Household and professional screwdrivers
From the general name, it is well understood that household screwdrivers are designed for infrequent household work, and a professional tool is an indispensable assistant to a specialist in construction and repair work. These two types of screwdrivers differ in power, chuck size, power supply, availability of additional functions, weight and, of course, price.
Household (amateur) screwdrivers should be taken when you rarely need the tool and will use it for a short time. These devices are lightweight, often battery powered, inexpensive, and do well in tasks such as assembling furniture or changing a lock. The rotation speed is rarely higher than 400-500 rpm, and the torque is usually around 10-15 Nm.
If you constantly make something or are professionally engaged in repairs, and the electric screwdriver will be used almost every day and for several hours, then you need to take a more impressive tool. Professional screwdrivers are more powerful, easily withstand high loads, they will not replace a drill, but if necessary, they can even cope with drilling hard surfaces. Their rotation speed reaches 1300-1500 rpm and more, and the torque is 130 Nm.
To decide which electric screwdriver to choose, you need to soberly assess the future load on it and the type of work being done. functional professional models are not always the best option. On the farm, to perform minor repairs, it is enough to have the simplest electric screwdriver, especially since the for such a tool do not bite.
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These screwdrivers are powered from the mains, and this implies a number of pros and cons.
The advantages of network screwdrivers include:
- higher power, therefore the professional one prevails among the network tool. Household screwdrivers with mains power supply are not produced by all manufacturers;
- there is no need to constantly monitor the battery level and recharge it. plugged in the plug and you can start;
- operating time is not limited by the duration of the battery, there is no need to come off to recharge the battery;
- less weight compared to cordless models, because the design of the tool does not provide for the presence of a battery.
- network binding. When assembling furniture, wires only interfere, and when performing construction work, there is not always access to electricity. In addition, the outlet may be located far away, and then you will have to additionally use an extension cord. When working at heights, cordless screwdrivers are extremely inconvenient.
Torque is one of the main characteristics of screwdrivers. It shows the user what loads the tool is ready for and what its functionality is. To simplify, the torque is the force that the device applies to the screwed fastener, or the force of its resistance to the load. This indicator is measured in Nm.
- soft torque determines with what force the tool can tighten screws, self-tapping screws, etc., the speed in this case is minimal;
- hard torque shows the maximum force in the drilling mode, but this function is not available in all screwdrivers.
For home use, a tool with a torque of 10-15 Nm is suitable. If the task is to occasionally make holes in not very dense materials with an electric screwdriver, then it is better to take a tool with 30-40 Nm. In professional screwdrivers, the torque can be up to 130 Nm and sometimes even more.
The higher the torque, the longer and larger in diameter the fastener can screw in the tool. For example, a device of 25-30 Nm can easily cope with screwing a 70 mm self-tapping screw into a tree, and to work with 100 mm self-tapping screws, you will have to take an electric screwdriver from 40 Nm. Sometimes, when working with long self-tapping screws, a hole is pre-made.
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The torque of an electric screwdriver can be adjusted, which makes it different from many other tools. The design of the device includes a special limiter located after the chuck, with its help you can set the level of torque when tightening. When the fastener is screwed in, the chuck will stop, even if the engine is still running. Thanks to this feature, the likelihood of drowning the self-tapping screw too deep or damaging the bit is reduced.
tips on how to choose an electric screwdriver for home and work: types, manufacturers
Assembling a cabinet, unscrewing an old screw or screwing several dozen self-tapping screws into a plinth using only one screwdriver is a real torture for the master. It will be much easier if you use an electric screwdriver. No professional can do without this useful tool, and an electric screwdriver is needed to perform small repairs around the house. If you decide to buy this device for yourself or as a gift, then you probably faced the problem of an indecently huge assortment. How to choose an electric screwdriver for home and work, deal with different types of tools and numerous manufacturers. Novice craftsmen may also be disturbed by the question of how an electric screwdriver differs from a drill. We deal with all the nuances.
Electric screwdriver chuck type
In screwdrivers, there are mainly two types of cartridges used:
To decide which electric screwdriver to choose, you need to remember the previously defined purposes for using the tool.
Screwdrivers with a keyless chuck are more versatile and allow you to install both bits and drills, and even a mixer attachment and a grinding brush. Changing the attachments is quite simple and quick, fixation occurs due to the rotation of the clamping ring. The mechanism can be two-sleeve, when two rings have to be turned simultaneously, and one-sleeve. The latter allows you to change the equipment more quickly.
