How many of you own both corded and cordless drills?

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Forum topic by DKV posted 06-24-2015 07:19 PM 2176 views 0 times favorited 41 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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3940 posts in 3420 days

06-24-2015 07:19 PM

I have owned the same two Dewalt drills for over 20 years. Every five years or so I buy new batteries and continue on. I’m about ready to order another set of batteries. I asked myself why not just buy corded and be done with the challenges of battery powered drills. Or, should I buy corded drills and a new set of batteries, or, should I buy corded drills and a new set of cordless drills? Mechanically the two existing cordless drills work well. It’s all about the batteries. I do not buy third party batteries…only Dewalt batteries. What have you guys done? Just continue to buy batteries for old drills? Buy new cordless drills? Have a set of corded and cordless? What’s your story?

-- This is a Troll Free zone.

41 replies so far

View TravisH's profile


742 posts in 2851 days

#1 posted 06-24-2015 07:29 PM

I stuck with corded drills for some time after the cordless finally became decent but eventually made the switch to battery and find the cost of replacement batteries or even the entire drill a non factor when compared to dealing with having to make sure a power outlet, messing with an extension cord, discovering just not quite long enough, coming unplugged, etc… In the shop wasn’t as big of a deal but just one more cord that seamed to always be in the way.

View jimr1cos's profile


31 posts in 2802 days

#2 posted 06-24-2015 07:36 PM

I use my cordless 90%. For the remainder I use my Craftsman Commercial 1/2 in corded beast- heavy and bulky, but capable of serious work.

View Fred Hargis's profile

Fred Hargis

6571 posts in 3409 days

#3 posted 06-24-2015 07:40 PM

I couldn’y imagine being without a corded drill, but I don’t replace the batteries on the cordless. Typically, it’s almost as cheap to toss everything and start with a new one. I did try aftermeaket batteries for my old NiCad Dewalt, and they were actually better (more power in terms of run time and they had longer lives) than the OEM.

-- Our village hasn't lost it's idiot, he was elected to congress.

View Dlhornscxm's profile


4 posts in 1983 days

#4 posted 06-24-2015 07:47 PM

I own both but use my cordless for most things. I just have two cheap corded drills, one standard 1/2” drive and one 1/2” hammer drill. I have a 1/4” drill/driver 12volt Bosch (10+ years same batteries), a Bosch 12volt 3/8” drill/driver and 1/4” impact kit I bought in January. Last summer was the last time I used my corded and that was building my kids swing set using 6X6 timbers. Gave my son-in law my 18volt Ridgid set (batteries not lasting very long anymore). Have contemplated buying a new 18volt drill mainly for drilling pocket holes, 12volt doesn’t hold up as long with drilling pocket holes.

-- Dlhornscxm, Elk Grove CA,

View jmartel's profile


9108 posts in 3066 days

#5 posted 06-24-2015 07:50 PM

I personally don’t see a point of a cordless drill for my use. I’m not doing anything that isn’t within extension cord range of a power outlet. Plus, corded drills are more powerful, cheaper to buy, and don’t need replacing every couple years. Others may vary, however. Someone who does a lot of work on a jobsite would be much better served with a cordless drill.

-- The quality of one's woodworking is directly related to the amount of flannel worn.

View MrUnix's profile


8281 posts in 3115 days

#6 posted 06-24-2015 07:56 PM

I have both… several corded drills and a couple older Makita cordless drills. There are some things that cordless drills just suck at… like drilling lots of largish holes in thick plate steel or stripping paint off an old machine cabinet with a wire wheel.


PS: And new batteries for my Makitas only cost $10-$15 a piece.

-- Brad in FL - In Dog I trust... everything else is questionable

View Earlextech's profile


1162 posts in 3606 days

#7 posted 06-24-2015 08:03 PM

Both. Nothing like a corded drill for jobsite drilling, but for cabinet installation I love my Makita drill and impact!

-- Sam Hamory - The project is never finished until its "Finished"!

