How To Use A Drilling Machine

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Drill machines are the most powerful and convenient tools that help you perform all your tasks efficiently, including DIY projects. Not using it the proper way will lead to injury.

If you want to get the best results from this device, you should know how to use it safely. If you are a beginner or just started using a drill machine or a pro, you should follow specific safety measurements.

In this article, we shall discuss everything you need to know about how to use a drill machine safely. Continue reading below to get a fair idea of the safety precautions.

Let us get started.

How to Prepare for Drilling?

No doubt, the various types of drilling machines are easy to operate. However, you need to be careful when using those devices. For that, you need to prepare yourself with the required safety measures to ensure a smooth and risk-free drilling process. Below are some safety instructions to follow by every individual when using a drill machine:

Instruction 1: Always have Eye Protection and Safe Clothing

The very first step in the preparation for drilling is to safeguard yourself. Always wear eye protection and proper clothing while using a drill machine. You might be an expert or pro at using this device. There are still chances of getting injured if you do not take these safety precautions.

Not only when using this device, but also when operating other power tools, you ought to wear safety glasses to your eyes. This prevents your eyes from damage caused by the flying debris. Also, see to it that you are not wearing loose clothing or hanging jewelry. These may get stuck in the appliance as you lean over it.

Instruction 2: Ear Protection is Important too!

Do not just get settled with the safety glasses. Protecting your ears is important, too. The sound produced by an electric drill tool is so loud, i.e., about 90 decibels. It is so dangerous that prolonged exposure to it may cause damage to the ears and affect your hearing ability. Never neglect the ear protection.

If you are using a cordless drill, then it might not require ear protection. These devices are almost noiseless. Other types like the hammer drills or the impact drills are so loud that hearing protection is a must when operating. They produce more than 100 dB and can be dangerous to the ears.

Instruction 3: Don’t Forget to Wear a Mask!

After wearing safety glasses and ear protection, it is now time to wear a mask. You need to protect your lungs when drilling concrete or bricks. This is because there are high chances of getting exposed to dust, which will have a significant impact on the lungs. It is always advisable to wear a mask to protect yourself from respiratory diseases.

The best mask you can rely on is the dust mask. It protects your nose as well as your mouth by not allowing the dust to go inside. If you are working for a longer time, we suggest you wear a respirator instead of a dust mask. Different types of respirators are available each, designed for a specific type of hazard. Hence, choose the one that best suits the kind of project you are working on, and use it without fail.

Instruction 4: Pick the Right Drill Bit

Now that you are all prepped up for using the drill machine, let us proceed with the further process. Even before you start using the drill, the most crucial thing you need to look for is selecting the right drill bit. Each drill bit that comes along with the machine is for a specific purpose and surface. Using the wrong bit on the right material will make your drill machine break.

Here are several drill bits that you can use for various surfaces. For drilling wood, you can use a general-purpose bit. For drilling a block of concrete, stone, or brick, use a masonry drill bit.

An HSS (high-speed steel) drill bit works best on most metals. For surfaces that are very hard and brittle like, glass, porcelain, or glazed tiles, use either a carbide or diamond-tipped bit.

Let us say you are drilling a hole for a screw. Finding the right-sized bit is not a difficult thing. Drilling a hole is the easiest and the simplest thing to do. All you have to do is hold the screw behind the bit directly. Do it in such a way that the shaft of the screw gets covered by the bit. See to it that the screw threads become visible from both sides.

There are certain safety factors to consider when using a drill machine. Let us have a look at what they are:

  • Check whether the drill comes with a cord or without a cord.
  • If it is a cordless machine, check for the battery inside. How long does it support the device and the amount of time you need to charge it before use?
  • Is the drill machine easy to operate?
  • What is the overall weight of the power drill?
  • Which type of material is the drill best suitable for?

You need to do a little research on the above points of the drill, in addition to other safety protocols.

Instruction 5: Fit the Drill Bit into Chuck

The next step after choosing the right drill bit is to fit it into the device. Every drill comes with a chuck, which acts as a clamp in the jaws. This chuck helps in holding the drill bit in place. All you have to do is, place the drill into the chuck and rotate the chuck to fit the bit inside. This chuck holds the bit firmly and does not allow it to move when spinning. If you want to remove the bit, rotate the chuck to loosen it. Now you can remove or replace it. But make sure you switched off the device before you do that.

Fitting the drill bit into the chuck is again dependent on the type of drill you are using. For some, you may do it by hand, and for others, you need a chuck key. You can locate this key on the handle of the appliance. For fitting the drill bit, firstly insert it into the chuck and then tighten it using this key. The same applies to removal as well. When fitting, ensure that the bit is straight and secured. After that, remove the key before you turn on the device.