The hex chuck is designed only for working with bits, but you can trick and use drills with a hex shank. An alternative is to use the removable keyless chuck that comes with some models. The hexagonal chuck allows you to quickly change the bits, they are held by a magnet or a special lock, you need to make a little effort to change the bit.
Also, when choosing, pay attention to the inner diameter of the chuck, which determines what size a bit or drill can be inserted into an electric screwdriver. Household models, as a rule, allow working with attachments with a diameter of no more than 10 mm, but there are exceptions.
The gears in the gearbox can be plastic or metal. The metal version is naturally better.
The presence of specific additional functions makes the device more expensive, but also more versatile. In order not to overpay for unnecessary functionality, you need to soberly assess the scope of the tool.
Additional functions of the electric screwdriver include:
- The hammer mechanism practically turns the electric screwdriver into a hammer drill and allows the tool to cope with creating holes in concrete and stone. However, for constant drilling of such hard materials, it is better to purchase a drill or even a hammer drill, and in an electric screwdriver, this is just a pleasant addition for rare use;
- pulse mode will increase the torque and cope with driving screws into harder materials. At the same time, the impulse makes it easier to unscrew the fasteners and facilitates work in the absence of normal support;
- there is a reverse in the absolute majority of models, it allows you not only to tighten, but also to unscrew screws and screws;
- backlighting will simplify work in hard-to-reach places, but is not required;
- there is a speed switch on those tools where the speed of revolutions allows not only screwing in fasteners, but also drilling holes. The most advanced tools have 3 speeds;
- automatic feeding of self-tapping screws makes it possible to simplify and speed up large-scale work, but this function is found only in professional screwdrivers.
This type of tool has become more widespread. These devices are powered by batteries, the capacity and charging time of which can vary significantly.
- independence from the availability of electricity and the location of the outlet, which gives freedom of action. Work can be performed at a height, in hard-to-reach places, but practically in the field, and the wires will not get tangled underfoot;
- the scope of application is wider, which follows from the autonomy and mobility of the tool.
- dependence on the battery charge level, the need to constantly monitor this parameter and periodically charge the batteries. Experts recommend taking a spare battery with a cordless electric screwdriver: while one is charging, the second is working. It is preferable to choose batteries that charge quickly;
- in terms of power, the cordless tool loses to the mains one. The torque may not be enough for working with hard materials, but there are exceptions here. professional cordless screwdrivers are quite powerful and reliable.
Professionals know that choosing a cordless electric screwdriver is even more difficult than a network one, because it is necessary to take into account not only the functions of the device directly, but also the features of the battery.
The first thing to look out for is the type of battery:
- lithium-ion batteries, Li-Ion. This is the most popular and modern type of battery, it is used everywhere, not only in screwdrivers. Among the advantages are low weight, sufficient power, no memory effect, long service life of charge / discharge cycles (about 3000 and more), high charging speed. Of the minuses, the relatively high cost, so this is a good option for permanent, but not one-time work. This battery is not designed to work in cold weather. In order for the battery to last as long as possible, it is better not to discharge it less than 15% and not to charge it more than 90%. Service life is about 3 years;
- nickel-cadmium, Ni-Cd. They are highly resistant to low temperatures and power surges. On the other hand, they have a pronounced memory effect, so it is better to discharge such a battery completely and fully charge it so as not to reduce its capacity. The battery can withstand about 1000-1500 charge / discharge cycles, but it takes a long time to charge. about 7 hours, so it is better to have a spare battery. The battery’s weight is significant, but it is the cheapest. Service life is about 5 years;
- nickel metal hydride, Ni-MH. Such batteries are becoming more and more popular, they are light in weight, low resistance to low temperatures, and the memory effect is not expressed. A big plus is the minimum self-discharge, and a minus is the price;
- Lithium polymer batteries, Li-Pol, are rarely used in screwdrivers. These are capacious, but not very durable batteries.
In addition, it is worth paying attention to the battery capacity in Ah: the higher it is, the longer the electric screwdriver can work without recharging. Another important parameter is voltage in Volts. The maximum power that can be obtained from a cordless electric screwdriver directly depends on this indicator.
Typically, the voltage ranges from 9 to 36 V. For simple work, you can take the 9 V model: these are compact tools for rare use. a 12 V electric screwdriver is an excellent option for a household tool, suitable for many home repair work. an electric screwdriver 14 V is the golden mean, screwdrivers for 18 V and more are already a tool for professionals.