With a top-rated impact driver and a solid cordless drill/driver, the Milwaukee 2691-22 18-volt combo kit can meet all of your drilling, driving and lagging needs. Hundreds of customers call it the best combo kit available, and the impact drill ranks at the top of many expert tests. The extra features -- LED task light, rapid battery charger and built-in battery gauge -- only add to its convenience and usability.
Combo kits let you match your tool to your project. Everett Snyder of ProToolReviews.com says the Milwaukee 2691-22 kit is perfect "for both Pros and DIYers" because it is powerful and compact "with extremely long run time." The kit includes compact drill/driver 2601-22, quarter-inch impact driver 2650-22, two 1.5-Ah Li-ion batteries, a battery charger and a carrying case.
Though we only found one professional review for this kit, plenty of consumers agree that the 2691-22 combo kit has all the power you need for home repair and medium-duty contractor use. At NorthernTool.com, the kit has an overall 4.9-star rating, with more than 100 reviews. One pro at NorthernTool.com says, "The power in these 18V tools is superior to other cordless tools I own."
A professional mechanic and do-it-yourself contractor at NorthernTool.com agrees, saying, "Whether it is drilling through various steels or woodwork, the drill has great power and battery life. The Compact Driver in this kit meets all my needs and is versatile."
Milwaukee's 2691-22 combo kit also gets lots of praise at Amazon.com. With 275 reviews, it has far more reviews that any other top-selling combo kit, and it has an overall rating of 4.4 stars. "Solid set of drills. I used them to put up drywall, drive screws into brick, framing and for everything else," says one Amazon.com consumer.
The Milwaukee 2650-22 impact driver is the one of the best impact drivers on the market, topping expert tests by Popular Mechanics, Tools of the Trade and TheFamilyHandyman.com. It excels in speed and torque: It's a "lag-driving powerhouse," says Popular Mechanics. More information on Milwaukee's 2650-21 and 2650-22 can be found in our section on the best impact driver.
In a review of the cordless drill 2601-22, ProToolReviews.com says it's a "pretty impressive tool overall, with a balanced feel that drove the weight of the tool straight down the handle -- where it should be." One review from a major consumer organization says the 2601-22 drill has only a fair amount of power and run time.
Compact batteries are lightweight. The Milwaukee 2691-22 comes with two 1.5 Ah Li-ion batteries in the combo kit, and most users say they last long enough to complete most tasks without recharging. As one user at NorthernTool.com put it, the "batteries stay charged better than any I have ever seen," while another adds that the "batteries last long and have plenty of power for most jobs."
Charger includes battery gauge. The Milwaukee 2691-22 includes a smart charger that recharges in 30 to 60 minutes, depending on the battery. With two batteries in the kit, "you can recharge one while you keep working using the other," says a consumer at Amazon.com.
Tough tools with extra features. Owners repeatedly cite two features of the Milwaukee 2691-22 in their reviews; the built-in battery gauge and the trigger-activated LED task light. The light is a particularly popular feature, because it stays on for eight seconds after releasing the trigger to keep illuminating whatever you're working on.
In general, consumers say the impact driver and cordless drill/driver are built to last. One user at NorthernTool.com says, "The drill was rugged enough to survive numerous drops on the shop floor and ground with no signs of damage." However, reviewers at ProToolReviews.com aren't pleased with the Milwaukee 2601-20 drill's plastic chuck sleeve, saying, "It won't take long for that to get dinged up pretty good during the course of a project."
Review Credibility: Very Good With 275 reviews from users, the Milwaukee 2691 18-volt combo kit has far more reviews than any other combo kit at Amazon.com. Most users praise the set, giving it an overall rating of4.4 stars out of 5. Job performance, battery life and bonus features are the top reasons that users like the set.
Review: Milwaukee 2691-22 18-Volt Compact Drill and Impact Driver Combo Kit, Contributors to Amazon.com, As of January 2013
Review Credibility: Very Good NorthernTool.com also has a high number of consumer reviews, with more than 100 customers giving the Milwaukee 2691-22 combo kit an overall 4.9 out of 5 stars. Many reviews say they like the versatility that the kit gives them so they can use the perfect tool for each job. A lot of the comments come from professionals who have experience with power tools and say this Milwaukee set is a good choice.
Review: Milwaukee M18 Compact Cordless Combo Kit -- 2-Tool Set, 18 Volt, Model# 2691-22, Contributors to NorthernTool.com, As of January 2013
Review Credibility: Very Good The Milwaukee 2601-22 is one of 61 cordless drills that editors at ConsumerReports.org test. Using lab tests, editors evaluate each drill for speed, power and handling, among other attributes.
Review: Cordless Drills and Tool Kits, Editors of ConsumerReports.org, Not dated
4. Tools of the Trade
Review Credibility: Good The editors at Tools of the Trade take 18-volt Li-ion impact drivers to their jobsites for thorough evaluation. They include both the Milwaukee 2650-21 and 2650-22 (which have the same body, but different batteries) in their tests. The 2650-21, which is the same drill-battery configuration as the 2691-22 combo kit, gets top marks for speed and run time.
Review: Untitled, Greg DiBernardo, Not Dated
Review Credibility: Good In a comparison of cordless impact drills, TheFamilyHandyman.com evaluates torque output, speed and handling to name the best impact drills. The Milwaukee 2650-22 finishes on top, with editors saying, "In addition to raw power, it has all the features we loved: a tool-belt hook, a bright work light and a battery 'fuel gauge'." The 2650-22 is the same drill body and the drill in the 2691-22 combo kit, but with the larger 3.0 amp battery (which doesn't affect power output).
Review: Choosing the Best Impact Driver, Editors of TheFamilyHandyman.com, Not Dated
Review Credibility: Good Popular Mechanics test nine impact drills in this review, awarding the Milwaukee 2650-22 impact drill 4.5 stars. Editors say the drill is "ruggedly built, with a heavy nosepiece and plentiful rubber overmold protection, especially under the battery." The 2691-22 combo kit includes the same 2650 impact drill, but with the compact batteries.
Review: Impact Driver Comparison Test, Roy Berendsohn, Not Dated
Review Credibility: Good Everett Snyder reviews the Milwaukee 2601-22 cordless drill kit for this review, praising the tool's power, balance and weight. The kit includes the same drill and battery charger as the Milwaukee 2691-22. Snyder says the main drawbacks to the 2601-22 are the plastic chuck sleeve and the lack of bit storage.
Review: Milwaukee 2601-22 M18 1/2" Drill/Driver Review, Everett Snyder, July 23, 2011
8. New Woodworker
Review Credibility: Fair Tom Hintz reviews the M18 cordless drill/driver kit, which has the same drill, battery and charger as the 2691-22 combo kit. "The Milwaukee M18 Cordless Compact Drill Driver is a very well built tool that handles woodworking tasks very well," he says. "It has plenty of power and dependable ways to control the above average amount of torque when dealing with small fasteners."
Review: Milwaukee M18 Cordless Compact Drill Driver, Tom Hintz, April 9, 2010