Cordless drills are amazing when you are working on any DIY project. They help the process go a lot smoother. Unfortunately, you may have noticed a peculiar burning smell coming from it.

The four most common reasons your drill may smell burnt are that your battery is shorting out, the motor is overheating, parts are melting, or it may be time to retire your drill.  

Let’s look at each issue and why it would be causing these symptoms. 

The Battery is Shorting Out

What does it mean when your battery is shorting out? 

It usually means that it has short-circuited, which happens when both positives and negatives are connected for some reason.

The best example of a short circuit is what can happen when you jump-start a car. You are warned to put positive to positive and negative to negative. 

This internal damage can happen because of a variety of reasons. Although usually, when this happens, you have an overheated cell. 

That heat from the cell will then damage your battery

Now, most lithium-ion batteries, usually the default nowadays, will power down if they sense a short circuit. 

What Happens if the Battery Shorts Out?

Unfortunately, powering down is not always the case, so the temperature can continue to rise. 

This high level of voltage being released can cause wires to overheat.

Overheating wires can then turn into a fire. That’s why you can smell the smoke coming from your DeWalt drill. 

Once you’ve determined that your battery is good, it is good to look at the things causing your motor to overheat. 

You can even get your battery repaired if it is eligible.

Your Motor is Overheating

As mentioned above, sometimes overheating can happen. Now is it the battery or the motor? 

Over time any item that has moving parts can wear down. Friction from having your drill on for a long time can also cause this overheating.  

Let’s look at the different ways that can cause your motor to overheat:

  1. Blunt parts
  2. Clogged air vents
  3. Too much pressure is being used
  4. Retirement is approaching

We will dive into the specifics of each of these ways and different ways to deal with these issues. 

Blunt Parts on a Drill

Friction is an inevitable part of having a drill. Over time and with use, friction can cause parts to become blunt or dull. 

Both the brushes and bits can be susceptible to this eventual reality. Sparks can be created in some cases when it comes to your brushes. 

Thankfully, both brushes and bits can be replaced if needed. 

Bits are easy to swap out, but if you need help replacing your brushes, you can always take them to a repair shop. 

You can find replacement bits on Amazon for a relatively good price. 

Clogged Air Vents

Every electrical appliance, from TVs to hairdryers, has some sort of air vent. This is to prevent a build-up of heat. Therefore causing overheating and the wearing out of parts. 

Find the vents on your drill, and ensure they are free and clear of dust. To do this, you can get one of those air sprayers. Spray or wipe down the vent to make sure it’s clean. 

The air sprayers can be cheap on Amazon or at your local hardware store. 

On a side note, check to ensure your hand isn’t accidentally covering that vent when you are using it. It may sound silly, but mistakes happen.

Too Much Pressure is Being Used

A little bit of pressure can go a long way when using a cordless drill. 

You need just the right amount of pressure to make sure the screw is held into place, and that’s it.

You don’t need to push hard and apply more pressure with the speed of the drill. Let the drill do its job. 

The more pressure you put on the drill bit and the drill during the process, the more likely you can damage your bit and drill. 

Ease up on the trigger a bit, and let the drill do its job. 

It may not be as fast as you would like, but it saves your screw from being stripped and your drill bit from going dull faster.

Retiring Your Drill

Eventually, it happens to us all. All good things leave us in the end. While cordless drills are sturdy and made to take some abuse, they don’t last forever.

Even a good, sturdy, and well-maintained drill can be ready to retire if it has been well-loved. 

The motor can die, or you find that no matter how much you replace a bit or brush, it just keeps overheating faster and faster. 

If that’s the case, it might be safer and cheaper just to go ahead and retire your old buddy and find a younger replacement. It has served you well; let it rest. 

What is Covered Under Warranty

Warranty was mentioned earlier, but what would be covered under a DeWalt warranty?

DeWalt has many different types of warranties, from Limited Time to Full Lifetime. 

The Limited Time Warranty won’t replace items based on normal wear and tear. Yet, even if you got the basic Three Year Warranty, you would get one year of Free Service. 

The Three Year Warranty will help with the basic wear and tear. 

You should get the warranty if you plan to use your drill a lot. 

We’ve got more info on how to claim your DeWalt warranty here.

DeWalt Drill is Smelling Weird

These four ways can cause your DeWalt drill to smell weird when using it. It’s a good idea to check to make sure your drill is clean and that you maintain it. 

Doing so will keep your drill lasting longer, and yourself safe when using it. Now, check out those issues and keep creating.