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Even though the brushless motor has been around since the 1960s, it has only become a common feature in cordless tools in the past 15 to 20 years. But what are the benefits, and is it worth paying up to twice as much for a brushless tool?
The more common brushed motor takes its name from the carbon brushes used to transfer electrical energy from the tool’s battery to a metal-plated spinning device called a commutator. The commutator then sends this energy into a group of coiled copper wires known as an armature. These copper wires become magnetically charged and push against a circle of stationary magnets around the armature, causing the armature to spin. This turns the tool’s rotor and the attached drill bit.
In comparison, a brushless motor removes the brushes and commutator. Brushless motors instead have a group of magnets that surround the rotor and a larger armature around these magnets. The armature is connected to a circuit board that dictates how the armature is magnetically charged. This magnetic charge then pushes against the magnets on the rotor, forcing them to spin.
Removing the brushes and commutator in brushless tools eliminates contact points within the mechanism. Therefore, brushless tools will last longer than brushed tools as there’s no friction or wear and tear on any of the internal components.
Fewer components also means the tool can be smaller, improving usability. However, many manufacturers will choose not to shrink the size of the tool. Instead, they will increase the size of the armature and magnets attached to the motor. This boosts performance, meaning brushless tools can be up to 35% more powerful than their brushed counterparts.
The circuit board in brushless tools can also detect changes in rotor speed and force. It can then adjust the power drawn from the battery when needed. This saves battery power and increases efficiency. Many manufacturers claim that their brushless tools will last up to 50% longer than their brushed counterparts.
So do you actually need brushless tools? We say it depends on your use case. If you’re a casual DIYer who uses your tools a few times a year, you probably won’t be getting your money’s worth. However, if you’re a DIY fanatic, it’s probably worth investing in the brushless versions of the tools you use the most. Whether you choose brushed or brushless, a Badaptor will fit both snuggly.
Badaptors convert 18V batteries from DeWalt, Makita, Milwaukee, Bosch Professional, Ridgid and AEG to work with the entire range of Ryobi One+ tools.
Visit our website at badaptor.com to buy yours today.
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