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Head to Head Tool Test: Milwaukee Vs. Maklita IMPACT Drivers

Two top-of-the-line impact drivers are examined for specifications, features, real-world tests, and performance
July 13, 2023

In this video, ProToolReviews compares two top-of-the-line impact drivers, the Milwaukee M18 Fuel 2953 and Makita's 40V XGT GDT01. They consider specifications, features, real-world tests, and performance. The aim is to provide an informative analysis for educated construction pros.

Specifications and features of the impact drivers:

To begin, we utilized Milwaukee's 5 amp hour M18 battery and Makita's 40V XGT 2.5 amp hour battery for all measurements and tests. Despite the voltage difference, the watt-hours of both batteries are equivalent. In terms of size, the Milwaukee impact driver measures 4.5 inches in head length, slightly shorter than the Makita's 4.7 inches. Regarding weight, both drivers are similar, with Milwaukee weighing 3.85 pounds and Makita slightly lighter at 3.73 pounds.

Impact driver performance evaluation:

To assess the performance, we conducted various tests using custom rigs. The first test involved a medium load scenario, driving a 6-inch by ¼-inch grk rugged structural screw into a stacked OSB subfloor. Milwaukee completed all three screws in less than 10 seconds, averaging 8.6 seconds per drive. Makita, on the other hand, finished each test with an average drive time of 12.8 seconds.

The second test measured the driving capability within 30 seconds, using a 10-inch by ½-inch lag screw into the same stacked OSB subfloor. The driver that achieved the deepest drive resulting in the fewest inches of exposed bolt remaining earned the point. Milwaukee outperformed Makita in this test, with approximately twice the depth achieved.

The third and final test focused on breaking loose a nut set to 150 foot-pounds or 1800 inch-pounds. The total time taken to break loose five bolts was measured. Milwaukee excelled in this test, completing all five bolts in just 2.46 seconds, while Makita trailed behind with a time of 5.97 seconds.

Price and warranty:

Apart from performance, other factors such as price and warranty play a significant role in the purchasing decision. The Milwaukee M18 Fuel model is available for $149 as a bare tool or $299 as a kit with two 5 amp hour batteries. Makita's GDT01 has a higher bare tool price of $217, and the kit, including two 40V 2.5 amp hour packs, costs $429. Milwaukee also offers a five-year warranty, while Makita provides a three-year warranty.

The bottom line on these impact drivers:

In our hands-on testing, the Milwaukee M18 Fuel 2953 outperformed Makita's 40V XGT GDT01 in all three tests. With a final score of 8 to 1, the Milwaukee impact driver emerged as the clear winner. We encourage readers to share their opinions in the comments section and provide suggestions for future head-to-head comparisons. If you want to learn more about these impact drivers, remember to like and subscribe to our channel.

Requirements for a comprehensive impact driver comparison

To conduct a thorough and accurate evaluation, the following factors are essential:
1. Access to both impact drivers for hands-on testing.
2. Availability of reliable specifications, features, and manufacturer data.
3. Access to appropriate tools and equipment, such as a tachometer, digital caliper, and custom rigs for performance testing.
4. Understanding of testing protocols and procedures.
5. Clear documentation and measurement of test results.
6. Knowledge of pricing and warranty information for making comprehensive comparisons.
7. Consideration of user feedback and suggestions for future comparisons.

By adhering to these requirements, an educated construction professional can provide an insightful analysis of impact drivers or any other construction tools.

More tool reviews on ProTradeCraft:

—This video is from ProToolReviews, which, as you can imagine reviews tools for pros. See more on their YouTube channel.

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