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DEWALT DCD980M2 vs DCD985M2 vs DCD990M2 vs DCD995M2 Review

Contractors and serious hobbyists know that DeWalt has some of the finest and toughest pro tools on the market. Long-life motors and ergonomic design make their cordless drills very popular because they are durable and comfortable to use. The only problem is choosing between the models available. Let’s sort through these four drill kits to see which one will be the best for you.

DEWALT DCD980M2 20V MAX XR Li-Ion Premium 3-Speed Drill/Driver Kit

dewalt dcd980m2

dewalt dcd980m2

Generally, if you see a kit number ending in a zero, that drill is a drill/driver without a hammer drill function. If you’re specifically looking for a hammer drill, skip down to either the DCD985M2 or the DCD995M2 described below.

This model, the DCD980M2, is a 3-speed drill with a variable-speed trigger. There are 22 clutch settings to give you lots of control over what you drive and fasten. It has an all-metal transmission so it won’t flake out after hard use. The ½” metal ratcheting chuck has carbide inserts that keep a tight grip on bits.

The maximum power rating is 535 unit-watts-out. In the real world that means you can sink three-inch screws into hardwood with no problem. Since the drill is so powerful, DeWalt includes an optional side handle like they do for their hammer drills.

There is a built-in LED light below the chuck to help you see in dim work areas. The light has a 20-second delay that keeps it lit after you release the trigger. The 4.0Ah capacity Lithium-ion battery will keep the drill going for hours of intermittent use on a project before it needs a charge. The included charger refills it in about an hour. The battery can sit for days or weeks without being used and not lose hardly any of its charge.

More features of the DeWalt DCD980M2 drill kit

  • DeWalt offers a 90 Day Money Back Guarantee, a 1 Year Free Service Contract, and a 3 Year Limited Warranty
  • The DCD980M2 comes with a removable side handle, two 20V MAX* XR Lithium-Ion batteries with built-in fuel gauge, a charger, and a plastic kit box
  • Drill weighs 5.2 pounds

 

DEWALT DCD985M2 20V MAX Lithium-Ion Premium Hammerdrill Kit

dewalt dcd985m2

dewalt dcd985m2

This kit number ends in a number 5, which means the drill is a hammer drill.You can also see the hammer symbol on the side by the clutch settings dial. Like the previous drill in the DCD980M2 kit, this one has three speed settings and a variable-speed trigger. The hammer has a maximum impact rate of 34,000 blows-per-minute and the overall power rating is 535 unit-watts-out.

In case you’re not familiar with hammer drills, here’s a little explanation. Think of how tough it is to drill into cement or brick. Now imagine how much faster it would go with a jackhammer. A hammer drill combines the rotation of a bit with the impact of a hammer to drive into tough materials.

So what does all this mean in real life? Besides drilling wood, metal, and masonry, you can use the DCD985M2 for other purposes, like drilling ice for fishing and removing lug nuts. (Of course, those are not recommended actions, but we know people do them.) It’s a good thing that the ½” metal ratcheting chuck has carbide inserts to endure that kind of abuse!

When you want fine control over how deep you sink screws, it has 22 clutch settings. The drill weighs just 5.2 pounds and feels well-balanced in the hand. If you plan to take on tough jobs needing a lot of torque, mount the included side handle. If you need to drill in dark areas, the onboard LED light will help. It has a 20-second delay after you release the trigger.

The charger in this kit refills the batteries in about an hour. If you haven’t worked with Lithium-ion batteries before, you’ll be surprised at how lightweight they are compared to Ni-Cd. The 4.0Ah capacity means the two included batteries in this kit will keep you working for hours without a pause. And since they are Li-ion, you don’t have to worry about memory effect—you can charge them as often as you need, or leave them filled and off the charger for weeks without losing power.

More features of the DeWalt DCD985M2 drill kit

  • DeWalt offers a 90 Day Money Back Guarantee, a 1 Year Free Service Contract, and a 3 Year Limited Warranty
  • The DCD985M2 comes with a removable side handle, two 20V MAX* XR Lithium-ion batteries with built-in fuel gauge, a charger, and a plastic kit box

 

DEWALT DCD990M2 20V Max XR Lithium Ion Brushless Premium 3-Speed Drill/Driver Kit

dewalt dcd990m2

dewalt dcd990m2

Now we’re getting down to the serious pro tools. This drill in the DCD990M2 kit has a brushless motor. Why is that important?

