Best Angle Drill – Buyers Guide

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An angle drill – otherwise known as a right-angle drill – is the perfect tool for if you have any jobs to do in a tighter space and are struggling to get access! Whether you are working on a job as big as fitting a kitchen or something smaller like putting together a piece of furniture, there is always going to be those hard to reach angles that make it impossible to get your power drill in there! In these situations…you need an angle drill.

As the picture shows, an angle drill is designed to be the opposite to a standard power drill, with a long handle and a short driving section, so that you can position the drill at a 90 degree angle and still have the power and drive to screw or unscrew whatever you are working with.

Best Pick Angle Drill

Makita DDA351Z 18V Li-ion LXT Angle Drill – Batteries and Charger Not Included
  • Maximum Capacity in steel 10mm
  • Maximum Capacity in wood 25mm
  • Head height 93mm
  • Keyless chuck
  • Large trigger

Last update on 2024-04-24 / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API / As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases

Originally, angle drills were only typically seen being used in the construction industry, however, now their efficiency and versatility have been recognised by amateurs and professionals alike, angle drills have become the go-to tool for a range of skilled DIY enthusiasts including cabinet and wardrobe fitters, carpenters, home DIY hobbyists and even mechanics!! 

Only got 5 minutes 

When you think of an angle drill, think of a screwdriver and mini hand-drill combined. Streamline, compact and lightweight, they’re designed to fit into those confined and awkward spaces: the 90° angle allows for a smaller driving head, which results in increased maneuverability and precision. 

The best angle drills will allow you to screw or drill in a straight line, even in an area where space is limited. 

Cordless Vs Corded 

Just like conventional drills, angle drills are available in both corded (mains powered) and cordless (battery-powered) models.

Angle drill typeAdvantages Disadvantages 
CordlessMaximum flexibility allows you to reach those almost-impossible-to-reach spots No trailing cables No power outlet/source needed Limited battery life Will require charging Battery requires regular use to hold charge Not as powerful as corded models 
CordedPreferred by professionals as they aren’t limited on use-time More powerful than cordless Ready to use Can be used with an extension lead for increased flexibility Majority of models have an ‘impact mode’ for penetrating hard materials Trailing power cord Requires mains power supply Better suited to drilling rather than screwing

Technical capabilities to compare

Weight, power, speed and cost will all depend on which brand and type of angle drill you choose. When deciding between models, it is worth taking the time to compare the angle drills you’re considering based on the following four areas:

Weight 

Lightweight cordless models can weigh as little as 2lbs, ranging up to around 20lbs. Corded models tend to come in at around 12-15lbs up to 21lbs+ 

Power 

Cordless models are between 10V-20V and corded models, which are mains powered, are 110/240V

Speed 

Cordless models are generally between 800 – 2000 RPM; corded models have the capacity to run at 750-2400 RPM

Cost 

Obviously dependent upon the brand, type, power capacity and additional features, however, you can expect to pay around £65 for an entry-level model and up to £400+ for top-end drill with maximum power and a wide range of additional features 

Angle drill features 

Standard components of an angle drill

  • Chuck
  • Chuck adjustment
  • Forward/Reverse control 
  • Start/stop speed control trigger
  • Handle/main body
  • Battery*

Desirable features of an angle drill 

  • Well-made body
  • Strong motor
  • An LED light (ideally shockproof)
  • Slim profile
  • Lightweight & compact design
  • Multi-speed settings
  • Reverse drill function
  • Keyless chuck (ideally a spindle lock chuck)
  • Angle range settings/pivoting head
  • High speed (0 – 1300 RPM)
  • Battery level indicator* 
  • Additional battery*
  • Charger*
  • Storage case
  • Detachable handle
  • Speed limiting function (prevents over-tightening)
  • Magnetic bit holder
  • Ergonomic ABS handle
  • Electronic clutch with multiple settings
  • Lengthy warranty (minimum 12 months)

*cordless models only 

Best Budget Angle Drill

DEWALT DEWDT71517T Right Angle Torsion Drill Attachment, Yellow
  • ideal for use with cordless drills
  • accepts standard 1/4in hex shank accessories
  • durable, compact design
  • includes 9 popular 25mm screwdriver bits

Last update on 2024-04-24 / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API / As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases

Angle drill chuck design 

As well as deciding between mains-powered or battery-powered, you’ll need to narrow down your search for an angle drill further by considering the design of the chuck (the clamp mechanism to which the drill bit it attached and tightened).

