Brushed vs Brushless Drill – 2021 Ultimate Guide

| Last Updated: June 29, 2021

Over the years, the electric drill has seen numerous advancements in design and technology, which has made it a lot easier to do a lot of tasks. 

One of the changes is the introduction of both brushed and brushless drills. While to an untrained eye, there might not be that much of a difference between the two, the two drills are quite different in how they operate.

Therefore, it is important for one to be aware of these differences as they impact efficiency and performance. There are many different options available in the market, so we’ve compiled all the things you should know before deciding to make a purchase. 

Comparison of the Best Brushed and Brushless Drills

IMAGEPRODUCT
  • Best Brushed Drill
  • Uses a unique 18 volts battery system
  • An ergonomic design to reduce stress on joints
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  • Best Brushless Drill
  • Equipped with a keyless chuck
  • A compact and lightweight design to fit in small spaces
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What is a Brushed Drill and What Does Brushed Drill Mean?

A brushed drill is a type of cordless drill. Cordless drills use the attraction and repulsion of magnets to spin the shaft, which converts electricity into power. In a brushed drill, the drill requires small brushes that assist the magnets in spinning the shaft. These carbon brushes are available in different sizes and shapes according to the drill you have. 

The brushes' dimensions, thickness, and depth all vary from drill to drill and from one manufacturer to the other. You can find brushes that are compatible with your drill easily. These are extremely important for the drills to function properly. 

Brushed vs brushless (Source)

What is a Brushless Drill and What Does Brushless Drill Mean?

A brushless drill, as the name suggests, is a drill with a brushless motor. You can adjust the speed, torque, and power supply of the drill according to your requirements. This drill can sense what the task at hand is and then uses the right amount of power needed. This makes it very easy to use without having to put in the extra effort. 

Since there are no brushes on these drills, no energy is lost due to friction. This makes them energy-efficient and ensures that they offer effective performance. 

How Does a Brushless Drill Work?

A brushless drill features electronic sensors in place of brushes that sense the type of work being done. These sensors deliver the energy to the magnets, which moves the motor shaft, causing them to spin.  

Similarities and Differences 

Now the question that arises is, which drill should you opt for? What sets the two apart, and which one should you get? 

It is important for you to know how the two compare and where they lack, and where they will be the most useful. Therefore, we’ve drawn up comparisons between the two so that you can understand which option is more suitable, according to your requirements. 

Brushed and Brushless Drill Similarities

The main similarity between both brushed and brushless drills is that they require magnets to keep the motor shaft spinning. Other than that, both are quite different. 

Brushed and Brushless Drill Differences

Here are some differences between the two types of drills:

Operating Life

In a brushed drill, you are required to replace the brushes after using them for 50 to 60 hours. Meanwhile, with brushless drills, you can use them for as long as you like. 

Efficiency

Brushless drills are more efficient than their brushed counterparts. In the former, no energy is lost due to friction, as there are no brushes rubbing against the surface, which allows them to run on batteries longer.

Size

Einhell TE-CD Power X-Change 1400 RPM

A brushed drill is comparatively larger and heavy to hold, whereas brushless ones are a lot smaller and lightweight. 

Price

Brushed drills are comparatively inexpensive, whereas brushless drills can be quite pricey. 

Top Pick Between Brushed and Brushless Drill

Brushless drills tend to be a favorite, especially when you’re doing any task that might be heavy-duty, or you can use it for general use as well. The best part about using these drills is that they offer you higher speed and power and are low maintenance.

Moreover, when using these drills, you don’t really have to put in a lot of effort as they feature electronic sensors that sense the type of work being done. With that, the drill exerts the required amount of pressure and power needed to complete the task without you having to do much. 

Brushless drills are a lot more energy-efficient as well. They are smaller in size and lightweight, making it easier to use them for longer periods. Also, compared to brushed drills, they can be used for longer periods of time as well. 

Overview of Our Favorite Brushed and Brushless Drills

If you’re thinking of buying a drill and are unsure which one to opt for, then let us help you. There are numerous different options available in the market for you to consider, which makes it difficult to choose the right one.

Therefore, we’ve narrowed it down to the top drills we think are definitely worth considering. 

Best Brushed Drill:
Einhell TE-CD Power X-Change 1400 RPM

Einhell TE-CD Power X-Change 18-Volt Cordless 1400 RPM Brushed Motor, Variable Speed Drill/Driver, w/Adjustable 1/2-Inch Keyless Chuck, 407 In-LB Torque Selector, w/Hard Case

PROS

  • Very precise 
  • Offers a quick changing drill chuck 
  • Features an 18-volts battery system 
  • Comes with an ergonomic handle to offer comfort 

CONS

  • Diffusion settings on the work light aren’t functional 

What Recent Buyers Report

The Einhell TE-CD Power X-Change 1400 RPM is a brushed drill that is preferred by many. It is well-made and is of good quality. It offers you variable torque and comes with three drill bits and four screwdriver bits in different sizes. It is an effective drill that gets the job done quickly. 

