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Best Drill and Impact Driver Kit: 2-Tool Combo Kit Buying Guide 2017


If you missed the premiere of our new buying guide series of articles, here’s the scoop – we’re putting ourselves in your shoes. We know what it’s like to stare at a wall of options and have no idea what the best drill and impact driver kit is or how to decide what of those features and specifications are meaningful and what’s just hype. So take it from the Pros at Pro Tool Reviews – here are our picks for the best 2-tool combo kit in several major categories.

What’s the best cordless drill kit under $150?

Keep in mind that we’re focused on the 18V/20V Max class – 12V is a whole other category and it’s deep enough that we could go through each of the same recommendations you find here.

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Best Drill and Impact Driver Kit

Best Drill and Impact Driver Kit

Milwaukee M18 Fuel 2-Tool Combo Kit with One-Key

When you need the best available drill and impact driver, expect brushless motors, multiple speed options, and some upgrades to the electronic controls. If you’re looking for the best overall 2-tool combo kit and money isn’t a consideration, it’s hard to go wrong with the Milwaukee 2796-22 M18 Fuel One-Key Drill and Impact Driver Kit.

Drill Specs

  • Model: Milwaukee 2706-20
  • Max No Load Speed: 2,000 RPM
  • Impact Rate: 0 – 32,000 BPM
  • Max Torque: 1,200 in-lbs
  • Weight: 3.40 lbs

Impact Driver Specs

  • Model: Milwaukee 2757-20
  • Max No Load Speed: 3,000 RPM
  • Impact Rate: 0-3,700 IPM
  • Max Torque: 1,800 in-lbs
  • Weight: 2.10 lbs

Check out our review of the non-One-Key version of this kit

Key Features

  • Price: $399
  • Warranty: 5 years
  • POWERSTATE Brushless Motor
  • REDLINK PLUS Intelligence: prevents damage to the tool and battery due to overloading or overheating
  • REDLITHIUM Batteries: deliver more work per charge and more work over the life of the battery
  • ONE-KEY Compatible: Customize, Track and Manage tool’s performance and location
  • Easily toggle between up to four custom performance profiles that can be saved to the memory of the tool

We tested the One-Key System using this combo kit

Pros

  • Milwaukee One-Key customization
  • Hammer drill features Excellent speed and impact rate with Outstanding torque
  • Impact driver features Very Good speed, Excellent impact rate, and torque
  • Excellent ergonomics
  • 5.0 AH batteries included
  • Deep line of compatible M18 cordless tools

Cons

  • Pricey kit at $399

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Best Drill and Impact Driver Kit Runner Up

Best Drill and Impact Driver Kit Runner Up

Makita 18V LXT Lithium‑Ion Brushless Cordless 2‑Pc. Combo Kit

A close second place is the Makita XT268T. You get most of the same benefits as Milwaukee’s kit, but without the level of customization. You get better ergonomics in the trade, though.

Drill Specs

  • Model: Makita XPH07Z
  • Max No Load Speed: 2,100 RPM
  • Impact Rate: 0 – 8,250 / 0 – 31,500 BPM
  • Max Torque: 1,090 in.lbs
  • Weight: 5.9 lbs

Check out our review of this drill

Impact Driver Specs

  • Model: Makita XDT14Z
  • Max No Load Speed: 3,600 RPM
  • Impact Rate: 0 – 1,100 / 0 – 2,600 / 0 – 3,800 IPM
  • Max Torque: 1,550 in.lbs
  • Weight: 3.3 lbs

The XDT12 is nearly identical but with Assist Mode

Key Features

  • Price: $429
  • Warranty: 3 years limited
  • BL Brushless Motor eliminates carbon brushes, enabling the BL Motor to run cooler and more efficiently for longer life
  • Extreme Protection Technology (XPT) which is engineered to provide increased dust and water resistance in harsh job site conditions
  • 18V LXT Lithium-Ion 5.0Ah battery BL1850B features an integrated L.E.D. battery charge level indicator
  • Rapid Optimum Charger has a built-in fan to cool the battery for faster, more efficient charging
  • Equipped with Star Protection Computer Controls to protect against overloading, over-discharging, and over-heating

Pros

  • Hammer drill features Outstanding speed, excellent impact rate, and torque
  • Impact driver features Outstanding speed, Excellent impact rate, and Very Good torque
  • Outstanding ergonomics
  • T-mode on impact driver for self-tapping screws
  • 5.0 AH batteries included
  • Deep line of compatible 18V LXT cordless tools

Cons

  • Including the XDT12 Impact Driver would add Assist Mode
  • Expensive kit at $429

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If you want to consider getting into a more industrial line of cordless tools with really smooth performance and Excellent warranty program, check out Hilti’s SF10W + SID 4-A22 kit. Just be prepared to earn some credit card points – it’s $569!

