Impact Wrench Vs. Impact Driver Vs. Hammer Drill: Reviews & Comparison (2022)

Individuals who use power tools are mostly confused about the primary differences between impact wrenches, hammer drills, and impact drivers. The main differences are in the appearance, weight, purpose, expense and the method of operation. This guide will help you understand the differences and make the right purchase decision.

See Also:

Impact WrenchImpact DriverHammer Drill
Suitable for around-the-house jobs and light automotive jobs like removing lug nuts, bolts, and oil pan boltsSuitable when driving fasteners like nails and screwsSuitable when drilling into hard surfaces like concrete and bricks
Function in rotary fashionFunction in rotary fashionVibrates in forth and back motions
Are heavier than both impact drivers and hammer drillsThey are lighter than both impact wrenches and hammer drillsThey are lighter than impact wrenches
Expensive than both impact drivers and hammer drillsThey are moderately pricedThey are lower priced
Have more torque than both hammer drills and impact driversProvide moderate torqueOffers torque enough to complete your projects

Top 2 Best Impact Wrenches on The Market:

DeWalt DCF899P1 20V Max XR Wrench Kit

If you are looking for a cordless impact wrench that has everything you need, go for the DeWalt DCF899P1 20V Max XR Wrench Kit. It boasts a versatile and compact design that allows its application in a wider range of projects including the industrial ones. If you are operating under a tighter budget, it is the tool to buy.

About this Product:

DeWalt is among the reputed brands worldwide, especially when it comes to producing intellect devices and tools. Among their most recent releases is the Dewalt DCF899P1 20V Max XR. Contrary to what you might expect with most other brands, the DCF899P1 comes with all the things it needs to run such as a charger and battery. Its motor is long lasting, provides excellent runtime and performance.

Speaking of performance, the cordless impact wrench comes with beautiful materials and features that will help you want to finish your projects faster. It is capable of providing 700 ft.-lbs. Torque, which is demanding for various applications. Even more, the 3-speed selectors allow the user to select the level and to switch the LED lights when working in a dark workspace.

The battery level indicator and the ergonomic design handle are the other two features you will definitely like. Based on the performance, the impact wrench falls into the category of heavy-duty tools and is suitable for automotive works.

Pros:

  • Has a powerful brushless motor
  • Comes with a battery and charger
  • Has LED light with 20 seconds delay
  • Has no load speed

Cons:

  • Some users claim that it is more substantial than they need
  • The manufacturer only provides one battery

You can take the Dewalt DCF899P1 to any place. Whether you work for a construction company, farm or infrastructure, it is an excellent tool to include in your kit. The handle design and excellent balance make it as good as you should expect.

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DeWalt DCF899B Impact Wrench Kit

If you are looking for a cordless impact wrench that comes with everything, you might need to get started with the DeWalt DCF899B. Most users consider it an excellent impact wrench and a fully complete model.

The compact and more versatile design allows it to function for more extended periods and is applicable in most heavy-duty projects. It is also an excellent choice for individuals with tighter budgets.

Unlike most other brands, the DeWalt DCF899B comes with the items a user requires such as a charger, a battery, and a carrying case. Its brushless durable motor offers superior performance and longer operation time.

Moreover, this product comes with several important features and materials, which you would expect from a product of its class. It provides a maximum torque of 700 ft.-lbs. Moreover, breakaway torque standing at 1200 ft. /lbs. That is important for most projects.

Furthermore, it provides 3-speed selectors to help the user choose the most appropriate level. The LED lights will remove darkness from your workplace to help you complete a task precisely. DeWalt DCF899B is real power for screws and bolts.

Pros:

  • Has a powerful brushless motor
  • Comes with a charger and battery
  • Has no load speed
  • The LED light has 20-seconds delay

Cons:

  • You might realize its heavyweight when completing a task
  • The manufacturer only offers one battery

Whether you work on a farm, construction company or infrastructure industry, you should be ready to include it in your kit. The excellent balance and the handle design ensure better results every time.