The shaft size of the drill bit must be smaller than the maximum size of the chuck. The tip of the bit can be larger, though. 

How do you assure the bit fitted perfectly into the chuck? Check whether the bit is spinning or wobbling from side to side when the drill is operating. If you notice any of these, then this is a clear indication that either the bit is bent or not fitted properly. If there is a bent bit, discard it immediately and not use it, as it will break during the drilling.

Instruction 6: Clamp The Small Pieces Together

After fitting the drill bit into the chuck, the next thing you should do is clamp down the small pieces firmly. This is a mandatory step if you are drilling the machine into a small surface or a loose piece. Since you will not get a grip on such surfaces, make sure you hold the piece firmly with one hand. If you do not hold, it may slip when drilling and injure you. Holding it firmly will prevent any injury from taking place.

Instruction 7: Handle The Cord Safely

As mentioned earlier, some drills come with a cord, while others without it. If you are using a corded one, it is essential to take good care of it. When you are not using the machine, keep the cord folded. Do not stretch it on the floor and leave it. Also, never pick or hold the drill by its cord. It is strictly not advisable to do so. If you have to use a corded drill in a wet area, we suggest using a cordless one instead.

Are you using an extension cord for drilling? If yes, check for the guidelines in the drill manual before you even use it. The minimum wire gauge should be a key point of consideration. Do not plugin multiple extension cords together, as it is dangerous. You can always use the indoor extension cords for outdoors, as well. If it is a three-prong cord, you may use an adapter to plug it into a two-prong outlet.

How To Use Drilling Machine?

Now that you know all the safety measures you need to take, make sure you follow them. After taking the necessary steps, you can get started with the drilling. But, before that, you need to have complete knowledge of how to use the drill correctly and safely. Irrespective of whether you are a professional or just a beginner, you need to follow certain steps to ensure safe drilling. Let us have a look at what those crucial steps are:

Step 1: Drill Pilot Holes

It is always advisable to start with a pilot hole first before getting into the actual process. Drilling a smaller hole will help you get a hang of the process and guarantees better results for the final one. So, always start with a pilot hole and then go to the larger one to reduce the chances of slipping or damage.

For brittle surfaces like glass or ceramic, you need to be extra careful. There are high chances of damage to the materials in case of sheer negligence. To avoid this, tray marking or making a small “X” on the surface where you want a hole with the help of masking tape. Now, place the drill bit over the “X” and create a small dent there, by tapping it gently using a hammer.

Step 2: Keep The Pressure Steady

The next vital step in the drilling process is to apply steady pressure on the drill. You should not put more or less pressure on the object, but only as required. It should be constant and perfect so that the drill bit can easily and slowly push the object inside the surface.

If you feel that you are applying even a little force, then you must be using the wrong drill bit.

Step 3: Adjust The Clutch

Adjusting the torque of the machine accordingly when using a drill machine is yet another crucial step. You can do it using the twistable collar of the drill. This collar has a series of numbers written in it that depict the torque. The highest number represents the maximum torque. You can adjust the torque by setting the numbers appropriately. Let us say you are having difficulty penetrating the material. You can increase the torque by regulating the number. If you feel that the force is too high that the bit may drill deeper into the material, then reduce the torque.

Step 4: Let It Cool Down

Whenever you are drilling through hard or very hard materials or when you are drilling at high speeds, the machine may encounter severe friction. This may lead to overheating the bit. Sometimes, it can be so extreme that the bit may turn red and even burn the material you are drilling. To avoid this, it is advisable to start at a lower speed and then gradually increase the speed, as needed. You may also do this. Maintain slow speed consistently and then pause in between for a few seconds. This will allow the drill bit to cool down.

Let us say you are drilling through glass, ceramic, or stone. In such cases, ensure a constant water supply to keep the drill bit cool. Although it does not look hot, allow it some time to cool down. After that, you can start using it again.

Step 5: Do Not Force A Jammed Bit Through

Let us say the drill bit got stuck in the material. Do not try to remove it out forcefully by running the machine. Instead, turn off the drill, unplug it and then try separating the bit and the chuck. After separation, you can easily remove the bit from the stuck surface using manual tools.


I hope this ultimate guide on how to use a drilling machine equipped you with all the necessary information. If you are a pro or a beginner, make sure you follow all the safety measures mentioned in this article. This ensures your safety and also the secured use of the machine.

Your questions and feedback mean a lot to us. Write to us in the comments section below if you find this article insightful. Let us know if you need more information or have any points to add. Do not forget to share your inputs with us by posting them in the comments.

We would love to hear and learn from you.

Stay home, stay healthy, stay happy and stay safe!!!

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