There are two options to choose from when it comes to the way that the chuck locks on to the screw or drill bit: 

Key locking chuck 

  • The jaw of the chuck is tightened/loosened using a chuck key
  • The key fits into a hole at the end of the chuck
  • Over time the key locking chuck mechanism will wear, making tightening/untightening more difficult 
  • The chuck key requires safe-keeping

Keyless chuck 

  • The jaws are manually tightened and loosened by turning the exterior of the chuck 
  • No need for a chuck key 
  • Manual tightening/untightening should be sufficient for all sizes of angle drill screwdriver/drill bits 
  • When working in a tight space, a manual adjustment should prove much easier than using a chuck key 

Models with a key locking chuck are, to some extent, a thing of the past, but it is still a feature of some models. A keyless chuck is the preferred and more common option due to its ease of use and durability. 

Do I really need an angle drill?

  • Thanks to variable speed settings, an angled-drill is suitable for the majority of domestic DIY tasks.  
  • For professionals, an angled drill is a vital piece of kit for both construction and carpentry.
  • For occasional work around the home, a flexible head angle drill is definitely worth considering, which allows the user to switch between a conventional drill head to an angled head.  
  • For regular or professional use, a corded angle drill is worth considering then you aren’t restricted by the life of the angle drill battery.

Angle drill Vs Angle attachment 

If you already own a conventional drill, there are angled attachments available on the market that can be fitted to your existing drill, which will allow you to drill at an angle. 

These attachments are handy – they allow you to drill at an angle for the fraction of the price of an angled drill – however, it is worth remembering that an angled drill is specifically designed to drill and drive in areas where space is restricted; the small, compact, streamlined design of an angle drill reflects this. A standard drill with an angled attachment will not necessarily be suitable for use in a confined space.  

Angle drill design features: functionality & comfort 

Motor & torque settings

The majority of angle drills will be powered by an interchangeable 3-speed motor which means you can adjust the drill speed in accordance with the density of the workpiece. Maintaining the power but decreasing the drill speed will improve drill control and is also likely to prolong the life of the angle drill motor – the adjustable settings should relieve unnecessary pressure from the torque, reducing the risk of it burning out. 

Ergonomic design 

The best angle drills will have been designed ergonomically, reducing wrist flexion and the risk of hand and finger strain. As an angle drill needs to be held with the wrist straight, models with an ergonomic handle should prove more comfortable to use and allow for greater control. The best angle drills will have an adequate rubber coating on around the motor; not only does the rubber encourage a firm and stable grip, but it also absorbs vibrations during intense or prolonged periods of use. 

Reaching the power switch can also prove tricky on some angle drill models and so an adjustable power switch is a handy feature to look out for. 

Angle drill attachments 

When it comes to power tools, versatility is key and the angle drill is no exception. Primarily it’s a drill designed to be manoeuvred in and around tight spaces, however, should you need to switch to a job where a conventional drill is good for the job, do you really want to have to switch between the two??? The best angle drills will come with attachments which extend the reach of the drill without putting excessive torque on the motor. Again a variable speed motor comes into play here as it minimises the risk of the motor burning out. 

There are conventional drills which come with angled attachments, claiming to do the job of an angle drill, however, it’s worth bearing in mind that although you will indeed be able to drill and drive at an angle, you’ll lose the efficiency and precision that is unique to the angle drill. By using an extender on an angled drill, you’ll be drilling in straight lines with the help of the angled drive head, and still be able to maintain the high level of control and precision of the angle drill.

Angle drill torque 

‘Torque’ is a common term associated with drilling. The torque is the power exerted by the drill onto a workpiece. The level of torque is important as it needs to be great enough to penetrate the material, but not so powerful that it’s difficult to control. The best angle drills will feature an adjustable torque setting and/or motor speed adjustment. You should look for an angle drill with at least 2-3 adjustable speed settings. 

With an angle drill, more so than a conventional drill, it’s important to get the torque right as, when drilling in a tight space, a greater degree of accuracy is likely to be required. 

Another positive when it comes to adjustable speed settings is the fact it reduces the pressure exerted on the motor. Regularly using a drill at too-high a torque will inevitably result in the motor burning out, which is both inconvenient and potentially costly.

An angle drill – why you need one in your toolkit 

The main reason for using an angled drill is to screw in a screw or drill a hole in areas with limited space or access, where getting a traditional power drill just isn’t an option due to the fact that there is simply not enough space for drilling or screwing in a straight line.