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Top 2 Best Impact Drivers on The Market:

DeWalt DCF887B 20V MAX XR Li-Ion Brushless 0.25” 3-Speed Impact Driver

This tool is a mind-bending power tool that Dewalt released recently. One of the special features you will realize about this product is that it offers three different speed modes, which allows the user to control the speed and the produced torque more effectively.

The first mode produces a speed ranging between 0 and 2800 rpm and around 240 in-lbs. Of torque. The second mode delivers a rate ranging between 0 and 2800 rpm and approximately 1500 in-lbs. Of torque. The last mode provides a speed ranging between 0 and 3200 rpm and 1825 in-lbs. Of torque.

In addition to that, this model has many standardized features of 1/4” bit hex chuck that you can use to take in 1” bit. With the LED light that sits beneath the trigger, you will be able to complete your projects in any place, including in the dark.

Pros:

  • Boasts a compact but straightforward design, which does not increase the weight (2.65 pounds)
  • The motor provides variable speeds that can reach a 3200 rpm maximum and provide 1825 in-lbs. of torque
  • The variable speed ability makes the device usable in most industrial, construction and home projects
  • Noteworthy DeWalt warranty, which is also available with other models from the supplier

Cons:

  • The product is more expensive compared to others of similar class
  • You might only need to buy it if you have other DeWalt tools and you already have a charger and battery handy
  • The DeWalt 887 offers 1,825 in-lbs of torque at fast 0-3, 250-rpm speed and 0-3, 600 impacts per every minute. It has a compact size and lightweight. With the features, you will not worry about the complexity of your DIY projects.

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Bosch PS41-2A Hex Impact Driver Kit

Bosch PS41-2A Hex Impact Driver is among the impact drivers that work perfectly. It provides adequate work reliability by fixing screws into lugs and efficiently removing nuts and bolts from lugs. Its compact short head length is applicable in tighter regions.

Its 3-LED light glows perfectly towards the surface of a target. Put differently; you will be able to work at any time, including in the dark. The LED light glows the target points to help you avoid making mistakes.

The product has a length of 5.2 inches on the head. The purpose of this feature is to help reduce the complexity of your work – you can use it when working on stiff corners. Its chuck boasts ¼” hex with more comfortable fitting kit. The battery indicator at the product’s side allows for more flexibility and comfort.

The impact driver will help you go through rigors to complete tasks professionally and satisfy all your clients without any apologies. It will make long-lasting impacts in your workshop. Even more, it works perfectly on almost any type of bolt, screw, and nut including in the automobile calipers.

Pros:

  • The product is highly portable
  • It features an ergonomic handgrip
  • It is lightweight
  • Its lithium battery offers 12V power and the manufacturer shields it with Dura shield.
  • The product is very versatile
  • The manufacturer offers a one-year warranty

Cons:

  • The trigger is not the best

The Bosch PS41-2A has many useful features that should help you complete your projects the right way. It is applicable in the automobile industry due to its higher quality torque. The three LEDs light can illuminate the darkest spots and help you make better precision to make your job complete always.

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Top 2 Best Hammer Drills on The Market:

DeWalt DCK299P2 20V MAX XR Lithium Ion Brushless Premium Hammer Drill & Impact Driver Combo Kit

No one would like the idea of buying many tools to complete a single DIY project. A single tool with several attachments comes in handy and works well for most projects. However, that may not be the case for professionals.

Mostly, power drills do not deliver enough speed or torque for constant heavy-duty projects. A cordless drill might stall out before you get your bolts or screws fastened fully. Moreover, when that happens, you will not feel confident about the completion of your project.

If you work as a professional carpenter, plumber or HVAC repairer, you would not like to risk such reduced performances. Therefore, for any project that requires drilling and driving reliably, you will need two different tools. The DeWalt DCK299P2 is a good option. It offers excellent battery life, power and two beautiful tools to help you complete your jobs efficiently.

Its design and the lithium-ion battery make its handling more comfortable. The power output is excellent, and you should expect around 1,825 in-lbs. That is more than enough for most commercial and regular home jobs. The combo includes a hammer drill, which provides 2,000 RPM.

