Makita BDF452HW 18 Volt Compact Lithium-Ion Driver Drill Kit

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(Reviewed by 178 customers)
Makita BDF452HW 18-Volt Compact Lithium-Ion Cordless 1/2-Inch Driver-Drill Kit

Makita BDF452HW description

Experience the power and reduced weight of the new lithium-ion technology, without the high cost. Lithium-ion cordless tools provide more power with less weight. This cordless drill-driver is a more compact, lighter-weight version of the LXT 18 volt tool. It has a 1.5 amp hr battery, which is half the size of the LXT 3.0 Amp hr batteries. This is not a light-duty tool by any means; it kicks butt in the 18-volt category. It boasts 450 in./lbs. of torque! You can even use the longer run time 18-volt LXT 3.0 Amp-hr batteries in this tool (the higher the amp hr rating, the longer the battery will last before it needs to be recharged).

This cordless drill weighs only 3.5 pounds, the lightest yet of any professional 18 volt. It has a comfortable grip and excellent ergonomics, which is ideal for continual use. Located just above the trigger, are two "headlights." Headlights refer to small LED lights that provide light where you need it most. I was skeptical about this feature, thinking it was just another gimmick, but after using it for some time, I've come to depend on it. From lighting my way to the house in the dark, when bringing the batteries/tools on cold nights to providing light in a dark cabinet, closet, or under a desk, this a must-have feature. Rubber grips adorn the exterior of this tool and protect it during impact if it falls. For all that you get with this tool package, the price is unbelievably low. This 18 volt is perfect for the professional who needs a powerful cordless to use all day long.

This Makita drill also has the most advanced charging system available and it charges in only 15 minutes! Generically, it's called a "smart charging system." A computer chip inside the battery lets the charger know exactly how to optimally charge the battery, to completely charge each cell within the battery and for maximum battery life. Each battery is made up of smaller 1.2 volt cells. Often a battery will drain unevenly during normal use, at different rates within these internal cells. A normal charger will stop charging the battery when one cell reaches maximum capacity, not all of them. Once this happens once, it will continue to do so as long as you use the battery. What this means is your 18-volt battery is now a 16- or 17-volt battery and it can drop even lower. A "smart charger" will charge every cell independently until each cell is fully charged, so your 18-volt battery will remain 18 volts for its entire life. This charger has a fan in it and blows air through the battery to cool it down before charging so the battery can be charged right away, unlike other brands, where the charger waits until the battery cools, or even worse attempts to charge a hot battery pack and damages it or decreases the life of the battery. These Makita lithium-ion batteries will last longer than standard batteries and can be charged over 1200 times, as opposed to the standard of 600 to 800 times, which alone can justify the slightly higher price tag. -- Gabriel Shantara Ford

What's in the Box
Driver drill; compact lithium-ion batteries (2); 15-minute Rapid Charger; carrying case  

Makita BDF452HW specifications

Battery Type
Lithium-ion (Li-ion)
Battery Voltage
18 Volt
3-year warranty on tool; 1-year warranty on battery and charger
Makita-built 4-pole motor delivers 450 in.lbs. of Max Torque, with a variable 2-speed all metal tran
Built-in L.E.D. light illuminates the work area
Makita LXT lithium-ion battery and energy star rated 15-Minute rapid optimum charger produces 430-Pe
Compact, ergonomic design; only 8-Inch long and weighs just 3.5-Pound
11 pounds
Package Height
5.2 inches
Package Width
12.4 inches
Package Length
15.3 inches
Package Weight
9.8 pounds

Makita BDF452HW reviews

OK for DIY projects - otherwise get Pro version
Makita makes two versions of this tool The Pro version has 100ft lbs. more torque, twice the charge capacity, and includes the bit holder and the belt clip in the kit. This version is targeted at the homeowner and this is why the lower capacity batteries. For most purposes this will not be a problem as the kit comes with two batteries and a fan cooled charging station that can recharge a battery in under 20 minutes.

The chuck is also a DIY grade chuck and not nearly as good as the ones on most other "pro" level cordless drills from DeWalt or Milwaukee. It was also a bit bothersome to find that the bit holder and belt clip were left out of the kit as these are standard items with other Makita, DeWalt, Bosch, and Milwaukee cordless drills. These items are not even in stock at Makita's customer service center so even if you are willing to pay the extra $20 to purchase and have these 2-bit items shipped to you, this is not an option.

The drill performs well and the LCD lights that turn on and off automatically are very helpful in more situations than one might first realize. Having benefited from the lights with a number of projects I would not even consider buying a cordless drill that lacked this feature.

Torque although less than other 18 volt cordless drills is still more than adequate. I easily made 11" holes in my ceiling for in-ceiling mounted speakers for my home theater using the excellent Hole Pro hole cutter.