Best Drill and Impact Driver Kit for Pros on a Budget

Best Drill and Impact Driver Kit For Pros on a Budget

GEN5X Brushless 18V Compact Hammer Drill/Driver and Impact Combo

Not everyone has the benefit of a major construction firm’s spending power and sometimes the money you save on tools means more money in your pocket. That doesn’t mean you want the cheapest tool you can get away with. After all, you’re a Pro and you need Pro performance. Go for the Ridgid R9205 Gen5X Brushless Compact Drill and Impact Driver Kit for $249 if that’s you. The fact that the majority of Ridgid’s additional tools you’ll want are also for the budget-minded tips the scales in its favor.

Drill Specs

  • Model: Ridgid R86116
  • Max No Load Speed: 2,100 RPM
  • Impact Rate: 27,300 BPM
  • Max Torque: 700 in. lbs
  • Weight: 3.0 lbs

Impact Driver Specs

  • Model: Ridgid R86037
  • Max No Load Speed: 2,750 RPM
  • Impact Rate: Not listed
  • Max Torque: 2,250 in-lbs.
  • Weight: 3.0 lbs

Key Features

  • Price: $249
  • Warranty: Lifetime service agreement
  • Hammer drill: compact size and lightweight design for a fully powered hammer drill in a compact size
  • Impact drill: 3 speed settings provide adjustable power and speed for the most demanding jobs as well as precision work
  • Tri-beam 3 LED lights around the front housing to eliminate shadows

Check out our review of this kit

Pros

  • Brushless motor on a budget
  • Hammer drill features Outstanding speed, Good impact rate, and Very Good torque
  • Impact driver features Good speed and Outstanding torque
  • Excellent balance of power and compact design
  • Lifetime service agreement with registration
  • Very Good ergonomics

Cons

  • Compact hammer drill doesn’t have the torque of the top heavy-duty models
  • Not as many tools available on the 18V platform as others

Also, consider the Kobalt 24V Brushless Drill and Impact Driver Kit. The line is pretty limited, but both tools are Very Good performers.

To get into one of the more premium lines, the Milwaukee 2799-22 M18 Compact Brushless Kit is an Excellent choice at $249.

Best Drill and Impact Driver Kit to Jump Onto a New Battery Platform

Best Drill and Impact Driver Kit For Jumping Into a New Battery System

DeWalt FlexVolt Hammerdrill and Impact Kit

Deciding what battery platform to buy into is a tough decision. It’s got to have all the cordless tools you’ll need down the road and still fit your budget. That’s why the best 2-tool combo kit is so attractive – you can often get the drill, batteries, and charger and once you add up the costs separately, the impact driver is almost a freebie. Get your hands on the DeWalt DCK299D1T1. You actually unlock two battery systems from DeWalt since you get a 20V Max battery and FlexVolt battery in the kit.

Drill Specs

  • Model: DeWalt DCD996
  • Max No Load Speed: 2,000 RPM
  • Impact Rate: 0-38,250 BPM
  • Max Torque: 840 in-lbs
  • Weight: 4.7 lbs

Impact Driver Specs

  • Model: DeWalt DCF887
  • Max No Load Speed: 3,250 RPM
  • Impact Rate: 0-3,600 IPM
  • Max Torque: 1,825 in-lbs
  • Weight: 3.4 lbs

Check out how this impact driver did in our shootout!