View AHuxley's profile


874 posts in 4237 days

#8 posted 06-24-2015 08:13 PM

I have an array of drills and use them all over the course of say a year but I much prefer cordless drills. I have a corded 1/2” beast that only comes out for the most brutal of tasks, none of which have anything to do with fine woodworking. I have light corded 3/8” drill I bought for pocket holes when the upper rpm limit of cordless drills was significantly lower than what was recommended, this is probably my least used drill now. I have the 18v Dewalt tools and for a while I used them almost exclusively BUT now 12v tools get by far the most use. The current 12v (technically 10.8v) tools especially the brushless versions are amazing. If I was starting from scratch I would buy 12v cordless tools (brushless where available) which I could use 97% of the time and pick up cheap lower-midrange corded tools for the rare “hard” job I would use them for. Currently with the market penetration pricing you see with cordless tool kits it makes little sense to replace just batteries for older tools, the tools are much better now and the prices particularly when they go on sale make replacement batteries false economy. Try to get some time hands on with either a Milwaukee or Bosch 12v brushless drill and it is unlikely you will see a need for 18v replacements.

For most people cordless tools are like TV remotes, prior to living with one they seem frivolous but when you have lived with one they become a requirement.

View gtbuzz's profile


427 posts in 3357 days

#9 posted 06-24-2015 08:28 PM

Both. A bunch of different cordless ones for various tasks, but a single Dewalt corded one with 1/2 in chuck for the really heavy duty stuff (mostly construction, very rarely woodworking). Definitely comes in handy when mixing grout or mortar. Haven’t found a cordless drill that can really last for a task like that. Certainly sucks to have to replace the batteries on the cordless drills every few years, but really can’t beat the convenience.

View nerdbot's profile


97 posts in 2277 days

#10 posted 06-24-2015 08:36 PM

I have a few drills as well, 3 cordless and 1 corded. I use the cordless ones for most everything, woodworking and fix-it projects in the house. I used the corded one when I was wiring up the different rooms in my house for cat5 and surround sound. Even the Dewalt 20V drills ran out of juice quickly when using the long drill bits I needed.

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Monte Pittman

30576 posts in 3254 days

#11 posted 06-24-2015 08:45 PM

I have 4 corded drills and insisted that I would not buy a cordless one. Yesterday, I bought a cordless one. I hit a couple situations that it would have been the right thing to have.

-- Nature created it, I just assemble it.

View Dallas's profile


3599 posts in 3403 days

#12 posted 06-24-2015 09:13 PM

I own no drills with tails. I just sold my 20 year old Milwaukee 14.4V with a Jacobs chuck, I got a second set of two batteries from Milwaukee 12 years ago when there was a recal on the batteries and these were still going strong.

Last year, (I think), I bought a Master Mechanic 12V 1/2” drill and impact driver. Both are vary powerful. Not like the old Milwaukee, but strong enough for most things.

In November my wife got me an 18V Li 1/2” drive drill that is nearly as strong as my ex boss’s Crapsman 1/2” drive corded heavy duty drill.

I have used it in a 12” deep solid concrete drilling marathon. I made 10 holes before changing batteries, and by the time I wore out the next battery, the one on the charger had been fully charged.

Sorry, I gave up the drills with cords many years ago.

-- Improvise.... Adapt...... Overcome!

View Larry Wilson's profile

Larry Wilson

26 posts in 2692 days

#13 posted 06-24-2015 09:19 PM

I have a couple of Milwaukee M18 cordless drills and a 1970s Craftsman corded drill as a backup. If I could get even ten bucks for the old Craftsman drill I would unload it. I can’t remember the last time I used it.

-- Shoot pool, not people

View bondogaposis's profile


5891 posts in 3267 days

#14 posted 06-24-2015 09:41 PM

I have both, rarely use the corded, except when drilling bench dog holes.

-- Bondo Gaposis

View timbertailor's profile


1594 posts in 2340 days

#15 posted 06-24-2015 09:46 PM

I use a corded drill when I need the power, have access to AC, and I have a lot of work to do with it.

I use the cordless drill for small jobs, places where I can not get AC power, or when it is more convenient.

I bought two, inexpensive cordless drill kits. It was cheaper than buying replacement batteries or even getting them rebuilt for my DeWalt. I like my 12 volt DeWalt for its size. I do not need 18.8 + power. I like the old compact design. But, the new drills came with four batteries and two chargers. Now, I always have a good battery waiting for me and I can use one drill for drilling and chuck up the other for screwing. No more going back and forth. Saves me a lot of grief and aggravation.

-- Brad, Texas,

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