What Is A Brushless Drill; Brushless vs Brushed Motor

Have you been curious to know what a brushless drill is? If yes, you’ve come to the right place about this tool.

Ranging from cordless types to difficult powerhouses, brushless drills tend to offer lots of benefits. Take note though, that enjoying the benefits a brushless drill has to offer depends on your demands or needs.

That said, one of the most important things you need to consider when dealing with drills as a whole is to understand the science behind the design of the brushless and brushed drills. Since this is a topic you will often come across when considering drills, I will extensively talk about the differences between the two types.

Overall, this article will explain how the brushless drill works, how to choose the right one. I will also highlight the advantages and disadvantages of brushless drills.

What Is A Brushless Drill?

What Is A Brushless Drill_

Brushless motors have become the latest hot cakes in every aspect where cordless drills are concerned. The technology behind this power tool helps to improve the performance of the drills.

In fact, it also makes them more reliable and durable.

Even though this power tool is only just recently gaining large recognition with DIY enthusiasts and professional users, it is not new to the market. You can trace the origin of this power tool as far back as the early inventions of Mr. Ernst Werner von Siemens in 1856.

Although the brushless drill’s design is still basic, its inventions have undergone several improvements over the years. One of its earliest features was the use of a rheostat for precisely controlling the rotational speed of the shaft.

The major push to the development of this tool was the arrival of a power dimmer that could help to convert alternating current to direct current. With time, brushless motors began to operate on the technology that utilized magnetism and could be successively opposed by an electric device.

When scientists realized the need for a physical switch to transmit the current, it was necessary to birth the idea of a brushless motor.

Fast forward to the 1980s, the increased availability of permanent magnets and the presence of high-voltage transistors allowed the brushless motors to begin to generate as much power as brushed motors.

How Do Brushless Drills Work?

How Do Brushless Drills Work_

First and foremost, in a brushless drill, the commutator and the brushes are absent. Also, the magnets and windings are positioned in reverse order.

Secondly, you will find the magnets and the armature copper windings fixed on the standard motor shaft. The flow of energy to the windings is controlled by a tiny circuit board instead of brushes and commutators.

Surprisingly, the tool is efficient at offering good services despite the fact that the electronics directly interact with the permanent windings.

For instance, when you use a brushless drill to drive screws through styrofoam, it identifies the lack of resistance more quickly and starts to draw only the charge it needs from the battery.

This equipment will change and draw more electricity if you begin to screw 3-inch screws into mahogany. On the other hand, when in use a brushed motor will always run fast.

In addition, since one can make their copper windings larger, brushless drills are more powerful. Plus, with brushes rubbing against the rotating commutator, brushless drills are free from the causes of friction and voltage drop.

However, they tend to suffer a constant loss of energy during their operational processes because of physical contact.

Uses

The-Uses-Of-Brushless-Drill

Firstly, electrical equipment such as power drills serves two main functions. You can use it to drill holes in wood, walls, or other hard surfaces.

Secondly, it helps to secure fasteners and screws to surfaces.

Overall, brushless drill drivers are useful for assembling furniture, drilling holes in walls, and working with wood. Plus, you can build a deck and perform renovation projects in your home by picking the one with the right power.

Factors To Consider When Buying A Brushless Drill

Factors To Consider In A Brushless Drill

Here are the features you need to look for when purchasing a brushless drill.

High Voltage

By looking at the voltage of a brushless drill you can tell how powerful it is. To put it simply, more power means a high voltage.

Make sure you purchase a high voltage drill if you feel you’ll be using this equipment on tough materials.

Drills for Light-duty Applications

For small household projects, you can consider drills that come with a 6V to 12V battery.

Medium-General Purpose

The most common models of brushless drills that fall within this category usually come with 12-18V ratings. Except for heavy-duty projects, you can use this range of equipment for almost all forms of driving and drilling.

Drills for Heavy-duty Work

For large building projects, you will definitely need a heavy-duty brushless drill that is powerful and can offer long battery life.

The usual rate of these types of devices is between 18 to 24 volts. However, some specialty units can offer as many as 36 volts.

Drills within this range are usually perfect for experts since they can handle most of your daily tasks, renovation projects, and DIY projects. As for me, I would recommend that you get an 18V brushless drill.

Torque

Firstly, you need more torque if you’re going to drill on a hard surface. The rating of the voltage will not give you a clear understanding of the drill’s total power.

The level of twisting load that the drill can use in a work area is referred to as torque. Its measurement is in Newton-meters (Nm) or pounds (in-lbs).

Generally, you need more torque and slower speeds when you are drilling into concrete, metal, and other hard surfaces.

