For any DIY repair or construction project, there are few power tools more versatile and essential than the iconic cordless drill.
However, there are tons of other applications in which people can make use of the power tool. From shoe shining to powering a Van de Graaff generator, here we list down the 21 unusual uses for your cordless drill.
If you’d like to see a graphical breakdown of the cordless drill uses, we got you covered:
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- 1 21 Unusual Cordless Drill Uses
- 1.1 1. Shoe Shining
- 1.2 2. Camping Aid
- 1.3 3. Portable Electric Mixer
- 1.4 4. Peeling Apples and Potatoes
- 1.5 5. Plant Potter
- 1.6 6. Paint Mixer
- 1.7 7. Hand Crank Generator
- 1.8 8. Pet Entertainer
- 1.9 9. Potato Mashing
- 1.10 10. Pea Shelling
- 1.11 11. Trolling Boat Engine
- 1.12 12. Algae and Mildew Scrubber
- 1.13 13. Jump starting a Car
- 1.14 14. Powering a Go- Cart
- 1.15 15. Van de Graaff Generator
- 1.16 16. Corkscrew
- 1.17 17. Pumpkin Carver
- 1.18 18. Coffee Grinder
- 1.19 19. Pencil Sharpener
- 1.20 20. Surface Sander
- 1.21 21. Rust Buster
21 Unusual Cordless Drill Uses
1. Shoe Shining
Getting late for an event or meeting only to find out that your shoes need polishing? Fortunately, that can be done in seconds with the use of a Cordless Power Drill.
Simply attach a shoe buffer, slap on some quality shoe polish over the buffer, turn on the power drill on low speed, and polish the dirt away. Within no time, you have your shoes shining like they are brand new.
Note: Just be extra cautious with a liquid polish. If you soak the shoe buffer too much, the rapid rotation of the cordless drill could cause the liquid to smear in every direction.
2. Camping Aid
If you plan on going camping, it may prove itself helpful to take along a cordless drill.
If you are going along in a caravan, you can use the power tool to effortlessly wind down the corner legs of the van once you set up camp.
You can also use the drill to put holes in wood or hard ground surfaces and for the secure screwing in of pegs, pop rivets, anchors, fasteners, etc.
3. Portable Electric Mixer
Imagine this scenario, you are on a camping trip, and you really crave a nice plate of scrambled eggs with cheese. Since there is no power outlet, you couldn’t bring an electric mixer with you.
Do you accept fate and manually mix them away?
No need for such indignities! We have already discussed how helpful a cordless drill could be on a camping trip- here is another reason you should bring it along.
A portable power drill can make a great alternative to an electric mixer.
Avoid straining your wrists while making recipes in the outdoors by simply slotting the appropriate piece of cutlery onto the cordless drill and mixing (or whisking) away!
4. Peeling Apples and Potatoes
Everyone one of us has tried to manually peel away the skin of apples and potatoes, and we can surely attest to how time-consuming and frustrating it can be.
But it doesn’t need to be like that – a different, better world is possible!
With the help of a household drill, you can perform the task of peeling in minutes, which otherwise would have taken you hours. To start with, just attach a sharp peeler to the drill, turn it on and let it peel away.
Alternatively, for bulk peeling, throw the apples or potatoes in a bucket, fill it with water and attach a hard bristled brush to the power drill.
Now just turn on the power tool and insert it into the bucket and see the quick results it achieves!
5. Plant Potter
Do gardening the smart way with the help of a cordless drill.
Instead of spending your precious time away digging plant holes in the garden with a spade, connect a large-sized auger bit on to the drill and put a neat hole in the ground in seconds – perfectly sized for easy planting of your seeds and bulbs.
6. Paint Mixer
Mixing paint can be a messy business, and it can be a tad bit difficult to achieve the desired results if you do it manually. However, with a cordless drill in hand, the task becomes a lot easier and less messy.
To begin with, first put a hole in the lid of the paint bucket with the drill. Connect a paint stirrer tool through the lid on to the power tool and then dip the stirrer into the paint bucket and securely close the lid.
Now just turn the power drill on and start mixing the paint.
In case you don’t have a paint stirrer at your disposable, you can use cut the bottom portion of a coat hanger into a ‘J’ shape, attach it to the cordless drill and employ it for mixing the same way as you would a paint stirrer.
7. Hand Crank Generator
In emergency situations such as during a prolonged power outage, after a natural disaster or you being stranded in the great outdoors, you can turn your cordless drill into a portable hand crank generator, which you can use to keep your phone charged or provide power for lighting.
To convert it into a generator, take out the battery pack and use a pair of alligator wires to connect to the battery connector inside. Use a string or zip tie to keep the power drill switched on permanently.
Now, connect a makeshift hand crank to the drill chuck, and the other ends of the alligator wires to whatever you want to power. Afterward, start cranking away to generate power.
8. Pet Entertainer
Want to ensure your pet is getting the proper exercise they need, but you can’t summon the energy yourself to help them in this regard?
No worries, here is a lazy way to get your cat or dog endless hours of fun and exercise without having to exert much of an effort on your own end.
Attach a blunt stick to the cordless drill. On that stick, tie one end of a string and tie the other end to a small toy or piece of fluff. Place it on low speed and watch as your pets go crazy!
9. Potato Mashing
Mmmm…mashed potatoes, who don’t like them?
However, mashing boiled potatoes can be a real chore, but fortunately, one that can be avoided.
By attaching a mixer to the power drill, you can use the tool to mash the potatoes into a fine consistency with a creamy, smooth texture.
One can even say that the results may even be better than what you can achieve manually.
10. Pea Shelling
Picking out peas from the pods can be very time consuming, even when using a pea sheller.
You can save time and effort in this pursuit by removing the hand crank from the pea sheller and connecting your cordless drill to it instead.
