Ryobi ONE+ Cordless Drill

Last updated date: May 5, 2019

DWYM Score
8.5

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Look for the DWYM seal for products that are the best in the category.

We looked at the top 1 Cordless Drills and dug through the reviews from 2 of the most popular review sites including Consumer Reports, Popular Mechanics and more. Through this analysis, we've determined the best Cordless Drill you should buy.

Overall Take

In our analysis of 64 expert reviews, the Ryobi Ryobi ONE+ Cordless Drill placed 6th when we looked at the top 10 products in the category. For the full ranking, see below.

Editor's Note May 22, 2019:
Checkout The Best Cordless Drill for a detailed review of all the top cordless drills.

Expert Summarized Score
7.8
2 expert reviews
User Summarized Score
10.0
1 user reviews
Our Favorite Video Reviews
What experts liked
Quieter than most. Short recharge time. Fast at drilling holes and driving screws. Has a 1/2-inch chuck. Has an LED work light. Has a case or bag for storage. Has a belt hook. Can store a bit on drill
- Consumer Reports
In praising these new Ryobi Li-Ion drill/drivers, it's important to remember that Ryobi was, until recently, a runt of the power tool litter. But it nailed the new screw-dropping 18-volt battery, both in this tool and our lime green value winner, the P203.
- Popular Mechanics
What experts didn't like
Lacks a battery charge indicator. Non-Ratcheting chuck. Lacks a battery charge indicator
- Consumer Reports
That AutoShift doesn't always correctly guess what you're doing. Boring holes in a pressure-treated 4x4, the power setting kicked on, slowing the 1-in. spade bit to a wrist-wrenching crawl.
- Popular Mechanics

From The Manufacturer

Ryobi presents the 18-Volt ONE+ Lithium-Ion Brushless Drill/Driver Kit. It features a new and innovative 3-jaw in. Jacobs Chuck for quick hex bit insert. Choose from 1 of 24 torque options on the clutch and engage this device with the variable-speed trigger in 1 of 2 speed settings (0 to 600 RPM or 0 to 1800 RPM) to match your desired application. Its brushless motor provides longer runtime and extended tool life when compared to brushed motors. The LED light illuminates the work area and remains on for a time after trigger is released for improved accuracy. This is 1 of over 100 tools that work off of the same battery platform.

Overall Product Rankings

1. Dewalt Cordless Drill
Overall Score: 9.4
Expert Reviews: 9
2. Makita Cordless Drill
Overall Score: 9.1
Expert Reviews: 10
3. Hitachi Cordless Drill
Overall Score: 9.0
Expert Reviews: 10
4. BLACK+DECKER Cordless Drill
Overall Score: 8.7
Expert Reviews: 10
5. MILWAUKEE M18 Fuel Cordless Drill
Overall Score: 8.6
Expert Reviews: 1
6. Ryobi ONE+ Cordless Drill
Overall Score: 8.5
Expert Reviews: 2
7. Kobalt Cordless Drill
Overall Score: 8.4
Expert Reviews: 7
8. Bosch Cordless Drill
Overall Score: 8.3
Expert Reviews: 9
9. Ridgid Cordless Drill
Overall Score: 6.9
Expert Reviews: 2
10. Greenworks Cordless Drill
Overall Score: 6.7
Expert Reviews: 2

An Overview On Cordless Drills

Even in the most maintenance-free household, a good cordless drill can be a time-saver. In most homes, it’s nothing short of a necessity. From hanging a painting to building an outdoor deck, there’s no job that a drill won’t make easier.

As with any electric tool, there’s a bit of jargon to translate for the non-handyman. But in general, all drills work the same. An electric motor rotates a drill or screwdriver bit, whichever is held in place by a secure clamp called a chuck. The higher the voltage put out by the motor, the higher the torque or circular force applied by the drill. Cordless drills can vary in power greatly from 4 volts to more than 30, but a lot of that power can be overkill unless you’re planning to drill into concrete.

You can change out the bits in your drill by loosening and then tightening the chuck. This used to be done primarily by inserting and turning a chuck key, but keyless chucks are more or less the standard these days. Not only are they easier to use and generally more durable, you don’t have to worry about losing the key. The maximum size of your chuck will determine what size bits it can accommodate. 1/2 inch is one of the largest sizes to be found, but 3/8 inch is enough to fit most standard bits.

Needless to say, the main convenience of a cordless drill — other than saving you elbow grease — is its portability. And while the batteries needed to power it can be heavy, they are generally easily rechargeable. Amp hours are a good indicator of how long the battery will last on a charge, though they won’t translate directly into actual hours. Don’t automatically assume a drill will come with a battery, by the way. Many brands manufacture a range of different tools, such as circular saw, drivers and the like, that can use the same battery, which will be sold separately.

Any drill will have clockwise and counterclockwise settings to respectively place and remove screws, but most will also have a variety of clutch settings. The clutch is essentially a safety valve for your drill, disengaging the drive shaft when a certain level of resistance is reached. (For instance, when the screw sinks flush into a wall.) You can increase the setting to drill through thicker materials, like treated wood or concrete, or lower them when screwing into simple drywall.

DYWM Fun Fact

No matter how proud you are of your drill, it won’t match up to Bertha. That’s the name given to the world’s largest boring device used to dig the Alaskan Way Viaduct replacement tunnel in Seattle, Washington until its dismantling in 2017. It weighed more than 6,000 tons with a cutting head that was 57.5 feet in diameter.

The Cordless Drill Buying Guide

  • Among cordless drills, Lithium-Ion batteries have become the standard. They’re longer-lasting, more efficient, safer for the environment and somewhat lighter than their Nickel Metal Hydride (NiMH) or Nickel Cadmium (NiCd) counterparts — although the high-powered models can still get fairly heavy. They are, however, somewhat more expensive. Some cheaper Lithium Ion batteries can also overheat in certain conditions. Be sure to check your owner’s manual for storage directions.
  • Some battery brands will also have a battery life indicator or “fuel gauge,” which can be helpful. Even more helpful is a spare battery that can be switched out while the other is charging. And if you’re outfitting your garage with more than one tool, consider buying a modular kit with a single battery that can be used in a variety of different devices. It’s a definite money-saver.
  • There are a lot of factors that go into the price of a cordless drill, and power is one of the biggest. The amount of voltage put out by the motor will, in general, determine how much torque it can generate. You’ll want to find the drill that is right for the kind of projects you plan to tackle. Do you need a drill to repair your cabinets, hang paintings or assemble the odd piece of furniture? You might be fine with a 7.2-volt drill. Are you going to be drilling into masonry, putting screws into pressure treated wood or other outdoor jobs? You might want to look at a drill that packs 12 volts or more.
  • You’ll find two general types of motors in a cordless drill: brushed and brushless. Without getting into the technical weeds, the brushed motors use tiny “brushes” to transfer power to the rotor, while brushless varieties use magnets. Brushes, like any other motor part, is subject to wear and tear. That’s why you’ll generally find longer warranties on drills with a brushless motor. They’re just more efficient (and of course, somewhat more expensive.)
  • Weight and grip can be important factors, especially when you’re using your cordless drill in tight spaces or awkward positions. Most modern drills are configured with the weightiest part — the battery — placed at the bottom of the handle. While that generally makes the drill more stable and easier to use, some prefer a more top-heavy pistol grip that allows them to put more force behind the screw or drill.