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We’ve gone through quite a few drills around the Toolmonger shop, so we have some pretty strong opinions about what makes a decent drill.  A long time back, we reviewed the specs of well over a hundred drills before — reluctantly — coming to the conclusion that the drill set pictured above was the best buy for our $100 budget at the time.

In the meantime, we’ve had the chance to use dozens of the drills from the test, and we’re still a fan of the Craftsman 19.2, at least in its price range.  Sure, you can find numerous better drills — but for $100?  With a light?

It turns 0-400 RPM in low gear and 0-1,400 in high, and makes 420 in-lbs of torque.  It’s got a 24-position torque set ring, and two bubble levels (top and rear) plus an LED worklight.

And for what it’s worth, even though my Craftsman stays in the drawer quite a bit — since we’re often testing much more expensive and powerful drills — the light that came with it is still a hit. 

Anyway, if you’re looking for a good drill for around the house and medium-duty shop use, this is still a great deal, and $99 is, in our experience, the cheapest Sears sells it.

Craftsman 19.2V DieHard Cordless Drill/Driver w/LED Light [Sears]


10 Responses to Deals: Craftsman 19.2V Drill Driver w/Light for $99

  1. Jeff T says:

    I agree, these and the Ryobi kits are not bad at the same price point. However my main beef with these is the chuck – a ~$20 fix. If you buy one of these do yourself a favor if you plan on using it quite a bit and get yourself a replacement Jacobs keyless chuck or a Rohm chuck or something. They have them there at the big box stores by the drills usually. Get the locking-ratcheting type. I use my friends Craftsman at work and I usually end up wanting to throw it out a window since your bits just fall right out of the chuck all the time…

  2. Stuey says:

    FYI – a few weeks ago they had a varient of the drill bundled with a right angle drill for $100.

    It lacks the LED, perpendicular handle, slightly different grip and has 410 inch lbs of torque instead of 420. It’s also 19.2V and 1/2″ chuck.

    The right angle drill was 3/8″ chuck, and a bit less powerful (I believe 125 inch lbs) but a bit handy.

    Jeff T, thanks for the info. I thought it was just me – my 3/32″ bit kept slipping and retreating into the chuck.

  3. Chuck Cage says:

    I’ll admit that my favorite feature of Milwaukee’s V18 is the ratcheting keyless chuck. It’s so easy to tighten down. But (as everyone’s mentioned here) the trick about this drill is the price — and the fact that you get the great light with it.

  4. Bill says:

    Great drill/driver and the light has the best reflector I’ve ever seen, also look for the 19.2 Batteries on sale.

  5. mike says:

    i haven’t had an issue with the chuck, and this combo (both the drill and the light) are the most used tools in my household. the light is even bright enough to upcast-light a room when the power goes out (love those windstorms).

    i’ll have to check out those ratcheting chucks and see if i fall in love or not. oh! the task LED light on this drill is super-cool too. nice feature!

  6. nrChris says:

    I am intrigued by the ratcheting chuck too. I have used a lower end Craftsman cordless drill and pretty much loved it. But recently I picked up a 3/8″ DeWalt corded drill at a big box for $40 down from the usual price of almost $60. Now I have never minded contending with the cord, as long as I have a cordless option when needed. This drill is more powerful than any cordless system that I have encountered, and the battery life is as good as your extension cord. For the price difference, I cannot justify another expensive cordless drill. I use a cheapo McCullough cordless as well as a cordless hammer drill from harbour freight. The DeWalt gets most of the use.

    Anyone care to post a review of the ratcheting chucks?

  7. Roscoe says:

    I had a Sears Craftsman 18V drill a few years back and loved it, but the batteries quit taking a charge and Sears had switched styles and no longer had batteries available for the old style.

    While I liked drill and trim saw I had, I’m sticking with name brands now, simply because I know that batteries will be available down the road. I still love Craftsman for there hand tools though.

  8. Paul says:

    I am with nrChris with the use of corded drills myself. cordless drills are like childs toys in comparicon to the power of a corded model. But I have to admit, for a lot of jobs there is some sort of an allure to the freedom a cordless drill gives you. Something about skipping plugging it in, and just pulling the trigger has to be going on here.

    Sometimes I guess we all want to play with toys? Then a cordless is nice, and batteries are included! But for me dependability breeds loyalty. And when the chips are coming down I know the corded drill isn’t going to go flat on its charge on me. When I pull that trigger I count on the consistant performance a corded drill delivers.

    Hey Roscos Why don’t you try to rebuild your battery pack on that tool you can no longer get new packs for? There is a lot of information on the net about rebuilding battery packs. If you’re really daring you can try to rejuvinate the battery first. I mean it doesn’t work now, so what do you have to lose? Here’s a link to one site about zapping rechargables back to life:


    Before you try it though be warned that there are more scientific methods of going about this. But this guy claims it works.

    The instructable site also has a number of articles about rebuilding, and or hotrodding your battery packs here’s one I found:


  9. Bill R says:

    I got this drill the day you posted this article after researching through various websites for the best deal. Consumer reports rated it a best buy, which is what really sold me on it.

    I had checked your site but could not find a easy way to compare the few reviews I could find (read: your site is not very user friendly). I came back after I purchased it to see if you had in fact written an article on it. And found this new one on the front page.

    It is a powerful drill for the money. I think I am going to be pretty happy with it.


  10. Curt says:

    My wife got me the drill and right angle drill for Christmas. Great drill, the right angle thing is interesting but not as good. The box it all came in stinks, the straps that hold it closed broke already. 🙁
    Big bummer: apparently theres another set that comes with an impact wrench. The guy at Sears told my wife that NOBODY needs an impact wrench. As you well know ALL home mechanics can benefit from an impact wrench…
    Anyway adding the impact wrench is pretty cheap especially since my kit came with 2 batteries…

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