Power tools have been around for a long time, but in the last 15 years there has been a big jump forward for them. The creation of brushless motors has added smarter power tools to the market.
The difference between brush style motors and brushless ones is that brushless motors can automatically adjust for the resistance detected from use. While brush motors constantly operate at the same power level, brushless motors will adjust power up or down depending on that resistance. If you’re interested in learning more, let’s find out what the best brushless combo kit of power tools is.
DEWALT DCK277C2 Brushless Drill and Combo Kit (Editor's Choice)
Milwaukee 2897-22 M18 Fuel 2-tool Combo Kit (Editor's Choice)
DEWALT DCK280C2 Compact Drill Combo Kit
Makita CT322W Compact Cordless 3-Pc. Combo Kit
DEWALT DCK283D2 Brushless Drill/Combo Kit (Editor's Choice)
This kit includes a cordless drill and a cordless impact wrench. Both pieces are lightweight and compact, making them easy to use in tight spaces. Along with that, the tools have LED lights to help see where you’re working when in dark or confined spaces.
The lights have a 20 second delay so that they stay on after you’ve stopped running the tools so you can see if the job is finished.
The set comes with two 20 volt lithium ion battery that work with either tool. The included wall charger is able to fully charge one battery at a time in about two hours. The kit also includes a carrying bag to store the tools in when they are not in use, or to help get them from one project to the next.
The tools feature an ergonomic design, which makes holding the lightweight tools easier and more comfortable. The grip helps out with the balance of the tools as well, making them easy to hold in the proper position for the duration of the job.
The set comes with a limited three year warranty to help protect your investment. The way these tools are constructed and operate, along with the strong warranty, show that they are durable and ready to last a long time.
The only issue that was truly noticeable about the tools was that they ran out of power a bit sooner than some of the other models we reviewed. That being said, the battery and power still outperformed any cordless brush model that I’ve encountered.
Milwaukee includes a cordless hammer drill and impact driver in this combo kit. While this kit is supplied power from 18 volt batteries, the power provided is more than we expected. The impact driver can reach torque up to 1,800 inch pounds, and 2,000 rpm, easily able to handle almost any task desired.
The impact driver also has four modes of drive control to ensure the proper amount of power is supplied for the various tasks it will be needed for.
The drill has the ability to apply 1,200 inch pounds of torque as it spins at up to 2,000 rpm as well. This drill is likely the most powerful on the market for an 18 volt entry. The power and speed were able to improve the time it took to complete tasks, finishing one task after another without slowing down.
One of the extra features that truly comes in handy with the hammer drill is the self-tapping screw driving mode. This is great in preventing over drilling, and will definitely save many screw heads from being stripped over the life of the product.
Milwaukee covers this set with a five year warranty, and the tools come with a hard sided carrying case. The case provides much better protection while transporting the tools than any of the products that include a soft carrying bag instead. The quality of the materials is very high as well, once again proving that Milwaukee has made yet another durable product.
A second entry that we reviewed from Dewalt that includes a cordless impact driver and power drill, but this entry is not a brushless model. This entry was decided on to see how a brush motor compares to it’s brushless brothers.
The DCK277C2 reviewed above is set in the same class, and the tools appear nearly identical when taken out of the box. The difference isn’t noticeable until you start using them.
This model’s specifications show the impact driver as being:
The brushless model specs have it at:
For the impact driver, the difference in weight may not be noticeable at first, but after using the tool for extended periods of time, your hands and arms will be happier with the brushless model. Along with that, the brushless impact driver is rated to be able to apply around 100 inch pounds more than the brush driver. Proving that the brushless models are more powerful than the older technology.
Looking at the power drill, here are the results:
The brushless model:
While the brushless drill is a bit slower in max rpm than the older model, the torque outshines it in driving power, and the weight is a clear advantage to the brushless model as well. Ultimately, your budget and your power needs will have to be balanced to decide which version you prefer, as the brushless model is generally higher priced when shopping around.
Keeping in line with the impact driver and drill sets, this entry from Makita is the direct competitor to the other options we reviewed. The set has an advantage of including a compact cordless LED flashlight as the third piece, but considering that’s not really a power tool in the essence we are discussing, it isn’t much of an advantage.
