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A high-quality laser level is a time-saving tool builders can use to make building houses more accurate and faster. However, most people are not aware of the importance of correctly aligning certain elements of a construction project either vertically or horizontally.
They often try to put up some artwork on their wall only to realize individual lines are crooked. Just picture installing tiles in your house and having to start over again because you got it wrong.
A laser level can help you avoid such scenarios. It will indicate where to put certain elements and result in perfect alignment. However, there are many laser levels with different capabilities in the market.
In this article, we’ll review the best laser level for your requirements. We’ll also look at the features you should consider when shopping for the best laser level in our detailed buying guide.
- Our Top Laser Level Reviews
- Best Laser Level: Dewalt DW088K Self-Leveling Cross Line Laser
- Best Outdoor and Indoor Use: Johnson Level & Tool 99 006K Self-Levelling System
- Best for Small Home Projects: Qooltek Multipurpose Laser Level
- Best Special Features: Dewalt DW089K Self-Leveling Line Laser
- Best Budget Option: Johnson Level & Tool 40 0921
- Best for Measuring Tricky Surfaces: PLS 60521N Cross Line Laser
- Best User-Friendly Model: Bosch GLL 30 Self-Leveling Cross-Line Laser
- Best with Versatile Mounting Accessories: Bosch Combination Point and Line Laser GLL 1P
- Best for Home Renovations: Firecore F112R Self-Leveling Cross-Line Laser
- Best for DIY Jobs: Stanley STHT 77340 Cross Line Laser
- Laser Level Features and Considerations
- Rotary Laser Applications
- Range Requirements
- Ease of Use
- Power Source (Alkaline, Lithium, Nickel or 120V AC)
- Safety Considerations
- Warranty and Durability
- Laser Color
- Warning Indicator and Power Level
- Wrap Up
Our Top Laser Level Reviews
Best Laser Level: Dewalt DW088K Self-Leveling Cross Line Laser
The Dewalt DW088K laser level makes installing floors and mapping wall layout a quick process. It is an excellent choice for outdoor and indoor jobs as well as professional building projects at home.
The laser comes with an over-molded construction that is water resistant and durable. This makes it tough enough to withstand prolonged periods on the project site without getting damaged. The Dewalt DW088K laser level makes use of bright horizontal and vertical projections and is battery operated.
With the red beams, the laser level is easy to see indoors, which allows a working range of 100feet. The vertical and horizontal beams offer the best accuracy for different leveling applications and layout.
An extended range of 165 feet is not too much for this laser because it remains visible even without using an extender. Most outdoor and indoor jobs can benefit from the red beams that are projected in front of the self-level laser.
The Dewalt DW088K laser is designed with two visible cross line beams for layout and leveling purposes. It has a magnetic built-in pivot base to make mounting on any metal surface easy. This laser has an accuracy of 1/8 inch at 30 feet.
It has a pulse mode you can use with a detector for enhanced visibility. This comes in handy, especially when using an extending range of 165 feet. It includes a 1-year free service plan and a 3-year limited warranty.
Individual buttons located on the control panel enables you to have full control over the three beams. An IP54 rated housing cover offers dust and waterproof cover, making the laser an excellent choice for long days use at a project site.
This laser also has a sturdy sided storage box to make transporting it easy. It measures 9.2 inches and weighs 3.2 pounds, making it the perfect size for heavy construction jobs. It is also versatile, compact, and user-friendly which cuts down the time you may spend on a project.
The Dewalt DW088K laser level is powered by 3 AA batteries that last for 20 hours. These batteries come with a laser to enable you to test the calibration immediately after buying the tool.
Finally, the device has a flashing indicator for indicating low battery life. This warns you in advance and helps you avoid having a dead tool when working on an important task.
What We Like
- 2 on and off button switches
- Battery operated
- 2 visible cross lines
- 3 year warranty
- Self-leveling up to 4 degrees
- Accuracy of 1/8 inch at 30 feet
- IP54 dust and waterproof
What We Don’t Like
- No manual positioning option for marking lines at custom angles
- Can be challenging to identify laser lines in bright condition
- Projects bright crossing horizontal and vertical lines. Laser Beam Color: Red
- Full-Time Pulse Mode Allows Use with Detector and +/- 1/4 inch accuracy at 100 feet
- Over-molded housing and IP54 water/debris resistance
Best Outdoor and Indoor Use: Johnson Level & Tool 99 006K Self-Levelling System
The Johnson Level & Tool 99-006K self-levelling tool is a rotary laser designed with the accomplished construction tradesmen in mind. Setting up this laser is quite easy. It is ideal for both outdoor and indoor use.
You can use a detector for extended optimal accuracy for outside use which requires higher rotational speeds. On the other hand, slower rotational speeds can be used to enhance the visibility of the beam.
Johnson Level & Tool 99-006K features an enclosed beacon for protecting the inner mechanism from water and dust damage that may occur at the working site. If you are looking for a professional rotary laser level that is easy to use both outdoors and indoors, you should consider this device.
The rotary laser can project a 360-degree beam and boasts of 3 rotational speeds that include 200, 400 and 600 RPM. Therefore, this laser can level itself both in the X and Y-axis. It also has a locking system that protects the pendulum from hard knocks while in transit.
To prepare the device for use, disengage the transportation lock, then switch the laser on. The laser can level itself on the horizontal plane while you manipulate the vertical plane manually.
You can also use the split beam feature to create a 90-degree angle when needed. Consequently, Johnson 99 066K laser can be used horizontally or vertically. It comes with a red beam detector you can use in low visibility conditions due to extended range.
It has a 200 feet range, with up to 1/8-inch accuracy at 50 feet. The laser falls under Class III category with an output of 5 milliwatts. It has an IP54 rated enclosure that enables it to withstand water and dust without any damage.
Moreover, it stands at 6.5 inches high and weighs 3.3 pounds. You will get exceptional value from this device if your project site is not larger than 800 feet. You can use the laser level for various tasks at home as it comes with a receiver for finding lines in bright daylight.
The 5/8-inch mounting thread will enable you to use any tripod without experiencing problems. This tool also features an aluminium mounting bracket, mounting clamp and a lightweight aluminium tripod that allows for secure installation on any surface.
The detector/receiver runs on 2 AAA batteries while the laser is powered by 4 AA batteries. These batteries can last up to 20 hours.
What We Like
- Outdoor and indoor jobs
- Locking pendulum for maximum protection
- 3 variable rotation speeds
- Value for money
What We Don’t Like
- Not constructed sturdily
- Requires high maintenance to run properly
- TURNKEY SOLUTION: The 99-006K self-leveling rotary laser system includes a soft carrying case (laser...
- EXTERIOR RESIDENTIAL: Great for leveling forms and footings, aligning fence posts,...
- VERTICAL AND HORIZONTAL USE: Use vertically for laying out walls and floors, or installing metal...
Best for Small Home Projects: Qooltek Multipurpose Laser Level
The Qooltek Multipurpose Laser Level is an accurate little device you should consider adding to your DIY toolbox. This 3 in 1 device makes those little nagging home DIY jobs a breeze due to its easy to use application.
It has no complicated buttons, making it easy to use. The laser level has one button you can use to either switch on or off. It also comes with three tools; a measuring tape, traditional bubble level, and a laser level.
Consequently, you can measure and level without switching tools. It has three traditional bubble levels to enable you to measure and check diagonal, horizontal, and vertical lines accurately. This laser is designed for situations that require measurements and a straight line.
The Qooltek Multipurpose Laser is equipped with 8 feet measuring tape that measures imperial measurements or in metric. The measuring tape locks tightly to ensure correct measurements. It has a power output of 3.5 milliwatts and is categorized under Class III.
To make measuring hassle-free, you need to press the key button while pulling out the measuring tape. The key button will be loosened in order to lock the reel after drawing out the measuring tape to your preferred length.
It has a ranging error measuring -/+ 2 millimeters at 10 meters and 25 meters. The laser is built from hard plastic materials making it durable and it weighs 184 grams. The measuring tape and the ruler are made of soft aluminum material.
The laser measures 18.5 centimeters in length and 2.8 centimeters in height making it a lightweight tool that is easy to handle. It does not come with magnetic mounting brackets. But you can attach it to a tripod when necessary.
