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The which drill or what to do Q

rsutoratosu

Platinum Member
Feb 18, 2011
2,696
4
81
I been using a dewalt ni-cd 18v for almost 12 years, just a regular weekend project guy, the battery slowly died and I was able to get these Li Ion DC9180 battery that fits these old drill and now these battery after 3-4 years are slowly dying.

So its either finding aftermarket li-ion battery or buy a new drill after 12 years.

I saw a few of these li-ion drills are almost 300. I do have an li-ion 20v driver but need a drill for drilling purposes. I'm not a pro so I dont think I need something expensive, but let me know what I should do, invest in new battery (aftermarket) or is there a place that sells these classic dc9180 battery, or invest in new drill. Thanks
 

bbhaag

Diamond Member
Jul 2, 2011
4,838
576
126
I've been using a DEWALT DCD777C2 for the past couple of years and it has performed very well. I'm like you, just weekend warrior type projects nothing to over the top and not used daily like a contractor would. The specs on it are pretty good to for the price 20v, brushless, 2-speed transmission, ect.

I don't know how much your replacement batteries cost but it might just be time to move on and buy a new drill from a cost perspective.
 
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Greenman

Lifer
Oct 15, 1999
16,287
2,006
126
Look at Ryobi for homeowner stuff. I've also heard that the new Kobolt line at Lows is top notch.
 

sdifox

No Lifer
Sep 30, 2005
80,453
7,279
126
If your drill is still working fine, just get new batteries.
 

Leymenaide

Senior member
Feb 16, 2010
400
31
91
Check the chuck if it is worn or wobbly get a new drill. If you shop you can get the drill and two batteries for the price or less of the batteries. I have been picking up DeWalt recently to support a portable vac for bee hive recovery.
 

rsutoratosu

Platinum Member
Feb 18, 2011
2,696
4
81
Drill is fine, i may use it maybe 1-2 day out of a month. just power source is big issue. Yes you guys are right, new drill with battery is almost the same as buying a replacement. Its not nothing is wrong with drill but I can't use it because I can't get battery for it.

The issue is they dont sell real dewalt battery anymore.. or it cost as much as a new drill. The Li ion ones are definitely better, plus my 80 year old dad can't use the nicd, its so much heavier than li-ion. As of now, I gave my dad all my Li-ion.

Discontined battery and no alternative.. Are those cheap ebay battery even worth it ?
 

BoomerD

No Lifer
Feb 26, 2006
55,144
3,579
126
After killing several Ryobi tools quickly, ( not just crappy Ni-cad batteries, but also self-destructing with light use) and due to a low tool budget at the time, I switched to the Ridgid cordless tools. I have two of their 18v drills and 1 18v impact driver. I'm relatively happy with their quality. Due to the deals I got at the time, I have 5 batteries, so I never have to wait for a charge.

Dewalt is good. A but more spendy than the Ridgid stuff, but damned good.
 

jmagg

Golden Member
Nov 21, 2001
1,573
162
106
I killed a Dewalt screwgun in under a year remodeling this old house 2 yrs back, (1600 Backer-On cement board screws was its last stand) but the batterys (2-DCB207 and a DCB106 charger) are still here if you can use them. I went with Rigid this time, and 2 yrs later the gun and batts are fine albeit under lighter use.
 

Micrornd

Golden Member
Mar 2, 2013
1,084
110
106
Have you considered one of the many 18v to 20V adapters made for early DeWalt tools like you have?
They allow you to use the modern 20v Li-Ion DeWalt readily available and cheaper batteries with the older tool line.
 
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Greenman

Lifer
Oct 15, 1999
16,287
2,006
126
Drill is fine, i may use it maybe 1-2 day out of a month. just power source is big issue. Yes you guys are right, new drill with battery is almost the same as buying a replacement. Its not nothing is wrong with drill but I can't use it because I can't get battery for it.

The issue is they dont sell real dewalt battery anymore.. or it cost as much as a new drill. The Li ion ones are definitely better, plus my 80 year old dad can't use the nicd, its so much heavier than li-ion. As of now, I gave my dad all my Li-ion.

