KIMO 20V 13809S Review
Pros: Inexpensive, includes basic bits and drills
Cons: Not very powerful, struggles to drive in larger fasteners
Our Analysis and Test Results
The KIMO includes a flexible attachment so you can tighten or loosen fasteners in confined or other hard-to-reach places where the body of the drill is too large — a bit of a unique feature. However, these can break if you apply too much force through them and make it much easier to strip out fasteners, so you only want to use it whenever absolutely necessary.
Our first round of assessments focused on how well each of these cordless tools held up when it came to drilling holes. We rated and scored performance by seeing how well each drill did at drilling a 1" hole using a spade bit through some stacked lumber, ¼" and ½" holes through 16 gauge steel sheets, and a 5" hole using a hole saw through a solid-core door. Regrettably, the KIMO couldn't really hang with the top tools, earning a score well below average.
The KIMO actually got off to a decent start in our steel sheet drilling tests. It was quick and easy to drill both sizes of holes once we dropped it down to the lower gear — it kept stalling when we tried in the higher gear. It only took about 1.5 seconds to punch through the steel sheet with the ¼" drill and around 10 seconds with the ½" drill.
Unfortunately, the KIMO did considerably worse with both the hole saw and the paddle bit. It didn't make any progress with the hole saw in its higher gear but we eventually were able to drill about ¾ of the depth with some persuasion. It frequently stalled and struggled the whole time, taking 2+ minutes to reach this depth. For comparison, the most powerful drills made it the full depth in under 20 seconds.
This drill did a little better with the 1" spade bit but not by much. We again had to shift to the lower gear but it could successfully drill through the stacked lumber, though much slower than the top tools.
It would stall on a semi-frequent basis, especially when punching through the bottom of the hole. Overall, we think this drill is fine for the occasional heavy-duty application but we would suggest investing in a more powerful option if you routinely are using large paddle bits or hole saws.
Next, we moved on to ranking and scoring how the KIMO did at driving in fasteners, using a ½" diameter, 5" long lag bolt and some more typical wood screws. The KIMO did a little bit better overall in this metric but still merited a score that was well below average compared to the top tools.
The KIMO delivered very poor results in our lag screw test, failing to even come close to driving the screw to the full depth. It stopped with just over 2" of the screw remaining.
This drill did much better with the smaller screws, as long as you weren't trying to drive them in where there was a knot. It's slow and steady when it comes to driving in the screws but can usually get the job done.
The KIMO could countersink the heads to the proper depth most of the time, though it would struggle while doing so.
Our next series of evaluations focused on the battery performance of each of these cordless tools, based on the number of batteries included, the time to recharge a completely dead battery, and the performance of each tool in our battery test. This test consisted of driving in 16 screws and then drilling 3 1" holes with the spade bit, repeating this cycle until each drill's battery was depleted. The KIMO did much better, earning an above average score overall.
The KIMO only includes a single 2.0 amp-hour battery which took around 75 minutes to fully recharge in our test — right on par for the average product.
This drill delivered a solid showing in our battery test before calling it quits. It made it through 6 complete cycles and then died just a single 1" hole shy of completing the 7th. The top tools finished over 10 cycles before their batteries were exhausted.
Our last round of tests looked at the ease of use and user-friendliness of each tool. We awarded points based on things like the maximum bit diameter and operating modes, as well as the weight and ease of installing or removing the battery. The KIMO finished out with another decent performance, earning another above average overall score.
This drill is fairly lightweight, tipping the scales at just under 3 pounds, and has a belt clip near its battery pack. It can hold a bit up to ⅜" in diameter — which is a little on the smaller side — and it has two different operating modes if you need to maximize speed or torque.
We liked that the battery slides in and out very smoothly and that it has a fuel gauge with LED lights but we weren't overly enamored with the integrated worklight. It's a little on the dim side and there isn't any way to activate the light without the drill spinning.
All in all, the KIMO is a solid tool for its price point. There are definitely much better options out there but we think it's a decent value if you are shopping on a very restricted budget.
This light-duty cordless drill is a great option for beginners or homeowners that are looking for a basic tool that does an acceptable job without spending a ton of cash. It's by no means the most powerful tool out there but it can handle most beginner to intermediate DIY projects without a fuss and includes enough bits and drills to get you started. It's a good option on a tight budget but we would recommend upgrading if you have more ambitious uses in mind.
— Austin Palmer and David Wise
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