Hole PRO X-305: 1 7/8" to 12" Adjustable Twin Blade Hole Saw Cutter with Tungsten Carbide Blades 3" 4" 5" 6" 7" 8" 9" 10" 11" Capacity

I really liked certain aspects of the drill, but unfortunately was still forced to return it and get something else.

I'll start with the good stuff. First off, the weight and feel was perfect, exactly what I was looking for. I'm a sculptor, so I need something light and compact when I am working all around a piece, sometimes in hard to reach, uncomfortable positions. The LED light is good in that it stays on for a little while after it is pushed. More manufacturers should add this feature. It doesn't center exactly on the bit tip, but the way it's positioned under the chuck, like all the drills I've seen, I don't think it will ever be perfect. The power is fantastic and it's the only compact I've seen with 450lbs of torque. I doubt I will ever need that much, since I'm not drilling or screwing into concrete or anything like that, but it could be useful for some people. The charger is the fastest I've seen at 15 minutes. I timed it and it really does charge in or under 15 minutes.

Now I have to talk about the reason I returned it for something else and few other negatives. I bought it at Home Depot, I like to get a feel for tools I buy and they had a power tools sale going on at the time. So I picked one of these up and tested it at home for about a day. I noticed instantly that there was some vibration I wasn't used to in drill. When I looked at the chuck I noticed it was wobbling a bit. I put a 1 1/4" spade bit in as I was drilling holes at the time. I spun it and looked at the tip of the bit, man this thing was wobbling all over the place. By my calculations it had a 1/8" wobble. That might not sound like much, but try to drill a big hole in plastic or a small hole through metal and see what happens. I decided to try and drill a hole out with the spade bit since I had it on anyway. I used a scrap piece of hard plastic as that was the material I was working with presently. Now I knew the bit was ok as I had drilled out some nice clean holes in some other plastic using my old corded Ryobi drill. After trying it out with various speeds and settings, the results were uneven holes, some larger than they should be and chipped edges. The drill was shaking and vibrating like you wouldn't believe too. So I take it back and get another one. After I get it home I test it out and guess what, same results. I even try to drill a small 1/16" hole through some sheet metal. After it flew across the metal for a minute it finally caught and started going in. Man, this bit was shaking back and forth, the whole drill shaking like crazy. I was afraid the bit was going to break off and fly into my eye. So back to Home Depot I go. This time I show the hardware guy and see what he has to say. Maybe I've just gone crazy and am being overly critical. He pops in a spade bit and even he can see the wobble and knows this isn't right. I tell him this my second one, so we take a new one off the shelf and open it up. He pops the spade bit in that one and guess what, same wobble. We decide to test out the comparable Milwaukee compact lithium drill to see if this is just something all the cordless compact drills share. He pops the spade bit into the Milwaukee pulls the trigger and no wobble, smooth as butter. He says maybe they got a bad pallet and could check to see if there was a new skid of the Makitas in the back. I decided to not take anymore chances and swapped out for the Milwaukee.

My reasoning is this is a Makita, not a Skil. It's supposed to be a quality product from a quality manufacturer, I should not have to go through 3 different ones to get a good one. I suppose this may be the world we live in now that everything is made in China, but I think I took more than enough chances on this drill.

Also Makita, don't be so cheap to not add a bit holder and belt clip, come on now.

This may be an isolated incident and I don't want to badmouth a good tool, but I can only comment on my experience. To all the people that are happy with the Makita, I'm glad. To anyone looking to buy one, I suggest you test it out in the store first to make sure there aren't any problems like I had.

On a side note, I didn't have the drill long enough to experience the battery problems some people have had. I don't know if that problem has been fixed or not. The batteries seemed good for the time I used it.
Defective Battery
I've used this drill for work almost everyday for a year. I bought this drill in January of '07 and have used it almost everyday (light to med duty) as a car audio installer.

I've replaced both original batteries and both replacement batteries as of last week. Luckily I live near a service center and they've discretely replaced my batteries with a simple analysis on their battery dyno. So basically I've been there 4 times. They've never asked for a purchase receipt but on my 2nd to last replacement battery, they engraved the date and some reference number. But the replacement that I got last week wasn't engraved.

I own many lithium-ion tools (including the BDF451 for home use), flashlights (Light & Motion Arc Li-Ion $500 HID bicycling light), camera ($1000 Canon 30D SLR), etc and I know how to care for the batteries. I've never let them run completely out.

I've had Makita check my charger the first two times as well. The batteries are definitely defective. The charger luckily blinks alternately to show that the battery is infact not charging. In otherwords, the charger is working properly.