Discontined battery and no alternative.. Are those cheap ebay battery even worth it ?
They make adapters so that you can fit almost any battery to almost any tool.

Edit: Just noticed Micrornd already posted this.
 
Feb 4, 2009
26,741
7,265
136
Drill is fine, i may use it maybe 1-2 day out of a month. just power source is big issue. Yes you guys are right, new drill with battery is almost the same as buying a replacement. Its not nothing is wrong with drill but I can't use it because I can't get battery for it.

The issue is they dont sell real dewalt battery anymore.. or it cost as much as a new drill. The Li ion ones are definitely better, plus my 80 year old dad can't use the nicd, its so much heavier than li-ion. As of now, I gave my dad all my Li-ion.

Discontined battery and no alternative.. Are those cheap ebay battery even worth it ?
Drills sound like phones, once the drill is so old batteries must be acquired thru off brands and those batteries will suck as in never fully charge and die quickly. I'm guessing it is because like phones once the model stops being produced the batteries stop being produced shortly after. Basically even if it is a new battery it is either cheaper like less capacity or it has been sitting in a box for years which again means less capacity.
 

Steltek

Platinum Member
Mar 29, 2001
2,387
279
126
If your drill otherwise works fine, buy the Dewalt adapter to allow you to use the flat pack batteries with it.


I bought one to use with my older model Dewalt grease gun and it works great. They can be difficult to remove, though, so you might have to take some sandpaper to them if you want to use them on multiple tools. I just leave mine permanently on the grease gun as I've transitioned all my other tools to flat pack batteries. You can also alter the adapter so the Flexvolt batteries will work with it as well if you come across a deal for them.

The best time to buy Dewalt stuff is usually around Black Friday/Christmas as you can usually get a cheap Dewalt drill plus one or two flat pack batteries at Lowes or Home Depot for less than you'd normally pay for a single battery. If you have to, buy one of the cheapo 3rd party batteries to get by until then. Most of the 3rd party batteries aren't bad, but they don't last as long in my experience (both in useage life and longevity) as the name brand batteries.

One thing about using the battery adapter is to make sure you do not run the lithium batteries until they are completely dead. If you do, they won't charge back up again without taking drastic (and dangerous) steps. Supposedly, the Dewalt adapter has circuitry to prevent this that cheap 3rd party battery adapters don't have. I haven't taken a Dewalt adapter apart to verify that yet, but Dewalt used to advertise it as a selling point. That circuitry also means there may be a tiny parasitic current draw on the battery, so don't leave the battery on the drill when you aren't using it or it will discharge over time.
 

Greenman

Lifer
Oct 15, 1999
16,287
2,006
126
Drills sound like phones, once the drill is so old batteries must be acquired thru off brands and those batteries will suck as in never fully charge and die quickly. I'm guessing it is because like phones once the model stops being produced the batteries stop being produced shortly after. Basically even if it is a new battery it is either cheaper like less capacity or it has been sitting in a box for years which again means less capacity.
There is certainly some planed obsolescence going on, though not nearly as much as in the past. Dewalt's 20/60 system has been around a while, and will likely continue for many years. It's well thought out, robust, and works well.
There are a lot of guys like me that have to much invested in a system to change, even if someone comes out with a better tool. They need to keep us from switching systems, and the way to do that is by sticking with the same battery.
 

Steltek

Platinum Member
Mar 29, 2001
2,387
279
126
There is certainly some planed obsolescence going on, though not nearly as much as in the past. Dewalt's 20/60 system has been around a while, and will likely continue for many years. It's well thought out, robust, and works well.
There are a lot of guys like me that have to much invested in a system to change, even if someone comes out with a better tool. They need to keep us from switching systems, and the way to do that is by sticking with the same battery.
Ain't that the truth, and it works pretty well for all of the manufacturers.

