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Has it really been more than 5 years since we’ve talked about impact-rated screwdriver bit holders?
Some impact drivers work with insert bits, but many require power bit-style bit holders or extensions.
There’s also of course the option to use longer impact-rated screwdriver bits that don’t require the use of a bit holder or extension.
Even when bit holders aren’t required, they can still be convenient for fast bit changes.
A reader recently wrote in, asking for my current impact bit holder recommendation.
What’s your favorite bit holder when using your impact driver? Not specialized like a drywall dimpler, just for phillips/flat head/square drives… If you go on Amazon, good God there’s a million! Magnetic this, ball detent, spring ring, Makita’s Gold Torsion ugly old style Makita blue one… What’s the one you grab all the time unless you need some super specific one.
To be honest, I don’t really have a favorite. I couldn’t even tell you which is the best impact bit holder, as most seem to be perfectly interchangeable.
For non-impact bit holders, I absolutely do have a favorite locking bit holder, the Wera Rapidaptor (usually ~$14-15 at Amazon). I don’t use it exclusively through – I also use impact-rated bit holders with cordless drills and in other non-impact operations.
As it has been 5+ years since I first asked readers’ opinions on impact bit holders that don’t suck, I should have developed a definitive opinion buy now, right? Maybe, but for me it simply comes down to convenience – I grab whichever bit holder I can reach first.
A couple of magnetic bit holders have failed on me, with the magnets popping out. I *could* glue the magnets back in, but I usually forget and eventually discard them rather than open a new tube of SuperGlue. Plus, I have plenty replacements available, as just about every assortment comes with a bit holder or two.
Bit holders can wear out, but I usually misplace them long before that happens.
Wera makes an impact-rated bit holder (~$28 at Amazon), but I haven’t felt compelled to buy it yet.
If you need a recommendation, the Bosch – shown above – is decent, and it typically sells for $4 at Amazon and other retailers. Or, pick up whichever pro brand you can find at your local home center, such as Dewalt, Milwaukee, Makita, or Metabo HPT.
Most pro accessory brands offer a couple of different styles of bit holders, priced from ~$3 to $10, and there are a couple of more premium styles as well.
I don’t have a favorite, and practically speaking there’s no best impact bit holder, at least not a clear leader from what I’ve seen.
I’m sure that there are extreme torque testers out there that have declared a winner. However, I typically break screwdriver bit tips or shear off fastener heads well before I can push bit holders to their limits – not that this happens regularly anymore.
Maybe I’ll develop a favorite before the next time someone asks me the same question. In the meantime, I’m interested in hearing about your impact bit holder opinions and experiences.
Let’s hear about your favorite impact-rated screwdriver bits.
Or how many of you only use whatever bits come with bit assortments and bulk packs?