Strength of UWO

The current method for calculating the maximum power of a drill is Units Watt Out (UWO). It is a mixture of torque and speed.

Simply put, the more powerful the drill is, the greater the Units Watt Out (UWO).

Drive Motor

If you want to use this device for a longer period of time without overheating, pick the one with a brushless motor.

Differences Between A Brushless Drill And A Brushed Drill

More Power

Brushless drills provide a higher torque value in a smaller package than brushed drills, therefore, they offer more power. Since there is no friction to impede the torque of brushless drills’ motors, their circuitry transfers enough power to the operation at hand.

You’d be surprised to know that without the weight, noise, or high power draw that brushed drills come with, a small drill can perform the same job as a large drill.

Lasts Longer than Brushed Drills

Due to their friction-free design, brushless drills last longer than brushed drills. Brushless can perform for years with no problems, no matter how often you use them.

Secondly, the main parts need less energy because there is less friction. After all, heat causes most of the early problems in power tools.

Additionally, the motor can remain stable enough for years of operation if you keep the parts cool at practically any RPM.

It saves money for you because the drills last longer than the brushed models. You’ll pay less for it when you consider the drill as a long-term investment.

Brushless Designs Incorporate Smart Technology

Due to the presence of circuit boards, there’s a high level of difficulty in the operations of a brushless design. Regardless, there is a good side to them.

For an increase in efficiency in their operations, the circuitry changes the drill’s torque and other features.

As a result of the changes, internal parts are less stressed. You’ll have powerful and efficient equipment that can operate any drilling project.

Compact Housing

Brushed motors always need some movement in between their components. Meanwhile, brushless drills are the same as traditional drills.

They can live in small spaces because of their friction-free build. Their drill is lighter and easier to use for everyone in the house because of their smaller housing.

Longer Runtime and Cooler Operation Equals Less Friction

You’ll discover that the drill will get warm and even hot for you to touch if you’re using a traditional cordless (brushed) drill for work that needs more torque.

While the motor spins, the presence of carbon brushes in traditional cordless drill motors causes friction.

More friction forms because of the great amount of power it needs. Friction is a loss of energy that can quickly drain a battery (especially when a lot of torque is needed).

A brushless motor removes this energy loss effectively because there is friction between moving parts. Plus, you can maximize the power which the battery stores because the work at hand will use up all of the energy.

Finally, it makes it more comfortable for you to use since this device runs a lot cooler.

How To Create a Quiet Environment When Using Your Brushless Drill

How To Create a Quiet Environment When Using Your Brushless Drill

The quiet operation is the selling point of brushless drills. You don’t need to drown out the rest of your home with noise from power tools even if you’re working on a project at home.

Fortunately, quiet drills do not sacrifice their power levels according to Eureka Magazine. Keep the noise level low even if you use the drill for complex work in the house.

As long as there is little friction, the operation’s quietness helps.

Pros And Cons Of Brushless Drills

Pros And Cons Of Brushless Drills

The new kind of drill machine is the brushless drill. They convert electrical power into mechanical power using a separate method that does not need constant contact.

Pros

Less Friction

The absence of carbon brushes ensures that there is substantially less friction between the moving and stationary components of the drill in a brushless drill motor.

Since there is no friction, there is no need to be concerned about components’ wear and tear.

Furthermore, less friction results in less heat, which results in less energy loss. As a result, brushless drill motors do not require as much maintenance as brushed motors.

Light Weights

They don’t have to account for the extra carbon brushes because brushless drill motors are lighter and smaller than brushed drill motors. This makes them easier to pick up and move about.

They Are Smarter

Brushless drill’s biggest advantage is that they are mostly “smart devices”. This refers to the circuit board’s electrical sensor capabilities.

Moreover, it doesn’t matter if the job requires less or more energy, brushed drills will still supply the same amount of electrical current.

There are some brushless drills that can sense how much power you’ll need to quickly complete a job.

For instance, consider a simple process where you drive a screw into a drywall. In order for the revolving parts not to receive too much current, the circuit board’s sensors will do the necessary sensing and control the power supply to avoid the waste of energy.

However, the rotors will require more power to spin when drilling through a hard metal surface since the sensors will show it and alert the circuit board to supply power to the working components.

Overall, you won’t need to charge brushless drills frequently because they are very energy efficient.

Cons

You might feel there is no reason for you not to purchase a brushless drill machine after seeing these benefits. However, this device has a major flaw of its own just like all technologies.

Higher Cost

One major disadvantage of a brushless drill machine is that they are expensive and their difference in price is huge. This tool is more expensive because it is high-tech and also contains a more powerful circuit board.

