What is a Screw Gun? Screw Gun vs a Drill

Last Updated on March 14, 2021 by James

A screw gun can be very confusing for someone who is seeing it for the first time.

They might think they it is just a drill with a screwdriver bit. But, why you need it in the first place? Can’t you simply use a drill instead?

However, a screw gun has its own importance. It is much more and different from a drill or electric screwdriver.

What is a Screw Gun?

A screw gun can be said as a combination of a power drill and screwdriver. But instead of drilling holes, it is used for driving screws.

It is designed in such a way that it automatically feed screws from a given clip similar to the nail guns.

The nose of the screw guns can hold interchangeable shank bits of different sizes, which is commonly known as a tip. Some of the different types of tip include 6mm, 25 mm, and others.

The nose can be adjusted according to the depth of the drive which is very helpful while working with drywall.

You might think it is a small tear, but such minor damages compromise the integrity of the drywall, and can also lead to future problems.

Using a screw gun, you can place the screws in the exact depth of the drywall.

You also need to apply a little pressure to engage the clutch for driving screws. Most of the manufacturers also recommend keeping the motor running while driving screws inside a wall, or any other surface.

How Is a Screw Drill Different From a Drill?

Most of the time both words “screw gun” and “drill” are used interchangeably, but they are very different from each other.

A screw gun is used to drive screws whereas a drill is used to bore holes. Here are some of the differences:


A chuck is used to hold the drill bits and fasteners firmly. On the other hand, screw guns have an adjustable nose instead of a chuck which is used to set the depth of the screw.

There is only one use of the screw guns, i.e., install drywall, plywood, and other materials which requires a screw. Drills have several purposes such as hammer drilling, boring, screwing, and others.

There is a gear switch in the drills which is used to supply more power when needed. The primary difference between both the tools are their speed. The screw guns spin at 6,000 rpm whereas the rate of spinning for drills is below 3,000 rpm.


If you use a dimpling bit, then a drill can be used as a screw gun. These type of bits are easily available in the market. Most of the manufacturers use drills to install a few screws if they do not have a screw gun. However, a screw gun can never be used as a drill.

How to Use a Screw Gun

A screw gun makes it very easy to install and fit drywall, and other interiors of a house. There are several types of screw gun such as regular, automated, collated, and a drywall screw gun. However, all of them work in the same way.

Step 1 – Select a screw gun.

As there are different types of screw guns available, however, you need to select the one according to your needs and requirements. A cordless screw gun is much easier to work with and has a battery.

Check out our guide to find the best screw guns and cut the workload, make the whole process simple and less time-consuming!

You don’t have to worry about the wires getting tangled, and you can also carry it anywhere. They are very lightweight which makes changing the bits easier.

Step 2 – Loading

The next step is to load the screw gun with the appropriate screws. In the automatic models, all the screws are stored once, but the manual ones work similarly to a manual screwdriver in which you have to load the screws manually each time.

Although the automatic models are a bit expensive, it makes your life easier as it saves the need to fix each screw separately.

Step 3 – Screwing

You need to place the screw gun in the right location and slightly put pressure against the wall. Simultaneously, press the trigger which will force the screw to the required depth. Repeat this process with all the screws to make sure that the drywall is placed perfectly without any wear and tear.

Step 4 – Adjustments

If you want to insert the screw slightly deeper, then you can use the adjustable head depth of the screw guns. Adjust the settings according to your requirements and make sure that the screw doesn’t rip through the drywall.

Here’s video tutorial:


Although a screw gun is very easy to use, it might take you some time and practice to master the art. To make sure that the job is done right, use the right tool and adjusts the screw to the right depth in the wall.