Whether you are an experienced handyman or you are just trying to get your first tool kit together, a good impact driver is one of the best purchases you can make. Most beginners will be on the lookout for a reliable and versatile drill as their first power tool purchase. However, the power and efficiency of an impact driver can make any job a lot easier, assuming you need to drill some long screws at some point.
Buying your first impact driver can seem like a scary task, but it doesn’t have to be that way. An impact driver is built to be a fast and efficient power tool, and after reading through the reviews and tips in this article, your decision-making process should be fast and efficient too.
The following product reviews should give you a quick overview of the impact drivers that are available and what features to look out for when choosing one to buy.
View the Best Impact Driver, Below.
- DEWALT DCF885C1 20V MAX Impact Driver Kit
- Makita XDT131 Brushless Cordless Impact Driver Kit
- BLACK+DECKER BDCI20C Impact Driver Kit
- Milwaukee 2853-20 M18 FUEL impact Driver
- Ryobi One+ P236 Cordless Impact Driver
- CRAFTSMAN CMCK200C2 Drill Combo Kit
- Milwaukee M18 2850-20 Brushless Impact Driver
- Bosch GDR18V-1400B12 Impact Driver Kit
- PORTER-CABLE PCCK647LB Impact Driver Kit
- Bosch PS41-2A Impact Driver Kit
1. DEWALT DCF885C1 20V MAX Impact Driver Kit
The first impact driver to look at is the DCF885C1 MAX from DeWalt. DeWalt is a reliable American company and a big name in the power tool industry. If you are buying an impact driver for the first time, having a reputable manufacturer can be important when choosing what to get. In this case, it also means you are getting good value, as this product is one of the more affordable on the list.
In terms of value for money, this might be the best you can get. It has a built-in LED that uses a 20-second delay after use for safety. It is also a very efficient design. Not only is it small and lightweight in comparison to other impact drivers, but it has simple, one-hand loading for your bit tips. It has a brushed motor, which seems strange nowadays, but it does give extra control at lower speeds.
This impact driver is made by a reliable manufacturer at great value for money. It also gives more control through its brushed motor, which is a rarity.Check Price on Amazon ➞
2. Makita XDT131 Brushless Cordless Impact Driver Kit
The Makita XDT131 is another affordable impact driver, which can be an alternative to the DeWalt model. This Makita cordless impact driver differs mainly due to its motor. The brushless motor used in this model is more modern and allows the impact driver to run more smoothly and efficiently. Of course, most new impact drivers have brushless motors, but there are some other features that make this excellent value for money too.
The compact design makes this model simple to use and to carry around while you work. Makita has also succeeded in making an efficient impact driver, as the ¼ inch hex chuck allows you to change the bit with speed. It functions at a high speed too, with 3600 impacts per minute. Finally, the soft rubber grip and dual LED lights make this light work for an operator and particularly helpful on the job.
This is a compact and convenient power tool that is designed to be as easy to use as possible, with dual LEDs and a rubber grip to help the operator.Check Price on Amazon ➞
3. BLACK+DECKER BDCI20C Impact Driver Kit
Black and Decker have created their BDCI20C impact driver kit as an affordable option, yet it still maintains excellent quality and a very high impact speed. The compact design makes this as easy to use on the job as its competitors, although it is not quite as light. It is also battery powered and uses a brushed motor, which partially explains the low cost. Neither of these is problematic if you want an affordable impact driver for occasional use, but a professional might want to invest in something better.
It has a fast release to help you change bits quickly and reaches a higher speed than most impact drivers. In this sense, it is well worth the money as it will get any job done fast. However, it could be more efficient and of higher quality overall. Nonetheless, if you are buying your first impact driver, this would be a good, affordable option.
This is a cheaper model of impact driver from a reliable brand that still offers a high impact speed, making it great value for money.Check Price on Amazon ➞
4. Milwaukee 2853-20 M18 FUEL impact Driver
Another well-known power tool brand is Milwaukee, and here they have developed one of the most powerful impact drivers on the market. However, in this instance, the power is given to you rather than the tool. This is due to the 4 modes available on this product. Changing between the 4 different modes gives you full control of the speed and power that the driver uses, which is perfect for a professional.