Another thing that contributes to its high price tag is the need for sensors to regulate the flow of electric current to its rotating part based on the difficulty of different tasks. Since you need the sensors to switch on the copper coils in perfect rhythm with the magnets and rotor, you can’t do without them.

Although some manufacturers offer low-cost options, brushless drills are still very expensive.

My Recommendations

Recommendations

DEWALT 20V MAX XR Brushless Drill/Driver 3-Speed, Premium 5.0Ah Kit, Cordless 

DEWALT offers you high visibility in dark areas because it comes with a 3-mode LED.

This brushless drill’s built-in features give you a strong performance. Also, the design of this tool is small and portable, so it fits into tight spaces easily.

Best Components

  • It offers good value for money
  • This tool is easy to use
  • It is efficient in power and energy
  • Size

Cons

  • The switch is inadequate

BLACK+DECKER Brushless Drill, 6.5-Amp, 1/2-Inch

This brushless drill comes with a 3 position side handle which helps reduce muscle fatigue across various applications and keeps you comfortable as well.

Also, it provides easy bit changes and accommodates larger bits because of its 1/2 single sleeve chuck.

Above all, it quickly drills through hard materials like concrete, stone, and brick since it comes with a powerful 6.5 amp motor.

MELLCOM Cordless Rotary Hammer SDS-PLUS Brushless Drill with 20V

To handle different challenges, this brushless drill uses a high-temperature resistant pure copper, that has a power of 800W.

Also, you don’t need to worry about the lack of power at the construction site because this drill can give you freedom of movement and operation without the shackles of wire.

Finally, this brushless drill can switch between rotary hammers and rotary drills since it comes with a multi-function knob.

MILWAUKEE’S 2804-20 Brushless Drill

MILWAUKEE offers you an XC5.0 battery that will last you for a long time. Also, it gives you optimal and excellent performance.

Its Redlink plus intelligence prevents it from damage and battery drainage during heavy applications.

Best Components

  • This tool has a lightweight
  • It is easy to use
  • It offers good value for money
  • Type and battery life
  • Finally, it offers a good overall performance

Cons

  • The defect might be the clutch

Makita XPH12Z 18V LXT Lithium-Ion Brushless Cordless 1/2

Makita offers you an innovative design because with this tool you don’t need carbon brushes and it can work for a long period.

The brushless motor it comes with makes this drill efficient for heavy-duty projects and jobs that can take a longer period.

Also, it comes with an ergonomic design. Since its grip is in rubber, it is soft and more comfortable for you to use.

Furthermore, it offers you an anti-slip grip which protects it from slipping or stripping.

Additionally, it has dual LED lights installed in it just to light up darker areas so that the ultimate result efficiency will improve.

Plus, this equipment is portable and small in size. During longer jobs, it prevents stress to your arm, shoulder, and wrist.

Its dual-speed also gives you a maximum torque of 530in/lbs and 2000 RPM. It can withstand the stress of constant usage on job site situations that are difficult.

Lastly, on masonry, concrete, steel, and other tougher substances, this drill can control the runtime and power to provide a massive operation.

Best Components

  • Ergonomic design
  • Easy to use
  • Lightweight and compact
  • Dual LED lights
  • Value for your money
  • Delivers up to 530 in/lbs of torque
  • It removes the use of carbon brushes

Safety/Maintenance Tips: What Is A Brushless Drill

Firstly, whenever you’re drilling make sure you use safety glasses to shield your eyes.

Secondly, dot punch and mark the area you are drilling metal. It makes it easier to find and operate the drill bit.

More so, always drill a pilot hole whenever you are drilling big holes on tough materials.

A drill’s metal can get hot from friction, so do not touch a drill bit after using it. Also, install the battery into the drill before using it.

Avoid anything that might get caught in the drill, especially baggy clothes.

My Conclusion

Conclusion

You might be thinking brushless drills are too good to be true. If you are of the opinion that there has to be a catch somewhere, I’m glad to say that there’s barely any.

There’s no catch because brushless drills are more pricey to manufacture than the traditional brushed drills. Furthermore, this tool has a longer life span and the efficiency is improved because its original cost is usually repaid.

If you are more concerned about their expensive price point,, don’t worry. When brushless drills become more popular, their prices will come down.

I hope you found this PowerVersity pick helpful?

If you found it helpful, kindly share your thoughts with the “Leave a Reply” form found towards the end of this page.

Finally, you may want to read other articles like this, visit our below pages.

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Akpan Iniobong
Akpan Iniobong is a Technical Writer for PowerVersity.com. She has a B.A in Religious Studies. She loves hiking, reading, and socializing. In PowerVersity.com, she writes buying guides and product best picks.
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