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Milwaukee cordless drill

The best 18V & 12V cordless drills from Milwaukee

The Milwaukee brand originates from the town of the same name in the USA and was founded as early as 1924. Today, it belongs to a Hong Kong company, which also produces Ryobi cordless drills. The Milwaukee cordless drills are primarily aimed at people with high demands and at the trade. They are manufactured to a high standard and have a powerful brushless motor. Accordingly, the purchase price is not too cheap. The range mainly includes 18V (M18) and 12V (M12) drills.

Milwaukee cordless drill

In the following, we will show you which Milwaukee cordless drill is recommended. You will also find out what you should consider when choosing. We hope to be able to help you with this guide.

Milwaukee cordless drill – 3 Models in detail

Milwaukee M18 Fuel FPD2-502X

M18 Fuel FPD2-502X

Milwaukee cordless drills are sometimes supplied in all-inclusive sets. Popular in this context is the model Milwaukee M18 FPD2-502X .

The scope of delivery includes two 5Ah batteries, a charger, an additional handle and a transport case. Unfortunately, the latter is also made of plastic on the inside, which is why transport damage can occur in the material. The drill itself is of high quality. It has a brushless motor and a 13 mm full metal quick-action drill chuck. The peak torque reaches an incredible 135 Nm, which is why even XXL screws can be screwed in with ease.

In a narrower sense, this is an impact drill with which you can drill, impact drill and screw flexibly. While holes of up to 16 mm can be drilled in steel and masonry, 89 mm can be drilled in wood. Despite the high performance, the working weight is limited to 2.2 kg. The soft handle and a variably mountable additional handle support your handling.

All in all, the M18 Fuel FPD2 is a powerful cordless drill from Milwaukee. Thanks to a torque of up to 135 Nm and the included 5-Ah batteries, you can also handle large tasks without complications. The ratio between weight and power is really very good – Bosch, Makita and other tools with the same power weigh at least 500 g more. The impact drill also comes with a belt hook, a practical LED and an additional handle. The impact function can be switched on and off variably.

Milwaukee M18 CBLPD-422C

18V brushless 422C

Basically, it can be said that 18V cordless drills can be used particularly flexibly. They can develop a lot of power when needed and still remain handy. Exactly this circumstance is also fulfilled by the model Milwaukee M18 CBLPD-422C .

This example is also delivered in a set, which is why no separate purchases have to be made. It comes with a 4Ah and a 2Ah battery, among other things. Even with the larger battery, this 18V drill still weighs a moderate 1.8 kg. Accordingly, it can be carried well above the shoulders. The quick-action drill chuck is also made of metal and has a clamping width of up to 13 mm.

Although the cordless drill is comparatively lightweight, it can generate a torque of up to 60 Nm. This is sufficient for versatile work in the craftsman and DIY segment. In the usual manner, 2 gears and numerous torque levels are available. Incidentally, the head area is only 16.5 cm long, which is why you can work confidently even in confined areas. A bright LED light supports you in this.

Overall, the M18 CBLPD-422C is a versatile cordless drill from Milwaukee. In the 18V class, it is one of the light and compact models – yet it does not lack power. The high-quality brushless motor ensures this. Both the motor and the battery have electrical overload protection. In addition, the drill shooter has a bright LED light and a belt clip. Customers are very satisfied with the synergy between power and manageability.

Milwaukee M12BDD-202C

M12 12V M12BDD

You don’t always need an 18V cordless drill. Small tasks can be done more easily with a 12V drill drill. One recommendation is the Milwaukee M12BDD-202C .

This cordless drill weighs a light 1.2 kg and can therefore also be used effortlessly by women and senior citizens. It comes with a carrying case, a charger and two batteries with 2 Ah each. The maximum torque in 1st gear is 30 Nm. It can be adjusted in 19 different steps. The manufacturer recommends using screws up to 6 mm thick.