Turn the thing on and simply drop the pea pods into the sheller and be amazed at just quickly the peas get separated.
11. Trolling Boat Engine
There are many DIY examples where people have employed cordless drill as part of a trolling boat engine setup.
Apart from the power tool, stuff you may require includes wood pieces, a propeller, a drill rod, and a suitable shaft. Use the wood piece to create the structure and the rudder.
Connect one end of the drill rod to your cordless drill and the other end to the propeller shaft. You can make more adjustments to the structure if you need to make it more convenient and functional.
This setup isn’t exactly the speediest one, but it makes for a nice bit of DIY task you can do and try out on a free weekend.
12. Algae and Mildew Scrubber
Infestations such as that of algae and mildew can not only ruin the aesthetics of your property but, if left unchecked, can cause issues such as discoloration, corrosion, and weakening of structural integrity.
What is even worse is just how stubborn they are to remove.
Often you require special tools such as a power washer to remove them effectively, but in certain scenarios, a drill brush and a cordless drill are all you will need to scrub the unwanted growth away from the surfaces of your property.
13. Jump starting a Car
Sometimes, a car’s battery may die off at the most inopportune of moments. You could be driving across the interstate and get stuck in the middle of nowhere, with no one being seen for miles that you can ask help from in re-starting your car.
Or it could be that you have just moved to a new place and feel too shy to ask any stranger for a favor.
In such cases and much more, having a cordless drill at your disposable can be extremely helpful. Most modern cordless drills come with an 18 V battery pack that is capable of delivering large amounts of current, just enough to jump-start your car.
However, the first and obvious challenge in using cordless drill battery in jumpstarting the car finding a way to connect it to the car’s own battery.
Your jumper cables won’t be cut out for the task as they are simply too big for the tiny terminals of the drill battery. Worse, if they are too close to each other, they could short each other out, create sparks or even cause the battery to explode.
To resolve this, create a makeshift adapter out of wires that you can safely connect to the jumpers and the battery terminals.
With that solved, the next issue is with the voltage. Most modern cars carry a lot of highly sensitive electronic equipment. If the load from the battery is too high, it could risk frying some of the electronics.
Fortunately, most household cordless drills carry a voltage of between 10 and 12 V, which is considered fairly safe.
If you are sure that the battery is within a safe range or that your car isn’t too packed with modern gadgetry, complete the setup and turn your car keys.
14. Powering a Go- Cart
On the internet, you will find many examples of people sharing their experience of using a cordless power drill as the engine for home-made go-carts for their children or even themselves.
While we are unsure whether a power drill is powerful enough to drive a fully-grown adult on a go-card, it can certainly pack enough punch to move a 12-year old on a go-cart.
15. Van de Graaff Generator
A Van de Graaff generator is an electrostatic generator that works by moving belt to accumulate electric charge on a hollow metal globe on the top of an insulated column.
Making one is easy and can be made from everyday household items. They can make for a fun science experiment and a great learning tool. A power drill can be used to move the belt of the generator.
Plus, you have the option of setting different speeds for generating different levels of electrostatics.
Want to indulge yourself in a nice delicious bottle of wine, but the annoying cork on it is preventing you from doing that.
Desperate, are you going to risk breaking the bottle open? No need!
Just take your power drill, use it to fix a large screw into it, and gently pull it out. It may take a bit of effort, but it is better than being little more than helpless against a cork.
17. Pumpkin Carver
Who doesn’t like carving pumpkins?
Whether it is Halloween or any other suitable occasion, your cordless drill can be a great helper in the helping you carve intricate designs on your pumpkins.
Scoop out the flesh from the pumpkins and then use the different sized drill bits to create details on the vegetable.
18. Coffee Grinder
A hand grinder is stylish and can do a really great job in helping bring out the flavor and richness of your coffee.
However, it takes too much time to ground the coffee with it, which can be a bit of a bother, especially in the morning when you are getting late for work.
For quick and easy coffee grinding, you can employ the use of your trusty power drill for the task. Place the coffee beans inside the grinder, connect the power drill to the grinding shaft, and start it on at the lowest speed to have an excellent coffee grind ready in seconds!
Alternatively, you can also use a similar setup for the purpose of grinding pepper, clove, and other spices.
Note: Before using a power drill with a coffee grinder, make sure that the grinder is durable enough to withstand the drill’s power.
Also, note that operating the drill at higher speeds can risk damaging the shaft or break the housing of the coffee grinder. Plus, operating at high speeds can burn the coffee and ruin its flavor.
19. Pencil Sharpener
Manually sharpen a pencil? That’s boring! Show your kids how cool you are by attaching the eraser end of the pencil to a power drill and turn the thing on.
Insert the spinning pencil end into a manual sharpener and get sharpening.
This setup is also highly convenient when you need all those color pencils quickly sharpened for your kids the night before school.
20. Surface Sander
Forget the hassle of a using a sanding paper or a sand block to smoothen out the irregularities out of surfaces.
Instead, use your cordless drill for the purpose by connecting it to a sanding drum. Use it to smoothen out even the most uneven of surfaces such as curved wood pieces and arcs.
21. Rust Buster
In case you don’t own an angle grinder at home, a power drill can act as a good substitute for the purpose of removing rust from metal tools and surfaces.
You employ an attachment that allows you to use wheels designed for angle grinders for the task. Alternatively, you can use a brush bit instead, which also does a fair job of rust removal.
And that concludes our list of the 21 unusual uses for your cordless drill.
If you know of any other unconventional cordless drill uses, do tell us about them in the comments below, and we might just add them to the article.
We do hope you did enjoy reading the article and even find out it helpful.
A cordless drill is an essential power tool for any DIY enthusiast, and its many uses are only limited by one’s imagination.Last updated on: