Ready to tackle some drilling

Stuck For a Father’s Day Gift? Black + Decker AutoSense Drill Reviewed

Geek Culture Reviews Tools
Ready to tackle some drilling
Ready for action. Photo by Brad Moon

We’re getting closer to the big day and for some of you, gift anxiety may be setting in. Our annual Father’s Day Gift Guide should be a big help in that case. And if your dad is looking for new power tools –specifically a drill and driver, then I have a suggestion. Black + Decker sent me its new 20V Max AutoSense Drill/Driver to try out and I have to say, this is a pretty cool drill. It’s not exactly contractor grade, but for most DIY home repair and projects, it should do the trick quite nicely.

Over the years I’ve built up a pretty decent collection of power tools, and the drill I have has always done what I ask. However, it is a tad bulky and heavy.

When I opened the 20V Max AutoSense box, I have to admit, I had my doubts about the drill. It’s smaller than I expected. However, as I found out when I took it out to the back yard for a trial run, small doesn’t mean wimpy.

The grip is actually a perfect size (at least for my hand) and very comfortable. Weight is quite light too. The combination makes the 20V Max AutoSense less tiring to use for extended periods.

LED indicator lights
LED function and battery indicator lights on top of the drill are a nice touch. Image copyright Black + Decker

The 3/8-inch clutch is an electronic one equipped with AutoSense technology. This turns out to be a very useful feature. Select the driver setting (the drill has LED light-up indicator lights that show drill or driver plus battery level), pick your spot and drive the screw in. AutoSense stops it automatically when the screw head is flush with the surface. I tried it out and the feature worked as advertised. This makes one less thing to be worrying about when using the driver for repetitive tasks like installing deck boards. As B + D points out, this isn’t just an issue of consistency and reducing damage to the surface of the wood, but can also reduce the risk of stripping a screw.

AutoSense Drill/Driver
Black + Decker 20V Max AutoSense Drill/Driver. Image copyright Black + Decker

And yes, I think the 20V Max AutoSense would be up to a project like that. I used it to drill deep holes in 6-inch pressure treated lumber, then fired a bunch of 2-inch deck screws into some 2 x 6 pressure treated boards. No problem, no overheating and the lithium ion battery was still showing a full charge after 30 minutes of testing.

As dusk approached, I discovered one of the features I really appreciate with the 20V Max AutoSense. It has a built-in LED light that activates when you pull the trigger. The light does a good job of illuminating the area you’re working on — great idea.

If you’re interested in the Black + Decker 20V Max AutoSense Drill/Driver (for Father’s Day or as an an addition to your own power tool collection), it and other tools in the series are available at most hardware retailers. It’s currently $79.97 on Amazon where it has a 4.5 star rating.

Disclosure: Black + Decker provided a drill for review purposes

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1 thought on “Stuck For a Father’s Day Gift? Black + Decker AutoSense Drill Reviewed

  1. Did you find the battery charging to be too slow?
    Does the speed reduction on screw driving also seem slow?
    I have a couple of Panasonic 1/2 ” drills (that I really like) but even with new NiMh batteries they are always dead when I go to use them. Hence the interest in lithium-ion. So would you recommend the B and D over say a drill/driver that costs $30 more? Thanks very much for your comments. Phil

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