Introduction: Power Brush - Drill Attachment

Picture of Power Brush - Drill Attachment

It all started when I had to clean the shower. 'Surely,' I thought, 'someone else, who hates cleaning tile, has made a brush head for a drill.' Well, no one had. Or, at least, they figured it was so simple no one would need an instructable for it. So I made one without an instructable, and now I'm making an instructable for those who don't want to try it without instruction! So there you go. Super easy, super cheap, super fast. That's my kind of project!

Step 1: Materials

Picture of Materials

This is all your going to need:

-A large screwdriver

-A 'Soap Dispensing Palm Brush' refill pack

-A 1/4 in. x 1 1/2 in. machine screw and nut. You may need a different diameter screw if your brush is a different brand.

Step 2: Assembly 

Picture of Assembly 

Screw the machine screw almost all the way though the hole from the bristle side. Leave a few turns left to screw before threading the nut on. Tighten the nut with your fingers into the countersink around the hole. Then tighten the screw with the screw driver. If your brush doesn't have a countersink, don't worry about leaving a few turns before threading the nut, and just tighten the whole thing down.

Step 3: Use It!

Picture of Use It!

Just put it in your drill like a normal drill bit and start scrubbing! Just, please don't use this on anything fragile or of real value. (Like if you have antique tiles for some reason.)


pashiran made it! (author)2016-01-23

very good idea. I bought a brush at 1-dollar shop. I will make handle for it with 3d printer.

Dwargh (author)2016-01-22

Aw man, great idea! Yeah! YMMD!!

KrS5 (author)2016-01-05

I use an old sonic care tooth brush for this purpose. Does a decent job.

DaveW67 (author)2016-01-05

clinton_munkres (author)2016-01-05

Plenty of things like this out there. I think Black and Decker makes a rechargeable version or you can get something almost identical on Amazon.

spark master (author)2016-01-04

That is a sweeet idea, gotta admit. Consider a rubber foot made to go over the 1/4 20 golt head to stop possible problems Before they shred a tile! Also fill that cip with silicone rubber (rtv), so it is really nice for the walls.

Could polish horse hooves or my teeth with them!!!!!

FamilyGuy2006 made it! (author)2014-11-12

I just went through this thought process a month ago. I know a spinning brush is ok for a little while but pretty quick all the bristles end up laying over and they don't poke into the grime I'm trying to remove. So a reciprocating or 'back and forth' brush is needed. Think about the clean you can get from those new tooth brushes that have thousands of strokes per second (they are awesome). Its the bristle tip pushing into the unwanted matter that makes it come loose where dragging across the gunk doesn't remove it as efficiently.

After figuring this out, I remembered that "I have no new ideas". I can generally come up with an idea then do a google search to find someone who has done it first, better, and is either selling it or wrote a DIY instructable about it.

Lowes came through this time. They sell an attachment to your reciprocating saw ($20~ish from Harbor Freight). It has many attachments for all kinds of surfaces (also about $20)



Of course the big fail on my solution is I'm spending $40 vs your ~$5. But I have no modification time and lots of brushes to use. Even a metal file is included.
So depending on your time and money budget, there are options.

I would hope that you are not using an electric reciprocating saw in a wet area like a tub.

Thanks for the concern, and yes I am. I make sure my saw is properly grounded, and the cord is not cracked and that the plug interfaces stay away from anything wet.

jbrown47 (author)FamilyGuy20062016-01-03

So.... since you are using this with a drill, you can always just reverse the direction of spin if you think the bristles are laying down one way (been using this for months with no problem of that though?)

FamilyGuy2006 (author)jbrown472016-01-04

Eventually all the bristles point away from center. And the reverse on a drill is nothing compared to a reciprocating action.

fredellarby (author)2015-01-04

I'm confused. Should it turn clockwise or anticlockwise? I could end up inserting dirt instead of removing it.

And you're right. Not so much as needing instructions as never having thought of it.

rkrishnan7 (author)fredellarby2016-01-04

It all depends. Are you in the Southern Hemisphere? Just Kidding....