Key Features

  • Price: $329
  • Warranty: 3 years limited
  • Hammer drill: 3-speed, high performance (0-2,000 rpm), all-metal transmission optimizes tool-to-task for fast application speeds and improved run-time
  • Hammer drill: compact size (8.4″ front-to-back length) and lightweight (4.7 lb) design to fit tight areas
  • Hammer drill: includes 3-Mode LED providing lighting in dark or confined spaces up to 20X brighter
  • Impact driver: provides 1,825 in-lbs of max torque at fast 0-3,250 RPM speed and 0-3,600 impacts per minute
  • Impact driver: compact size (5.3″ front-to-back length) and lightweight (3.4 lbs) design

Pros:

  • Gets into both 20V Max and FlexVolt lines
  • Hammer drill features Excellent speed, Outstanding impact rate, and Very Good torque
  • Highest impact rate in class makes this the best hammer drill for light masonry applications
  • Impact driver features Excellent speed, impact rate, and torque
  • Excellent ergonomics

Cons:

  • Not much to complain about – you can find better performance specs, but neither tool is sub-par for Pros and it’s a solid all-around kit

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Best Drill and Impact Driver Kit if Compact and Lightweight is Key

Makita 18V LXT Sub-Compact Combo Kit

Makita 18V LXT Lithium‑Ion Sub‑Compact Brushless Cordless 2‑Pc. Combo Kit

On the 18V side of things, nothing beats the Makita CX200RB 18V LXT Sub-Compact Kit for compact and lightweight. The size and performance of both the drill and impact driver are pretty much 12V, but being on the 18V battery system means you’ve unlocked their deep line of 18V tools. You only get compact batteries, though, so you’ll want to look for bigger ones down the road.

Check out our review of this kit

Drill Specs

  • Model: Makita XFD11ZB
  • Max No Load Speed: 1,700 RPM
  • Max Torque: 350 in-lbs
  • Weight: 2.8 lbs

Impact Driver Specs

  • Model: Makita XDT15ZB
  • Max No Load Speed: 3,000 RPM
  • Impact Rate: 0 – 1,600 / 0 – 3,900 IPM
  • Max Torque: 1,240 in-lbs
  • Weight: 2.6 lbs

Key Features

  • Price: $239
  • Warranty: 3 years limited
  • Efficient BL Brushless motor
  • Driver-Drill weighs only 2.8 lbs. with battery for reduced operator fatigue
  • Compact and ergonomic design
  • Mechanical variable 2-speed transmission for a wide range of drilling and driving applications
  • Impact Driver weighs only 2.6 lbs. with battery for reduced operator fatigue
    Compact and ergonomic design at only 5-5/16″ long
  • Assist Mode (A-mode) feature helps eliminate “screw cam-out” and “cross threading” by driving at low speed until impact begins
  • Extreme Protection Technology (XPT) is engineered for improved dust and water resistance for operation in harsh conditions
  • 18V Compact LXT Lithium-Ion 2.0Ah battery features an integrated L.E.D. battery charge level indicator

Pros:

  • Ridiculously lightweight for 18V tools
  • Outstanding ergonomics
  • Deep line of compatible 18V LXT tools
  • Drill features Good speed
  • Impact driver features Excellent speed and Outstanding impact rate

Cons:

  • Performance is closer to 12V tools than 18V
  • No hammer drill mode
  • Compact batteries are good for the kit but limit more power hungry 18V LXT tools

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Best Drill and Impact Driver Kit for Prosumers

Best Drill and Impact Driver Kit For the Prosumer

Ryobi One+ 18V Lithium-Ion Hammer Drill and Impact Combo

Sure, you don’t work in the trades for your day job, but you’ve got a talent for building and fixing things and expect professional results. Jumping all the way up to Pro level pricing isn’t an option, but you want a tool that delivers and you’re willing to trade off some of the most recent features for solid performance. If that sounds like you, grab the Ryobi P898N for $169. If you can live without the hammer drill mode, you can get the same kit with a standard drill for $20 less.

