by Glyn Sheridan
Cordless drills operate on rechargeable batteries, allowing the user to snap in a battery pack and enjoy instant drill power without a power cord. While these cordless drills are useful for numerous applications, some uses are more popular than others. Perhaps the most versatile item in the carpenter's toolbox, the cordless drill substantially reduces the labor necessary to complete many projects. As long as the battery pack has a full charge, you can use your cordless drill anywhere; you don't have to be near an electrical outlet.
Replacing the screwdriver: The cordless drill's top use involves attaching and assembling. Using a screw bit, the craftsman can position a screw on the end of the bit and quickly insert it into the project. With the flip of a switch, the cordless drill driver can rotate counterclockwise, making it invaluable for removing screws as well as installing them.
Pilot holes: When you're inserting screws into wood that may split, a cordless drill, with a bit one size smaller than the diameter of your screw, lets you drill a pilot hole before inserting the screw. This is beneficial in finish carpentry where even a small split would detract from the quality of the item. Because a screw digs into the wood and separates the grain, it has a tendency to split the wood, especially if the screw is large. However, by drilling a pilot hole first, you can insert the screw and minimize wood splits.
Hole saw: Your cordless drill doubles as a saw for cutting out holes for doorknobs, sink faucets, drains and other round holes. Hole saw-bits come in various sizes, and they attach to the cordless drill, allowing the tool to do all the work of cutting out a perfectly round circle.
Drywall installation: Drywall installers carry their cordless drills on their tool belts for quick access. Installing drywall requires lifting and holding large panels in place before inserting drywall screws into the studs beneath the wall. With one hand bracing the panel, the installer can grab his cordless drill -- fitted with a magnetic screw tip -- and insert the screw through the drywall with ease.
Concrete: The cordless hammer drill, a special type of cordless drill used to drive bolts into concrete, incorporates a slight vibration along with the strong rotating action of the drill. A cordless hammer drill is indispensable for bolting down outdoor furniture to concrete or for installing any type of screw into concrete.