Black & Decker DR550 7 Amp 1/2-Inch VSR Drill/Driver (028877561974) Reviews

Black & Decker DR550 7 Amp 1/2-Inch VSR Drill/Driver (028877561974)

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The Black & Decker DR550 7amp Electric Drill delivers plenty of torque for wood projects!

Nov 20, 2010
Review by  
Rated a Very Helpful Review

Pros:almost limitless drilling power, quiet operation, includes key chuck

Cons:short 6ft cord

The Bottom Line: Compared to the Black & Decker DR250, the stronger 7 amp DR550 drill has plenty of torque to get almost any demanding project complete. 


In order to quickly mix cement for the base of my new polycrystalline solar panel stand, I needed a strong electric drill.  The Black & Decker DR500 7 amp  was my first choice and it proved right.  The electric drill has plenty of torque and a sturdy grip that helps me have smooth control over drilling large 1" holes through the wood surrounding my concrete formworks.  Read on to see all that this electric drill can do for you.

Black & Decker DR550 Weight And Physical Dimensions
The DR550 electric drill packs an impressive 6.1 lbs with the side handle installed.  The case is made of a combination of mostly metal and about 25% plastic.  The cord on the drill is two prong and 6ft long.  In the box you will find an instruction manual and the key chuck.  I was a little upset that no case was provided.  If you are giving this electric drill as a Christmas present then make sure you pick up a rugged case at the same time to leave a lasting impression.

Operation Of The Powerful DR550 7 Amp Electric Drill
If you have weaker 3/8" electric drills then you will enjoy using the larger 1/2" models because they have heavier rotational weight.  The larger chuck means that more metal is needed to clamp down on the 1/2" drill bits.  As a demonstration of the power you will be holding in hand, imagine putting a 1" spade bit in the chuck and attacking a tree stump.  Once you turn on the drill it roars to life and makes you reach for the side handle immediately.  The handle allows you to swing the 6.1lb copper and iron drill around to attack the old Chinesse tallow tree stump.  The 1" spade bit penetrates deeply into the tree stump with it sinking 3/4" into the still green tree in less than 5 seconds.  Pull out the drill, go back in and less than 10 seconds later you are a solid two inches into the tree stump.  The weight of the drill is not real intrusive and your arms are barely tired after making the deep hole.  With these drills, the electrical cord holds you back quickly as it heats up so I often wonder how good they would be on higher amperage, short distance cords.

Power Cord Selection Is Critical
Many people use their electric drill in places where a wall mounted electrical connection is not available.  As a result, they have to use long extension cords to provide 120 VAC power.  To get peak performance out of your high torque electric drill, you need to choose the proper electrical extension cord to get the job done.  I used this drill to mix several batches of concrete and quickly discovered that I needed a heavy gauge electrical cord.  I was using a 100 ft 16 gauge cord and the drill was noticeably strained while mixing cement.  To correct my problem, I purchased a Coleman Cable 02589 12/3 Vinyl Outdoor Extension Cord
and the drill seemed to come to life again.  Keep all this in mind if you experience any loss of torque with your Black & Decker DR550 on the job site.

Power Consumption Of The 7 Amp DR550 Electric Drill
I used a P3 International P4400 Kill A Watt meter to measure the power consumption of the Black & Decker DR550 1/2 Electric Drill.  The drill offered steady torque output for all the projects I have used it for.  These electrical power readings show that the drill is hardly phased with heavy loads and can efficiently deliver its rated peak amperage of 7 amps.

No Load
375 watts at full speed with 475 peak wattage while starting up.

Peak Load
565 watts at full speed with 605 peak wattage while drilling a hole in a log using the 1" bit from the Black & Decker 71-536 13 piece spade bit set.

Product Specifications And Full Feature Listing
Manufacturer:  Black & Decker
Model Number:  DR550
Volts:  120 VAC only
Amps:  7 amps
Cord length:  6 ft
Features:  Built-in belt clip, triple gear reduction

Summary
Compared to the Black & Decker DR250, the stronger 7 amp DR550 drill has plenty of torque to get almost any demanding project complete. 

After a week of use, I give the Black & Decker DR550 7 amp 120VAC electric drill two thumbs up!

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