Drill Specs

  • Model: Ryobi P214
  • Max No Load Speed: 1,500 RPM
  • Impact Rate: 19,500 BPM
  • Max Torque: 600 in-lbs
  • Weight: 3.9 lbs

Impact Driver Specs

  • Model: Ryobi P237
  • Max No Load Speed: 3200 RPM
  • Impact Rate: 3400 IPM
  • Max Torque: 1,800 in-lbs
  • Weight: 2.75 lbs

Key Features

  • Price: $163
  • Warranty: 3 years
  • 1/2″ single sleeve keyless chuck with spindle lock for quick, easy bit changes
  • Heavy-duty all-metal chuck for added strength and durability
  • Drill mode for drilling holes in wood, plastic, and metal
  • Drive mode for driving screws and bolts
  • Hammer mode for drilling holes in masonry and concrete
  • MagTray magnetic holder for convenient placement of bits and screws
  • Built-in bubble level to improve drilling/driving accuracy
  • 2-speed gearbox for high torque applications

Pros:

  • Sub-$200 price tag is easier to handle than most
  • Hammer drill features Good torque
  • Impact driver features Excellent speed, Very Good impact rate, and Excellent torque
  • Solid lineup of compatible One+ 18V tools, including lifestyle categories other brands aren’t into

Cons:

  • Hammer drill speed and impact rate are a little under true Pro level expectations
  • Not as fine a fit and finish as others
  • Compact batteries are good for this kit but limit more power hungry members of the line

Also, take a look at the Porter-Cable PCCK602L2 kit for $169.99.

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Why a Drill and Impact Driver Kit?

The drill and impact driver 2-tool combo kit is the most popular kit sold and everyone has them. For Pros, you have your drill bit in the drill and driver bit in the impact driver to drill pilot holes and drive screws without having to change the bits. Even when that’s not the task at hand, the drill is your go-to tool for making holes and the impact driver is your screw driving specialist. Projects are always easier and faster when you have the right tool for the task at hand – and in many cases, that’s a combo kit of tools.

What Are the Criteria?

We looked at each of the brands that offer a 2-tool drill and impact driver combo kit to find the overall best performance, price, ergonomics, depth in the 18V/20V Max lineup, and warranties. Many brands offer more than one combo kit at multiple price points and we considered those as well. Advertising partners are included but do not receive unfair consideration in our picks. It’s all about what kit is the best in each category from an objective standpoint.

We didn’t include 12V tools for this group even though there are some great options available. Some even have performance that gets near this higher voltage group. In the end, however, they really need to be considered in a group of their own. So keep your eyes open for the 12V buying guide!

Rating Key

  • Outstanding – best in this class
  • Excellent – not the top, but close
  • Very Good – solid, nothing to be ashamed of here
  • Good – It’ll work, but we wouldn’t want to go any lower

Disagree With Our Choices?

That’s okay! We know personal preferences take a front seat in determining the best drill and impact driver kit, and every trade is different. Do Pro Tool Nation a favor and tell us what your top pick is and why you love it. Feel free to put it in the comments below or on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter!

Why Pro Tool Reviews is a Reliable Source

At Pro Tool Reviews, we have our finger on the pulse of the tool industry. We’re constantly keeping up with the latest press releases and researching the newest tools. The most relevant tools for our Pro audience make it into our editorial calendar for review. We do hands-on reviews of more than 200 tools each year as standalone evaluations. We run dozens more through our head to head tool shootouts. Additionally, we get our hands on hundreds of other tools at media events and trade shows throughout the country and internationally. With a team of Pro reviewers across every major trade involved in the construction process, you’re sure to get an expert opinion every time.

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11 Comments on "Best Drill and Impact Driver Kit: 2-Tool Combo Kit Buying Guide 2017"

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Pete
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I had just been shopping the options for a solid drill and driver kit. I had no preferences and no brand loyalty. All I had before was a plastic B&D drill. All my reading and YouTube watching lead me to Dewalt for the best performance/value combination. I’m not a pro so I don’t need (or want) to pay top dollar. As I was about to order a set on one site, I saw another site (so you know I’m not advertising) had a one day sale for a Dewalt set. The DCD796 driver, DCF887 impact, 2 batteries (2 and 4… Read more »
Frank O Reilly
Guest

It’s a pity Milwaukee
Haven’t caught up the specs of the European spec
DIY is what you are but with the industrial prices
Keep it for your home market
The European,s are not fooled to easy

James Paradiso
Guest

I’ve owned them all. Milwaukee is by far ahead of the game.

Rob Davidson
Guest

Love my Ridgids. Wouldn’t trade them for anything.

Chris Mooneyham
Guest

I have dewalt 20,I have Makita 18,I have Milwaukee 18,dewalt smokes the rest as far as battery life

Glenn Guratovich
Guest

It really depends on the battery amperage.

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