Finding the best impact driver for the money can be a painstaking task, especially if you have never owned one. However, shuffling through impact driver reviews isn’t something everyone wants or likes to do.
I’ve been a contractor for nearly 20 years and I’ve used some of the best and lousiest impact drivers on the market. There’s a few things you should keep in mind when looking for one and that is: Torque, Speed and battery power. With that in mind, look for impact drivers with variable speeds – this will help you from snapping off screw heads. Furthermore, find one that has a brushless motor – this will help reduce the wear and tear of your motor and will extend the life of the battery between charges for less downtime.
Top 7 Best Impact Drivers Reviewed & Rated
1. DEWALT DCF885C1 20V Max 1/4″ Impact Driver
The ergonomic design of the DEWALT Impact Driver Kit allows it to fit into tight spaces. It weighs 2.8lbs and is only 5.55 inches back to front. For increased visibility, it has a built-in LED light with a 20-second delay after each trigger release.
This is a super lightweight impact driver that packs a lot of power. Many of the contractors I work with love this tool. Read full review
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Q. Does it have variable settings?
A. The impact of the driver depends on how far you depress the trigger. So if you press it lightly, it will release slower, and if you push it in further, it will release faster.
Q. Can the charger take a 220v input or just 110v?
A. It takes a 110v
Q. Can I use a 20v 4.0Ah battery on this drill?
A. Yes, all 20v DeWalt batteries will work.
What’s My Take
2. Makita XDT12Z 18V LXT Brushless 4-Speed Impact Driver
According to many cordless impact driver reviews the Makita 18V LXT Impact Driver is faster and has more torque than its predecessors. Thanks to its precision fastening applications, there is no damage to the screw or work surface. It weighs in at 3.3lbs and produces 1,550 lbs of torque and has four power speed settings up to 3600 RPM. This is probably the most compact and best cordless impact driver in its category. Read full review
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Q. Will 18v Makita batteries work with this tool?
A. Yes, it will.
Q. Can it be used as a hammer drill?
A. No, it is not recommended. Some other drivers are designed to be robust hammers as well. However, this one is not suitable.
Q. How durable is the driver?
A. I have dropped it several times from a height is 25 feet, and it stills works like a charm, time and time again.
Q. Where is it manufactured?
A. In Japan
What’s My Take
3. PORTER-CABLE PCCK647LB 20V MAX
The PORTER CABLE Cordless Impact Driver has a brushless motor which provides fifty percent more runtime. It packs plenty of torque for large fastening applications at 1400lbs and 2900 RPM. I really love the quick change hex that allows for rapid, one-handed drill bit changes – perfect for when you’re standing on top of a ladder in a tight space. It’s very lightweight weighing in at 2.9 LBS and carries is a three-year warranty. The ergonomic design is 14% shorter than other models and makes it easy to grip and hold.
Porter cable has been around for a longtime and for the price, this impact driver is a steal. Read full review
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Q. Will this take off lug nuts
A. No, you need at least 300 FT-LBS of torque for this application
Q. What accessories sent with the driver?
A. It comes with two batteries and a charger
Q. How long does LED light stay on while working
A. It will stay on for approximately 20 seconds before going off
Q. Are the batteries interchangeable with other brands?
A. No, the batteries only work with this specific brand
4. Milwaukee 2753-20 M18 Fuel 1/4 Hex Impact Driver
The Milwaukee Impact Driver is lightweight and uses a lithium ion battery. It weighs 2.6 pounds. Similar models have brushes however this model is brushless. You will be pleased to know that this driver has various settings and is ideal for jobs that require less power as well as it won’t damage the surface will mess up the job that you are trying to do.
Milwaukee is a brand that is breaking all kinds of records, in regards to performance & reliability – especially with the M18 line. Read full review
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Q. What accessories are included with this driver?
A. It is sent as a bare tool, so no charger, battery or case
Q. How do the sockets attach to the tool?
A. It attaches via a 1/4″ hex drive bit holder
Q. Will it work on heavy bolts on vehicles?
A. Not really, this model is designed more for construction. If you need one specifically for automobiles, you should inquire as there are various models available.
What’s My Take
5. Ridgid GEN5X R86035SB 18-Volt Lithium-Ion 1/4 in Cordless Impact Driver
The Ridgid Cordless Impact Driver Kit is an excellent tool for any handyman. One of the first things you will notice about it is the fantastic battery life that lasts a while between jobs. The variety of speed and torque settings are also nice features. As a bonus, Ridgid offers the free batteries for life program as part of their Lifetime Service Agreement. It also comes equipped with a battery indicator that allows you to check how much battery life you have left.
This is a nice low cost impact driver. Read full review
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Q. Can I use the same batteries for all Ridgid tools?
A. Yes, All Ridgid batteries are compatible and interchangeable
Q. How much does it cost?
A. It is available at different retail prices from different sellers and retailers. However, it is cheaper than other leading brands, and you get free batteries with it
Q. Is the brushless version
A. No, it is not
Q. How can you tell how much battery life you have left?
A. It comes with a handy battery switch that shows you how much battery life you have left
My Take on this driver
6. Bosch 25618-02 18-Volt Lithium-Ion 1/4-Hex Impact Driver
If you have ever needed to get a job done in a hard-to-reach or tiny space, then you will appreciate the Bosch Hex Compact Tough Impact Driver with Slim Pack Battery. Its compact design allows it to get into those hard-to-reach places to accomplish practically any job. Optimized torque limits assist in not stripping off the head of screws. If you have a tendency to work in low lighting in environments, you’ll be pleased to know that it has a useful LED light which simply illuminates the work surface. It provides the best control and runtime for medium or small duty fasting jobs. It also constrains an innovative feature called the electronic cell protection feature which basically prevents damage caused by misuse and also increases the battery life. Read full review
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Q. What accessories accompany the driver?
A. According to the manufacturer website, it comes with 1 belt clip, a single battery, 1 contractor bag and 1 charger.
Q. How does it perform doing metal related tasks
A. It works wonders when you self-tapper screws through metal
Q. Do the batteries lose charge if you don’t use the tool?
A. No, you will be pleased to know that the battery holds the charge while it is not used.
What’s My Thoughts
7. Ryobi Cordless 18V P237 Impact driver
The Ryobi impact driver brings life to the word “impact”. With its three torque and speed settings, this mean looking driver packs a powerful punch. It is built solidly and has on-board lighting that comes in handy when you need to work in areas where lighting is poor. Although it runs on regular Ryobi batteries, the battery life is still pretty good. This driver can complete the necessary tasks that it was intended for. However, you should maintain it and only use it for functions that it was designed for. This is the best way to lengthen its lifespan. Read full review
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Q. Will this driver remove lug nuts?
A. You may have an issue if the lug nuts are on too tightly, but once they are slightly loose, you shouldn’t have a problem removing them using this impact driver.
Q. What is the difference between P237 and the P236
A. The P237 definitely has more torque and 3-speed settings. This version also has a power level switch that helps to reduce stripping out screws. With this version, the LED lights stay on for a couple of seconds after you release the trigger and it also contains a spring-loaded auto eject chuck.
Q. Are there more compact versions of the Ryobi impact driver?
A. No, this is the most compact in its catergory
Q. Is this impact drill versatile?
A. It has three torque/speed variations and is, therefore, able to drive through multiple boards. However, it can also be dialled back for jobs that need a lighter touch.
What’s My Take
There’s quite a few brands of impact drivers to choose from. You really can’t go wrong in purchasing either one of them. In most cases, you get what you pay for and by reading our impact driver reviews, I hope we helped solve some concerns many of you have.