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Introduction To DeWalt Compact Drill Drivers

Introduction to DeWalt Compact Drill Drivers

Labelled features of a cordless drill.

Whether you are a professional contractor or just a DIY enthusiast a compact drill driver is a must have tool. DeWalt are known worldwide for their high-quality build and the powerful lightweight tools. When it comes to choosing the best power tools for you, the DeWalt Compact Drill Driver should definitely be considered!

Why buy a compact drill driver?


As the name suggests, a drill driver can be used both for boring holes and driving screws. It is usually cordless, and is most suited for use on softer materials such as wood, plasterboard, plastic and metal.


Its three-jawed chuck will accept both straight and hexagonal bits, so you don’t have to buy extra ones specifically for this tool.


Strong enough to drive through metal.

Even a small drill driver can produce around 16Nm (Newton metres) of torque – a lot of power compared to a cordless screwdriver, which may only deliver about 6Nm. As a result, you’ll be able to drive larger screws into tougher materials.


Extra control when drilling is provided with the inclusion of torque control.

Even a small drill driver can produce around 16Nm (Newton metres) of torque – a lot of power compared to a cordless screwdriver, which may only deliver about 6Nm. As a result, you’ll be able to drive larger screws into tougher materials.


You can take a cordless tool anywhere. And weighing in at only 1.1kg with the battery fitted, a DeWalt’s sub compact drill driver won’t tire out your arms.


The 10.8V battery may not last quite as many hours as an 18 or 36V model, but it is much lighter and also charges up more quickly.

What should you look for in a compact drill driver?

There are a number of different things that you should consider when you are looking for a new compact drill. At Wonkee Donkee, we have compiled a complete list of everything you need to think about before you buy:

Adjustable torque control


Dual gearing


Keyless chuck


Automatic spindle lock


LED light

Forward/reverse button


Variable speed trigger


Metal gears


Electronic motor brake


Lithium-ion batteries

Adjustable Torque Control

Adjusting torque control on drills.

DeWalt sub compact cordless drill drivers have multiple torque adjustment settings – usually around 15 – so you can fine-tune the turning force to suit the type and depth of material you’re working on. For more details see Tips on Torque Control.

Dual Gearing

Dual Gear switch provides extra control.

The gear selector switch allows you to change between two gears for more versatility. You can choose either a low speed, high torque setting (for tough tasks) or a high speed, low torque setting (for softer materials or small screws). This breaks up the tool’s power into manageable chunks, preventing too much torque and speed from being delivered at one time.

Keyless Chuck

You don’t need a key to open and close the jaws of the chuck, making it easy to change drill bits. In addition the chuck has a single rotating sleeve and automatic spindle lock so that you can work it one-handed.


Just turn the chuck anti-clockwise to unlock it when removing a bit, and clockwise to lock the new bit in place.

LED Light

LED lights provide extra visibility working in dark areas.

Located just under the torque adjustment collar, the LED (short for Light Emitting Diode) light is useful for illuminating the work surface in dim conditions.


The light will come on automatically when you squeeze the trigger switch, and will go off when you release the trigger.

Forward and Reverse Button

Forward and reverse button to control the drill direction.

This button allows you to alternate the direction in which the drill driver rotates. Forward is used for driving in screws and drilling, while reverse is for removing screws and backing out drill bits. When the button is set in the centre, it will lock the drill in the off position. You can push the button in from either side of the tool.

Variable Speed Trigger

Variable Speed Trigger Switch.

The variable speed switch lets you choose the best speed for a particular task. Pulling the trigger starts the chuck turning – and the further you squeeze the trigger, the faster the drill will go. To slow down or stop, simply release the trigger.

Metal Gearing

Metal gears used within a DeWalt power drill.

The all-metal gears on DerWalt drill drivers are much more durable than the plastic ones found on many cheaper makes. They offer greater precision, and can also withstand the pressure of working with tough materials.

Electronic Motor Brake

Electronic motor from within a cordless power drill.

DeWalt’s cordless drill drivers are equipped with an electronic brake which immediately cuts the motor to stop the chuck rotating when you let go of the trigger switch, so you don’t have to wait for the spinning bit to slow down – a useful safety feature. 

Lithium-ion Batteries

DeWalt Lithium ion battery pack.

DeWalt drill drivers are available either with or without a battery pack, which consists of two rechargeable lithium-ion batteries – chosen due to their long charge life, compact size and low weight. Having two batteries means there’ll always be one with a full charge, so you’ll never have to wait around.

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