Shop Talk

Replacing the Brushes in a Dewalt Drill

  • For every power drill, there comes a time when its brushes will need to be replaced. Yes, even a Dewalt drill will have to undergo a brush replacement, or quite a few, as the years tumble on. Fortunately though, brush replacements are a fairly, if not completely, simple procedure that will re-amplify the power and performance of your tool, re-pizazz its functionality, and do this all in only a few moments time.

    To change the brushes in your Dewalt drill, we’ll begin with a few preliminary and safety measures (these things may seem self-explanatory, but, if I have learned anything in this business, it is that nothing is self-explanatory and everything has the potential to be forgotten). First, if you have the drill’s manual, read it
    . These are not simply a waste of resources and will contain valuable information about the procedure you are about to take-on. Second, it is very important that you have the correct replacement brushes for your specific drill
    . Because not all brushes are the same, your tool requires the exact brush that was designed for its motor. And thirdly, please make certain that the tool is, in all possible fashions, disengaged
    . Take off the battery, unplug it, put any “on” buttons in the “off” position, and so forth.

    After preliminaries and precautions, begin by either opening-up the tools housing or simply unscrewing the drill’s end cap (this is simply a dome at the back of the tool (part of the housing) which will sometimes extend further down into the tool’s handle – it should look something like the image to your right) which will plainly reveal the brushes. In any disassembly process though, it is wise to keep your parts and screws as organized as possible – anything your remove will have to later be replaced. If you have to open the housing, remove the top of the clamshell and locate the tool’s brushes. They might be a bit hidden, but should be at the back of the drill motor in the rear of your tool. The brushes, which are small carbon blocks that are pressed up against the drill’s armature, will have been comfortably slid into guide sleeves on either side of the drill’s motor. If you need only remove the end cap, the brushes should be immediately accessible.

    Upon revealing the brushes, carefully remove their brush caps, tug them, the old ones, out of their guide sleeves, and gently slide the new brushes in in the same orientation the old ones were removed. Ensure the new brush is making complete contact with the armature’s commutator and its pretty much as simple as that. Put everything back together tightly ensuring that all things have found their proper space. Once the drill is all buttoned up, give it a little spin; run the drill in forward, reverse, change gears if you have that capability, and maybe even drill a screw or two. If all is in working order, then your procedure is complete and you have successfully performed brush-surgery on your power drill. If however, things did not turn out so good, retrace your steps to ensure you haven’t simply made a small mistake. If none become clear, take the drill to a Dewalt factory authorized service center near you for a professional inspection.

    So, after all is said and done, replacing the brushes in your Dewalt drill is a pretty simple procedure and one that will afford you a lot of good in the long run. You see, brush replacements keep your tool performing powerfully, they save you the cost of paying someone else to do it for you, the cost of investing in a new drill, and it’s a really simple way to maintain the healthy relationship with your power drill that all craftsmen strive for.