The drill driver delivers an excellent amount of power for the size and power output of the unit. Coming in at 480 inch pounds of torque, this is definitely one of the top cordless drills on the market as far as power is concerned.
When it comes to the impact driver the story is a little different. With the rpm getting up to 2,900, the torque comes in at a relatively unimpressive 1,460 inch pounds. While that’s plenty to get most jobs done that you’ll encounter, it is lagging behind the other options we reviewed.
While the power tools themselves are mixture of results, the included flashlight is all alone in this review. Clearly the best flashlight included out of any of the sets, because it’s the only flashlight, it’s actually a welcome addition to the kit.
The flashlight can last up to 35 hours without needing to be recharged, it has a hand strap for convenient use to point light where you’re working, while you’re working and it’s compact size helps you set it into tight spaces.
The final product we reviewed wraps up with a third kit from Dewalt. This combo also features the impact driver and drill pairing that we’ve been covering. As we’ve seen with Dewalt products, they are a strong competitor and have durable equipment in the market.
This set is no exception to that. The durability and materials are on par with the other entries. Where this set struggles is in the power range. While the DCK277C2 is most comparable, with both sets being brushless motors, this entries power is greater in terms of results than it’s brother.
The drill clocks in with 620 inch pounds of torque, which gets close to doubling the torque output of the DCK277C2’s drill. The drill is heavier, coming in at 3.4 pounds, but having the extra power to get the job done can make the decision for you.
The impact driver is also able to deliver more power as well, with the speed getting up to a max of 3,250 rpm, and the torque maxing at 1,825 inch pounds. Those are both quite a difference from the little brother’s capabilities. The weight is a manageable 2.8 pounds, which is very similar to the DCK277C2’s impact driver.
With other features being similar, including the LED lights with 20 second delay, the carrying bag, and the batteries being 20 volt… the difference is do you need more power, or the more economical choice. As with the other Dewalt comparison, for more power, the cost is likely going to be greater, making this the highest price option of the three choices we reviewed.
When choosing the best brushless combo kit that suits your needs, it’s important to know what projects and tasks the tools will be used for. Whether it will be used every day, or just on rare occasions can also come into play. Before making a final decision, come up with the reasons why you need one of these combo sets and think about the following aspects as well.
One of the first things that needs to be looked at is the chuck size on the drills and impact drivers. This is the inner part of the drill that grips the bit. If you’re just using the kit for every day purposes, then you likely only need the standard 3/8th inch chuck.
If you have more demanding tasks to handle, there are options that include up to a half inch chuck. When examining the above options, check out the links provided to see what size chuck is offered, to match it up with the tasks you need.
The next thing to take into consideration is what is known as keying. While all of the above recommendations come with keyless chucks, that just twist open and locked, there are models out there that require chuck keys. Keyed chucks can be tightened down better than keyless versions, but they are more difficult to open and change bits quickly.
If you need a stronger gripping chuck, then you may need to research other options to find a keyed chuck to suit your needs.
One last thing to consider before making your decision, is the battery. There are many options for tools that have cords, rather than operating from battery, and they have their advantages and disadvantages as well. Being tethered to the wall with a cord limits where you can reach at times, but battery operated versions can’t build up as much power and strength as those plugged in versions.
Batteries also lose charge as they age, meaning they may not last as long to accomplish the jobs you need done in a day. With a plugged in version, you’ll never have to worry about running out of power unless there’s a blackout or you can’t reach the outlet anymore.
After looking at the tools available, and working through a few simple challenges with them, the best brushless combo kit for us was the Dewalt DCK277C2. With the broad range of power, compactness, and right price, it works best for all around purposes. Of course, if you need more power then the DCK283D2 is a better choice, or the Milwaukee 2897-22 was a superb choice as well If budget restrictions are the biggest concern then the Dewalt brush motor models or Makita option are likely what you’ll want to look at first.
At the end of the day, these kits are as personal of a choice as can be, so take your time looking at each option more closely, so when you make your purchase you’ll be happy with it for years to come.
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