In the drill setting, it is possible to make holes up to 10 mm in size in steel and up to 22 mm in size in wood. The fact that the quick-action drill chuck on this 12V cordless drill is also made of metal is certainly something special. It can take attachments with a diameter of up to 10 mm. This small Milwaukee cordless drill also comes with a belt clip and a front LED.

In summary, the M12BDD-202C is a relatively inexpensive cordless drill from Milwaukee. It is handy and easy to use. Nevertheless, there is enough power for small and medium tasks. Customers are largely enthusiastic about this 12V cordless drill. However, they complain that 1 mm thick drill bits cannot be fixed properly.

Milwaukee cordless drill – In general, you should pay attention to the following

Selection options & drive

Currently, 15 different cordless drill drivers are offered under the Milwaukee brand. These can in turn be divided into 3 sub-categories according to their drive:

  • 18V tools (M18)
  • 12V tools (M12)
  • 4V compact drills (M4 D)

In addition to the classic design, angle drills are also offered. These are particularly stout in the head area so that they can reach even the most remote corners.

Because Milwaukee is at the forefront of technology, it is not surprising that even the compact 12V drills usually come with a brushless motor. Milwaukee develops these motors itself. They are considered to be particularly powerful because there are no pronounced frictional losses. In addition, the dimensions and wear are minimal. The best current version of Milwaukee’s brushless technology is called FUEL.

When it comes to the battery, the proven lithium-ion technology is used. This is already considered durable (no memory effect), compact (high energy density) and convenient (low self-discharge), but Milwaukee is an additional innovation driver here. The cells are monitored in detail to achieve maximum runtime and durability.

The battery capacity ranges between 2 and 12 Ah (ampere hours). The higher the value, the longer the battery lasts in continuous operation. However, the costs, weight and dimensions also increase. Therefore, you should strive for a sensible ratio between the drill, the battery and the amount of work. In most cases, 4-5 Ah are quite sufficient.

In addition, there is system communication between the battery and the drill (REDLINK PLUS). This allows the power to be optimised independently. In addition, overload protection protects the electronic components from excessive wear.


Power is always of crucial importance. It does not necessarily have to be pronounced, but it must definitely fit the task at hand. In this context, it makes sense to keep several indicators in mind.

For screwing, the first point of contact is the torque. It is expressed in the unit Nm (newton metres). The higher the value, the easier it is to screw in and remove long and thick screws. A Milwaukee cordless drill can provide up to 135 Nm – that’s enough even for XXL screws.

The fact that you can adjust the torque in a variety of ways is absolutely necessary. For example, if you want to countersink small screws into soft surfaces such as wood, you can only do so precisely with a low value. Otherwise the screw and bit attachment will quickly end up too deep. In addition, you should work at a high speed (2nd gear) to prevent rough chipping.

For drilling, the maximum diameters in wood and metal are consistently indicated. For tools with impact function, of course, the masonry/brick type is added. Because Milwaukee cordless drills can be so powerful, it is possible to make up to 89 mm holes in wood, up to 16 mm holes in masonry and up to 16 mm holes in steel.

The battery voltage also gives a rough indication of the potential power. 18V versions are generally superior to 12V versions here.

The fact that no wattage is directly indicated is even advantageous for many consumers. In principle, it only defines the power consumption. In the past, high wattages were often used as an enticement. In practice, however, such appliances were sometimes only inferior power guzzlers. The combination of a moderate wattage and a high torque is more praiseworthy – it is both efficient and effective.

Drill chuck

The drill chuck that is used has a far-reaching influence on the comfort and possible applications in practice. Depending on the model, Milwaukee uses different systems. In general, the manufacturer relies on the proven quick-action chuck. While an M18 model has a maximum clamping width of 13 mm, an M12 model has a maximum of 10 mm. Only the small 4V model has a different chuck (¼″-Hex direct bit chuck).

A quick-action drill chuck can be opened and closed with one hand. The use of a separate tool is never necessary. If the chuck clicks, the respective attachment is fixed. Other brand manufacturers also like to use this design.


Handling a cordless drill should of course be as comfortable as possible. In this case, you can devote yourself fully to the task at hand and need not fear any physical discomfort.

