Table of Contents
- View The Best Right Angle Drill Below
- Right Angle Drills Buyer’s Guide
DIY often conjures images of men and women with hardened, calloused hands and the belief that the more power and strength you can get in a power tool, the better. This may be true in some situations, but many DIY enthusiasts fall into the trap of purchasing a huge, overpowered drill, only to find that it’s so big it can’t fit into small and tight spaces. Working under car hoods, inside kitchen cupboards, or down the back of household appliances requires a tool with much more finesse and dexterity. The best tool to use is a right angle drill.
If DIY is a heist movie and power drills are the muscle, then right angle drills are the contortionist sleuths that sneak in and tinker to get the job done. Raw power isn’t always the answer, and with right-angle drills, you will find that you can reach awkward and hard-to-get-to areas without having to become a contortionist yourself.
While they can be limited to what they can manage, when it comes to heavy drilling, right-angle drills are the best option for guide holes and putting in screws. They are great for completing low to mid duty jobs such as assembling furniture, installing cupboards or garage doors, or carrying out maintenance on automobiles or electronics.
But what are the best right angle drills? Is it worth buying one instead of a new power drill or an electric screwdriver? We’ve taken a look at seven of the best right angle drills we could find, and we’ve broken down everything you need to know to find the one you need to get the job done.
View The Best Right Angle Drill Below
1. Dewalt 20v Max Right Angle Drill
This Dewalt drill (also known as the DCD740B) is the best performing right-angle drill and also offers a range of functionality and versatility use. It features a ⅜ keyed chuck that can hold almost any screwdriver bit or drill head, and dual rpm speed functions. You can use either 0-650 rpm or the max 0-2000 rpm, depending on your workload.
Either way, you can be sure that you will be in complete control with the variable speed trigger. It’s better to think of the Dewalt as a power screwdriver more than a mini power drill. While it works great with small drilling jobs in wood, plastic, and other softer surfaces, it may struggle with harder materials such as stone or brick.
It has a wide, multi-grip paddle switch down the ergonomic handle that will allow you to set the drill spinning even when you have to change your hand position on account of constricted or tight spaces. It measures 1ft in height, which gives you brilliant reach and leverage, and because it runs on a 20v lithium-ion battery, you have total freedom of movement.
It should be noted that this DCD740B model is sold only as the tool itself. Another model, the Dewalt DCD740C1, comes with a battery and charger. They are, in fact, the same drill, but purchasing the DCD740B instead of the Dewalt DCD740C1 is more suitable for those who already own any Dewalt power tools, as it means you can save money by not having to purchase another battery and charger. Also, unlike the Dewalt DCD740C1, the DCD740B has the option to buy additional drill and screw heads as part of a package deal.
+ Versatile and dexterous.
+ Dual speed ranges for enhanced control.
+ Wide paddle switch trigger.
Why We Like It – Few power tools can reach such awkward positions as the Dewalt, which is why it sits proudly at the top of our list.
2. Makita DA3010F Right Angle Drill
This Makita drill offers a powerful drilling force when compared to other right angle drills thanks to the 4.0 amp motor. It’s surprisingly light for a drill, which is great if you’re working on a long project or need to reach into tight spaces. It comes with an additional handle that allows you to push the drill harder while maintaining full control.
Its ball-bearing construction puts this drill on the heavier end of mid-duty tools, and it has excellent use lifespan. The variable speed paddle switch can push this right angle drill up to an impressive 2400 rpm. It features a limiting dial to ensure you don’t over tighten screws. The ⅜ keyed chuck makes sure your drill, and screw heads never come loose.
A LED light illuminates those awkward workspaces so you can get the job done with precision and safety. This is a corded right angle drill with a stand US plug fitting. While this does restrict your movement slightly, it makes up for it with how lightweight it is. It also completely avoids any battery issues. You can work for as long as you need without worrying about the battery running out or your arms tiring from the weight.
+ Powerful and Durable.
+ LED light.
+ Additional handle for increased control and leverage.
Why We Like It – The Makita feels like a solid piece of DIY equipment. Where some right-angle drills can feel like they’re struggling or need to be handled delicately, the Makita powers its way through whatever it needs to tackle.