Granted, there are situations where you can get away with drilling or driving a screw in at an angle – usually if you’re working on an area that can’t be seen. Providing the screw is secure and fully driven in, the fact that the screw is angled can, on occasions, be overlooked however it should be avoided where possible. 

It might not be top of your DIY toolbox wishlist, but if it’s increased productivity; accuracy and manoeuvrability you’re looking for, then an angle drill is what you need; it’s a worthwhile investment and, although it’s typically been viewed as a tool which ‘complements’ the traditional power drill, this is no longer the case as there are models on the market which offer both the functions of a standard drill and an angle drill. Consequently, you may be best considering the possibility of investing in an angle drill over a conventional drill as switching between the two involves nothing more than removing the perpendicular (90°) drive head and the angle drill is then ready to use as a conventional drill. It is worth bearing in mind that the most angle drill combi-models tend to be smaller than a conventional hand drill though and are best suited to occasional, household DIY tasks.  

Best of the Rest

Sale
Trend Snappy 90-Degree Angle Screwdriver Attachment Mark 2, Access Tight Corners, Quick Release System, SNAP/ASA/2
  • ACCESS TIGHT CORNERS: The Trend Snappy Angle Screwdriver Attachment Mark 2 provides a 90-degree angle for easy access to tight corners, allowing you to work in confined spaces.
  • QUICK RELEASE SYSTEM: Featuring a quick-change chuck, this attachment ensures secure tool holding and allows for efficient swapping between bits and bit holders.
  • VERSATILE HANDLE: With a two-position handle design, this angle screwdriver attachment offers maximum control and flexibility during use, enhancing your overall working experience.
  • PREMIUM CONSTRUCTION: Constructed with heat-treated steel precision gears, the attachment delivers maximum torque for reliable performance. The die-cast head with ball bearing guides provides stability, making it suitable for use in both cordless and corded drills.
  • COMPATIBILITY AND SPECIFICATIONS: This angle screwdriver attachment can be used with impact screwdrivers (maximum 12V) featuring a maximum torque of 60Nm, rotation speed of 0-2000 RPM, and 0-2500 impacts per minute. Please note that it is not compatible with nut drivers.

Last update on 2024-04-24 / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API / As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases

Ryobi RAD1801M ONE+ Angle Drill, 18 V (Body Only)
  • 180° rotating base for easier access
  • Reverse action
  • Electric safety brake
  • Electronic variable speed
  • Dual material, non-slip, anti-vibration handle

Last update on 2024-04-24 / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API / As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases

Sale
Bosch Professional 12V System Cordless Angle Drill GWB 12 V-10 (without Battery and Charger, 1/2 L-BOXX inlay for tool, Cardboard box)
  • Particulates with chuck and effectively illuminates dark work spaces
  • Simple bit replacements for a variety of applications
  • Chuck articulates from 90°-180°. better balance and control of the tool for perfect working in tight areas

Last update on 2024-04-24 / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API / As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases

Frequently Asked Questions

What is an adjustable drive head?

The best angle drills will have an adjustable drive head, which means the angle of the chuck can be adjusted – typically to 90°, 45° or to be used as a conventional drill. This means you can carry out a variety of drilling jobs without having to stop and swop between different drills and/or adjust the head angle. 

What is the best battery in a cordless angle drill?

Lithium-ion batteries (Li-Ion) are the best type of battery for a cordless angle drill as they tend to have a short charge duration but decent running time. In terms of power, the majority of angle drill batteries tend to be between 10V and 18V, with 12V being sufficient for the majority of household DIY tasks.  Look for a drill which comes with at least two batteries and a charger for added convenience. 

Do angle drills have the same power as standard power drills?

Generally, you will find that angle drills do have slightly less power than standard power drills, which is one of the downsides to purchasing them. However, there are models that come with the same power so if you are looking for something with a lot of torque there are angle drills out there to choose from.

About Thomas Paxton 368 Articles
Hey there, I'm Thomas Paxton, your Tool Guru with a Twist! I've been knee-deep in the world of tools since I was a little tinkerer in my dad's shed. Now, I'm running my own website where I share my passion for tools and gardening products through buyers guides and insightful tips. I've got the knowledge and experience to break down complex concepts into simple, easy-to-understand language. I purchased Tools Review from Mike Jones at the start of 2023, he has done a sterling job of building the site and I hope I can continue in his success! When I'm not writing guides, you'll find me in my garden or garage, putting my skills to work and pushing the boundaries of creativity. So, whether you're a pro or just starting out, join me on this adventure, and let's conquer DIY projects together!

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