Best SDS Drill Reviews & Buying Guide

Makita Cordless SDS Plus Rotary Hammer Drill

  • 3-mode function
  • Lightweight design (3.5kg)
  • Cordless
  • Variable rotation mode

The Makita DHR202Z is one of the best all-round SDS drills on the market. Whether using at home or work, this SDS drill has plenty of features that will make those drilling and hammering tasks simple.

Not only does it feature an attractive design, but it’s built with easy operation in mind. It’s a cordless drill so removes the restrictions of corded models, while also having an ergonomically designed handle for better grip and less fatigue.

Better still, it comes with a light weight for an SDS drill, weighing just 3.5kg - one of the lightest weights available for this type of tool.

With three operation modes and a variable rotation mode, this is an SDS drill that performs on all fronts. You can easily switch between rotary only, hammer only, and rotary hammer, making it easy to drill through thick materials such as stone and masonry.

The variable rotation mode allows the chisel action to work in 40 different positions. This is certainly impressive as it rotates up to 360 degrees to cover all possible angles, making chasing jobs like tile removable a piece of cake.

The Makita DHR202Z is unquestionably one of the best SDS drills available, and it even comes with a three-year warranty!

Bosch PBH 2100 RE

  • 3-mode function
  • Low weight of 2.2kg
  • Compact design

The Bosch PBH 2100 RE is a powerful 3-mode SDS drill hammer with a compact and lightweight design for easy handling around the home. It’s got a great price attached, making it a fine choice for anyone looking to buy an SDS drill for the first time.

There are three operation modes to choose from, including rotary only, hammer only, and hammer and rotary. The rotary hammer option can also be changed into a chisel function, which is fantastic for chasing jobs such as tile removal.

It is also possible to use the rotary switch to choose whether you want drilling done with or without impact, and the speed is adjustable to suit the material.

The hammer mode is very powerful too, offering 1.7 joules of high impact force, making it a good choice for powering through harder materials. Despite the power, the ergonomic handle and lightweight design (it weighs only 2.2kg) makes it comfortable to use and prevent any kickback no matter the pressure.

Perfect for those home projects, the Bosch PBH 2100 RE is a great option for those looking for a reliable SDS drill with plenty of functions. It’s affordable, lightweight, and easy enough to use.

DEWALT DCH273N

  • 3-mode function
  • Brushless motor
  • LED light/w delay for improved visibility
  • Low vibration to minimise fatigue

The DEWALT DCH273N is a fantastic 3-mode SDS drill hammer that features an innovative brushless motor for increased performance and lower charging times for the ion-lithium battery. An electronic clutch offers high torque consistently, while helping to further increase the durability of the hardware.

A rotation stop mode is perfect for light chiselling around the house, making it a fine option for working with plaster, tiles, and render. The impact stop mode featured with the rotary only drilling option allows for efficient drilling in various materials, including metals and woods.

The DEWALT DCH273N is also one of the best SDS drills when it comes to vibration control, clocking an impressive 6.6m/S ². This is thanks to a floating gearbox design that is mounted on 4 springs, which causes the gearbox and chuck to move back and forth at the same time, resulting in better impact absorption.

Therefore, using the drill is very easy on the operator as there is a fraction of the vibrations compared to most other SDS drills. It also weighs very little at 2kg, although this does increase once the battery is installed, which is sold separately.

VonHaus 1500W SDS Rotary Impact Hammer Drill

  • 3-mode function
  • Powerful 1500W motor
  • 2-year warranty
  • Various accessories included

This 1500W SDS hammer drill from VonHaus offers the perfect balance of performance and affordability. Despite being one of the best-priced 3-mode drills on the market, it comes with an exceptional price, especially when considering the accessories that come with the hammer drill.

Perhaps the most impressive aspect of this hammer drill is the motor. Providing a whopping 1500W of power, there is some serious kick to this tool, offering enough juice to tackle both light and heavy-duty work.

When you consider that 650-750W motors are generally suitable for most basic tasks, this SDS hammer drill offers that and more, making it very versatile. There are three modes to choose from, including rotary, rotary with impact, and a chisel function, allowing for a variety of tasks to be tackled.

For instance, it can drill through steel up to 13mm, concrete up to 32mm, and up to 44mm for wood, so it can take on most odd jobs around the house whether you’re drilling through plaster or hammering away at bricks or concrete.

To finish of a great product, it comes with a host of accessories, including a replacement brush, grease pot, and various chisel heads and drill bits, along with a 2-year warranty for a sound peace of mind!

Hitachi DH26PX

  • 3-mode function
  • 850W motor
  • Light weight of 2.8kg
  • 3-year warranty

The DH26PX is an outstanding 3-mode SDS hammer drill from Japanese manufacturer Hitachi that is suitable for various tasks around the house. It also comes with a great design that makes it one of the easiest SDS hammer drills to operate, featuring a lightweight design and reduced vibrations.

One of the more interesting features of this hammer drill not found in many others is the double modelled side handle. This feature adds a great aesthetic to the drill, but more important it results lower vibrations fed back to the operator, making the drill much easier to operate than most - it can be used for a good length of time without causing any fatigue.

As a three mode SDS hammer drill, the Hitachi DH26PX operates with rotary, rotary with impact, and a chisel mode. These are suitable for a variety of home improvement tasks, including drilling through wood, metal, and chiselling away tiles, grout, plaster etc.