3. Galaxy Pro Angle Drill
The all-black color and design of this gorgeous looking angle drill immediately signify that it’s something very special and different from all other models. With your hand closed around the comfortably shaped handgrip, you can drill through a range of mid-duty materials including wood, plastic, thin metals, and light masonry.
It weighs just 4.5 lbs and can reach a speed of up to 1600 rpm for an excellent drive with the 3.5 amp motor. The variable speed pistol trigger ensures you are always in control and can be locked off and on for continuous drilling. A ⅜ keyed chuck keeps your drill heads and screw tips secure during use and can be swapped out with ease.
With this, you can tackle a versatile range of tasks and jobs. This angle drill also features an LED light for illuminating dark and hard to reach workspaces. As a corded right angle drill, you never need to worry about battery life. It even comes with a 24-month warranty and x2 screwdriver heads to get you going.
+ Comfortable trigger grip handle.
+ Built-in LED light.
+ Highly versatile
Why We Like It – This drill is so stylish and functional, it’s like something Batman would use. If you think it has been a while since you last updated your toolbox, this drill is definitely worth a look.
4. Ryobi P241 One+ Right Angle Drill
This is one of the best right angle drills when it comes to awkward and tight spaces. The Ryobi is one of the tallest tools on our list, at 13-inches. The rubber hand grip and trigger are positioned much lower than over models to give maximum protrusion and reach to the drill head. It has a built-in LED light to help you see in dark workspaces and an innovative magnet tray.
The tray is included as a means of keeping hold of your loose screws, nuts, drill bits, screwdriver heads, or anything else that makes you roar in frustration when it drops down the back of the washing machine. It can reach a speed of up to 1100 rpm and apply ten ft-lbs of torque for tightening screws and bolts.
However, it’s not recommended to use it as an impact wrench, as the loosening of nuts often requires much more torque. This drill is sold as a tool only, so the 18v battery needs to be bought separately. The Ryobi P241 is compatible with almost all other Ryobi batteries, including the 18v P100 and P102 to P108. It also includes a 3-year warranty on new (non-refurbished) tools.
+ Built-in magnetic tray.
+ Extended length and reach.
+ Compatible with a range of Ryobi batteries.
Why We Like It – The extended length gives better reach, and the magnetic tray is a fantastic innovation not seen in other models.
5. Ingersoll-Rand 7807R Air Drill
This is the only air-powered angle drill on our list, so it does require the purchase of an air tank and an input of 90psi to operate. Most home-use right angle drills run on electricity, purely for the sake of convenience since air tanks are cumbersome and often hard to move. This is the one disadvantage the Ingersoll-Rand has compared to the other models, but it makes up for it in several ways.
The ⅜ chuck can reach up to a far superior 2500 rpm and is considered a standard duty drill, suitable for light, industrial work. It’s made from high-quality internal components that ensure long working life without any loss of drilling force. It uses an ergonomically designed lever throttle instead of a trigger switch and weighs as little as 2.5 lbs. It features a grease plug to allow for maintenance and upkeep. It’s bi-directional, which not all air-powered drills are.
+ Superior RPM.
+ Extreme lightweight (if you don’t include the air tank).
+ High-quality internal components for lasting performance.
Why We Like It – Committing to an air-powered drill is something of an investment, but for automobile and garage work, it’s a smart choice that leaves its competitors eating dust.
6. Makita XAD02Z – LXT Lithium-ion Cordless Angle Drill
This Makita right angle drill uses a four pole motor to reach speeds of up 1800 rpm with over ten ft-lbs of torque. The variable speed trigger makes sure you stay in absolute control of the ⅜ keyless chuck. Having no key required for switching drill bits and screwdriver heads makes working just that little bit more efficient and can save you time. It also features a removable second handle for even more control, putting a little extra force into each turn of the drill.
The Makita is sold as a tool only and weighs 4lbs, meaning that weight will increase once a battery is added. Additional package deals are available. These include a battery, charger, and useful carry case. As a cordless right angle drill, it means you have total freedom of movement while working. It can reach into compact and tight spaces.
Four pole motor gives excellent RPM and torque for an electric drill.
Additional removable handle.
Why We Like It – The detachable handle provides great additional control and support. The keyless chuck makes switching drill heads out a breeze.