The brushless motor makes it more efficient and 30% faster. Not only this, but it has an intelligence system included to ensure it does not overload, so you can work risk-free. If you need to work in tight spaces, this is also an ideal choice because of its size. With a short length and lightweight, you can get into the smallest gaps comfortably to get the job done.
The short and lightweight design makes this ideal for use in small spaces, and the four different modes give you greater control over both power and speed.Check Price on Amazon ➞
5. Ryobi One+ P236 Cordless Impact Driver
One lesser-known brand, Ryobi, has offered up one of the most useful impact drivers on the market. The P236 cordless impact driver has a bundle of features to make it stand out from the crowd as one of the most efficient tools available. This starts with a compact design. Like most impact drivers, it is small and easy to carry, but this is lighter than most. It also has a rubber grip, which is great when using it in uncomfortable positions or for long periods of time.
Some extra, more unique features include the magnetic tray. This is attached to the unit and allows you to keep any extra bits or fasteners stuck on, so you have both hands free to work. It even comes with one Phillips head drill bit attached. As well as this, there is a tri-beam light. This LED will do a better job of lighting up your workplace than most, but some operators could be annoyed by its restricted use. It only comes on while the driver is in motion, but this is the only clear negative of the tool.
This impact driver includes a bunch of added features and even a spare Philips drill bit to make your work as easy as possible.Check Price on Amazon ➞
6. CRAFTSMAN CMCK200C2 Drill Combo Kit
If you are looking to start a toolkit, or upgrade on your power tools, one of the most convenient ways of doing so would be to get a combined set of a cordless drill and an impact driver. That is exactly what Craftsman has to offer with their Drill Combo Kit. Here, you can get both for the price of one, along with a bunch of features that make them good quality too.
Firstly, both include an LED light built-in for maximum visibility while working. They are also designed to be compact in size so you can work in smaller gaps. If the package wasn’t convenient enough, they come with a handy storage bag and a charger that can recharge the batteries in an hour. Frankly, neither product is any better than its competitors, and the brushed motor is less efficient, but it remains a bargain nonetheless.
A combined drill and impact driver kit is excellent for filling your toolbox, and here you can get both at an affordable price.Check Price on Amazon ➞
7. Milwaukee M18 2850-20 Brushless Impact Driver
Another power tool from Milwaukee is this brushless impact driver. This is a more simple and affordable impact driver than the other Milwaukee product on this list, but it still does the job efficiently. Its compact design makes it ideal for working in tight spaces, and the brushless motor means it can run quickly and efficiently. It also has a high runtime as a result of this, so you don’t need to recharge frequently.
This is also one of the lighter impact drivers on this list. Often, weight can be a sign of quality, but in this instance, it makes it very useful for longer jobs. No job will take too long, though, as it works at one of the highest speeds seen on this impact driver list too. Unfortunately, it does not come with a charger or any other add ons, but this is reflected in the affordable price.
This is a simple impact driver from a reliable manufacturer who offers high speed and efficient performance at a reasonable price.Check Price on Amazon ➞
8. Bosch GDR18V-1400B12 Impact Driver Kit
When it comes to electrical goods, one of the best-known brands out there is Bosch. Already, a product seems reliable under the name. This impact driver kit lives up to that standard, as it gives you a sturdy product that is designed to be as convenient as possible.
Firstly, this is noticeable because it is a kit. As well as the power tool, you also receive a useful storage bag, a battery, its charger, and two bits. All you need is in one package. In terms of performance, this is one of the fastest impact drivers available. It is also very compact and light, meaning you can use it in smaller gaps. The built-in LED helps illuminate dark spaces too. A brushless motor would be better for a professional, but the motor in this impact driver works well for occasional use.
This is a full kit from Bosch, which gives you one of the fastest, most compact impact drivers on the market and a nice bag to carry it around in.Check Price on Amazon ➞
9. PORTER-CABLE PCCK647LB Impact Driver Kit
Porter-Cable has created this impact driver with a brushless motor for extra efficiency. Like all impact drivers with brushless motors, this can boast a longer runtime and a higher speed than its brushless counterpart. However, the speed is still not as high as most of its competitors.