The Qooltek Multipurpose Laser is well-equipped for the little DIY home tasks than advanced construction sites. Therefore, you should keep that in mind when looking for a laser level. It comes with a backup battery and a 3 x AG13 button battery.
What We Like
- Built-in measuring tape
- Hard, durable plastic materials
- 3 in 1 tool to ensure accurate measurements
- Can be mounted on a tripod
- Spare battery included
- Easy to handle
What We Don’t Like
- No magnetic mounting brackets
- Short tape of 8 feet
- 3-PRONGED APPROACH - combines a fine-tuned tape measure, a triple-positioned leveling bubble and a...
- WORKS FOR INDOOR - designed for any situation where a straight line or accurate measurements are...
- 8-FOOT Measuring Tape - comes loaded with an 8-foot measure that includes imperial and metric...
Best Special Features: Dewalt DW089K Self-Leveling Line Laser
The Dewalt DW089K laser comes with a second plumb line for creating intersecting lines on the ceiling and floor. This takes care of your layout plans at once while eliminating the need to get a second laser level. You also do not have to look for extra accessories, which make this laser cost-effective, easy, and quick to use.
With the micro-adjust knob feature, you will be able to adjust the beam without having to move the device physically. A track clearance of 1-3/4 inches allows you to raise it over drywall track without looking for other accessories such as extenders and tripods.
The Dewalt DW089K laser is suitable for use when installing the ceiling because it is equipped with a universal wall mount and an integrated pivot bracket. It is self-leveling up to -/+ 4 degrees and accurate up to -/+ 1/8 inches at 30 feet. The single button control panel makes operating the device relatively easy.
It comes with three laser beams that include a 90-degree plumb line. These specifications are important for designs that require a layout measuring 90 degrees. This laser has a pulse mode that enables you to use a line detector for extending the tool up to165 feet.
It has an over-molded housing that is covered in IP54 rated material. This makes it strong and durable to withstand harsh environments. With the knock proof as well as dust and waterproof feature, the device is able to remain calibrated for a long period of time.
The Class II laser is equipped with a sturdy sided storage box that allows for safe device transportation. It has a metal roll cage for maximum stability while the integrated pivot bracket fits on any universal wall mount.
The laser has an output of 1 milliwatt for powering its 3 laser beams while the second plumb line feature will enable you to install drywall applications and acoustic ceilings effectively and fast.
It is battery powered and uses 4 AA batteries that last up to 30 hours. The device measures 11.3 x 10.6 x 4.8 inches and weighs 4.4 pounds which means it is considerably compact. It comes with a 1-year free service plan and 3-year warranty. The beam is red and brighter for maximum visibility in daylight conditions.
What We Like
- Micro adjustment knob for easier alignment
- Triple beam laser for 90-degree layouts
- Second plumb line feature
- 30-hour battery life
- Battery operated
- 3-year warranty
What We Don’t Like
- Difficult to remain steady on metal surfaces
- 3 Beam Line Laser to aid in 90-Degree layout, built-in magnetic pivot bracket
- 2x Brighter diode to increase visibility in bright job site conditions
- Accurate to +/- 1/8-Inch at 30-Feet for level applications
Best Budget Option: Johnson Level & Tool 40 0921
The Johnson Level & Tool 40-0921 is a relatively affordable laser. It comes with a standard tripod stand and offers vertical and horizontal cross beams. This makes it a great laser for small everyday tasks, especially for people who are not looking for a highly-priced laser.
It is also ideal for situations that require you to level some lines. The device is equipped with laser enhancement safety glasses and comes with a large round shape elevated base that rotates up to 360-degree.
The pendulum locks to offer protection against knocks when the laser level is not in use. In addition, the device self-levels at -/+ 6 degrees and is easy to install. It has a single off/on the button for easy control, making it user-friendly. It is accurate within ¼ inch at 35 feet. The X and Y cross beams allow for pinpointing leveling.
The Johnson laser level 40-0921 projects horizontal and vertical cross beamlines simultaneously with a 100 feet range. The beams allow for easy alignment jobs. This laser falls under Class III and has an output of 5 milliwatts.
