Can You Use an Impact Wrench as a Drill? (Detailed Guide 2022)

Can you use an impact wrench as a drill? Many DIYers and home enthusiasts frequently ask this question.

The answer is yes; you can use an impact wrench instead of a regular hammer drill. However, there are several factors that you must keep in mind. 

First, you Must have a “lockout” device on your impact wrench that will prevent the tool from spinning at the speeds needed to drive a screw or tighten a bolt.

Secondly, you must use a “durability” test to ensure the impact wrench you are using has enough power to do the job.

After that, it’s up to you (the user) to use the proper technique.

If you don’t have the right tool for the job, you can do serious damage to your workpiece. Therefore, always use care when working with power tools.

Impact wrenches are more powerful than regular hand-held hammers. However, they can cause injury if used inappropriately.

In this article, you have learned about impact wrenches, how to use them safely, and several other useful things you should know about this powerful tool. So, let’s start reading:

Read Also: When Not To Use An Impact Wrench

What is an Impact Wrench?

An “impact wrench” is like a drill or an electric screwdriver, uses mechanical energy rather than heat to tighten or hold a nut or bolt.

Most impact wrenches work by hitting a metal object (like a nut or bolt) multiple times with a large hammer.

Can You Use an Impact Wrench as a Drill?

Yes, you can use an impact wrench as a drill instead of a regular hammer drill. However, it will not give you the same torque as a hammer drill. An impact wrench is a much more powerful tool than a hammer drill.

If you want to get the same torque, you need to use a hammer drill.You can get a 15V impact wrench, which will give you around 12 to 15 ft-lbs of torque. So, you will be able to drill a 1/2″ hole in a wall with this.

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However, If you are using a 10V impact wrench, you will only get around 10 ft-lbs of torque. So, you will not be able to drill a 3/4″ hole with it.

Safety Tips For Using an Impact Wrench:

The following are some safety tips for using an impact wrench as a drill:

Always wear safety goggles and gloves while drilling. These can wear over your regular clothes or in a hard hat if you have one.

Do not drill through wood with an impact wrench. The hammer may hit something else while drilling and cause you or someone else to be injured.

Be very careful when you hammer while drilling. You must strike the object with sufficient force to ensure a good connection, but not too much that you damage something around it (like wood, plaster, etc.)

Don’t let the hammer fall onto the ground or anyone accidentally. It can bounce and hurt them, especially if it hits them directly.

When drilling, keep a steady hand and use a solid surface (wood, steel, concrete) to support the object you are drilling into.

Be careful when drilling into concrete and brick. There are different methods of drilling into these surfaces. Some are solid and work great, but others involve making a small hole into which you insert an auger or another device to make a larger hole.

If you drill too deep, you can ruin the surrounding structure. When drilling, keep your fingers out of the way of the hammer.

How To Choose The Right Impact Wrench For The Job?

Since impact wrenches come in many sizes, how do you know which one to buy? It is quite simple. Get the largest impact wrench you can find with a long enough handle to allow you to stay at least three feet far from it.

The tool itself should be heavy and have very solid construction. If it is not, it will become unbalanced, and you will easily be able to tell by the way it handles.

Impact wrenches are available in a variety of different bit sizes and styles. The most common ones are 3/8″, 1/2″, and 1″.

If you only need to tighten or loosen one nut or bolt, use the 3/8″ or 1/2″ impact wrench. If you need to make multiple adjustments (tighten or loosen more than one nut or bolt), use the 1″ impact wrench.

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Benefits of Using an Impact Wrench

The following are some benefits of using an impact wrench:

  • It makes things much faster. Because you only have to turn a small portion of the handle to accomplish a lot of work, you can complete a task in much less time. For example, if you have to remove ten screws holding a cabinet together, you can do it with one screwdriver with an impact wrench in just a few seconds.
  • It permits you to work where you are restricted by space. Since you only need a small turning motion to do a lot of work, you can use an impact wrench on items that would be too difficult or impossible for you or another person to use a standard tool like a drill or ratchet set. (Like trying to get into a small area between two vertical walls.)
  • It is easier to control the depth of the drilling. With an impact wrench, you only have to apply force to the handle; there is no clutch mechanism to get confused with.
  • Impact wrenches can deliver huge amounts of torque. This means the wrench itself has the strength to tighten or loosen a large number of nuts and bolts simultaneously.
  • A normal hand tool has to be used multiple times to accomplish this task. With an impact driver, you can do it with one handle swing.

Frequently Asked Questions

What Efforts Can You Use To Improve The Efficiency of an Impact Wrench?

Impact wrenches are highly efficient, and in most cases, it’s recommended to use them over a power drill. The main drawback is that you don’t have much control over the process, and if you have a lot of moving components, you may easily damage them. So, make sure that you clean and lubricate your tool regularly to maintain its functionality.

Is There a Distinction Between Impact Drivers and Hammer Drills?

Impact drivers and hammer drills are two similar tools that use the same principles for operation. They both have a reciprocating impact mechanism where an internal hammer drives a tool bit or drill head using an impact mechanism.

The main difference is that the hammer drills are self-contained in housing while the impact drivers are connected to a larger external unit. A typical impact driver is about the size of a cell phone and can be used as a power drill, screwdriver, and many other tools.

A hammer drill is bigger, usually between the size of a golf club and the length of a baseball bat, and it’s used for larger drilling tasks like drilling holes in concrete and rebar.

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Do You Need an Impact Driver?

An impact driver is a beneficial tool for working with electrical or mechanical items. However, you don’t need an impact driver if you already have a drill or a normal screwdriver. An impact driver makes things go faster by allowing you to use less force and achieve deeper penetration.

But if you do need one, you should get a variable speed impact driver like the Black & Decker 18V Variable Speed Impact Driver. It features two impact bits and a ¼-inch drive bit so that you can switch among the two with a simple twist of the knob.

What is The Difference Between an Impact Driver and an Impact Wrench?

Impact drivers are essentially the same as hand drills and use a hammer or similar power-driven mechanism to drive a drill bit. This is done to create a hole in concrete or similar building material.

Impact wrenches are the same thing, but they can generate more torque and have variable speeds. They’re used to remove nuts, bolts, screws, and similar fasteners.

What Can You Do With an Impact Driver?

Impact drivers are very useful in many DIY projects that involve driving nails into wood, plastic, or even concrete. They’re also useful in driving screws and bolts into the wood and driving them into hard objects that resist hand tools.

There are different types of impact drivers available on the market, so it’s always best to do some research before buying one. It’s also essential to understand what type of work you want to get done using this tool and whether you can achieve the desired results by using only hand tools. 

Conclusion

If you have the essential tools and know-how to use them properly, they will become your best friends. This is why we love using power tools because they can do anything.

They can cut wood, screw holes in wood, drill holes through wood, create grooves in wood, drive screws, grind metal, and so much more.

I’m sure you can see how powerful they are, but there is a downside. You have to make sure you’re using them safely. If you don’t know how to use power tools correctly, you can end up breaking your tools or hurting yourself and others.

It’s very important to protect your tools and yourself. Have you ever used an impact wrench? What are your thoughts on it? Share in the comments below!

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