Why it Stands Out to Us

We love that this drill from Einhell helps in making the job easier. It can be used for multiple purposes, in the workshop, at the garage, or for household projects as well. It is part of the Power X-Change family, and with this option, you don't have to worry about the cords interfering or tripping hazards.

Moreover, there is no need for an electrical outlet. It features a high-quality quick-changing drill chuck that makes it easier to change the tool. It also features an electronic torque preselector that allows you to optimize the TE-CD's power and torque according to your requirements. 

This drill offers two-speed gearing, which makes it easier for powerful screwdriving and faster drilling. It features an ergonomic handle that helps provide a comfortable operation. It also comes with a rechargeable battery and a high-speed charger as well.

Bottom Line

This is a good option to consider, as it features a robust motor that is made using high-quality material and offers you both power and durability. The drill is very easy and comfortable to use, and you can use it for long work sessions without putting stress on your joints. It is an effective drilling unit that you should definitely check out if you’re looking for a brushed drill. 

Best Brushless Drill:
Dewalt 20V Max DCD777C2

DEWALT 20V Max Cordless Drill / Driver Kit, Compact, 1/2-Inch (DCD771C2)

PROS

  • Features a compact and lightweight design 
  • Provides high-speed transmission and delivers two speeds 
  • Has a high-performance motor that delivers 300 unit watts out 
  • Comes with an ergonomic handle to offer both comfort and control

CONS

  • Both batteries don't charge enough

What Recent Buyers Report

According to buyers, the Dewalt 20V Max DCD777C2 is a great drilling unit. It comes with two batteries that you can charge and use; this way, you don’t have to worry about the drill running out of power. The drill features LED lights that allow you to work in dark spaces and offers 20 volts of power, which is more than enough. It is a very easy and comfortable drill and makes the whole experience a lot easier.  

Why it Stands Out to Us

The DEWALT DCD771C2 20V MAX drill features a lightweight and compact design that allows you to travel with it and fit it into tiny spaces. It features a high-performance motor that delivers about 300 unit watts out (UWO) of power. 

It also offers high-speed transmission and delivers two different speeds. It also features an ergonomic handle that provides both comfort and control. This DEWALT drill comes with two 20-volt compact Lithium-ion batteries, a charger, and a durable bag that makes it easier to travel with it. 

Bottom Line

All in all, this DEWALT drill is an effective brushless drilling option. It comes with a pair of batteries that means you don't have to worry about the battery running out mid-project. It is very easy and comfortable to use, and you can use it for a number of different projects. 

Conclusion

When it comes to picking a drill, you have two options: brushed and brushless. However, there are both pros and cons of each. If you’re looking for a drilling unit to help you with any serious, heavy-duty, or even general use projects, then a brushless drill would be a better option. 

However, if you’re looking for one to help with DIY projects, you can get a brushed drill instead. There are many options available in the market; however, we've narrowed it down to some options that are worth checking out. Hopefully, you now have a clearer idea of what you want. 

People Also Ask

Considering that the market has so many different variations and models of both brushless and brushed drills to offer, chances are that you might still have some queries regarding them. You might still be confused about which one to opt for. Therefore, here we have answered some frequently asked questions in hopes to answer some of your queries. 

How Long Do Brushed Motors Last?

The main question is what type of work you will be doing and why you require a drill. Brushed drills tend to have a limited motor life, depending on the type of brush you have. They feature bearings due to which you are likely to attain 1,000 to 3,000 hours of work on average. 

Are Brushless Drills Quieter?

One of the best things about brushless drills is the quiet operation they offer, so you don't have to worry about making a lot of noise. Moreover, their quiet motors do not compromise on their power levels.

Is a Brushless Drill Worth It?

A brushless is always a good option as you don't have to worry about its maintenance. These drills are efficient; no energy is lost, and you don't really have to exert any extra pressure.

The sensors on them sense the work being done and provide the right amount of energy that you need in order to complete your task. 

Dewalt 20V Max DCD777C2

How Much Longer Does the Battery Last in Brushless vs Brush Drill?

Since brushless drills have sensors instead of brushes, no friction is created as there are no brushes rubbing against anything. Therefore, no energy is lost, which helps in making them a lot more energy-efficient. A brushless drill can run on batteries for about 50 percent longer compared to brushed drills. 

How to Tell If a Drill is Brushless

The major difference between a brushless and a brushed drill is the absence of the brushes, obviously. A brushless drill does not have brushes; instead, it features electronic sensors that send the magnet signals regarding how much torque is required. 

Are Brushless Drills Better?

Brushless drills are best for you if you’re looking for a drill that can be used for both heavy-duty and general use. So for any such serious projects requiring drilling, having a brushless option is always better as they provide you with faster speed, more power, and don't require high maintenance either. 

Do Brushless Motors Spark?

No, there is no sparking as the drills feature a motor that uses computer controls.

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