Pros

  • The hammer drill offers 3-speeds ranging between 0 and 2,000 RPM. The three speeds allow faster completion of jobs.
  • The high torque impact driver combo offers 3,250 RPM for tougher jobs
  • Comes with a hard case
  • The lightweight design of the two tools allows easier handling
  • Lithium-ion battery provides long lasting power when using any of the tools

Cons

  • The first speed on the impact driver is low
  • The manufacturer does not include any bit holders

You will enjoy several benefits after buying this product. The price is low, and the manufacturer has updated and improved the design since the first release. If you owned an earlier model, then you have possibly identified the differences.

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DeWalt DCD996B Bare Tool 20V Max XR Brushless 3-Speed Hammer Drill Review

Power tools are a significant investment and if you want to own equipment that will last for many years; you should go for quality products. Apart from having a topnotch design and construction, such a tool will help you complete your projects smoothly. Thankfully, most people have been relying on DeWalt products for a long time.

Both amateurs and professionals highly appreciate the products, including the DCD996B Bare Tool. Due to its unique power and versatility, you will efficiently complete all your DIY projects. Even though the market has many other similar tools to offer, DeWalt DCD996B brings more value.

The product has a higher power output (820 units-watts out) and 3-speed settings, and it can tackle a broader range of applications. Its speed levels start at 0-450 rpm (the highest torque setting), 0-1,300 rpm (offers mid torque speed), and ends at 0-2000 rpm.

The manufacturer also provides a different speed reversible feature, which allows operation in forward, reverse and variable speed. For safe usage, the reverse and forward control button work as the lock-off button to prevent accidental switch on. The unit comes with a brake to stop operations immediately the user sets the trigger switch off.

The brushless motor operates cooler than you expect with those of other models. That means that the drill will last for more years. Lack of physical exchange that might result in loss of energy makes the tool more energy efficient.

Pros:

  • Boasts a brushless motor that allows more efficient performance
  • The powerful engine provides 3-speeds
  • For better grip, it has high-quality ½ inches ratcheting metal chuck
  • Has a 3-mode LED light and 20-minutes automatic shutoff
  • Features a 360-degrees side handle
  • Has 3-years limited warranty

Cons:

  • Does not come with a charger

The product has higher power output. Moreover, because of the 3-speed adjustable feature, the product tackles a broader range of applications excellently. The manufacturer also thought about the user safety when designing the product. (manual)

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Advantages of Impact Wrench

Most individuals believe that impact wrenches are only usable in construction and industrial sites. However, you can use them at your home to fasten bolts or nuts for various tightening or loosening purposes. Impact drivers are great tools both professionally and domestically, and some people refer to them as torque gun, rattle gun, air gun or air wrench.

Manufacturers are offering several types of impact wrenches, but hydraulic and electric models are very new to the market. The wrenches provide accurate torque, and most of them are easy to use. Contrary to the traditional versions, they do not kick back.

Advantages of Impact Driver

Impact drivers are more popular due to their unique design. Due to their thin design, they are a good alternative for any individual working in the construction or automotive industry. They are neither regular drivers/drill nor a hammer drills.

Their appearance is distinct with little profile and hex attachments. The devices are more responsible for work, and their impact actions switch on naturally when a need arises. [1]

Advantages of Hammer Drill

Standardized hammer drills drill into light metal, drywall, wood, brick, and concrete. They precisely remove and drive long and standard screws without pilot holes. They allow the use of large drill bits when drilling large holes. Moreover, even though they are more substantial than other types of cordless drills, they are easier to handle.

When drilling, the adjustable clutch will automatically increase the torque if the resistance increases. That means that you will never put more pressure behind your drill than necessary, which is the case to expect with the standardized cordless drills. While using this tool, you will only need to apply more weight if the hammer drill uses lower voltage.

You will require particular drill bits for the hammer setting. When in this setting, a drill bit plugs in and out when spinning. Generally, hammer drills will help you complete numerous projects. [2]

Can You Use An Impact Wrench As A Drill?

Yes. You can use an impact wrench to drill holes, but that will highly depend on the level of accuracy you need. For a rugged construction, including boring holes to pass some wires through, you can use an impact wrench. However, if you require accurate placements – the roundness and size are vital – stick to regular drills and drill bits. In fact, the market only offers bits with ¼” hex shank.

