Makita Xwt12 Rb Kit Shot 5c118b2535156

Tool Review: Makita 18V LXT Sub-Compact Brushless 3/8" Square Drive Impact Wrench

March 11, 2019
This reviewer was impressed with the tool’s “unique” reverse stop feature.

The Makita 18V LXT Sub-Compact Brushless 3/8" Square Drive Impact Wrench, No. XWT12RB, is designed to give users 12V handling with 18V performance, and is compatible with Makita's 18V Li-ion cordless tool system. This impact wrench is ideal for working in tight spaces and for overhead applications. The reverse rotation auto-stop mode stops rotation and impact when the fastener is loosened adequately. The tool also features a variable speed trigger, two speed settings, built-in LEDs and a 3/8" square drive for quick socket changes. 

The review

For a lead technician like Lou Fort of K.A.R.S Inc., who has used his fair share of cordless 3/8” impacts in all different styles, from all kinds of brands, you’d be hard pressed to find a feature he’s never seen before. Enter the Makita’s 18V LXT Sub-Compact Brushless 3/8" Square Drive Impact Wrench with its reverse rotation auto-stop mode.

“I have found in the right application, using the XWT12RB’s unique reverse stop feature can be a huge time saver,” Fort says.

Initially, the reverse mode, which automatically stops rotation when the fastener is loosened adequately, stumped Fort. But after reading the included manual, that feature became a favorite and a standout.

“I have used the reverse rotation auto-stop mode to loosen pan bolts, valve cover fasteners, banjo fittings and more with no fear of the fastener spinning free and flying off never to be seen again,” Fort says.

In addition to the reverse auto-stop mode, Fort says the tool was light “yet quite powerful.”

For general maintenance applications, Fort uses the tool in both full and low power modes.

 It comes with a removable belt clip, which Fort removed in order to access tight spaces, and features dual LED lights which Fort says “provide a great source of light where it’s needed and can be used even when the impact itself isn’t needed.

The XWT12RB includes the tool, batteries, a battery charger and tool bag.

"The kit comes with a tool bag that is one of the nicest bags I have seen,” Fort says. “There are two bit holders, several open pockets and one closable pocket on the inside for storage. There are also several pouches on the outside to hold everything you can’t fit inside.”

“I haven’t found anything I don’t like about this impact, or any of the other Makita tools I use,” Fort says. 

About the Author

Vesna Brajkovic | Associate Editor - Vehicle Repair Group

Vesna Brajkovic is associate editor for the Vehicle Repair Group.

Brajkovic has covered the transportation industry for a number of trade publications, with a focus on the vehicle maintenance and automotive aftermarket industries since 2016. Prior to that, she covered the global aviation industry as assistant editor for Endeavor Business Media's, and held a number of editorial positions at an award-winning community newspaper.

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