Thursday, December 4, 2014

Drywall Screw Bits Review: Milwaukee, Dewalt, Warrior (Harbor Freight), and Grabber

IF you ever drive or try to remove long screws, you are probably familiar with cam out--that slipping of the bit that results when the bit loses grip in the screw head and spins around while the screw doesn't move. You might also be familiar with your Phillips bits breaking or rounding off as  you use them. I wanted to see which was the best Phillips #2 bit for driving so-called drywall screws, because those are the screws I use for most projects.

Drill bits tested:
Milwaukee Shockwave Impact Duty #2 Phillips Power Bits, item 48-32-4602 (package of 5 bits 2 inches long).
DeWalt Max Fit #2 Power Bits, item DWA2PH2-5 (package of 5 bits 2 inches long)
Warrior #2 Drill Bits (Harbor Freight 68462) 2 inches long, pack of 10
Grabber #2 reduced Phillips, 1 inch long

I tried driving a three-inch drywall screw into one by three stud lumber. Then I tried backing out the screw.

Here are the results:
Cam out while driving in was moderate with all bits, highest with Milwaukee, lowest with Grabber.
Cam out while extracting was moderate with all bits, highest with Milwaukee, lowest with Grabber.
Durability was highest with DeWalt, Milwaukee, and Grabber, lowest with Warrior.

For driving or removing drywall screws, I recommend the reduced Phillips #2, such as the one by Grabber. The special smaller head seems to fit better and work better than the regular or  full-size #2 Phillips.
The Warrior tips break under load and after some little use. They cost half the price, but the overall performance reflects that.

On the rack at Home Depot or Lowe's, the displays feature many regular #2 Phillips. Look around to find the reduced diameter #2. Or you can buy a box of Grabber drywall screws and get a bit free inside the box.

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