First and foremost, handling is influenced by weight. Depending on the model, a Milwaukee cordless drill weighs from well under 1 kg to over 2 kg. Despite robust components, a drill with 135 Nm from this manufacturer still weighs a moderate 2.1 kg – which is very commendable.

Soft and ribbed grip surfaces help you to grip firmly and securely. There is no need to worry about pressure or calluses on the palm.

Furthermore, the larger M18 models are supplied with an additional handle/side handle. This can be mounted as desired and distributes the weight evenly over both arms. You can also adjust its position.

Basically, the operation of a Milwaukee cordless drill is really uncomplicated. All controls are located where you would expect them to be. In addition, clear symbols help you to find your way intuitively. While the torque preselection ring is classically marked with numbers, the right-left rotation is marked with arrows.


A high-quality Milwaukee cordless drill can be equipped with numerous functions that improve comfort, versatility and safety. We will briefly explain which ones are particularly useful in the following.

As already mentioned, you can find your way around all the devices immediately. While you can preset the speed on the ring with numbers, there is a bolt on the side for right-left rotation. This is simply pressed in to change the direction of rotation.

Furthermore, a slide switch on the top of the housing can be used to switch between 1st and 2nd gear. The actual starting of the drill driver is then done in the classic way by pressing the throttle switch with the finger.

Other visually visible features usually include a metal clip. You can use this to hang the cordless drill on your belt and then climb a ladder with both hands.

A front LED light is almost always available as standard. Thanks to this, even dark recesses can be reliably illuminated, making work not only more effective and stress-free, but also safer.

The Milwaukee cordless drills with ONE-KEY are particularly innovative. This function allows you to connect to your smartphone via Bluetooth. You can then read out information and adjust the power in the app. It is also possible to localise the location of the connected cordless drill at any time.

Digital overload protection (REDLINK PLUS electronics) ensures that the motor, gearbox and battery are not damaged. In addition, the rechargeable batteries often have a capacity display, thanks to which the remaining working time can be estimated in advance.


Of course, the costs also have a certain influence on the decision. They should be in fair harmony with your own requirements. If this is not the case, there is an increased potential for disappointment. In the cordless drill segment, the following generally applies: the more power you need and the more often the drill is exposed to heavy loads, the more you should invest.

Admittedly, a Milwaukee cordless drill is not exactly inexpensive. However, that is not the manufacturer’s claim, but rather unconditional functionality under the toughest conditions. For this reason, even compact 12V cordless drills often require a three-digit budget. Smart 18V drills can even cost over 400 Pounds, but in principle they are up to any challenge.

Milwaukee cordless drill – It has many advantages to offer you

The cordless drills from Milwaukee offer great advantages. They are manufactured to a high standard and clearly belong to the top class in terms of performance. Brushless motors and quick-action drill chucks made of solid metal are evidence of great value. However, this is precisely why the tools are not the best choice in every situation. So that you can quickly weigh up their pros and cons, we have created a table for you below:


  • Probate choice of compact and large versions
  • High-quality workmanship means long durability is to be expected
  • Brushless motor offers the prospect of torque of up to 135 Nm, which means the manufacturer does not have to hide from any other brand
  • Perfect solution for tough applications in the trade
  • Metal quick-action drill chuck ensures easy drill and bit changes
  • Rubberised and illustrated operating elements ensure a high level of comfort in general
  • Power is widely adjustable
  • Front LED provides consistent illumination of the working area
  • Belt hook allows safe climbing of ladders and scaffolding
  • ONE-KEY connection ensures maximum control and efficiency (adjust speed and co. via smartphone)
  • Electronic components are preventively protected from overload, overheating and deep discharge
  • Batteries have a practical capacity indicator
  • 12V and 18V ecosystem can be used flexibly in many of the manufacturer’s tools


  • High purchase price, which is why the devices are not suitable for the small purse
  • For small tasks around the house, cheaper devices can be just as effective

Video: Milwaukee M18 Fuel review

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