Otherwise, the drill itself has plenty of power, is definitely light weight, and has a handy LED light too. But the run time is hit and miss. Sometimes I won't need to charge it for a couple of days and sometimes, I'll need to charge it twice a day.

Overall, I'm very dissatified with the battery which is a majory bulk of the price of the drill.
Nice to look at; lightweight; quick battery recharge; however, doesn't have enough torque compared to our old DeWalt even though that's an 18V as well. Wouldn't recommend for those who need to do any heavy-duty construction or who needs that extra power when driving in a screw, etc.
Not working as presented!
Factory recondition tags on everything, 2 batteries, charger & drill.

1 battery was not in working order, seller replaced promply. No charger

manual, seller sent one with repalcement battery.

Drill worked fine, used it for few prodjects. Time to charge batteries,

DC18RA charger turns on then when battery is put in it goes to a red &

green blinking condition and shuts off. No response yet from seller and

Mikita service has not given a yes or no on charger.

disapointing result
After recieving my new Drill after delivery all the way to Australia, I was disapointed to find the Battery Charger was not Multi Voltage and designed only for the US power supply of 110 volts. I have been told that a replacement charger is more than I paid for the whole drill package. So I would urge anyone with a power supply of 220/240 volts to give this product a wide birth. Hope this helps someone, not make the mistake I made. regards Bryan
Outstanding Drill!
I was given two of these for Christmas and LOVE them. I run a small community theater and we are tough on tools, especially cordless drills. Since Christmas these drills have been dropped from ladders, used to drive way to many 3" screws and built 2 full sets and there is not a single complaint. They hold a charge and recharge fast, the torque is great and the raw power is wonderful. The built in light is such a wonderful bonus I now want all of the drills to have them. Simple to say we are buying more of these.
Husband loves it
I bought this Drill for my husband on xmas. He is a carpenter plus we are remodeling our home & he simply loves this product & the light on it comes in handy. He just wishes I would of bought the driver also. Great product & he is very critical
New Generation
I've owned and used a Dewalt cordless 12 volt driver/drill for 5 years and was happy to have gotten a lot of use from it and its batteries. However this Makita 18 volt Lithium driver is a whole new ballgame. The batteries last much longer,the charger is faster and more convenient. It feels like half the weight. The chuck is improved. Of course it's more powerful. And I think the price was virtually the same as my last tool. Highly recommend.
Great drill poor included battery
I selected this drill as my prior one was worn out. The drill itself is good, my complaint is that the battery capacity is dissapointing. I wish I had got the high capacity batteries instead. They don't seem to last anywhere near as long as the batteries on my original drill. Maybe an unfair comparison as they could be different capacities, but every weekend I have to swap batteries, my old drill used to keep going for weeks with moderate usage.
Great handy drill, batteries are hit or miss
This is the first drill I go to for around the house work. It's light and comfortable to use. The chuck is very good. The 1-2 switch on the top feels cheap but works fine. It's a simple drill, and I do miss the bit holder.
I got it with 2 batteries, one of which was dead on arrival. The other one works fine.
lithium battery
My 18 volt lithium battery just purchased doesent hold a charge for very long, and the 15 min. charger doesn't keep the battery charged when not in use. It has good strengh, but doesen't last very long.
It's as good as the ratings say!
This is the most highly rated Lithium Ion drill/driver on the market and it is even better than I imagined it would be. Check the ratings out for yourself. But that is not all - it is a fantastic deal too. The kit comes with two batteries that are charged in 15 minutes. This means you can go pretty much non-stop with your work. This item is light and its compact size makes it easy to use. What is surprising is its torque and its "balls". Worth every penny!
Refurbished Drill
The drill worked perfectly and has been a satisfactory purchase.
The stickers on the case were close to impossible to get off. The refurbisher should looking into labels that can be removed easily by the end user.
The best
Don't look any further. I am a professional installer, and I will tell you this is the BEST Drill in the world, especially for the price.
It has the best torque to weight ratio its in class, its ultra light, and it is simply unstoppable. The best yet, with the super high capacitor charger, you have a fresh battery pack in less than 15 minutes. If mine ever breaks, I will hands down, no doubt about it, replace it with another.
The best drill by far!!!
So Far, So Good
I haven't used this one enough to know how it will hold up over time, but for now, it's far better than the craftsman I've been using...
very responsive and lots of controllable power.
Makita 18 Volt Drill-Driver Review
I purchased the BDF452W driver-drill from [...] and I have been very happy with this drill. The battery staying power is great. The charge time is a little longer than I am used to but the charger drains the battery each time for extended life. The drill itself is balanced and light but has never failed to be up to any task I need it for.
Very Pleased
I purchased this drill/driver for my dad who runs his own construction company and he absolutely loves it.
I cannot say enough about this drill!
I'm going to attempt to make this short, sweet and to the point, as MANY others have already outlined this tool perfectly.