Three is also an adjustable angle function when using the chisel blades, making it much easier to find the perfect chiselling angle for any task. The one push action makes changing bits simple, while the high impact energy results in 3.2 joules of power.

Bosch Cordless SDS Drill Professional 36 V

  • 2-mode function
  • 2 x 36v 2Ah batteries
  • Soft grip handle
  • 3-year warranty

The Bosch Professional GBH 36 V is a great choice for those that require a lightweight SDS hammer drill with decent functions and a reasonable price. While the lack of a chisel function may deter some, the 2-mode function still makes it a fine for drilling and hammering through various surfaces.

It is also a compact and lightweight SDS hammer drill, making it a good option for those that may struggle with heavy equipment. At just 2.9kg is shouldn’t be too heavy to operate for most and can even be used overhead, while it’s also aided by a soft grip handle that helps to reduce fatigue by absorbing much of the vibrations.

That doesn’t mean the Bosch Professional GBH 36 V lacks any punch. It produces impressive impact energy of 1.8 joules and comes with a 4.850 BPM impact rating, allowing it to drill through materials such as wood plastic, ceramic, and concrete.

Better still, it comes with two 36V 2Ah batteries. This is great as it means you can use the hammer drill for double the time, charging one battery while using the other to ensure there is always power ready. When fully charged, each battery can drill as much as 160 holes in a single charge!

Ryobi Cordless R18SDS-0 ONE+

The Ryobi R18SDS-0 ONE+ is one of the most unique SDS hammer drills on the market, in that it claims to have a 4-mode function rather than conventional 3-modes like other devices. It’s designed for drilling through thick materials such as masonry and concrete, while the versatile chisel function can remove light tiles with ease.

Featuring four modes that includes chisel, chisel adjust, hammer drilling, and drilling without hammer action, it does live up to the claim of being one of the first cordless 4-mode SDS hammer drills.

The hammer drilling mode is ideal for most masonry and bricks, while the drilling without hammer action is perfectly suited to drill through softer materials such as action, tile, and metal. The chisel mode works well to remove light tiles, while the chisel adjustment mode allows for the best angles to be used.

This makes it incredibly versatile for a variety of tasks. It really comes to its own in the drilling modes, with a pneumatic hammer mechanism allowing it to drill up to 16mm through concrete and wood, and up to 13mm through steel.

An ergonomic design makes the Ryobi R18SDS-0 ONE+ relatively easy to use. The handle is L-shaped to allow for closer drilling in tight spaces, and the handle comes with a soft grip that absorbs vibration.


SDS Drill Buying Guide

SDS hammer drills provide both drilling and hammering actions, making them one of the most versatile tools you can have for home projects. They are very effective at drilling holes in any type of material, be it wood, plastic, bricks, or concrete, while also capable of chiselling actions.

The most appealing aspect of an SDS drill is the fact that is offers so much power. This makes them one of the best tools for drilling into brick or concrete walls, while their ability to drill into other materials makes them very versatile.

However, with such a wide range of SDS hammer drills available, it’s hard to know what is best for your needs. They come with a variety of features and functions, so it helps to know what to look for in an SDS drill to ensure you get the most suitable tool you can find.

What is an SDS Hammer Drill?

In order to find a suitable SDS hammer drill, it helps to know what the tool is and how it works. While there are various names given, SDS generally stands for slotted drive system. This refers to the fact that the SDS drill buts feature slots at the end of each shank, allowing it to fit snuggly in the chuck and be locked firmly in place.

This is very useful for when using the hammer mode of the drill, as it slots featured in the bits provide the right motion needed to reduce friction inside the dill. The power delivered is therefore more efficient while reducing pressure for the users, making it much easier to hammer into hard surfaces without much strain.

Types of SDS Hammer Drills

There are three main types of SDS hammer drills available, with each one offering different modes for drilling and hammering.

2-mode - This features a rotary hammer mode and rotary drill mode. It’s suitable for drilling metal and wood with rotary mode, while the rotary hammer mode offers a hammer-action making it suitable for masonry.

3-mode -Includes the same modes as the 2-mode SDS drills, but also featured a third chiselling mode, allowing you to chip and chisel into masonry.

3-mode/w changeable chuck -  Includes all the features of a 3-mode SDS drill but also allows you to change the chucks, meaning you can add your own drill bits for a more versatile tool.

Things to Consider When Buying an SDS Hammer Drill
Weight 

The weight of an SDS drill is possibly the most important thing to consider when buying. These are heavy tools that require plenty of stamina to use, so using an SDS drill that is too heavy will only tire you quicker. Most of these drills are naturally heavy due to their functioning, but it may be worth getting a lighter model (typically 2-3kg) to ensure you don’t get too fatigued when using it

Speed

Drill speeds are measured in revolutions per minute (RPM), so the higher the RPM the quicker the drill speed. However, speed isn’t always the best feature to look for, especially when drilling heavier materials like stone and masonry. Higher speed is best used when drilling woods and other soft materials.

Motor Type

Brushless motors are the latest type used in SDS drill hammers and are quite impressive. By removing internal brushes, the motors offer increased power and reliability, while you don’t need to change the brushes as with traditional motors. However, these types of SDS drills are more expensive, but many view it as a feature worth paying extra for.

Read out over reviews and buying guide on the best Combi Drills and Cordless Screwdrivers.

Last update on 2018-04-02 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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