Makita XPH07T 1/2″ Cordless Hammer Drill Review
We’re getting ready to take a look at the toughest drills available in an update to our 18V Hammer Drill Shootout. As we lead up to it, we’re calling out the only cordless drills to have broken the 1000 inch pounds of torque barrier. The Makita XPH07T makes the list by pushing 1,090 inch-pounds.
Several of Makita’s most powerful cordless tools use the 18V x2 LXT platform that is powered by two of their 18V batteries. The 18V x2 LXT Circular Saw is one that we’ve reviewed and really like. However, getting that much torque out of their heavy duty hammer drill only takes one battery paired with the BL Brushless Motor.
The Makita XPH07T competed in our epic 50+ drill shootout where it performed well. It managed its speed well, had the second-highest torque, and the smallest overall footprint. It even rates well in value—something that can be tough for a premium tool.
Overall 18V Heavy-Duty Hammer Drill Ranking: 3rd place
Makita XPH07T Hammer Drill First Impressions
Before I even had the chance to unbox the Makita XPH07T, the first thing I noticed was the length of the side handle. It’s easily the longest I’ve used. Makita has been intentional with the ratio of torque to handle length in an effort to keep the tool under greater control. Hey, I’m good with that. While it may be a little disconcerting or even the punch line of jokes, it really does lead to a more stable drilling experience under load.
Picking up the hammer drill for the first time, I considered the weight. It’s not obscenely heavy for its size, but it’s not a compact lightweight either. I’ll chalk that up to the durability of the all-metal gearing and gear housing. The rest of the ergonomics in hand are excellent as expected. Installing the 5.0 amp hour battery creates a well-balanced tool. The handle is agreeably suited to the size of my hand and rubber overmolding helps the comfort level.
After charging the batteries, which only takes 45 minutes from dead flat with Makita’s Rapid Optimum Charger, I installed the side handle and got to work.
Makita XPH07T Hammer Drill Performance
Having tested the other heavy hitters of the cordless drill world, Makita was going to get the same treatment. That meant testing with spade bits and hole saws. Pressure treated pine was the victim of the day.
I started with a 1″ spade bit and left the Makita XPH07T in high-speed mode. Most drills I’ve used can handle the 1″ threaded spade bit before being dropped into low speed, so it’s a pretty good benchmark to start with. As expected, the hammer drill bored easily through the 2x material with no issues.
What stood out immediately is how smooth the performance was. Having just tested another drill that had no visible runout, but noticeable vibration transfer, this was a pleasant find. Even without the side handle installed for support, it was still smooth. This was a common experience in all of our tests.
Moving on to the 1-1/2″ spade bit, I dropped into low-speed mode. Again, there was no issue chewing through the PT. The drilling time was a little longer than other drills we used, but still very smooth compared to the others.
For hole saws, I went straight for the 4-1/4″ big boy. It bears mentioning that the Makita XPH07T is only rated for a 3″ hole saw. We knew we were going outside the recommended range, and I’ve certainly factored that into my opinion. The hammer drill cut smoothly as we’d been experiencing. While I was able to get through the cut, it stopped several times on the way.
So why is a drill with 1,090 inch-pounds of torque unable to make that cut? It’s in the gearing optimization. With such a wide range of possible applications, you’ve got to pick and choose how to deliver the power through your gearing. The good news is that you’ll love this drill on hole saws up to 3″. While it’s outside the recommended range, we think you can bump that up to 3-1/2″ with premium accessories.
Since we really didn’t want to tear up the floor of our shop, I didn’t test the hammer drilling performance – yet. We’ll be bringing in some concrete specifically for that on our Heavy Duty Drill Shootout, so be on the lookout for it in the next couple of months!
While it’s not the highest torque drill on the market anymore, the Makita XPH07T kit really stands out for the smoothness of the drilling and boring applications. Like we found in their compact miter saw, it’s a characteristic that is beginning to define our Makita experience. We really like that Makita kitted this unit with a pair of 5.0 amp hour batteries. The extra long handle, while I have yet to run out of one-liners for, really is beneficial.
Where some users may want to see the hammer drill improve is in weight. At 5.9 pounds, it is heavier than some of its competition. However, I’ll take the extra weight if it means I’d have to trade off some of the durability or smooth drilling. The Makita XPH07T comes across as a solid premium kit that’s definitely aimed at pro users. If you’re in the system already, you can grab the bare tool for $149. If you’ve been in for a while, you’ll score a couple of 5.0 amp hour batteries and a Rapid Optimum Charger by going with the kit.
Makita XPH07T 1/2″ Hammer Drill Kit Specifications
- Capacity (masonry): 5/8″
- Capacity (steel): 1/2″
- Capacity (wood): 3″
- No Load Speed: 0 – 550 / 0 – 2,100 RPM
- Blows Per Minute: 0 – 8,250 / 0 – 31,500 BPM
- Maximum Torque: 1,090 in.lbs.
- Battery: 18V LXT Lithium-Ion
- Overall Length: 8-1/8″
- Net Weight: 5.9 lbs.
- Kit Warranty: 3-year Limited
- XPH07Z Bare Tool Price: $149.00
- XPH07T Kit Price: $349.00
Makita XPH07T 1/2″ Hammer Drill Kit Includes
- (1) 18V LXT BL 1/2″ Hammer Driver-Drill (XPH07Z)
- (2) 18V LXT Lithium-Ion 5.0Ah Battery (BL1850)
- (1) 18V Lithium-Ion Rapid Optimum Charger (DC18RC)
- (1) Depth Gauge (122576-8)
- (1) Tool Belt Clip (346317-0)
- (1) (126413-8)
- (1) Tool Case
- (1) XPH07 Side Handle (126413-8)
This review originally published on October 30, 2015. It has been updated to reflect the hammer drill’s performance in our recent shootout.