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DeWalt MAX XR DCF887B Review

An excellent addition to an existing fleet of DEWALT tools, but an expensive option if you've not already investing in DEWALT batteries
DeWalt MAX XR DCF887B
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Price:   $140 List | Check Price at Amazon
Pros:  Good speed and torque, decent battery life
Cons:  Loud, relatively pricey
Manufacturer:   DEWALT
By Max Mutter and Austin Palmer  ⋅  Sep 17, 2022
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74
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#4 of 12
  • Speed - 35% 8.0
  • Torque - 25% 8.0
  • Convenience - 20% 7.0
  • Battery - 15% 7.0
  • Noise - 5% 2.0

Our Verdict

The DeWalt MAX XR DCF887B is a solid all-around performer and a worthy addition for anyone that already has several DeWalt cordless tools, and thus several compatible batteries, lying around their garage. However, while this driver put in a respectable performance in every one of our tests, it also wasn't the best performer among our field of impact drivers. Thus, if you're specifically looking for the most power you can get from one of these tools or want the longest-lasting battery, the MAX XR DCF887B isn't the best choice. Additionally, this impact driver asks for a significantly higher price than many comparable competitors, again making it less attractive to those who haven't already invested in DeWalt batteries.

Editor's Note: We updated this review on September 12, 2022, with additional sections considering the value and offering suggestions for other products that may better suit your needs or budget.

Compare to Similar Products

 
DeWalt MAX XR DCF887B
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Price $140 List
Check Price at Amazon
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Overall Score Sort Icon
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Star Rating
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Pros Good speed and torque, decent battery lifeIncredibly fast, phenomenal torque, four speed settingsExceptional torque, very fast, great battery lifeFast, lots of torqueConvenient, compact, several settings
Cons Loud, relatively priceyNot the best battery life, noisyLoud, only one RPM settingLoud, average battery lifePricey, battery doesn't last long, loud
Bottom Line An excellent addition to an existing fleet of DEWALT tools, but an expensive option if you've not already investing in DEWALT batteriesIf you're looking for a fast 18V impact driver with excellent torque in a condensed size, we recommend this modelThis driver had the most impressive battery life in our test and offers torque performance that is on par with the bestThis driver is fast and provides excellent torque at an affordable priceGet this if you're looking for a light, small, 12-volt impact driver with great performance
Rating Categories DeWalt MAX XR DCF887B Milwaukee M18 Fuel... Makita XDT13 Ryobi P238 Milwaukee M12 Fuel...
Speed (35%)
8.0
9.0
8.0
8.0
6.0
Torque (25%)
8.0
10.0
10.0
10.0
6.0
Convenience (20%)
7.0
8.0
6.0
7.0
7.0
Battery (15%)
7.0
7.0
9.0
6.0
4.0
Noise (5%)
2.0
2.0
3.0
1
3.0
Specs DeWalt MAX XR DCF887B Milwaukee M18 Fuel... Makita XDT13 Ryobi P238 Milwaukee M12 Fuel...
Impact Driver Model # DCF887 2853-20 XDT13 P238 2553-20
Average Measured Fastening Torque 238 ft-lb 300 ft-lb 282 ft-lb 300 ft-lb 143 ft-lb
Measured Breaking Torque 300 ft-lb 300 ft-lb 300 ft-lb 300 ft-lb 275 ft-lb
Measured Length 136 mm 116 mm 126 mm 161 mm 132 mm
Average Measured Sound Pressure Level 100 dBa 99 dBa 97 dBa 104 dBa 97 dBa
Quick Bit Insert? Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Bit Holder? No Yes No Yes No
Multiple Fastening Modes? Yes Yes No Yes Yes

Our Analysis and Test Results

The DeWalt MAX XR DCF887B continues the company's legacy of high-quality tools and is more than likely to please DeWalt fans. However, if you haven't already invested in the DeWalt battery system, there are equally capable options available with slightly friendlier price tags.

Performance Comparison


DeWalt MAX XR DCF887B impact driver - dewalt power tools have a dedicated following for their quality and...
DeWalt power tools have a dedicated following for their quality and availability of cordless tool options. However, there are a few better options on the market for impact drivers specifically.
Credit: Laura Casner

Speed


The MAX XR DCF887B is one of the fastest drivers we've tested. It managed to drive a 3" long ½" lag bolt into a stack of plywood in just 18 seconds and pulled it back out in under 5 seconds. On average, the tools we tested took 30 seconds to drive in the same bolt, and very few were able to break the 20-second barrier.

This speed carried over into our ledger screw test, in which the MAX XR DCF887B was able to consistently drive 3-⅝" into a stack of plywood in under four seconds. This is nearly half the average time of 7 seconds. This driver was even faster putting those ledger screws into 2x12s, with its average time dropping to just 3 seconds.