RickM64 (author)fredellarby2015-12-20

"Should it turn clockwise or anticlockwise? I could end up inserting dirt instead of removing it."

That was the funniest thing I have read in a while. I laughed for about 5 minutes.

It's just like threading bolts -righty tighty, lefty loosey. Except you have to be careful on plumbing, gotta go the opposite way as their threads are reversed

danzo321 (author)2016-01-03

I always used a steel wire toothbrush for grout but OK, this is good, might make one for my siding. Are those stiff bristles? do they sell different stiffnesses? The paint stripper people make some ferociously stiff bristle brushes.

ac-dc (author)danzo3212016-01-04

That can easily destroy tile. Bad idea. Nothing harder than plastic should be used on tile.

HGC (author)2016-01-03

I've been looking for a product like this for about 2 months now to help remove rust from a stainless steel grill. It requires a lot of elbow grease. Couldn't find anything available. Thanks, this instructive is just what I need.

ac-dc (author)HGC2016-01-04

Apply naval jelly (phosphoric acid) in an inconspicuous spot to see if it darkens the metal. "IF" it does not, then apply to the rusted area, let sit, and rinse off.

Next apply some silicone grease. Some might say use wax but you can't do that on a portion of a grill that gets hot while the grease is resistant to high temperature.

Also, next time pick a grill more carefully as it is only the low grade stainless that rusts.

rondust (author)HGC2016-01-03

Make a brew of Citric Acid and water, there are recipes on the net for rust removal on metals. Put the brew in a basin and soak for a couple of days, Rinse off with clean water. No elbow grease needed.

Best of.

gadgeteer123 (author)2016-01-03

Excellent old post. I use the waterproof Black and Decker version of his brush. If I may make one simple little recommendation and that is to use a carriage bolt that has a square to index into the plastic brush. If used with a Nyloc nut, you can easily use the brush in both a clockwise and counter-clockwise direction without loosening the screw and nut. Thanks.

bmaverick (author)2016-01-03

Back in the days of shoe polishing machines, there is an attachment very much like what is shown in this instructable. Just glad this is now shared for a new generation of people who don't recall shoe polishing dremel/drill attachment tools. Both brushes and buffing wheels exist. Now if you have not done this instrucable, a simple brush like above from the $1 store with a screw and nut is less that $2 to make this handy setup. Many of the newer cordless drills have LED lights to shine the trouble spots to clean as well.

jbrown47 (author)2016-01-03

For others making this, I didn't have a bolt/nut big enough on hand so I used a sheet rock molly (wall anchor?). Just hold the back end with pliers and turn the screw till its clamped tight. worked great!

irebenko (author)2016-01-03

Absolutely brilliant idea!!! I've never seen so many people excited to clean their showers! =D

reillymanj2000 made it! (author)2016-01-03

worked awesome. cleaned my shower floor in a short time. thanks

leehee (author)2016-01-03

What a great idea!

grantisimo made it! (author)2015-07-02

Just made one today. Gonna tackle that shower grout, when I get home!

Torgeirro made it! (author)2015-05-25

Work like a charm...

fbailey57 (author)2015-03-24

I CAN NOT believe this! Today I started re-furbishing an old outside storage cabinet. While using my little "household battery powered scrubber" I thought SURELY there is some way to attach a scrub brush to a drill... Oh my goodness! Glad I found this site during my lunch... Gonna go make one to finish cleaning that cabinet!?

Rayvenlight (author)2015-02-26

This is terrific. I had difficulty finding the refills at my local grocery store, however, but I did find one that came attached to the soap reservoir. I took it into the garage and broke it off with a hammer and some clippers and was able to get it to fit.

I have trouble scrubbing because of chronic pain, and this gives me a chance to get our tiles back to a beautiful clean!

russ_hensel (author)2015-02-06

Just a note to let you know I have added this to the collection: Cordless Drills Hacking for Other Uses !


