We’ve talked about Dewalt’s new POWER DETECT 20V Max cordless power tools a couple of times now, and we’ve learned more about the new tech and which batteries will deliver the most benefits.
Here’s a list of the new tools, with links to our posts about them:
- DCS574W1 Brushless Circular Saw Kit
- DCS368W1 Brushless Reciprocating Saw Kit
- DCD998W1 Brushless Hammer Drill Kit
- DCG415W1 Brushless Angle Grinder Kit
In a nutshell, “Power Detect” is a feature of select Dewalt cordless power tools (20V Max) that results in improved power and performance when the tools are paired with specific higher-performing batteries.
We had some questions for Dewalt, and here’s what they said:
(Some of the questions have been edited for easier readability.)
Which Dewalt cordless power tool batteries will provide the biggest performance boost?
The 20V MAX 8.0Ah Battery (DCB208) offers the highest level of performance with these tools, which is why we are launching these in kits.
What happens if lower capacity batteries are used? How does performance compare to predecessor models?
That said, the tools will work with other 20V MAX batteries, just at varying levels of performance. When paired with 20V MAX 5.0Ah Batteries (DCB205), a user can expect similar power levels to existing XR tools today, the 6.0Ah Battery (DCB206) is a step up from that.
Does this mean that the 9.0Ah and 12.0Ah FlexVolt batteries will provide performance on-par with the 8.0Ah? Will the FlexVolt 6.0Ah perform as well as the XR 6.0Ah?
That is correct on both points.
Are Power Detect tools replacing existing tools?
No, these will not replace their predecessors.
Will bare tools be available?
Bare tool options will likely be available late this year or early 2021.
What “components” or types of components are upgraded in the tools aside from the motors?
We’ve enhanced the motor controls for the brushless motors via software to provide the improvement.
So, in my understanding, the 20V Max 8Ah battery delivers the biggest boost in tool performance, and FlexVolt 9Ah and 12Ah batteries should deliver similar results.
When Dewalt says the Power Detect tools will deliver “up to xy% more power,” it’s with these batteries.
Lower capacity batteries, up to 5.0Ah, provide comparable performance as predecessor models paired with the same batteries. The difference will be the new Dewalt Power Detect reciprocating saw, which is a brand new 20V Max brushless reciprocating saw design, presumed to be adapted from the FlexVolt saw of similar design. That tool is said to operate with up to 44% more power when an 8Ah battery is used compared to a 5Ah battery.
There’s a middle-ground of performance, where a 20V Max 6Ah battery or FlexVolt 6Ah battery delivers greater performance than the lower capacity batteries, but not as big of a boost as with the ≥8Ah batteries.
We can’t quantify what a step up in performance means, but it’s good to know that Dewalt’s 6Ah batteries do provide some performance benefit, just not as much as the 8Ah batteries or FlexVolt batteries of higher charge capacity.
It’s also reassuring that we should expect to see baseline performance when the tools are paired with ≤5Ah batteries, or at least 3Ah to 5Ah batteries. We didn’t ask how these tools would perform with Dewalt’s compact batteries, but I would assume that the 3Ah and 4Ah compact batteries might perform comparable to the larger 10-cell packs.