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Can A Power Screwdriver be used as a Drill?

By: Daniel Smith




Are you wondering whether your power screwdriver can be used as a drill? We’ve got the answer and, you guessed it, the answer is: it depends.

In this guide, we will go over the details of why you can, and can not use a power screwdriver as a drill.

Can a power screwdriver be used as a drill?

A power screwdriver can be used as a drill. Keep in mind that a power screwdriver has a lower RPM than a traditional drill. Therefore, it is recommended to use it to drill in soft materials (e.g. Wood and mortar). You will also need a special drill bit with a hexagonal shank.

Can a screwdriver drill a hole?

It is possible to use your electric screwdriver to drill holes. However, it will take more time than with a regular drill. Dense materials like brick, steel, and other metals are not recommended to drill a hole in with a power screwdriver.

If you have a large job where a lot of drilling is required we recommend buying a hammer drill. You can read our guide: Best hammer drill for concrete

Electric screwdriver VS Drill

Even though they might look somewhat similar to each other there is actually a big difference between an electric screwdriver and a drill.

The main difference between an electric screwdriver and a drill is the RPM (Rounds Per Minute). Regular drills have a much higher RPM because they are designed to drill holes. Electric screwdrivers have a low RPM since this will reduce the chances of stripping a screw.

Showing the benefit of using a regular drill

Pros of using a regular drill:

  • More RPM so able to drill holes in most materials
  • Can often be used as an electric screwdriver when the drill has various speed settings.
  • Is a more diverse tool in general and is therefore more expensive.
Showing the benefit of using an electric screwdriver

Pros of using an Electric screwdriver:

  • Has only one purpose and therefore is often more affordable.
  • You will be less likely to strip a screw because of its low RPM.
  • Electric screwdrivers are much lighter than regular drills.

The Best Electric Screwdriver

Now that we know the difference between an electric screwdriver and a regular drill, which one of them is the best?

This is our favorite Electric Screwdriver:

Best Screwdriver

Black and Decker electric screwdriver product photo

BLACK+DECKER Cordless Screwdriver with Pivoting Handle

our score: 9.2
  • 180 RPM
  • 18 Months battery life
  • 3.6 Volts

Pros and cons

According to our experts
  • Plus icon indicating a pro

    Very compact and lightweight cordless screwdriver

  • Plus icon indicating a pro

    When you are not using this screwdriver it will have a battery life of 18 months

  • Minus icon indicating a con

    With only 180 RPM this tool is not ideal for drilling holes


The BLACK+DECKER Li2000 cordless screwdriver is the perfect tool for putting screws in your wall or wooden beams. Something we like about this tool is the ability to adjust the handle giving it more grip and accuracy.

Are you looking for a drill instead? You can read our guide: The best DEWALT hammer drill, to get started.

The Author
Daniel Smith
My passion for power tools and work clothing started when I was a kid. My father and I used to build tree houses together, he taught me all the tricks of the trade! Meanwhile, I'm a 28-year-old with more than 7 years of experience on various job sites.

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