Visually, we should see a huge difference these two types of drills. Cordless drill is a handheld model with rechargeable batteries, but it should have many other features of the AC-powered drills. There are also cordless hammer drills and we could also find clutch setting for lower speed, useful for driving screws. For continuous usages, workers need to use multiple battery packs, some are charged while the current one is used. In this case, we should choose models that allows for quick battery swapping. For intensive uses during the day, we may need to have three battery packs, all fully charged when the work starts. Older or affordable models have 7.2V battery packs, but we should get models with 18V or higher battery packs.
Higher battery capacity allows for more powerful torque. We should be aware that handheld drills may have NiCd (Nickel Cadmium) batteries and they could develop internal short circuits or memory effects. It means that the useful life will be much lower than expected. Also, Nickel Cadmium batteries require special kinds of disposal process. For this reason, we should choose cordless drills with Li-ion or Lithium ion batteries. Memory effects are less significant on the batteries and the charging time is much shorter. As an example, we can charge the battery for 20 minutes and the drill can run for nearly an hour. Li-ion batteries also offer stable discharge rate, so it means that the power output will be constant, even if the battery is nearly depleted. Li-ion batteries also hold more charge than older Ni-Cd batteries.
Corded drills also have their own set of advantages. As an example, these models are usually more durable and pack the most power. It means that corded drills can make holes on harder materials, such as concrete and metal. Cordless drills are often less powerful and their usability can be restricted by battery life. The recharging time may also take a few hours. We may choose more powerful cordless with higher voltage, but they are often heavier. Even so, if we choose the right model, cordless drill can be more comfortable to use, easy to handle and light. Because there’s no trailing cord, cordless drills are safer to work. This drill may also be more versatile and we can access trickier areas. There’s no restriction in terms of electricity supply and distance from the nearest wall socket.
If we have more than one battery, we can interchange the current one; so we can obtain continuous power. Many models can also work as electric screwdriver at specific settings. If we have forgotten to charge the battery, there is also a quick charge capability, so we can use the drill in less than one hour. Regardless of the type of drill that we choose, there should be speed adjustments, at least high and low. The low speed is useful for driving screws and high speed is for typical drilling purposes. There should be significant difference between two settings; with the low settings suitable enough for driving screws.