Are Corded Drills More Powerful?

Corded drills are typically believed to be a more powerful option for drilling. In this article, I’ll carefully explain if corded drills are more powerful.

As an experienced mechanical engineer, I know the power capacity of your corded or cordless drills. A better understanding will help you purchase a drill that best suits your workflow. For any repetitive task, I would recommend corded which are more impactful and powerful, as opposed to their other counterparts — cordless drills.  

Quick Summary: Corded drills receive direct power and are the most popular power tool. They are more powerful and have faster speeds than cordless drills. On the other hand, a cordless drill is battery rechargeable and replaceable.

More detail below.

Are Corded Drills More Powerful?

To find out the truth, I will review several corded drills’ characteristics.

1. Torque, Speed, and Power

Torque is everything when it comes to power.

Before we begin any sort of number crunching or head-to-head correlations, I’ll say that, overall, a corded drill is much more powerful than a cordless power tool; they have an endless supply of 110v electricity to run off of, whereas cordless drills are limited to 12v, 18v, or possibly 20-volts at most. 

Now, without going too far off the rails, let’s look at the maximum power outputs of several corded and cordless drills, and hopefully clear up some mistaken beliefs about volts, watts, amperage, power, and torque as we progress.

Corded drills, as said before, operate on a standard 110v power supply from a home or garage. Their maximum power capacity is determined by the size of the electric motor, which is measured in amps. A corded drill with a 7-amp motor, for instance, has a maximum output of 770 watts.

So, if you are comparing drills, watts (maximum power output) are not always the best unit to use, since we’re more concerned with speed and torque:  Speed, measured in RPM, refers to how fast the drill spins, whereas torque measured in inch-pounds, refers to how much rotational umph is driving the spinning.

Most of today’s high-quality cordless drills have impressive torque and speed out of their 18v or 20v batteries, giving you all the power you’ll need.

DeWalt uses an interesting calculation known as “max watts out” (MWO) to determine the maximum power value for their cordless drills. This 20-volt drill, for instance, has an MWO of 300, which is much less powerful than our earlier example of the 7-amp corded power drill with a maximum power of 710 watts.

However, as noted previously, the actual evidence comes in the form of speed and torque which corded drills can pack more of because of their larger power source.

2. Precision

If you are doubting the precision and accuracy of corded drills, then I will shed light below.

Analysts argue that corded drills are more precise and accurate. Their accurate or precise drilling mechanisms are effective and needed to quickly wrap up a task.  However, they are less precise than their cordless counterparts.

3. The efficiency of Corded Drills

Corded tools are versatile in their application due to the rotation and degree changes that enable the device user to maneuver. They are also readily available for use and do not need charging time, reducing downtime and increasing productivity.

using corded drill
Video | Found4you

Some Shortcomings of Corded Drills

Let’s check the flip side:

Fully Depends on the Electricity

Corded drills lack built-in batteries to power them, necessitating the use of extension cables and power outlets for power. That prevents a user from accomplishing precision when operating this tool.

More Storage Space

dewalt corded drill
Video | Found4you

They use more storage capacity than cordless drills, including space for the tool and other tools that work tandemly with the drill.

Take a look at some of our related articles below.

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About Sam Orlovsky

b1d87d2ee85af3e51479df87928bdc88?s=90&d=mm&r=gCertifications: B.E.E.
Education: University Of Denver - Electric Engineering
Lives In: Denver Colorado

Electrical engineering is my passion, and I’ve been in the industry for over 20 years. This gives me a unique ability to give you expert home improvement and DIY recommendations. I’m not only an electrician, but I also like machinery and anything to do with carpentry. One of my career paths started as a general handyman, so I also have a lot of experience with home improvement I love to share.

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