The laser is not waterproof, but it has a hard-sided storage case for transporting. It is built from hard plastic materials making it durable while the tripod is made from lightweight aluminum metal. The beam is red, making it visible indoors.
It has a visual indicator to let you know when you are off level. The laser has a 3-year labor and parts warranty and a replacement plan or a 24-hour plan upon showing proof of purchase.
The laser level is suitable for indoor use, tackling home renovations or repairs and various small-scale building jobs. Therefore, the device is designed for use on a wide variety of alignment applications or interior leveling.
It is powered by 3 AAA batteries that run for 12 hours which are enough for the small jobs at home. The Johnson laser level 40 0921 measures 5 x 4 x 3.5 inches and weighs 1.2 pounds.
What We Like
- Used both outdoors and indoors
- Vertical and horizontal cross line beams
- Elevating tripod
- Affordable price
- Hard-sided carry case
What We Don’t Like
- Short, light tripod
- Susceptible to vibrations
- Non-waterproof laser
- Projects a self-leveling laser cross on your work surface to easily layout your jobsite
- EASY-TO-USE ELEVATING TRIPOD: Kit includes a tripod that has a working range from 17" to 47". The...
- SAFE TRANSPORTATION: The kit includes a durable, hard-shell carrying case so that you can safely and...
Best for Measuring Tricky Surfaces: PLS 60521N Cross Line Laser
The PLS 60521N Cross Line Laser is a portable and accurate device you can add to your toolbox. It comes with a level and plumb as well as a square line. With this 3 in 1 device, you may not need your rotary laser or bubble vial again.
It is ideal for short to mid-range outdoor and indoor applications that require horizontal and vertical layout. This laser is also affordable and brighter than most rotary lasers. It has two visible laser lines that are perfect for horizontal and vertical plumb level applications.
Integrated square laser, level, and plumb makes this tool a 3 in 1 unique laser. This saves you money and time because you would not need other measuring tools while using the laser. It has a highly visible indoor range of 100 feet and projects the longest laser lines with a fan angle at 180 degrees.
You can purchase an SLD laser detector if you require extended exterior applications. The plumb line projects from behind the laser to allow it to wrap around a door or room opening completely.
The PLS 60521N laser level is accurate within 1/8 inch at 30 feet. It is self-leveling and uses a combination of patented PLS pendulum and magnetic dampening for optimum results. Therefore, the laser settles down quickly after it has been taken to another layout point due to this technology.
The technology also protects the laser point from vibrations caused by other machinery at the construction site. It is built with durable hard plastic materials and boasts of highly visible red beams.
Moreover, the laser comes with an easy to read manual, batteries, and sturdy carrying case. It is also equipped with a lightweight wall bracket that is easy to install and PLS 180 pouch. It boasts of 200 meters working range when used with the SLD detector.
The device is compact and small enough to withstand falls or knocks without losing its calibration. It measures 6 x 6 x 6 inches and weighs 2.4 pounds. The laser is perfect for complicated home renovations like wallpaper applications or ceiling layouts.
You can also use it for remodeling tasks such as fixtures, mirrors and lights. It has a 6-degree self-leveling range and 1-year warranty. The laser is battery operated and uses 3 AA batteries that run for 35 hours.
What We Like
- Produces crisp, visible lines
- Sturdy bracket magnets
- Laser line settles faster
- Longest fan angle
- Longest line length
- Long battery life
- Small and compact
What We Don’t Like
- May require more than one tool when working on the floor, wall, and ceiling at the same time
- Rugged design withstands Rough handling on the job site; drop tested at 1 meter
- Self-leveling, horizontal- and vertical-cross line laser level for rapid, accurate leveling and...
- Accurate to 3 mm at 10 meters (1/8 inch at 30 feet)
Best User-Friendly Model: Bosch GLL 30 Self-Leveling Cross-Line Laser
The Bosch GLL 30 laser level ensures alignment projects or any leveling is done accurately and quickly. This is a versatile laser that projects two lines to form an accurate cross line projection that is highly visible.
It also has a simple one switch button that allows you to make correct measurements every time with no hassles. The laser has a belt pouch for easier transportation and accessibility.
With the lightweight, compact, and ergonomic shape, the laser is easy to use and store. You can create level lines at any angle and height.
It is self-leveling at 4 degrees and has an accuracy of -/+ 5/16 inches at 30 feet. In addition, it works at 40 degrees Celsius/5 degrees Celsius/41 degrees Fahrenheit temperature. The laser diode falls under Class II with an output of 1 milliwatt.
The device is equipped with an integrated locking system for protecting the pendulum when the Bosch GLL-30 laser level is not in use. This makes it easy to transport while also keeping it safe.
The laser comes with the MM 2 flexible mounting tool that is used for quick installations in free-standing mode or stairway setups. It is equipped with an out of level indicator that blinks when inaccurate lines are detected.
It has a manual mode that allows you to lock the lines making it versatile when mapping out tricky angles. The device has a 2-year warranty and a soft grip design that offers maximum comfort. It is also equipped with a smart pendulum technology to ensure that you produce correct measurements every time.
The plastic housing is sturdy and durable with ¼ inch threaded mount that can be fitted easily on a universal tripod. The plastic cover protects the device against falls that may happen at the job site. It weighs 0.5 pounds and measures 2.8 x 2.2 x 2 inches.
Finally, you can clamp the Bosch GLL-30 laser level on any surface with 2-1/4 inches thickness to allow for further accuracy. The laser is battery powered and uses 2 AA lithium-ion batteries.
What We Like
- Performs at any angle
- Lock in and self-leveling system
- Lightweight and easy to carry
- Can be clamped on any surface
- Bright Lasers
- Manual mode
What We Don’t Like
- Poorly designed clamp
- Cross line mode: the Bosch GLL 30 projects two very bright laser lines, making a Cross Line...
- Entry Level: Ideal for homeowners and small remodeling jobs such as hanging pictures or installing...
- Convenient and Secure: Smart pendulum system allows laser to self level while also indicating out of...
Best with Versatile Mounting Accessories: Bosch Combination Point and Line Laser GLL 1P
The Bosch Combination Point Laser GLL 1P projects a bright dot point and highly visible line. It is great for performing basic alignment and leveling applications. Moreover, the laser enables you to align and level without having to detach the device, making it efficient and simple to use.
It comes with versatile mounting accessories to make the installation process a breeze. The laser kit is equipped with an adhesive mounting strip, mounting plate, and two thumbnail mounts to provide effortless horizontal and vertical leveling.
The laser has an accuracy of 3/16 inches at 33 feet and a single button that is easy to use. It is equipped with an integrated combination point device that is levelled manually.
It boasts of a 65 feet point range with a line range of 16 feet. With a mounting thread of ¼ inches, the laser level is compatible with any tripod. It comes with a versatile magnetic base mount.
The Bosch Combination Point Laser GLL 1P is perfect for short and interior tasks. The device mounts easily on surfaces using its strong magnetic base, making working at an angle easy.
It also has 2 built-in bubble vials to allow the laser to function as a spirit level and to provide more accuracy. This eliminates the need for another tool when working on alignment and level applications.
Using this device for levelling is straightforward and easy. Its small compact size makes it easy to work on vertical, horizontal and angular applications. It is a Class II laser with a power output of 1 milliwatt.
It features a hand level and an aluminium base that allows for easy and quick alignment and levelling. This laser measures 5.4 x 11.1 x 2.5 inches and weighs 1.2 pounds. It is designed with a grip handle for easy access to the battery compartment.
The laser is made from lightweight aluminium metal and durable plastic, making it sturdy enough to survive light falls and knocks. The tool is battery powered using 2 AAA batteries and comes with a 2-year warranty.
What We Like
- Can function as a spirit level
- Combination of dot and line laser level
- Versatile mounting accessories
- 2 built-in bubble vials
- Versatile mount
What We Don’t Like
- Limited line range at 16 feet
- Weak magnetic mount
- A bit expensive
- VERSATILE: The Bosch GLL 1P Laser Level projects a bright single laser line for easy and versatile...
- ACCURACY: The laser level provides a range point up to 65 feet. It delivers outstanding accuracy, up...
- COMPACT: The laser level has a compact, pocket-size design for horizontal, vertical or angular...
Best for Home Renovations: Firecore F112R Self-Leveling Cross-Line Laser
The Firecore F112R laser is a compact device that provides accurate vertical and horizontal lines. The laser is excellent for any special installations and other DIY or home decorating tasks. It is perfect for home renovation jobs due to its smart pendulum system.
With its premium features, you can use it at any angle and switch easily between slope or self-leveling mode. However, you need to turn the switch off in order to use the device in slope mode. A flashing indicator will let you know when you are off level. The device self-levels at 4 degrees and is shockproof within a falling range of 1 meter.
The IPX5 rated protective cover is dust and waterproof. A magnetic bracket can be put on a 5/8-inch tripod to provide more uses. The Firecore F112R laser is designed to operate in self-leveling mode after the on switch button is activated.
This laser produces red beams and has a 10-meter working range. It is powered by 2 AA batteries that run for 8 hours. However, the batteries are not included in the package. The low voltage alarm flashes red to indicate the batteries need to be recharged. The laser lines can shut off when the voltage falls below 2.0
The pendulum locking system prevents damage that may occur during transportation. It measures 3.1 x 2.2 x 3.5 inches and weighs 10.6 pounds. This Class II laser level has an accuracy of -/+ 1/8 inch at 30 feet with an output of 1 milliwatt.
The tool comes with a 30-day guarantee money back and a 1-year replacement plan. It features a vertical, horizontal and cross-line you can switch between depending on your preferred mode.
What We Like
- Magnetic bracket for providing more possibilities of use
- Out of level indicator
- Great for home renovations
- Manual slope mode
- Durable and sturdy
- Pendulum locking system
What We Don’t Like
- Red beam not optimal for outdoor use
- Can overheat
- Limited field of view
- One-button operation to switch three laser-line modes: Level, Plumb and Cross-Line.
- Professional accuracy, ±1/8-Inch at 30 feet, Class II laser product, Output ≤ 1mW
- Manual mode, laser beam can be projected at any angle, such as projection for stair installation and...
Best for DIY Jobs: Stanley STHT 77340 Cross Line Laser
The Stanley STHT77340 laser is perfect for DIY and small residential construction jobs like hanging cabinets and leveling chair railings. It projects horizontal and vertical bright laser beams on flat surfaces. The device has a lightweight and compact design making it easy to utilize outdoors or indoors.
Both the horizontal and vertical red beams are self-leveling, which makes it extremely accurate and user-friendly. The laser is equipped with a mounting system and quick link bracket. This enables the tool to link into different product mounting slots while offering you more versatile working options.
It has an accuracy of -/+ 5/16 inches at 40 meters range. An integrated locking pendulum prevents internal damage to the diode components during transportation. The laser is a Class I product and has a power output of 1 milliwatt.
You can use the tripod to get exact height projections. The device fits on a 20-thread universal tripod measuring a ¼ an inch. It’s designed to align and level applications both horizontally and vertically.
The Stanley STHT77340 laser is powered by 2 AA batteries that are included. It weighs 1.5 pounds and measures 8.2 x 6.4 x 2.2 inches. This makes it a small compact device worth considering if you’re looking for a laser to help you with your DIY jobs.
This laser is constructed with a durable hardcover plastic material that protects it from water and dust. It has a limited lifetime warranty.
What We Like
- Can be clamped easily on different surfaces at preferred angles
- Lock mode can be switched on to get fixed lines
- Compact and lightweight design
- Accurate up to 40 feet
- Quick link bracket mount
- Battery operated
What We Don’t Like
- Vertical and horizontal lines can’t be switched on individually
- Mounting bracket isn’t firm
- Short projection
- Laser isn’t very bright
- Self Leveling Cross Lines: Projects bright horizontal & vertical lines onto flat surfaces
- QuickLink Bracket and Mounting System
- Range 40'/Accuracy +/-5/16"
Laser Level Features and Considerations
A laser level is a time-saving tool you can add to your tool kit, especially if you want to keep your projects accurate. The laser level buying guide will help you choose a tool that performs every task you need without overspending on a device you might not use.
You will have to consider several factors such as the size of your working space, the projects you intend to do, budget, and much more when looking for the best laser level that suits your needs.
We have pointed out some of the most important factors in our buying guide to enable you to narrow down your choices.
The first question you should ask yourself is how you intend to use your laser level. You should consider the tasks you’ll be using your tool to ensure you check all the options available on the market. This will help you avoid buying a tool you may not need. Some projects to give a thought include:
Single Line Applications
Some projects require one-line laser. If the job you plan to do is within this category, opt for single-line laser levels. They’re the least expensive and extremely useful.
Here are some tasks that require one-line laser:
- Hanging art wall
- Setting up shelves
- Installing wall fixtures
These are tasks that require two perpendicular lines. This is time-saving and extremely useful when you are installing or building projects that require several elements to be accurate.
- Here are some common uses for cross-line laser levels:
- Wall and house framing
- Custom closet installation
- Suspended ceiling installation
- Custom cabinetry
Rotary Laser Applications
Some projects require precise lines to be projected across large spaces. For such tasks, a rotary laser is a perfect device to use. Rotary laser levels are usually used on municipal-scale projects.
However, smaller contractors and builders can use them for landscaping, wiring and big framing tasks.
- Here are some examples of rotary laser level applications:
- Large-scale residential framing
- Machine-mounted control
- Industrial and municipal excavation
- Commercial building
After deciding the type of laser level that will suit your applications best, you will need to determine the range you’ll require. This will depend on the size of your job site. Bear in mind that the work of a laser level is to project beams of light.
This means it is very easy to see laser levels in dark settings than in bright conditions. Glasses can help you view the line in bright places. However, you will have to consider using a laser sensor/receiver if you perform your work outdoors in bright locations.
Some lasers come with a receiver while others do not have them. Ensure you choose a laser with a receiver as a separate accessory if a receiver is one of the requirements you’re looking for. It should be from the same manufacturer to avoid having compatibility issues.
Here is an overview of the operating ranges. Range varies by model and manufacturer, so check well to ensure the laser level you pick meets your preferred range requirements.
|Type||Range||Range with Sensor|
|Single Line Laser Level||10 to 25 feet||N/A|
|Cross-Line Laser Level||25 to 100 feet||150 to 250 feet|
|Rotary Laser Level||250 to 500 feet||1000 to 2500 feet|
Some projects require measurements that are perfect, while others do not. If you are constructing custom cabinetry or laying tile, you should be accurate. However, nobody will notice you are off by ¼ an inch if you are constructing a chicken coop or framing a wall.
Basically, you get what you pay for when it comes to how precise a laser level is. Some of the single-line laser levels with low range may be out of level by ½ an inch at 10 feet. This is okay if you’re painting a stripe on the wall.
Crossline lasers are more precise. Most standard models have an accuracy of 1/8 inch at 30 feet. The Rotary laser levels are the most accurate. Some models boast an accuracy of 1/16 inch at 100 feet.
However, you should bear in mind that some maintenance is required in order to maintain optimal accuracy. You will need to run a built-in calibration function periodically that some laser levels have.
Others have a calibration service that will require you to take the device to a service center annually. If accuracy is your main concern, choose a model that has a reliable calibration option.
Ease of Use
There can be some big differences in how the laser level is operated depending on the type of tool you select. It is easy to work some laser levels with just a single or two buttons.
Other lasers are equipped with features that require you to adjust the settings whenever you want to use the tool. Your overall satisfaction will be affected if you find the laser level difficult to use.
Some of the factors to consider when selecting your tool include:
- Power level indicator
- Power source
- Manual override for custom angles and slopes
- Self-leveling functionality
- Automatic pendulum locking
- Out of level indication
This will help you choose a laser that works well for you.
Power Source (Alkaline, Lithium, Nickel or 120V AC)
This may not be an issue for many users. However, you should not overlook it, especially if you perform your projects at remote job sites. Most builders and contractors like using a rechargeable battery.
For some users, the battery that powers their laser level is the most important factor to focus on when deciding on the tool to buy. Consequently, some people will purchase lasers that are compatible with Bosch’s 12 volt or 18 volt batteries. Others will standardize on Dewalt’s 20 volt battery.
Unfortunately, you may not find a laser level that will work with your power sources. We have featured this factor in our buying guide to help you consider this when looking for a laser level.
Standard Alkaline Batteries
Alkaline reusable batteries are the most common power source for laser levels. Many popular rotary laser levels use D or AA batteries while cross line lasers use AA. This can be an inconvenience if you are not used to carrying around backup D batteries.
Find out if the manufacturer offers information concerning battery life then compare it against the duration of your project. If you require more power, it will make sense to invest in rechargeable batteries for your device.
OEM Rechargeable Batteries
A few lasers come with rechargeable OEM batteries, typically nickel-metal hydride (NiMH) or nickel-cadmium (NiCd). While you may prefer these batteries for other tools, note that they aren’t interchangeable. So, your backup power supply may not be of any help.
If you still choose a laser level that has an OEM rechargeable battery, consider buying another battery to avoid running into downtime when you need to recharge your battery.
120 Voltage AC Power
We have come across some laser levels that provide a standard AC power source for plugging in. This might be a good or a bad option depending on the type of jobs you do. Get more information about how the configuration works from the manufacturer if this is something you’re looking for.
Some lasers provide an AC power source as an added accessory. However, they don’t mention that you have to buy an OEM rechargeable battery so as to use the AC power source.
It is safe to operate laser levels. However, you may need to think about some considerations, especially when working on tasks where people are present. The real concern for you involves the risk of fire and direct contact of the tool with your skin or eyes.
Laser power is usually classified as Class I, II, III, or IV depending on the hazard and power they present.
Fortunately, most of the lasers available on the market fall within Class II or Class III. This means you are not exposed to any dangers. Class II laser levels have an output power that doesn’t exceed one milliwatt. However, they have a risk of eye damage which occurs when you stare into the beam for a long time.
It is important to note that continuous exposure to the beam can cause a burn in your retina. Class III laser levels that are used in rotary lasers also have warning labels. They can damage your eyes if the beam directly enters your eyes. Their output power doesn’t exceed 5 milliwatts.
Warranty and Durability
Laser levels are fragile tools with sensitive components, just like other electronic devices in your arsenal. Some manufacturers claim their devices can survive 3 feet fall without affecting the laser level’s accuracy. However, you should handle your tool with a lot of care.
There are some considerations you should bear in mind since this is a tool you’ll be using in some tough conditions.
- Check the manufacturer’s warranty. This will help you buy a laser level that comes with a warranty that covers the abuse your tool may experience.
- Consider the conditions you are frequently exposed to at your project site. For instance, if moisture and dust are common in your site, pick a laser level that has an IP rated enclosure.
- You do not have to worry about your enclosure if you work indoors in a workshop that is clean or has a dust extractor. However, opt for a rated enclosure if your job involves places with dust, mud, or rain.
Most outdoor and indoor lasers emit red laser beams that make it difficult to see in worksite conditions which are brightly lit. As a result, manufacturers have resorted to designing brighter green lasers that can be spotted easily even under the sun.
The following are the advantages of both red and green beams:
- Green beams offer up to 300 times more power making them great for heavy-duty projects.
- Red beams, on the other hand, are sufficient for most indoor jobs. They also consume less power.
If your job involves indoor projects, a red beam will be sufficient for you while green beams will be a good option if you intend to do high-end tasks.
Warning Indicator and Power Level
If you intend to buy a battery-operated laser, ensure it is equipped with a power level to let you know the remaining battery run time. This will enable you to recharge your laser in advance.
The tool should also have a warning indicator to alert you when something is wrong. Some tools shut down when they encounter something while others show an audio warning sign.
Laser levels have many uses; hence, a must-have tool for homeowners and professionals. These tools can help you accomplish commercial or DIY home improvement tasks where alignments are a must. They are also great for jobs that require precision and accuracy.
If you are a professional builder, laser levels are an excellent long-term investment because you’ll keep using them for different types of jobs. Use our buying guide to help you select the best laser level that suits your needs.