DeWalt 20V Max XR SDS Plus Rotary Hammer with Dust Extractor Review

DeWalt SDS Plus Rotary Hammer

The 1-1/8-inch DeWalt 20V Max XR SDS Plus Rotary Hammer with Dust Extractor (model DCH263R2DH) is a powerful, light, and OSHA Table 1 compliant tool that impressed us from the first trigger pull. We used it for chipping and drilling on several jobs and even made a large hole in a concrete wall for a hood exhaust. This DeWalt tool helps put airborne particles in the dust bin of history!


  • Table 1 Compliant with a replaceable HEPA filter
  • Plenty of power at 3 joules
  • Dust collector is unobtrusive and easy to empty
  • SHOCKS Active Vibration Control reduces fatigue
  • Light tool at under 6 pounds (without battery)
  • Extractor runs for several seconds after trigger release for maximum dust capture


  • No significant downsides


We really couldn’t find a weakness in this tool. It eliminates a big, corded dust extractor from the workflow while being light and powerful. The vibration dampening system makes the DeWalt DCH263R2DH ride easy in your hands as it quickly drills and chips. It doesn’t have the bind-up eliminating E-Clutch found on the DeWalt Stud and Joist Drill, but they designed the factory-set clutch to protect against bind-ups (we didn’t experience any). The dust bin and replaceable filter are easy to clean, so your lungs can stay safe and your jobsite can stay Table 1 Compliant. If finding dust control while drilling seemed an onerous task, DeWalt puts your fears to rest.

DeWalt DCH263R2DH Performance

As OSHA’s Table 1 regulations approached a while back, some tradesmen were understandably concerned that compliance would require burdensome equipment. But those concerns weren’t justified, at least in the case of a tool like the DeWalt 20V Max XR SDS Plus Rotary Hammer with integrated DWH205DH dust extractor. Its 3 Joules of impact energy have drilled through and broken up everything we’ve thrown at it.

DeWalt DCH263R2DH rotary Hammer

Since the DeWalt DWH205DH accessory included with this rotary hammer provides onboard dust collection, you don’t even need a separate system like the DeWalt FlexVolt 60V Max Dust Extractor.

DeWalt DCH263R2DH SDS-Plus rotary hammer

The integrated DeWalt DWH205DH dust collector on the DeWalt DCH263R2DH has a similar design as other tools we’ve used. The “magic” begins in the brushed dust nozzle head that slides back and forth. It stays in contact with the drilling surface and maximizes dust collection. The dust is vacuumed up through the sliding bar where it passes through the filter into the dust bin. You just work normally, and the extractor unobtrusively captures a majority of the dust.

DeWalt 20V rotary hammer dust extraction

How Do You Drill a Large Hole with a Rotary Hammer?

We needed to drill out a large hole for a hood exhaust and lacked a core drill with a suitable circumference. That work also had to occur while atop scaffolding. We opted to drill several small holes in order to create a large one through which the hood exhaust could fit.

DeWalt SDS Plus Rotary Hammer with Dust Extraction

This would have created a lot of airborne particles in the old days. However, the sliding dust nozzle head caught nearly all of it. The three DeWalt dust nozzle heads support 1-inch diameter bits, all stop bits up to 1.5 in. shoulder, and small diameter bits up to ½-inch. The slide also accommodates SDS-Plus bits up to 10 inches long.

The DeWalt DWH205DH dust extractor takes its power from the 60V Max FlexVolt battery we used. That means you save the weight of having to use a separate power source for dust collection. We appreciated how the extractor runs for a couple of seconds after you release the trigger. It wastes very little battery run-time and keeps you from losing dust as you withdraw the bit.

DeWalt DCH263R2DH HEPA container

How It Handles Bind-Ups

This DeWalt SDS Plus Rotary Hammer seemed to hit a lot harder than my last rotary hammer. In fact, an older bit I first used snapped off inside the chuck! That was surely a fluke (and a failure on the bit’s part), but I found it noteworthy.

Of course, when you use a powerful rotary tool there’s a risk of injury in a bind-up.

Editor’s Note: What is a Bind-Up?
A bind-up occurs when a bit encounters rebar or another obstruction and transfers the rotational force to the tool. It can sprain your wrist (or worse). Some rotary hammers and even hammer drills are starting to include accelerometers, clutches, or other mechanisms that sense when this occurs and stop the tool immediately.

This DeWalt 20V Max XR rotary hammer uses a factory set clutch. It’s designed to reduce sudden, high-torque reactions. We never experienced a bind-up during this review (nor do we go looking for them!), but this feature differs from DeWalt’s effective E-Clutch system that shuts high-torque tools off in a bind-up.

We had quite a few holes to drill on this particular job. The DeWalt 20V Max XR SDS Plus Rotary Hammer is light—even with the integrated dust extractor. It also proved strong enough to drill serial holes without causing a lot of fatigue.

How Do You Clean the Filter?

You can knock the HEPA filter clean every few holes by pressing the button on the dust bin. This lets you maintain suction until the container fills up. When it’s time to empty the dust bin, simply unlock it and remove it from the extractor. It’s a smart design that keeps your work brisk and your lungs free of those dangerous particles.

DeWalt rotary hammer dust filter


You can pick up the DeWalt DCH263R2DH for around $599 (see below). Here’s a look at the competition.

Reader Poll

The Bottom Line

The DeWalt 20V Max XR SDS Plus Rotary Hammer with its integrated DWH205DH dust extractor is an excellent tool for the majority of chipping and drilling work. Its inline design, effective dust capture, and light weight make it easy to use for serial drilling. We couldn’t find a true weakness. Priced comparably to its competition, it’s a great Table 1 compliant rotary hammer for any contractor.

DeWalt SDS Plus Rotary Hammer with Dust Extraction Specifications

  • Model Number: DeWalt DCH263R2DH
  • Dust extractor (integrated, removable): DeWalt DWH205DH
  • BPM: 0 – 4,300
  • Impact Energy:  3 joules
  • No Load Speed: 0 – 1,165 RPM
  • Dimensions: (HxL): 7.34 x 15.88 in.
  • Weight: 5.95 lbs.
  • Price: $599

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