7. Bosch PS11-102 Lithium-ion Right Angle Drill
What immediately sets the Bosch PS11-102 aside from all other tools is the pivoting head feature. You can set this drill to five different angles across a 180-degree arc to find the optimum positioning to get maximum drive and comfort when drilling. The ⅜ keyless auto-lock chuck works brilliantly in any position, and its speed can reach up to 1300 rpm with over nine ft-lbs of torque power.
The 12v motor features a breaker to ward against over tightening screws and prevent damage to the drill, while the variable speed trigger gives you total drilling control. The Bosch also features not one LED light, but two for better illumination in dark working areas. This drill weighs as little as 2.75 lbs so you can keep working for longer without your hands or arms tiring. Finally, to top it all off, it comes with a battery and charger, as well as a carry case to keep everything tidy and safely stored when not in use.
+ Pivoting drill head.
+ Two LED lights for better visibility.
+ Includes bag and charger.
Why We Like It – The pivoting head allows for better positioning and comfort when working. This reduces strain and fatigue, ultimately meaning you can work easier while still getting great results.
Right Angle Drills Buyer’s Guide
There are several types of right angle drills to choose from, and many have exclusive features that may pique your interest. Knowing if an LED light, magnetic tray, keyed, keyless chuck or any other feature is something you want to use is an important thing to consider, but these factors come down to personal preference. It’s best to look at the base factors of these tools, which we have broken down for you in the section below.
RPM and Torque
Consider what specific jobs you intend to use your right angle drill for. For larger, heavy-duty jobs, you may be better off using a stronger drill, but for mid to low duty tasks, a right angle drill can be much less expensive and more efficient. With that being said, you should look at the RPM and torque capability of your drill to make sure it can get the job done.
Higher RPM will make for better drilling power as the high speed of the drill head makes for better cutting through materials. However, if you intend to use your angle drill as more of a heavy-duty screwdriver, you’ll want one with high torque. Torque is the amount of force or mass that can be applied to the turning action, and therefore, a high RPM will not improve your drill’s ability to drive screws in.
Corded vs. Cordless vs. Air-powered
An air-powered drill is seldom used in home DIY because of its lack of movement range. They require rigging up to a weighty pressurized air tank, and so for most people, they will not be suitable unless you are working in a garage or similar environment where you can bring the work to you. The biggest decision for most will be whether it’s best to buy a cordless or corded right angle drill.
Cordless drills offer total freedom of movement and are best for working outside or on projects that require a lot of movement or re-positioning into tight to fit spaces. The downside is that you are limited to work for as long as your battery or batteries last. If they run out halfway through a job, you will need to wait for them to recharge, which can largely vary from model to model.
This is why some people much prefer to use corded drills, as it negates the need for a battery entirely. The trade-off is that you are limited to only work as long as you can reach a power socket. So it might be a good idea to also invest in an extension cord to free up your movement.
Right Angle Drills, Power Drills, and Electric Screwdrivers
It can be hard to know which of these three tools is the best one for the job. Right angle drills are best thought of as a hybrid between power drills and electric screwdrivers. However, they also have the advantage of being designed to fit into much tighter and awkward spaces.
It’s possible to think of these tools on a spectrum of strength with RPM and torque. You have the option of choosing whether you’d like a right angle drill that’s more like a power drill with a touch of screwdriver or one that is a screwdriver with a touch of a power drill. Right angle drills will give you a taste of both worlds, and, as they say, a jack of all trades is better than a master of one.
Can I use a right angle drill as a torque gun?
We don’t recommend it. Right angle drills have substantially less torque power than a torque gun as they use different types of motors and turning mechanics. You may get away with using your drill for rudimentary tightening of some nuts, but you’ll most likely break your drill if you try to remove rusted or hard to move lug nuts.
What are the best uses for a right angle drill?
Assembly of furniture, drilling guide holes, mounting picture frames or shelves, assembling kitchen units; the list could go on. But its best summarized by saying that a right angle drill can handle all light-duty works and most mid-duty works. For tougher challenges like home foundation work, you’re better off using a power drill and then doing the fine tweaking with the right angle drill.
What materials can you use a right angle drill for?
Most woods (they may struggle on some hardwoods such as mahogany), plastics, thin or soft metals, plasterboard, and drywall. Some models of right angle drill can handle masonry and brick. We do advise you to read the full instructions of your own right angle drill for a comprehensive list of the materials it can tackle.