How to Drill Holes Into Conduit Pipes

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Things You'll Need

  • Rag

  • Vise

  • Fine-point marker

  • Center punch

  • Hammer

  • Metal drill bit

  • Electric drill

Use an electric drill to create the hole in the conduit.

Conduit pipe is generally either galvanized steel, black-coated steel or made from plastic, and is used to house electrical cables. If a hole needs to be drilled through the walls of the conduit, the circular outer wall of the conduit makes it harder to keep the tip of the drill bit in place. To remedy this situation, the use of a center punch creates a slight indentation on the pipe surface to help guide the drill bit's tip.


Step 1

Place a rag on both sides of the conduit section (if not already installed) and secure it horizontally in a vise.

Step 2

Mark the side of the conduit where the hole needs to be drilled using a fine-point marker. Position the tip of a center punch on the mark, ensuring that the shank of the punch is perpendicular to the conduit. Lightly tap the end of the center punch with a hammer several times until the punch's tip creates an indentation on the conduit's surface.

Step 3

Place the correct size metal drill bit into an electric drill and tighten the drill's chuck with a chuck key. Rest the tip of the drill bit in the indentation on the conduit pipe with the bit and drill perpendicular to the pipe. Squeeze the drill's trigger lightly so that the drill bit moves slowly in the indentation and cuts into the side of the conduit. Push lightly on the drill while squeezing the trigger.

Step 4

Increase the speed of the drill slightly when the bit cuts into the conduit. Continue until the hole is completed in the side of the conduit.


If both sides of the conduit need to be drilled through, continue drilling holding the drill and bit perpendicular to the conduit, until the bit's tip exits out the other side of the conduit pipe. The hole in the conduit's side will act as a guide to keep the bit in place.



Steve Sloane

Steve Sloane started working as a freelance writer in 2007. He has written articles for various websites, using more than a decade of DIY experience to cover mostly construction-related topics. He also writes movie reviews for Inland SoCal. Sloane holds a Bachelor of Arts in creative writing and film theory from the University of California, Riverside.