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8 Best Electric Screwdrivers

A cross between a power drill and a screwdriver, the best electric screwdrivers are compact, easy to use and versatile. Our pro shares his favorites.

Our editors and experts handpick every product we feature. We may earn a commission from your purchases.

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Black decker Storage Foot ScrewdriverVia Merchant

Buying an Electric Screwdriver

Electric screwdrivers are incredibly useful tools, combining the compact size and functionality of a screwdriver with the time-saving efficiency of a power drill. They’re small enough to stash in a kitchen drawer or toolbox, and perfect for light-duty tasks  like tightening hinges and replacing anything with pre-threaded holes.

I’ve used an electric screwdriver for assembling particleboard furniture, which a larger power drill would easily damage.

To ensure that you choose the best electric screwdriver for your needs, keep these considerations in mind:

  • Handle style: Some electric screwdrivers with a pistol grip resemble a smaller version of a power drill. Others, with straight handles, look more like a regular screwdriver. Pistol-grip electric screwdrivers provide more control and can be more comfortable for people used to a regular drill. However, I find straight-handle models better for reaching into tight or awkward areas where a pistol-grip tool can’t fit. A third option is a pivoting handle that transforms from a pistol to straight grip with a twist. I’m a fan of pivoting handle versatility, helpful for all kinds of tasks.
  • Speed: If you’re concerned about how fast your electric screwdriver can work, choose a tool with higher revolutions per minute (RPM). The lower end is around 130 to 200 RPM, while more powerful options can generate up to 600 RPM. Some feature a variable speed control, allowing you to adjust the speed to the task at hand. These are expensive, but if you can afford it, go with a variable speed option.
  • Battery type: While all the options here are cordless, there is some variety in the type of battery. Most have a power cord that can be plugged into a wall socket for recharging. Others have a detachable battery with a separate charging station. Detachable batteries can also be used in other tools from the same brand, convenient if you own a large collection of battery-operated tools. Extra-light-duty electric screwdrivers require AA batteries.
  • Clutch settings: While some electric screwdrivers only have a single setting for torque (the rotational energy applied to the screw), more powerful models offer multiple settings. The more torque you can apply, the denser the material you can work with. While most four-volt electric screwdrivers only offer one clutch setting, more powerful options include up to 15 volts.
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Dewalt 8v max cordless screwdriver kitVia Merchant

Best Electric Screwdriver: Splurge

The motion-activated variable control of the DeWalt 8V MAX DCF680N2 Electric Screwdriver lets you precisely dial-in the speed. You twist your wrist to increase or decrease the speed, making this model good for a wide range of projects.

The LED illuminates your workspace, and by surrounding the entire bit it won’t cast frustrating shadows. The battery level indicator lets you know when it’s ready for a charge. The pivoting handle provides pistol and straight-line grips.

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Milwaukee M12 12 Volt Lithium Ion Cordless Hex Screwdriver KitVia Merchant

Best Electric Screwdriver: Max Power

The Milwaukee M12 1/4-in. Hex Electric Screwdriver Kit takes a 12-volt battery, making it the most powerful option on our list. I’m a big fan of the balanced, sturdy feel of this model, and the integrated belt hook allows you to keep it at arms length at all times.

This kit includes two battery packs and a convenient carrying case to keep everything organized and protected during transport. A variable-speed trigger affords maximum control.

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Black decker Bdcsfs30c Storage Foot ScrewdriverVia Merchant

Best Electric Screwdriver: Beginner Kit

If you’re just getting started in DIY home improvement projects, the Black+Decker LightDriver has everything you need, from a 42-piece set of drill bits to a built-in storage case for screws and other fasteners.

The pistol grip makes this tool comfortable to hold and easy to control, and the large LED offers a clear view of the work area. Plus, the high-visibility orange color is easy to spot in a cluttered garage or kitchen drawer.

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Black decker 6 Volt Alkaline Cordless Powered Screwdriver Via Merchant

Best Electric Screwdriver: Light-Duty

If you’re just looking for a light-duty model to complement your power drill without spending a bundle, the Black+Decker Alkaline Cordless Screwdriver could be a great choice. Its compact size and straight handle makes it easy to toss in your backpack or glove box as an emergency backup.

Our favorite feature of this tool? It can be locked for manual use, handy if the batteries run out before you’re finished.

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Skil 4v Pivot Grip Rechargeable Cordless ScrewdriverVia Merchant

Best Electric Screwdriver: Value

With its versatile pivoting handle and a nine-piece bit set, the Skil 4V Pivot Grip Electric Screwdriver is a great value for such a low price.

I love the magnetic, onboard bit storage. And with two bits always available, you won’t waste time searching through your pockets for the one you want. Its micro-USB charging capability makes it easy to charge, and the battery level indicator lets you know when you’re running low on juice.

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Ryobi 4 Volt Quick turn Lithium Ion Cordless Hex Screwdriver KitVia Merchant

Best Electric Screwdriver: Two-Speed

The Ryobi Four-Volt QuickTurn Electric Screwdriver can easily switch from stick to pistol grip with the twist of the handle. The two included bits fit securely in the magnetic holder.

This tool lacks the variable speed option, but the two speeds it has (200 or 600 RPM) should be fine for most household tasks. I’m a fan of Ryobi’s neon green color because they’re easy to find in a toolbox or backpack.

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Ryobi 4 Volt Lithium ScrewdriverVia Merchant

Best Electric Screwdriver: Straight Handle

The straight handle and elongated trigger of the Ryobi Four-Volt Lithium Electric Screwdriver make it perfect for working in tight spaces, like inside narrow drawers or reaching deep-set fasteners. Its narrow shape is also convenient to keep in your pocket, and the textured grip makes it easy to maintain control.

The two included bits are a nice perk. That, combined with the low price, make it a good value.

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Wen 3.6 Volt Lithium Ion Cordless Electric ScrewdriverVia Merchant

Best Electric Screwdriver: Furniture Assembly

By positioning the chuck flush with the top of the driver, instead of in the middle of the barrel like other models, the Wen 49103 Electric Screwdriver can reach screws near the edge of a workpiece. That’s helpful for furniture assembly. The included holster allows it to always be at arm’s reach.

This holster also features onboard storage for the three included bits, and can keep your fasteners organized as well.

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Alex Rennie
Alex Rennie is a freelance writer who specializes in the home improvement, DIY, and appliance space. Having spent more than five years as a residential and commercial carpenter in NYC–specializing in custom furniture construction and installation–Alex uses his hands-on experience and expert insight to craft product reviews, buying guides, and how-to articles. He has previously written for CNN Underscored, Business Insider, and Popular Mechanics, in addition to Family Handyman. He currently lives in Los Angeles, CA, where he spends his free time hiking and relaxing on the beach with his wife and their two dogs, Louie and Iggy.