The Difference Between a Drill and an Impact Driver – Which Do You Need?

Figuring out what tools need to be in your toolbox or garage and what tools can be left out without consequences is pretty hard. Drills and impact drivers are quite similar power tools that many people view as unnecessary companions in their collections. Thus, it means that people tend to choose one tool over the other. To make sure that the one you go with, whether it be the drill or the impact driver, is the tool that will serve you best in all situations, read the rest of this article.

What You Need to Know About Drills

The versatility of the drill makes it the go-to tool for most DIY projects around the house as it is primarily used to drill holes and to drive screws. Different types of bits can be attached at the end of the drill to suit the project that you’re trying to perform with the tool. Commonly, round bits, screw-driving bits, and hex-shank bits are attached to this impressive power tool. Another important thing to know about the tool is the fact that it can either be corded or cordless. For convenience in use, it’s obviously recommended to go for a cordless drill as there are no limitations when it comes to walking around from one side of the room to the other with it in your hands.

Pros:

  • Perfect for projects where precision is needed;
  • Tool provides a reliable, constant torque;
  • Some models allow you to adjust the torque as you please;
  • Accepts various bits and other accessories;
  • Asking price is quite reasonable.

Cons:

  • Bits might come loose;
  • Effort is required on the user’s part – wrist injury might occur;
  • Can end up stripping the screws.

Drill Safety Precautions

To make sure that you stay out of harm’s way when working with this tool, there are a few safety precautions that you must follow at all times. Here is the list of the safety tips that you can’t skip on:

  • Wear protective gear – To make sure that you won’t get hurt, you should never use the drill without wearing work gloves, safety goggles, and protective clothing.
  • Use the right drill bit – Make sure that the drill bit you attach is the right one for the job you intend to perform. Otherwise, you will either damage the tool or end up ruining the entire project that you have been working so hard on.
  • Turn off the tool when changing bits – When you’re done with the drill, make sure that you unplug it or turn it off before changing the bits. Otherwise, you risk serious injuries.
  • Don’t clog the tool – Wood dust can clog this tool, an occurrence that you have to avoid at all costs to ensure your well-being as well as the drill’s protection. When you feel a block, just turn the tool off and clear the blockage.

What You Need to Know About Impact Drivers

Many people view drills and impact drivers are being tools that are way too similar to each other. It’s true that impact drivers do work in quite a similar way to drills as they spin the bits that are attached to them. On the other hand, these tools are the go-to solutions for driving screws, this being the task that they are specially designed for. The combination of superior torque and concussive force that drivers use makes them powerful enough to drive screws through even the toughest of surfaces. This is a capability that drills don’t boast as they are limited by their design. Therefore, when speed is needed to drive screws or when you know that you’ll be working on tough surfaces, the impact driver is the power tool that you must use. Just like drills, these tools can either be corded or cordless, but for a higher level of convenience in use, it’s best to go with cordless models.

Pros:

  • Easily powers screws through dense materials;
  • More torque is provided;
  • Slim chances that the tool might strip screws;
  • Compact design;
  • Perfect fit into tight spaces;
  • Effortless driving of long screws;
  • Wrist strain is prevented – less effort required from your part.

Cons:

  • Most models are quite loud when working with them;
  • Limited when it comes to attaching bits and other accessories;
  • Too powerful – not adequate for jobs where precision is needed;
  • Comes at a more expensive price.

Impact Driver Safety Precautions

Just as the case is when working with the drill, there are safety precautions that must be in check when using the impact driver to ensure your well-being. Here are the precautions that you must take:

  • Examine the tool before starting – Before you start driving nails into various surfaces with this powerful tool, don’t forget to check it for signs of breakage, cracking, or any type of damage to prevent incidents from occurring.
  • Check the work area – Before you start to work, check the area for concealed electric cables, pipes, and gas lines to make sure that you won’t end up poking them with the driver.
  • Wear safety accessories – Never use the tool without wearing proper safety equipment. The accessories that you must always wear include safety goggles, a face mask, gloves, and a thick jacket.
  • Use the right accessory – Prior to inserting the accessory into the power tool, check its compatibility. If the socket or drill bit isn’t a perfect fit, the impact with the surface is going to cause breaks or splinters.

Conclusion – Drill or Impact Driver?

As we have already explained, these two power tools are quite similar in their operation, this being the reason why so many people falsely think that it’s not necessary to own them both. The truth is that in the toolbox or garage of a handy person, both tools are a mandatory presence as they are specially designed for quite different tasks. To be more precise, drills specialize in drilling holes and light jobs that involve driving screws, while impact drivers are specially designed to drive screws through all types of surfaces, even extremely hard ones. Therefore, if you want to be properly prepared for any DIY project, make sure that you have both power tools at your disposal.