A standard motor with carbon brushes jams the accelerator down to the floor on every speed setting. Over the long term, this means a standard motor wears out faster. It also uses more battery power. A brushless motor has a longer lifetime, and the batteries it uses for power last longer, too. A brushless motor only pulls the amount of power it needs to handle the resistance it senses. Contractors who use power tools day-in and day-out depend on brushless motors so they get the maximum value and power for the money they spent.

The DCD990M2 drill comes with a side handle although it’s not officially a hammer drill. But check out the power rating: 650 unit-watts-out. That’s a lot higher torque than the previous two drills we discussed above. It has a 3-speed transmission with 11 clutch settings and a variable-speed trigger. The clutch has an electronic sensor that stops the motor when the drill reaches the maximum selected power so you don’t strip screws. The maximum rotation without load is 2000rpm.

This drill is lighter in weight and more compact in size, partly because of the brushless motor. It has the rugged ½” metal ratcheting chuck with carbide inserts like the other drills have. It also comes with a built-in LED work light, but the light’s placement is in the foot instead of below the chuck. That way it throws less shadows where you’re drilling.

Like the other drills, this kit comes with 4.0Ah capacity batteries for long runtime between charges. The batteries have a built-in LED fuel gauge so you can see if they’re ready to go, or need a refill.

More features of the DCD990M2 drill kit

  • DeWalt offers a 90 Day Money Back Guarantee, a 1 Year Free Service Contract, and a 3 Year Limited Warranty
  • The DCD990M2 comes with a 360-degree rotatable side handle, two 20V MAX* XR Lithium-Ion batteries, a charger, a belt hook, onboard bit holder, and a plastic kit box
  • Weighs just 4.6 pounds and measures 7.9” front to back

 

DEWALT DCD995M2 20-Volt Max XR Lithium Ion Brushless Premium 3-Speed Cordless Hammerdrill Kit

dewalt dcd995m2

dewalt dcd995m2

The drill in the DCD995M2 kit described here is almost the same as the one in the DCD990M2 kit above, and it adds the hammer drill function. That makes it a little bit heavier and longer, but it powers through masonry with 34,000bpm and 650UWO. (In case you’re wondering, 650UWO is about 700 inch-pounds of torque.) It also has a brushless motor. This is the most powerful drill of the four listed in this review.

The three-speed all-metal transmission hits a maximum of 2000rpm. There are 11 clutch settings. The clutch is electronic just like on the DCD990M2 described above. To save battery power, the clutch stops the motor from running when the drill reaches the selected amount of torque. You’ll find you strip fewer screws.

It comes with the same long-running 4.0Ah Lithium-Ion batteries as the other drills. The charger refills one in about an hour. The onboard LED light in the foot of the drill runs off the battery. It has a 20-second delay before it turns off after you release the trigger.

The maximum recommended capacities of the DCD995M2 are: ½” carbide tips in masonry, ½” twist in metal, 1-3/8” hole saw in metal, 4’ hole saw in wood, and ½” twist in wood.

More features of the DeWalt DCD995M2 drill kit

  • DeWalt offers a 90 Day Money Back Guarantee, a 1 Year Free Service Contract, and a 3 Year Limited Warranty
  • The DCD995M2 comes with a 360-degree rotatable side handle, two 20V MAX* XR Lithium-Ion batteries, a charger, a belt hook, onboard bit holder, and a plastic kit box
  • Weighs 4.7 pounds and measures 8.4” front to back

 

Recommendation

If you need maximum power for the toughest drilling and fastening jobs, get the DCD995M2 kit. It’s a top of the line cordless hammer drill made for long runtime.

If the hammer function isn’t as important, but you still want a pro tool for fastening and drilling, get the DCD990M2. It has a brushless motor and specs similar to the DCD995M2, but it’s a little lighter and more compact.

If drilling and fastening isn’t your day job, but you still want a powerful tool, get the DCD980M2.

If you want a reliable hammer drill but aren’t ready to go pro yet, get the DCD985M2.

Click here to purchase DEWALT DCD980M2 on Amazon!

 

Click here to purchase DEWALT DCD985M2 on Amazon!

 

Click here to purchase DEWALT DCD990M2 on Amazon!

 

Click here to purchase DEWALT DCD995M2 on Amazon!

 

 

 

 

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