Are Impact Drivers And Impact Wrenches The Same?

Before impact drivers became popular, most DIY people had two primary options when power wrenching – the standard electric drills and the torque wrench. The electric drill was a good go for when completing general purpose driving, fastening, and drilling.

Typically, use of the powerful impact wrenches was high in the restoration and automotive repair industry.

After the introduction of impact drivers, most people started going for them. Apart from their sleek and compact design, impact drivers provide more torque than the standard drills and are more convenient than the considerable impact wrenches.

Generally, impact wrenches are bulky, heavy and more potent than impact drivers are. They use square drive (1/2″), and manufacturers make them for fastening and loosening sockets while impact drivers use ¼” hex drive. Manufacturers make impact drivers for use when driving screws.

You can quickly change an impact driver into a ½” square driver by using an adaptor bit. After that, you will be able to use it with various socket drivers.

Moreover, unless you are trying to renovate a semi-truck, impact wrenches provide much power that you do not need in your around-the-house projects. Impact drivers are suitable where standard drills cannot offer adequate torque, but impact wrenches are beyond the general-purpose uses, such as drilling holes and driving screws.

The two, impact drivers and impact wrenches, function in a similar way. They use concussive rotational blows to deliver maximum torque. They do not spin as the standard drills do.

FAQs:

Q: What is the difference between impact drivers and cordless drills?

A: Cordless drills/drivers are the most popular because they can accept driver bits or drill bits of any size. Drills have only one type of operation – smooth rotational action.

Impact drivers on the other hand provider swift rotational actions. They also provide higher torque by delivering thousands of impacts per minute on internal mechanisms. The operation is noisy but allows the low-recoil way that can help you drive fasteners with high torque than drills.

Q: When should I use an impact driver?

A: You can use an impact driver to fasten any fastener. Screws – no matter the type – are the most popular types of cables. However, impact drivers can drive lag bolts of any size, nuts, and anything that requires turning. With a socket attachment, you will easily drive eyebolts or l-hooks.

A drill will put much strain on your wrist as you provide counter forces to the rotation when driving long screws into hardwood. Screwing the head is easy when working with an impact driver. Hammering action in the machines makes rotational force, and the user has little recoil to deal with while in use. You will complete your projects within a short time regardless of the type of wood you are using.

Q: What is a brushless impact driver/drill?

A: “Brushless” denotes the motor or engine powering the impact driver. Standard motors have brushes, which pass electricity to the spinning rotor. The brushes are known to wear out within a short period and therefore affect the performance of a machine.

However, brushless motors do not require spinning parts to function. That alone reduces heat and friction and increases the tools durability.

Q: What are the differences between 20-volt and 18-volt drivers, 10.8-volt and 12-volt?

A: Most manufacturers choose the 20-volt terminology as a way of marketing their brand. After recharging a battery fully, it will have higher voltage rating than while it is working. Most of the brands that label their tools as 20-volt also include a disclaimer claiming that it is the Peak or Max, voltage – the operating voltage is usually lower.

Again, that does not mean that you can use your 18-volt battery with a machine labeled 20-volt. Most manufacturers use different battery form-factor, format and electronics to market their products.

Q: Can I use an impact driver to drill holes?

A: Yes. Impact drivers have higher RPMs – cordless drivers have more top speed than cordless drills. Some impact drivers do not have good control of low-end speed, and you will, therefore, have problems starting holes.

The high torque means that the machine chews more massive holes from auger or spade bits with lesser effort. If you do not want to purchase an entire set of hex-shafted drill bits that can match the typical ¼” chuck, most manufacturers provide drill chuck attachments.

Conclusion

We cannot cover every possible usage situation of hammer drills, impact drivers and impact wrenches. The only thing we can do is provide a general recommendation. If you are a DIY’er, maker or a woodworker, go for a combo kit.

Almost every manufacturer produces combo kits containing an impact driver and a regular drill. An impact wrench is suitable for heavy-duty projects.

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