Impact Driver Reviews: Makita LXDT01 18V Cordless Impact Driver
Choosing The Best Impact Driver (Impact Screwdriver)
The primary reason I have not made my recommendation before now on which impact driver visitors to this site should select was because of the large number of quality impact drivers that are available. Many of these drivers have similar features, and most of these brand name impact drivers have their own pluses as well as their own ardent supporters. However, I have finally completed my impact driver research and comparisons, and I am recommending that you purchase the Makita LXDT01 (formerly Model BTD144) Cordless Impact Driver. All things considered, this Makita impact driver is the best impact driver for your money and as one customer reviewer put it “Shop around online and you’ll realize soon that the BTD144 (now the LXDT01) is a class of one”.
Factors To Consider In Selecting An Impact Driver
- · Powerful
- · Cordless
- · Small Physical Size
- · Variable Speed Settings (that is, Control)
- · Light Weight
- · L.E.D. (light-emitting diode) Lamp
- · Warranty
- · Other Features
1. Powerful – Sufficient power is the most important feature to consider when buying an impact driver. Power is the primary reason that you are purchasing an impact driver. If the driver you buy doesn’t have sufficient power, it will frustrate you and you will end up just leaving it in the box it came in. The Makita LXDT01 Impact Driver’s brushless design motor delivers 1,460 in.lbs of Max Torque. I like to think of it as twisting power. That gives you a lot of power to work with! As one customer said, the BTD144 (LXDT01) drives “lag screws into solid wood like a knife through butter”.
2. Cordless – Some will disagree with me on this and say that usually you are using your impact driver around your home where there is always a electrical outlet to connect to so use a corded impact driver. That is true (some of the time)! But the way I look at it is if your impact driver provides you with enough consistent power, why would you want to have to fool with the inconvenience of having to use an electrical cord (e.g., plugging in the cord, laying the cord in place, moving the cord as you move, re-plugging the plug back into the outlet if it accidentally is pulled out, etc). The Makita LXDT01 is powered by an 18-Volt LXT Lithium-Ion Battery which provides this impact driver with plenty of consistent power, and the battery can be recharged in just 30 minutes. The Makita impact driver’s brushless motor technology delivers increased motor efficiency which provides up to a 20 percent longer battery life per charge. Additionally, both the battery warning light and the built-in L.E.D. lamp will begin flashing letting you know when to insert a new battery in your impact driver and begin recharging the battery you have been using in your battery charger. With the Makita impact driver coming with 2 batteries and a charger that recharges a battery in just 30 minutes, you should never be without consistent power.
3. Small Physical Size – Thanks to Makita’s brushless motor design, the LXDT01 is only 5 1/2 inches long. That’s only an inch or so bigger than your fist! That means you can use this Makita impact driver in tight places where larger size impact drivers just won’t fit.
4. Variable Speed Settings – Control is probably the second most important feature that you want in an impact driver. This impact driver gives you that control with 3 different settings you can choose from: (1) hammer mode (soft) which provides 0 – 1,300 RPMs (rotations per minute) and 0 – 1,300 impacts per minute (with 200 max torque); (2) hammer mode (medium) which provides 0 – 2,000 RPMs and 0 – 2,800 impacts per minute (with 490 max torque); and (3) hammer mode (hard) which provides 0 – 2,600 RPMs and 0 – 3,400 impacts for minute (with 1,460 max torque). When you choose your speed setting, you are setting the upper limit that the impact driver will operate at. By tightening or loosening your squeeze on the Makita impact driver’s trigger, you can adjust the impact driver’s RPMs and impacts per minute within that range.
5. Light Weight – The Makita LXDT01 only weighs 3.3lbs with the battery attached. That is light weight! Using a light weight tool makes your work easier to do and less tiring.
6. L.E.D. Lamp – Most impact drivers have a L.E.D. lamp which is very useful if you are working outside and it getting dark out or if you are working up in your attic where the lighting is poor. What sets the Makita apart is that the L.E.D. lamp stays on for a short time (about 10 seconds) after you turn the tool off, and the Makita lamp switch allows you to turn your impact driver into a mini-flashlight. A handy feature for helping you locate dropped screws in the dark.
7. Quick Bit Changing Capability – This Makita impact driver has a 1/4″ hex chuck with a convenient “one-touch” quick bit change capability. Or to put it another way, you can change the impact driver’s bits really fast and easy!
8. Warranty – The Makita LXDT01 comes with a 3-year warranty on the impact driver itself and a 1-year warranty on the 2 batteries and the battery charger. This is better than the warranties on most of the other impact drivers and is important to you because impact drivers will be one of the more expensive tools that you purchase. On the oft chance that the impact driver you buy has a problem, you want to be able to get it fixed or replaced at no cost to you. A warranty can also be used to gauge the quality of a tool that you are considering buying (i.e., what the tool’s manufacturer itself thinks of its own tool’s quality).