DeWalt MAX XR DCF887B impact driver - if your jobs often require driving ledger screws, you can save a lot...
If your jobs often require driving ledger screws, you can save a lot of time by investing in a driver like the DeWalt MAX XR DCF887.
Credit: Laura Casner

Torque


We found the MAX XR to display exceptional torque when breaking nuts loose but only slightly above average torque when tightening those same bolts. This put it towards, but not at, the top of our torque leaderboard.

First, the good. The MAX XR DCF887B easily broke a nut that had been tightened to 300-foot pounds in our testing, doing so in under 2 seconds. This puts it on par with the most powerful drivers we tested.

Now the mediocre. In tightening a nut onto bolts that we welded to an I-beam, the MAX XR DCF887B reached a maximum of 245-foot pounds, with its average slightly less over three trials. While this is still above average than DIYers will ever need , other models in the same price category were able to fasten bolts to 300+ foot pounds easily.

DeWalt MAX XR DCF887B impact driver - the dewalt xr produces spectacular torque.
The DeWalt XR produces spectacular torque.
Credit: Laura Casner

Convenience


While no model we tested has all of the convenient touches we want, the MAX XR provides more than most, earning it one of the top overall scores in this metric.

Perhaps our favorite user-friendly feature of this driver is the light. A string of LEDs placed around the chuck clearly illuminates where you're driving the screw or bolt, and it stays lit for 20 seconds after you let go of the trigger. This feature is nice, as you don't lose the light between trigger pulls when working in dimly lit areas. The light also turns on with a light press of the trigger before the chuck starts turning, so you can look at what you're doing before the driver engages.

A slide switch on the bottom of the driver allows easy adjustments between three different speed settings. This adjustability is nice for those times when you don't want to unleash the full power of the driver all at once. Front to back, the MAX XR measures 136mm. This length is slightly below average, making it more friendly for use in tight and awkward spaces than some of the other impact drivers we've tested. The chuck is a quick insert, which makes changing bits a quick process. However, there isn't any sort of bit holder to keep track of your spare bits, which some of our testers found somewhat disappointing.

DeWalt MAX XR DCF887B impact driver - the dewalt max has a very effective light pattern.
The DeWalt MAX has a very effective light pattern.
Credit: Laura Casner

Battery


The MAX XR DCF887B's battery turned in an above-average but not a field-leading performance in our tests. It has plenty of endurance to last through most home projects, but if you're one that often pushes tools' batteries to the limit, you may find the DCF887B somewhat wanting.

To test battery life, we loaded a fully charged battery into each driver, then drove 14 3-⅝" ledger screws into a stack of 2x12s, then we drove a 3" lag bolt into and back out of a stack of plywood. We then repeated this task over and over until the battery failed. The MAX XR DCF887B completed three full sets of ledger screws and then lag bolts. On the fourth set, it drove all the ledger screws and then died after pushing the lag bolt about ¾ of the way. For comparison, our average performance in this test was dying midway through the third set, but the best performers could complete five full sets.

DeWalt MAX XR DCF887B impact driver - although dewalt batteries are a tad on the expensive side, they are...
Although DeWalt batteries are a tad on the expensive side, they are easy to swap and readily available.
Credit: Laura Casner

Noise


In our tests, the MAX XR DCF887B routinely broke the 100-decibel mark, making it one of the loudest of the bunch. Noise is inevitable with these tools, but the MAX XR is noticeably louder than average. As always, it's important to follow the manufacturer's personal protective equipment recommendations while using a power tool.

DeWalt MAX XR DCF887B impact driver - we appreciate that the dewalt max xr has three, easily adjustable...
We appreciate that the DeWalt MAX XR has three, easily adjustable power levels.
Credit: Laura Casner

Should You Buy the DeWalt MAX XR DCF887BB?


As a standalone impact driver, the MAX XR DCF887B is not a particularly good value. While its overall performance is admirable, it also costs significantly more than most models, including many that match or exceed its performance attributes. If you're already a proud owner of a fleet of DeWalt tools, the MAX XR is quite capable and likely less expensive than investing in a new brand that will require new batteries.

What Other Impact Drivers Should You Consider?


The DeWalt MAX XR DCF887B offers classic DeWalt performance but at a bit of a premium. It is not the best value nor the most powerful option for someone building a set of tools from the ground up. For someone looking for premium tools, the Milwaukee M18 Fuel or Milwaukee M12 Fuel — depending on if you want 18-volt or 12-volt power — is your best bet. But for those looking to build a more affordable tool set, Ryobi tools like the Ryobi P238 impact driver is your best option for value.

Max Mutter and Austin Palmer
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