I have had this drill for about 3 months now and have been nothing but pleased with it. In fact, my BHP452Z has been stripped of its belt holster and 3.0aH battery and has now been retired to it's case! This little white wonder is now my daily driver! (Get it? Daily DRIVER....thank you, I'm here all week......Try the veal)

In all seriousness I have nothing but praise for this tool. It's lightweight, well built, tons of torque, long lasting/quick charging batteries and the list goes on and on. I have seriously tried to look for faults and the only negative I can come up with is the white gets dirty easily. Yes. That's all I can come up with. And I love the white color vs. the old Makita blue, so I just try to keep my greasy mitts off the white part as much as possible. I have yet to have any trouble out of my 6 Lithium Ion batteries, so it looks as if the bad batteries/chargers have been filtered out.

Makita has really struck gold with this lil guy. I have pretty much every brand in my arsenal and always find myself reaching for this little guy. (On a side note, the BTD142HW Impact Driver makes an AWESOME companion.)
battery life
drill is all it is advertised --- check the date of manufacture on the batteries before you buy -- it is stamped in the casing on the connection side - first two numbers is month and last two is the year (04PT08 = April 2008) --- remember that lithium ion batteries only last 3-4 years -- my batteries were a year old when I bought the came with a third free battery which was 9 months old already...otherwise I am happy with it.
Great driver!
I recently purchased this driver/drill to supplement my Makita impact driver - the Makita BTD142HW-B 18V Lithium-Ion Cordless Impact Driver (Tool Only) that I purchased a while back. I found that they had interchangeable batteries and since I loved the weight, balance, and durability of that driver, I figured I'd give the drill a shot. The impact driver was good for many tasks, but there were several that simply required a real drill.

First, you'll see the very sturdy plastic case. Unless you're hard on it, it'll last as long as the tool. A good way to store the driver safely and make sure you can always find it.

When you open the case don't be surprised by the light weight of the drill. Even with the battery, this is about half the weight of my previous 19.2v Craftsman drill. Just pop out the charger and plug it in, then slap a battery pack in for a brief charge. You'll hear the fan spin up, which is one of the tricks Makita uses. Keeping the battery cool allows them to charge it more aggressively so it usually only spends a few minutes on there before it's at full power. You've seen the hype about the battery life and power - and I can confirm that it is all true. :-) Now all you need to do is attach the battery - a very simple operation with a satisfying CLICK! to let you know you got it right.

Now grab a bit - round or hex base, doesn't matter. This takes a little getting used to if you haven't used this kind of chuck before. What happens is when the drill is stopped, the motor locks in place. So you can tighten and loosen the chuck with one hand! It is a simple and amazingly useful design that is almost worth the price of the tool by itself. You'll hear the chuck lock the bit in place, and then you can tighten as much as you think you need.

When you hit the trigger you'll see the LED light come on. This is a valuable little feature as well. You can see what you're doing a whole lot easier. Plus it stays on about 10 seconds after you stop using the drill. It saves a lot of time and energy.

As for power, I have yet to find something I cannot drill through with this bad boy and the proper bit. I use MDF a lot in my projects and it's usually a pain to work on. But the Makita drill keeps going. It is also very pleasant to hold for long periods, with a good balance and weight. Very comfy.

And sorry to come back to the battery again, but it usually lasts through entire projects (over multiple days) without a power drop. Of course the package comes with two batteries, and you can easily recharge one during a quick water break, and you can even buy the longer life version of the battery... bottom line is that you won't run out of power unless you want to.

The only con, the only missing feature, is a bubble level in the drill itself. There are tricks around this, and it's not worth dropping the review, but that's the one improvement that could be made.

Overall I'm extremely pleased with this purchase and would buy it again in a heartbeat. I'm now a Makita fan for life!
Pleased with another Makita drill
I purchased this drill a couple of months ago and have used it enough to need to recharge the batteries a few times. The drill performs well in light and heavy applications. The battery recharge system is fast and convenient especially with the extra battery that came with this package. The LED light is a great addition making it very easy to see work areas in low light situations. The drill is light and well balanced making it easy to use.
Makita 18-Volt Compact L-I 1/2-Inch Driver-Drill Kit
A great addition to any tool box. My first project with this driver was installing a dust collection system in a new workshop I am building. The 24 ga pipe ran through the ceiling trusses and space became a little tight in spots. The size of this driver allowed maneuvering in these areas quite nicely. My next project was screwing down about 500 sq ft of decking using 2" screws. The torque and battery life were impressive. With the extra battery and fast charge time there was never a time I waited on a battery charge.Makita BDF452HW 18-Volt Compact Lithium-Ion Cordless 1/2-Inch Driver-Drill Kit
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