My brother and I have collected a ton of different Dewalt cordless tools and batteries over the years. I was recently trying to buy a battery powered Pex-A expansion tool to use in a couple of future projects, but the Dewalt DCE400B bare tool kit stays constantly out of stock literally everywhere. I went so far to price the Milwaukee 12v ProPex tool, but the kit with batteries (which I'd have to have as we don't have any Milwaukee batteries or chargers) would run just shy of $500 plus tax. Ouch.

Luckily, I happened to catch a seller on eBay last week selling the Dewalt bare tool in new condition for ~ $250.00. I'm quite satisfied with it.
 
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Greenman

Lifer
Oct 15, 1999
16,287
2,006
126
Ain't that the truth, and it works pretty well for all of the manufacturers.

My brother and I have collected a ton of different Dewalt cordless tools and batteries over the years. I was recently trying to buy a battery powered Pex-A expansion tool to use in a couple of future projects, but the Dewalt DCE400B bare tool kit stays constantly out of stock literally everywhere. I went so far to price the Milwaukee 12v ProPex tool, but the kit with batteries (which I'd have to have as we don't have any Milwaukee batteries or chargers) would run just shy of $500 plus tax. Ouch.

Luckily, I caught happened to catch a seller on eBay last week selling the Dewalt bare tool in new condition for ~ $250.00. I'm quite satisfied with it.
DeWalt has had a couple of grand slams over the past few years. Their cordless roofing nailer is tough to find right now, which I totally get, no compressor, no hose running across the roof, it's a winning deal.
I have the cordless framing nailer, which is to heavy, and my guys still use the crap out of it. Not needing a compressor or a hose is a gift from God. The finish nailer and 7 1/4 cordless chop saw are also smash hits.
The DeWalt cordless tools have quite literally changed my entire job site for the better.
 

rsutoratosu

Platinum Member
Feb 18, 2011
2,696
4
81
Have you considered one of the many 18v to 20V adapters made for early DeWalt tools like you have?
They allow you to use the modern 20v Li-Ion DeWalt readily available and cheaper batteries with the older tool line.
Didn't know they were adapters. Math comes out to adapter 35; battery 90; charger ; 50-100 - almost price of new drill again.

I might just get a new drill and if I see these parts on sale, Ill pick them up. Thanks for the info
 

Homerboy

Lifer
Mar 1, 2000
28,672
2,326
126
I bought no-name replacements for my 15+ year old DeWalt. $40 on Amazon. Work like a charm and drill still going strong
 

Greenman

Lifer
Oct 15, 1999
16,287
2,006
126
I bought no-name replacements for my 15+ year old DeWalt. $40 on Amazon. Work like a charm and drill still going strong
I've always been afraid to try the knockoffs. I assumed they'd start a fire, burn out my tools, or be made out of depleted uranium. Might have to give one a try.
 

Steltek

Platinum Member
Mar 29, 2001
2,387
279
126
I've used a few of them before. They don't seem to power the tools quite as long as the Dewalt batteries, and don't last as long before needing to be replaced under heavy use (both probably due to use of cheaper battery cells in building the packs). However, they also cost 1/3 to 1/2 as much. So, give and take.

Overall, I prefer the original Dewalt batteries, but I'll also use the cheapos in a pinch.
 

Torn Mind

Diamond Member
Nov 25, 2012
3,443
93
91
Li-ion loves being at 70%, doesn't like being charged immediately after a toasty discharge, and doesn't like being charged too quickly. Basically, just like a laptop battery.....
 

Homerboy

Lifer
Mar 1, 2000
28,672
2,326
126
I've always been afraid to try the knockoffs. I assumed they'd start a fire, burn out my tools, or be made out of depleted uranium. Might have to give one a try.
So far so good for me. It does seem to go low/dead a little quicker, but it's hard to judge. I do admit I'd still like a new cordless drill, but I just couldn't justify the expense for my weekend warrior projects.
 

Scarpozzi

Lifer
Jun 13, 2000
24,407
596
126
Battery packs are the most expensive part of any system. I really like the Ryobi tool system because they have a decent mix of tools and the packs are pretty reliable with a few exceptions (mentioned below).

