Best Cordless Impact Driver for Installing Cabinets

Cabinet installers name their go-to impact drivers. November 29, 2014

Question (WOODWEB Member) :
We are installing a kitchen on adobe walls. We've tested 2 1/4x1/4 tapcons and they hold great. Weíre looking for a compact cordless impact driver to reach easily inside cabinets and have adequate power. Does anyone have any suggestions?

Forum Responses
(Cabinet and Millwork Installation Forum)
From contributor J:
Yeah, don't bother. Get a decent corded drill and go to town. I like the Makita.

From contributor D:
Any name brand impact driver will do the job, and their chuckless design makes even the 18v models fairly compact. The impact driver is one of the greatest tool inventions of all time.

From contributor L:
We use the 18V Makitas. They make three or four levels of 18V impacts. Actually any of them will work but there are no brushes in the higher priced ones.

From contributor Y:
Not a day goes by that I do not use my impact driver and I often thank my lucky stars for it. My chronic tennis elbow does too. Mine is a Hitachi 12V and it does great. Itís lightweight, strong and small enough to get in tight spots.

From contributor G:
We install commercially and have found the Makita 18V lithium ion very compact and the best for power, battery life, and the lightest for reaching into cabinets all day. Itís pretty tough too. The guys and I have dropped them on occasion and they have held up well. We have had these in service for two or three years and still use the original batteries. The best one out there for the money right now in my opinion.

From contributor K:
My installers have the expensive Makita and Hitachi models. I have several of the base model Ryobies that we use in the shop. You can get a kit at HD, impact, charger, drill, two batteries for about $100 bucks. We drive thousands of screws with them.

From Contributor O:
I have both a Hitachi 14V and a Bocsh 14V. Both work like champs although if you plan on driving many screws ditch the small batteries for the larger ones.

From contributor S:
I have six Bosch drivers that cost about $129 and they have been in constant use for about three years. They are still on the same batteries and I haven't had to repair a single one yet.

From Contributor T:
I like the 12V Bosch impact drill. Itís lightweight and powerful.

From contributor F:
I bring the following kit with me on installations:

28V Milwaukee Drill (in case I need a hammer drill)
18V compact Makita drill
18V compact Makita impact driver
10.8V Maktia drill
10.8V Makita impact driver
3/8" Corded Bosch

In reality I use the 10.8V Makitas most of the time. The 18V drill comes in second place. The 10.8V impact driver works just fine for driving cabinet installation screws. My 18V impact driver is overkill for this. I get out the Milwaukee V28 if I need a hammer drill, or 1/2" chuck capacity, but it is too big and heavy for normal use.