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DeWalt DCD985B 20V Review

Last Updated: 26.05.20



Notable features


The DeWalt DCD985 drill is particularly adaptable thanks to its all-metal 3-speed gearbox which offers a median setting for applications where a lot of torque won’t justify the trade-off in speed.

It offers good performance for its weight class, with 450 UWO and a maximum speed of 2,000 RPM.

Sufficiently light not to fatigue your hands, it also comes with a 360-degree side handle for hammer operations although it can be used one-handed as a drill.

Some additional convenience features, like a bit holder and an integrated LED.   

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Known issues


Unusual for a DeWalt hammer drill, it has received some complaints regarding its reliability.  




Main features explained


The DeWalt DCD985 cordless hammer drill will make a great choice for use around the house thanks to its superior versatility, which will allow you to employ it on almost every task, nullifying the need to acquire more tools. This is very welcome, considering that the DCD985 is not exactly the cheapest option out there.

As we’ve mentioned, it does offer a great deal of functionality for its price, covering the full array of uses a drill/driver can be put through, as well as allowing you to easily tackle light concrete and masonry jobs by using the hammer function.

The feature which sets it apart from other items in its category and contributes the most to its high versatility is the all-metal 3-speed gearbox that offers an intermediary gear setting going from 0 to 1,250 RPM. This will prove useful for jobs that demand just a little too much torque for the 2,000 RPM setting, but the lower 0-600 RPM gear will just be too slow. There are also 21 clutch positions, including a reverse.



In any of the settings, its brushed motor will generate 450 Unit Watts Out, a fairly high number for a 4.4 lb unit. This value doesn’t take the battery into account, which isn’t included in the particular package we’re looking at. When paired with a 20V 3.0 Ah Li-Ion battery from the same manufacturer, it is reported to hold the charge well enough to last for a full workday.  

It also features a non-slip metal ratcheting clutch with rubber inserts, an LED light and a bit holder for added convenience.

As a final word of warning, however, more than one DeWalt DCD985B review conducted by professional contractors concluded that this model was lacking in regards of reliability on the job site, with many of them recommending it be restricted to home use only. Then again, many others have found it to work just fine.


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Still undecided? Check our review on DeWalt DW511