It does make up for this in terms of its ergonomic design. It is shorter than most impact drivers, meaning this one is perfect if you need to work in tight gaps. The quick-release chuck lets you change bits with one hand and no need for any extra tools. It also comes with everything you need included, as well as a screwdriver bit for carrying out basic tasks. It may not be the fastest power tool, but it makes life easy for you and is very reliable.
This is the most efficient model Porter-Cable has created, with a much faster runtime and a shorter length. This means you can work for longer in smaller spaces.Check Price on Amazon ➞
10. Bosch PS41-2A Impact Driver Kit
Like the previous product, here is an example of Bosch providing a convenient kit for easy use. Again, this model comes with a handy storage case, 2 bits, batteries and a charger. In this sense, it is just as convenient as the other model and gives you everything you could need as a beginner. The PS41-2A is also a compact designed impact driver, with a built-in LED.
This is a power tool with variable speed, although it is not quite as fast as the previously listed Bosch model. However, it is lighter and arguably more versatile when working in small areas than most impact drivers on the market. The easy-grip handle helps you to feel comfortable when using it for long periods of time and has a short 5.4-inch head length, the shortest of its class. This is also a very durable piece of equipment, as Bosch boasts it can survive impact from 12 feet high onto concrete. This will not break easily.
This is small and compact enough to be used in the smallest of gaps, but it is also extremely durable, thanks to Durashield housing, making it ideal for the job site.Check Price on Amazon ➞
Impact Drivers Buyer’s Guide
Buying a new power tool is never an easy task. Whether you are a professional tradesman who needs an upgrade, or an amateur making home improvements who wants to start a toolkit, selecting the right drill or impact driver requires a lot of thought. After all, it is an expensive purchase and you will be likely using the tool for years to come.
To help make the decision process easier, it is best to think about what you need from your power tool and to learn what features are important to you. For example, not everyone needs a nice case to store it in, and the highest speeds might not be necessary if you are just carrying out basic home maintenance.
In order to help make your decision, the following tips should advise you as to what to look out for. By looking at what types of impact drivers are available and what features they include, this buyer’s guide should point you in the right direction for buying a new impact driver.
One factor that comes up a lot when shopping for power tools is the motor type. If you aren’t using power tools regularly, or you are looking to buy your first impact driver, you might not know what the different types are, or why they are important.
Generally, impact drivers can be split into two categories: those with a brushed motor, and those with a brushless motor. To put it simply, brushed motors contain carbon brushes, which are used to feed electricity to the coils which power the motor. This is the traditional way electric motors work, and brushless impact driver motors are a more modern development. Brushless motors do not use these carbon brushes, and there is nothing else touching the spinning armature.
Naturally, as brushed motors involve more parts, there is more that can go wrong. Over long periods of use, the electric motors can become less efficient and eventually stop working. This is why brushless motors have an advantage. They are designed to last much longer than brushed motors, and there is nothing in the way of the spinning armature, so it can spin faster and more efficiently.
If you aren’t going to use your new power tool often, this probably won’t make any difference at all. Occasional users can afford to buy a brushed motor and possibly save a bit of money. If you are a professional who uses it every day, the motor type could have an impact on your impact driver. A brushless motor will give you a higher speed and might last longer without damage.
As well as the type of motor that is used, there are plenty of other factors that can make an impact driver run more smoothly. Firstly, you might find that a smaller and more compact impact driver is useful. If you find yourself working in tight spaces, larger power tools can be a nuisance. If you are trying to put a long screw under a table or behind an obstacle, a shorter impact drill can give you the versatility you need.
Also, LED lighting on an impact driver can make a big difference if you are working in the dark or in a garage. Especially in small spaces, it can be hard to get the right lighting and you may end up working in a shadow. Having a built-in LED can solve this problem.
More simple features to make your impact driver more efficient regards storage. It may seem trivial, but a good bag or case to store your driver in can make all the difference if you need to travel around for work. Even if you don’t, having a bag to hold other tools and bits while you work can be handy. Some drivers have magnetic strips for holding your extra bits, so look out for that when you shop.
Hopefully, this guide will give you some extra tips for finding the best impact driver to suit your needs.
If you are a professional, it may be worth investing in a power tool with a brushless motor, as they are less prone to damage and last longer.
Did You Know?
When using your first impact driver, you will need specific ¼ inch hex bits, as those designed for drills will not be strong enough for the job.