If you are out to buy your first drill, and confused over corded or battery operated? This article would be more appealing to you since everything about Corded Vs Cordless Power Tools is covered. Today, battery operated tools are not the ones they used to be in the past decade .Over the years, battery technologies have improved to a higher extent. The old and bulky Nickel Cadmium batteries have been replaced by the compact and newest Lithium ion batteries. The Ni-Cd batteries store less charge and discharge quickly as the cells are not efficient compared to Li-Ion.
Here in the table below, all the advantages and disadvantages of both types of power tools have been mentioned. This will help you make a choice.
|Corded Power Tools||Cordless Power Tools|
|Of Course, very much cheaper than cordless models for a given power output. Parts are also cheap.||Has more parts like the battery, charger etc. Will be expensive. Most of the manufacturers don't share their power output as they work on DC, and mention only about its Torque and drilling capacity like, 10mm in to steel, 20mm into wood etc.|
|As the name indicates, movement is restricted to its cable length. The more cable you have, you are good to go.||Versatile. You can take this anywhere, except in airplanes, where you need to disconnect the battery and batteries are not liable to be carried in luggage compartments.|
|As long as electricity is available, you can use these power tools as long as you feel strain in your hands. Well, I mean, there is nothing to get it stop working.||Batteries have to store energy. If the battery is empty, you are out of business. It takes too much time to charge. If you can spend more, you can buy 2 amp, 3 amp batteries if available with the manufacturer. Fast Charging batteries are also available. Again, that's an investment|
|You depend on local power supply unit. Unavailability of power, delays your job. Finding an appropriate 220/ 110volts socket is also necessary. Home UPS may not be able to withstand power requirements of a drilling machine. A 1000VA Home Inverter can withstand up to 600 watts only.||Having extra batteries = increased productivity. Can be carried to any location without worrying about power supply.|
|Nothing beats AC operated tools as they are available in any capacities you think of. High end power tools operate only on AC. Ex: Jack Hammers||DC Motors are different than AC Motors. They cannot be subjected to immense load applications as they heat up quickly and are not as efficient as AC motors. Brushless DC motored power tools are also available but are expensive compared to conventional DC motors.|
|Less Maintenance.||Li-ion Batteries are expensive.|
|Drilling/Grinding Capacities are just unbeatable. More the Power, more the capacity.||For an Ex: If a Cordless Drill mentions its steel drilling capacity as 10mm, practically it takes about thrice the time you would make a hole woth corded drill.|
|Regarding Maintenance, Corded power tools have Brushes, which are easy to be replaced.||Cordless Power Tools also have Brushes. But, replacing is not a easy task. Cheaper drills have a small 12 volt motor, where you need to disassemble motor to replace brushes. Some Branded Drills always have externally supported Brushes in their cordless power tools. Brushesless Power Tools are very expensive.|
|No Bundled Tool Purchase Options. However Drill Kits are available with Bits, Tool Boxes etc.||Manufacturers do provide bundled kits with 4-5 power tools which support the same battery. You may use 1-2 tools at the same time. Keeping other tools under rest. This saves cost on batteries too. Its is always better to look for bundled offers than purchasing individually. Currently in India, this facility is not available.|
Hope you get the idea. Overall, its not about the investment. Its about the purpose of usage. This decision is similar to choosing between Laptop and Desktop. Both have their pros and cons. Just by having the same processor, it doesn’t mean they perform the same. It depends on cores, threads, Ghz etc. Similarly, even if the capacities of both drills is 10 mm, it doesn’t mean, they drill a 10 mm hole, 5mm deep, in steel at equal times. It depends on the motor torque and gear ratios.
A point that I didn’t mention in the table. When it comes to Drill, Cordless drills are very comfortable to hold in single hand than corded drill (my personal opinion). Corded drill has its motor in the front along with chuck. This makes it heavy on the front end, as you have to balance the tool and at the same time you have point it correctly and maintain that posture. In battery operated drill, weight distribution is perfect. Battery is located below. Motor behind the wrist, and gear box and chuck in the front. That’s a nice balance of weight for single hand use. Also, if you haven’t bought your first drill, I suggest you to go through this article on Drilling Machine Buying Guide.
Now, let me make this review unbiased. Corded tools manufactures do not offer bundled tools to its customers. Battery operated tools have bundled offers. But if you are looking just for a cordless drill or angle grinder, then don’t buy them separately. Buying from the same manufacturer may save some money as you can skip batteries since you already own one of their product.
The Cordless combo kits generally include 4 or 5 power tools in a single bag. Circular Saw, Angle Grinder, Saber Saw (Reciprocating Saw), Torch, Oscillating Multi-tool, Drill, Impact Driver, along with minimum two batteries is bundled together. The package bundle depends on the price, brand and voltage range. Ultimately, Its all up to you to decide.