Take a look at a bunch of project involving odd uses of drills.

and for even more drill info


FindersK (author)2015-02-01

I made this today and it worked great and saved a ton of money! Thank you OP!

liquidhandwash (author)2015-01-28

someones copied your idea and posted it on another site

antioch (author)2015-01-06

Congratulations, sir, you sound very much like the kind of person that ends up in the ER from abusing a brush.

SenKat (author)2015-01-06

Nice tone, rictum guy.... it was a nicely created instructional about a "why didnt i think of that" !!! Keep posting,good job !!

katerlyn (author)2015-01-04

I spent hours upon hours shopping online for my cousin's girl's wedding gift...I ended up ordering her a scrubber set for her power drill from amazon...I'm not so sure she was as thrilled as I would have been! Thanks for the instructable. smile.

cduncan1 (author)2015-01-04

It's a great idea.

Kevanf1 (author)2014-11-11

What a brilliant idea, thank you :) I'm thinking beyond tile cleaning in a bathroom though. One of my many pastimes is renovating/refurbishing old vehicles. This sort of brush just may come in very useful for cleaning up stubbornly dirty paintwork. It may just be enough to give it a 'key' prior to giving the paintwork a renovating spray over. If it's not quite abrasive enough there is always glue and sand. Run some glue over the bristles and dip the brush into dry sand. Let it dry, presto, an abrasive brush :) I would advise the use of goggles or safety glasses when using this invention even when used in a bathroom. It doesn't hurt to be safety conscious after all ;)

jumpfroggy (author)Kevanf12014-11-11

A normal wire-brush wheel w/ a power drill works wonders for that. I was able to strip stubborn paint off an old steel bed that way. It's amazing compared to sandpaper, especially for nooks/crannies.

You can also get sandpaper wheels that look like flowers, lots of little flaps. But your idea might be a nice middle ground (bristles w/ sandpaper).

rrichter1 (author)jumpfroggy2015-01-04

whutchu talkin' 'bout, willis ? wire brush? sand paper ? are you thinking they are trying to scuff up the surface of the tile for paint to adhere or something ?

jumpfroggy (author)rrichter12015-01-04

I was responding Kevanf1 about non-tile uses, esp metal. For tile, probably not so much. Might leave an "interesting" texture on the surface :)

Kevanf1 (author)jumpfroggy2014-11-13

Ah, I should have been a little more precise, my apologies. I do use a standard wire wheel brush on a drill as well as flap wheels on an angle grinder. However, these tend to be a little too harsh when it comes to taking back paint on aluminium (I have a 40 yr old Land Rover). Thank you for the suggestions though :)

jumpfroggy (author)Kevanf12014-11-13

NP, looks like you're ahead of me :) I spent incredible amounts of time with sandpaper, a heat gun, and paint stripper. The paint stripper did the bulk work, but the nooks and crannies were incredibly hard w/o the wire brush wheel. Love that thing. But still, neat idea. That's basically how they make those sanding sponges... soft structure, add glue & grit.

Ricardo Furioso (author)Kevanf12014-11-11

What kind of glue do you use? I love glue, but can't think which I'd employ.

Kevanf1 (author)Ricardo Furioso2014-11-13

I have in mind something like latex glue. It's also marketed as fabric glue but is often a bit expensive if purchased this way. I generally get it when sold as 'carpet glue'. It's the sort of stuff that after you leave it to go off (to set) it goes like rubber. I know from past experience that sand certainly adheres to it very well :)

xs2000 (author)Kevanf12014-11-11

Now that's a good idea! I'll have to try that!

studleylee (author)2015-01-04


handynut (author)2015-01-04

Thanks for the reminder. I'll be making a version of this to remove the wife's 'cooked-on classics' (burnt-on food). Just a bit wary of 240v and water issues, so will consider battery power. Probably use a Scotchbrite (green pad) abrasive instead.

rrichter1 (author)handynut2015-01-04

only a bit wary ???

handynut (author)rrichter12015-01-04

? Yes, my reckless desire for experimentation usually overrides any hint of common sense ?

About This Instructable



More by xs2000:Power Brush - Drill Attachmentjugger weapons remixduct tape back pack
Add instructable to: