Recently, I pushed the motor too hard while mixing thinset mortar. I got a burnt motor smell and bit of smoke. I have now learned that bigger mixing paddles are not always better! Have I caused serious harm to the motor? Is there anything I can do to ameliorate some of that harm? Or maybe drill motors are designed to survive such occasional abuse.
This has happened to me before and in general the tool continues to work mostly fine. I suppose there might be a drop in power output but I’ve never really noticed it.
I realized that slightly more expensive brushless motor drills often come with an electronic control that will shut off the motor before it gets damaged from being overdriven. Those are useful for avoiding the problem altogether.
Bottom line in my experience is, keep using the tool until it stops working unless you have a good reason for an upgrade.
Usually overheat and smoke means replacement.
Smoke is from something burning/melting usually electrical insulation.
Once the insulation is damaged it needs replacing.
Might be able to get a new motor, but probably cost close to a new drill, unless lucky.
Would contact the maker to make sure if they have replacement motors and the cost.
What should I do if I overheated my drill motor and made it smoke?
Let it cool down in front of a fan for an hour and try using it again. If it doesn't feel right then you will quickly know.
Have I caused serious harm to the motor?
There's really no way to answer this question without taking it apart and inspecting the motor. The pre-requisite is of course that you know what you're looking for once you've disassembled it.
Is there anything I can do to ameliorate some of that harm?
What's done is done. The main thing is to let it cool down adequately before using it again. If it's warrantied then send it in for repairs.
That drill has a 5 year warranty; I hope you registered it and can make use of the warranty.
So you've learned what that drill's max potential is, now you have to ask yourself whether that potential satisfies your needs. If your needs exceed the drill's capabilities then the realistic question is, which drill should you buy to satisfy your needs?
If the drill is still within the store's return window then I suggest returning it; why move forward with a hobbled drill?