Black & Decker - Firestorm 18v Drill (Rating: 3)

This was my first real drill. I know Black & Decker gets a lot of knocks here, but it really wasn't too bad a drill. I've had this drill for probably 5 years. I've done a lot of home improvements with it. This includes:

  • Installation of a new garage door opener
  • Putting up a patio lattice made of all pressure treated lumber (6×8s, 4×8x, 4×4s, 2×6s)
  • Various wood working projects (mostly shelves and storage).

I have used it to drill 3" screws into pressure treated wood. Mine came with 2 batteries and they last a long time. In fact, I don't remember ever running down both batteries the same day.

The biggest problem with this drill is the wobbly chuck. As you can see in the picture, one of the "features" of this drill is that you can put a drill bit in the chuck, then, when you drill the pilot hole, you can take off the chuck to reveal a driver to drive the screw in. It is a very useful feature, but the wobbly chuck makes it difficult to get accurate and straight holes.

The black & decker also seems to be fragile, especially where it links to the chuck. Luckily, I have never dropped the drill, so I am not sure if it is fragile or not.

I have since upgraded to a Makita 18v drill. The Makita is much lighter and stronger. The chuck is also solid. As for battery life, they both seem equal.

But, after using the Makita, I don't think the Black & Decker was too bad. I would actually give it 3.5 stars.