9. Other Features – This Makita impact driver has several other features that are also worth mentioning: (1) a soft grip handle which makes the impact driver easy to grasp; (2) an electric brake that quickly stops the driver when you release the trigger; (3) a great ergonomic shape that provides you with better control; (4) a tool hook (belt hook) that can be attached to either side of the tool; and (5) the battery charger earned the ENERGY STAR label from the US Department of Energy by meeting the DOE’s strict energy-efficient guidelines.
(Additional Suggestion: If you don’t already have a set of extension socket bits, I recommend that you buy a set (e.g., SE’s 3 piece Power Extension Bit Set). They are inexpensive and provide you with increased versatility.)
- Makita LXDT01 Impact Driver
- 2 18-Volt LXT Lithium-Ion Batteries
- 30-Minute Rapid Optimum Battery Charger
- Tool Case (durable plastic)
- Tool Belt Clip
Customer Feedback Rating
The Makita Makita LXDT01/BTD144 was rated 4.7 out of 5 stars on the Amazon website by customers who had purchased and used this impact driver. Only one customer reviewer rated this Makita impact driver lower than 4 stars. The customers were extremely pleased with their purchase. Examples:
“This is a great little impact driver. I had never owned one before and have always owned Milwaukee. The Milwaukee 14.4 drives the screws a little faster than the impact driver…but what sold me on the Makita 144 was its 3 speeds. Having an impact driver helps a great deal in keeping the bit in contact with the screw head. To prove this, I used a #1 square drive bit and 2 inch sq drive deck screws. I had to re-level my workbench top and used #1 – 2 inch deck screws to fasten it down. Normally I strip a few heads when taking these screws out wherever I have used them. I even left sawdust/dirt in some of heads of the sq drive screws…and to my amazement…not a one stripped out when removing them or when re-installing them. I also think the 3 speeds give the impact driver more versatility/control over a wide range of screw sizes. I like the little light…great for seeing into tight places. The battery’s have a lot of run time as well. I had originally ordered the 142hw…it had great reviews…I don’t think I would have been as happy… not as much run time, not as powerful, not as fast… the 144 is a little more useful/powerful…a little higher in price too…but my philosophy… you buy a good tool once …and you cry once…because in the end, price is justified. So if you’re in the market for an impact driver…this is the one to buy!”
“If you will be driving a lot of screws (say, framing with screws), then there is no other tool that is as effective or convenient as a 1/4″ Hex Drive Impact Driver, and the Makita BTD144 is the best there is– period.”
“I have yet to find any problems. It’s loaded with power. It’s extremely light weight and really packs a punch. only thing that I would add is a battery life meter on the battery, other than that its perfect. Power management is better than the btd141. If you get low on juice the driver will automatically shut down, as to not run the batteries all the way down. The previous driver did not. Belt clip is well balanced and comfortable, the light stays on for a while when not in use which is nice. Did i mention how strong it us??? 3/8 lag screws into solid wood like a knife through butter.”
“I have owned the Makita lithium cordless tools since they first came out in 2005. They make the absolute best cordless tools you can buy. I am a plumber and I use my impact daily, the design is comfortable and the balance is perfect. You could use this impact all day and not fatigue your arm or hand one bit. The power is unmatched and seems limitless. I would highly recommend this impact. In fact it is the only impact I would recommend.”
“Great impact driver. The battery lasts a long time, and recharges in about 30 min. I have used it mainly for sheet rock screws and 3″ deck screws for framing. Did a fine job of driving them. The charger does have a fan to cool the batteries but it was not that loud. A+ would buy again.”
“I looked around at a few other lithium ion powered drivers before buying this one, and I’m very satisfied with the Makita. The user selectable power settings have made working significantly easier versus having to be careful with the trigger finger. Even when you select the power setting you can still control the unit’s power output with the trigger finger, but it limits you to the highest power level you’ve selected which basically means less striped nuts and bolts, allowing you to work much faster. Overall it’s light, very powerful, and I’ll never have to replace a the brushes because it has a brushless motor. The battery life is great as well. Makita actually had a mail in rebate for a free extra lithium ion battery. So essentially you get 3 batteries with the BTD 144. That was great since I bought this drill driver plus three other bare tools, since the BTD 144 is not included in any of Makita’s current combo kits. (I mostly use this for automotive application and some carpentry such as assembling custom shelves and garages.)”
You can purchase this Makita Impact Driver on Amazon. Presently, Amazon is selling this impact driver for about $290 with free shipping This impact driver kit lists for $658, so the current Amazon price represents a substantial savings (about 46%) to you. Click here to view the Makita LXDT01 Impact Driver on Amazon.
Amazon is a very good place to read additional customer feedback reviews on the Makita LXDT01/BTD144. Click here to read more reviews from people who have purchased and used this impact driver.