Most of the time, HD has these specials where you can buy a tool and 2 pack of batteries for a discount. Check deal websites for when those come out. The default battery pack is only 2 mAh and you can purchase 3 and 4 mAh packs...usually for $30-50 each....before those awesome sales mentioned above. The upgraded battery packs are totally worth the money. They make all the difference.

Now...the LI-Ion battery packs go from working to not working when the voltage drops to a certain level. This means, you'll never have a drill barely turn like they used to with NiCad packs. They have circuitry in them that prevents them from supplying power to the tool and from charging if the pack ever drops below certain voltages. If the voltage ever goes below 5-6 volts, the battery charger will actually flag the pack as bad and will not charge. If this happens to you and the packs are out of warranty, don't throw them away!

I mention this because those batteries could discharge if they're not maintained and improperly stored. The safety mechanism is there because Li-Ion batteries can be a little dangerous compared to the older cells. They normally have a 2 year warranty, but you can bring them back to life by taking the pack apart and touching a 2amp trickle charger to the battery pack leads (on the other side of the charging circuit). I've "repaired" 4 packs this way over the years and kept them going.

Here's a video of some guy doing the same:

Just understand, you only have to touch a 2amp charger to the battery for a few seconds to push enough juice into the cells for it to register with the Ryobi charger. Do not, charge it with a trickle charger. And you may want to wear protective eyewear....just in case.

If you're handy, you could actually rebuild these packs fairly easily with a soldering iron and the right sized cells for a fraction of the cost of a new pack. It wouldn't take more than a few minutes.
 
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Steltek

Platinum Member
Mar 29, 2001
2,387
279
126
The Ryobi batteries and tools are fairly cheap, and have the advantage that there has only been one battery design in the system (unlike Dewalt, with the old and newer batteries). I do have a battery and charger and a single Ryobi tool (a drain auger I needed for an emergency, which did the job I needed it to). If I were using it daily, I don't know how long it would last, but the fit and build is decent on it. I was going to take a chance and purchase the Ryobi battery powered chemical sprayer as a bare tool; however, I ended up passing on it due to a lot of bad reviews regarding breakage.

You can also revive Dewalt batteries (and most other manufacturers' batteries, for that matter) using a similar technique as shown above by @Scarpozzi. The next time one of my Dewalt packs fails, though, I am going to try to rebuild it if the circuit boards are still in good shape.
 

Scarpozzi

Lifer
Jun 13, 2000
24,407
596
126
The Ryobi batteries and tools are fairly cheap, and have the advantage that there has only been one battery design in the system (unlike Dewalt, with the old and newer batteries). I do have a battery and charger and a single Ryobi tool (a drain auger I needed for an emergency, which did the job I needed it to). If I were using it daily, I don't know how long it would last, but the fit and build is decent on it. I was going to take a chance and purchase the Ryobi battery powered chemical sprayer as a bare tool; however, I ended up passing on it due to a lot of bad reviews regarding breakage.

You can also revive Dewalt batteries (and most other manufacturers' batteries, for that matter) using a similar technique as shown above by @Scarpozzi. The next time one of my Dewalt packs fails, though, I am going to try to rebuild it if the circuit boards are still in good shape.
BTW...I screwed up out of habit. The Ryobi battery packs are rated in Amp Hours....not Milliamp Hours.

Those hand pump chemical sprayers are prone to breakage as well....I would expect that the moving parts to pressurize the tank would be prone to issues if they aren't oiled or maintained somehow.

I've not ever had DeWalt battery powered tools...but I don't doubt they can be revived. It's all a question of the charger vs pack circuitry and what they deem acceptable range to attempt a recharge....and whether or not they have some kind of charge counter to mark the pack as dead. I always wonder if manufacturers do that sort of thing...kind of like how hard drives monitor how many times they park the heads these days for power cycling. Are they just tracking it so they can make the drive flag as "soon to fail" when there's not anything really wrong?
 

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