Our Guide To Using a Hammer Drill As a Screwdriver
Nowadays, multi-function power tools are becoming popular on the market, not only do they save you space from having to buy multiple tools, but these versatile tools save you money too.
If you do DIY around the house, then it's likely you are interested in owning a hammer drill due to their high torque output for drilling a range of materials, but you might be wondering if you could use a hammer drill as a power screwdriver too?
The answer to this is yes, standard hammer drills can be used for drilling in screws thanks to their different modes which allow them to perform as a non-hammer drill and driver.
To find out how about the different types of hammer drills on the market, how to screw with a hammer drill, and if they match up to impact drivers, we have composed a small informational guide for you to check out below.
Why Choose a Hammer Drill?
If your after versatile power tools which can act as an ordinary drill, hammer hard materials and act as a driver too, then you should invest in a hammer tool rather than normal drills or a combi drill.
Hammer drills combine their rotary drilling action with hammer pulses to drill through tough materials with ease, the abundance of torque means you don't have to worry about drill bit snapping or ruining the material you are drilling.
They are available as both corded hammer drills or cordless drills allowing you to have the freedom to move around when using the tool.
The advantages of using a hammer drill are -
- Quick drilling/driving time.
- Can be used on hard materials.
Different Types Of Hammer Drills For Screwdriving
Now we know why a hammer drill is a good investment and that it can be used for driving screws, before we get into how to drive a screw with a hammer drill, let's cover the different types below so as you can see what type of hammer drill you need.
- Standard hammer drills - Your standard hammer drill is very powerful in comparison to average cordless drills, it uses a hammer pulsating motion to drill material with the drill drive chuck moving back and forth.
- Rotary hammer drills - Rotary hammer drill types work the same as standard hammer drills but only the bit of these hammer drills move rather than the whole drill chuck, these can be used with slotted drive systems to make them even more powerful.
- D-handle hammer drill - D-handle hammer drill modes have their power switch at the back of their handle and have a powerful drill motor that delivers great amounts of torque at a constant speed for uses such as mixing paint, you should not use these to drive in screws however as it can break them due to the high-speed settings.
- Pneumatic hammer drills - Pneumatic hammer drills are one of the most powerful daddies of hammer drills on the market, these hammers use compressed air to deliver blows in hard materials but do not as a power screwdriver.
How To Screw With a Hammer Drill
As long as you have a cordless hammer drill that has multiple modes for driving screws the screwing process is relatively easy and a hammer drill is an excellent option for driving screws in material such as brick or concrete.
- Hammer drill.
- Concrete masonry bit.
- Concrete nails or fastener of choice.
Step By Step
- Step one - To drive a screw with the driver function on your hammer drill you need to be able to drill a hole first with a masonry bit, this hole should be deeper than the length of the screw itself so measure beforehand.
- Step two - Drill your hole and use water occasionally to cool the bit down when drilling, start at a slow speed then work your way up to increase the depth of the hole.
- Step three - Once your hole is drilled, use compressed air to get rid of any dust and switch to the driver function of your hammer drill, drive the concrete screw into this hole and ensure it is at least one inch deep in the hole.
Hammer Drills Vs Impact Drivers For Screws
When choosing between a power tool for driving in screws you might be wondering if your better off choosing an impact drill over a hammer sort of power drill.
Impact drivers are typically better for driving in and unscrewing due to their high powered rotational force which helps the screwdriver bit easily screw into any material.
However, impact drivers only excel when it comes to being a power screwdriver, they are not suited for other tasks such as drilling into hard material.
Hammer drills on the other hand might not be solely suited for screwing and unscrewing but have more versatility than an impact driver.
So overall, if you are looking for a more versatile power tool that can be used on screwdriver settings as well as a hammer/regular drill setting, stick with a hammer drill, but for the task of driving and unscrewing, an impact driver beats the hammer drill.
Frequently Asked Questions About Using a Hammer Drill As a Screwdriver
What are some alternative hammer drill options for driving screws?
For driving in screws you can also use an impact driver, regular drill with a driver function and combi drill.
Should I choose corded hammer drills or cordless drills?
Corded hammer drills are excellent as they often have more power and don't run out of charge, cordless hammer drills on the other hand allow you to have more freedom and are more portable.
What screw should I use for driving in concrete?
It is best to use a Tapcon concrete screw for drilling into concrete as they do not require a fastener and can support a great weight of objects, do ensure you drive them in far enough however to avoid them from slipping.
Can I use a pneumatic hammer drills type to drive screws in a hard material?
Pneumatic hammer drills are only good for drilling and do not have a driver function so should not be used for driving in screws.
How much do regular hammer drills cost?
Depending on your model hammer drills can cost between £50-£100.
Do hammer drills have a screw driving option?
Yes, most modern hammer drills will come with a drive function and a regular drill mode making them very versatile.
Overall, to round up our guide, a hammer drill can be used successfully as a screwdriver as long as the tool has a driver model. Make sure to use the drill with the right screwdriver bit and concrete nail for the best results.
For the best power tool in terms of a screwdriver, it might be best to consider an impact driver too as these tools have high power for driving screws into all kinds of materials.