The electric drills available in the market today sport varying voltage ratings. The differences are there to suit the different needs of users. Truth be told, while powerful electric drills are attractive, not everyone will need or even use such kinds of power. A professional may need to have a high volt drill to accommodate the various projects he handles, but a homeowner may need much less since the variety of applications are minimal. Understanding the difference between these volt drills will help you spend just the right amount of money to acquire a tool that will best meet your project needs.
What is voltage?
Simply put, voltage is the amount of power that is available to a drill. The voltage specified on the drill represents how much power a drill comes packing. It goes without saying that a high voltage will attract a high price as well and vice versa.
Below are some factors that you ought to consider before you make a volt choice. These factors will guide you to the best voltage drill.
Application for your cordless drill
For light duty tasks including drilling small holes and driving screws into surfaces (both hardwood and softwood), drywall and plastic, you will generally not require too much power. As a matter of fact, engaging full drill power in any of these tasks just might lead to irreversible damage to the surfaces being worked on. For the above-mentioned tasks or any other light duty task, you should consider getting a drill with a voltage rating of about 12V or even less.
For heavy duty tasks, on the other hand, you will without a doubt need a drill with high power. Heavy duty tasks include driving screws into soft and hard wood and drilling through these materials as well. Working on ceramic and metallic surfaces also counts as heavy duty. For these projects, you will require a volt drill of 14 Volts or higher.
The weight of the tool
Ideally, high voltage tools weigh much more than the low voltage tools do. If you do not intend to be using the tool often and for prolonged periods of time, then the weight of the drill should not be an issue. However, if you plan on completing long projects with the drill, then you should consider the weight since a heavy tool will strain your wrist and arm and even cause damage in some extreme cases with extended use.
In addition to this, it is very important that you consider the type of work that you will be handling with the tool. If you will be drilling and screwing while in awkward positions and small spaces, like in roof rafters, it will be tiring to have a heavy drill.
How much are you ready and willing to spend?
Just like the voltage affects weight, it also affects the price of the drill. A drill with a high battery voltage is likely to be more expensive than a low Volt drill. This is because there are other supporting features that a drill needs to have to ensure the high voltage power shines through.
The 12 Volt and 14 Volt drills are the most popular with most users since they provide sufficient power without having an insane price tag like that of 18 Volt drills.
But while the price is an important consideration to make, it should not take precedent to weight and application of the tool lest you find yourself with a tool unable to complete a desired heavy duty task in the future.
Consider other power tools you have
Tools that are made from the same brand and have the same voltage rating can share batteries. For instance, if you have a 14 Volt Makita Impact driver, and you seek to purchase a drill driver, choosing a 14 Volt Makita model will mean that you will have extra batteries to share among the tools.
But before you share the batteries, be sure to check with the manufacturer. There are some exceptions to this rule.