10 Best Laser Levels for Homeowners 2021 – Top Picks & Reviews
Laser levels are definitely a “must-have” tool around the home and office. They can help you with everything from hanging a picture to getting those new countertops “just right.”
We rely on laser levels for their performance and precision. A good level will make your home look amazing, while a bad level can sabotage all of your hard work. Some levels are better than others, so how can you make the best choice?
To answer that question, we’ve assembled reviews of some of the most well-known levels as well as a comprehensive buyer’s guide. With this information, choosing the right level will be easier than ever!
A Quick Comparison of Our Favorites
|Best Overall||DEWALT DW088K Line Laser||
|Best Value||BLACK+DECKER BDL220S Laser Level||
|Premium Choice||Klein Tools Self-Leveling Cross-Line Laser Level||
|Bosch GTL2 Laser Level||
|BLACK+DECKER BDL170 Line Laser||
The 10 Best Laser Levels for Homeowners – Reviews 2021
1. DEWALT DW088K Line Laser – Best Overall
We’re going to review 10 of the most well-known levelers in the industry. But what if you want to skip to the best one? In that case, we must recommend the DEWALT DW088K Line Laser for the best overall choice.
It provides the kinds of vertical and horizontal lines that you need for just about any leveling project. And the powerful Class 2 laser is clearly visible in just about any condition.
The accuracy is solid, with a ¼-inch accuracy from 100 feet away. But not everything is perfect with this laser level. Many users reported that it is almost impossible to see the laser when used in direct sunlight.
2. BLACK+DECKER BDL220S Laser Level – Best Value
When it comes to home projects and renovations, some handymen are on a pretty strict budget. In that case, you may be on the lookout for the best laser levels for homeowners for the money. And in the budget category, we have to give the nod to the BLACK+DECKER BDL220S Laser Level.
One of the best things about this model is that it is compact, allowing you to use it wherever you go. It’s highly compact and comes in at a great price, making it a solid choice for budget buyers and beginners alike.
The 360-degree rotating wall attachment is very convenient. And you’ll even get a spike to help secure this laser level into sheetrock as needed.
What keeps this budget buy from being our top choice? It cannot self-level and suffers from low range (about 10 feet), meaning you’ll often have to hold it to the wall to see anything.
3. Klein Tools Self-Leveling Cross-Line Laser Level – Premium Choice
While some buyers are on a strict budget, others may be more interested in extra “bells and whistles.” Which laser level is the best premium choice for your money? We’re going to have to go with the Klein Tools Self-Leveling Cross-Line Laser Level.
It’s more expensive than most models, but you’ll quickly fall in love with features like the self-leveling. And you can use horizontal and vertical lines either separately or at the same time, increasing your potential project options.
We loved the 360-degree mounting bracket and the dirt-resistant, water-resistant plastic carrying case it comes with. Why, then, is this choice not our best overall pick? It suffers from a few issues, including weak magnets and a battery cover that many users find nearly impossible to open.
4. Bosch GTL2 Laser Level
Are you looking for a laser level that is good for beginners and easy on the wallet? In that case, you should give the Bosch GTL2 Laser Level a closer look.
It features two perpendicular 90-degree laser lines that you can activate with the touch of a button. And you can also secure this level to the surface at the press of a button. It doesn’t get much more user-friendly than this.
While it doesn’t have the range of other models, this laser level is accurate to half an inch within 30 feet. However, some users have reported that the adhesive is weak and that the laser has low visibility well before you hit the 30-foot mark.
5. BLACK+DECKER BDL170 Line Laser
BLACK + DECKER is a name that every handyman knows and respects. Their BDL170 Line Laser is one of the budget options available, but does it bring the quality you expect from the name? For the most part, the answer is “yes.” The automatic leveling is very convenient, and the rubber molds and lighting help to improve both the durability and visibility of the level.
The 2-year warranty is convenient, as are the included batteries and wall mount. But there are some compromises here and there. Unfortunately, the drywall pin breaks very easily, and the laser can sometimes “stick” and require adjustment before you can continue.
6. Qooltek 004-00251-2 Laser Level
Still shopping for budget laser levels? In that case, you simply must consider the Qooltek 004-00251-2 Laser Level.
As a multipurpose laser level, you get a lot of versatility here in a single, affordable package. Specifically, this offers a “3-in-1” functionality with a level, a plumb, and a 45-degree bubble for both vertical and horizontal planes.
We also love the extra features, including 8 feet of measuring tape and a convenient retractable tripod. Sadly, it does not feature self-leveling, and many users report that the tripod is not very sturdy.
7. Johnson Level & Tool 9250 Laser Level
Many of the laser levels we have focused on have a ton of extra features. But what if you just need a very basic level for your needs? In that case, you should consider the Johnson Level & Tool 9250 Laser Level.
What we like best about this level is the cute, no-frills design. It looks like a little yellow computer mouse, and you can easily stick it to virtually any surface.
It projects light for 30 feet, which is good for smaller and simpler projects. But some users have reported issues with both the visibility of the laser and the quality of the adhesive on this laser level.
8. Johnson Level & Tool Self-Leveling Cross Line Laser
Are you looking for a more expansive kit that can help you handle a variety of situations? In that case, you might enjoy the Johnson Level & Tool 40-0921 Self-Leveling Cross Line Laser.
As far as kits go, this comes with an elevating tripod, hard-shell carrying case, and laser-enhancement glasses. And the laser level itself has some nice features, including a quarter-inch of accuracy up to 35 feet. Unfortunately, there are a few issues with this kit.
First of all, the proprietary mounting system can be very difficult to use. And the laser is difficult to see, even when using the included laser-enhancement glasses.
9. SKIL 65ft. Green Self-leveling Cross Line Laser
We have reviewed laser levels at a variety of price points. But what if you want something that falls squarely in the middle? In that case, the SKIL 65ft. Green Self-leveling Cross Line Laser may be worth examining.
There are nice features here, including auto-leveling and a rechargeable battery. And the accuracy is surprisingly good, offering 3/16-inch of accuracy up to 30 feet.
However, there are a few strikes against this model. The lack of a tripod reduces your options, and you can’t really turn it off without resetting the level. Finally, some users report low laser visibility once you go past 10 feet.
10. Stanley STHT77148 Manual Wall Laser
The Stanley STHT77148 Manual Wall Laser is another level that is designed to be simple and efficient. But is it ultimately too simple for your different leveling needs?
For better or for worse, this streamlined level does keep things simple. It’s nothing more than raised bubble vials and a rotating 360-degree attachment. The 2-year warranty is nice, but it can only measure up to 10 feet away.
On top of that, there is low visibility on the laser itself. And some of the construction (such as the pin you stick into the wall) is very fragile. All things considered, you should probably go with another laser level.
With any luck, our reviews have given you a solid overview of the different laser levels available on the market. But this may not be enough information to help you finalize your decision.
That’s why we put together our comprehensive buyer’s guide. This guide will help to answer any and all remaining questions that you may have about buying a laser level. And on top of that, it will give you the info you need to take your handyman skills to the next level.
Why Do I Need a Laser Level?
Our buyer’s guide will help you find the info you need to buy the right laser level. However, you might have a burning question that needs to be answered first: why do you need a laser level at all?
The primary benefit of a laser level is the added convenience. It’s true that you can try to make things level using other measures and other tools. But those methods range from annoying (like stretching out measuring tape) to messy (like marking on the wall).
The secondary benefit of a laser level is the laser accuracy. While different levels are accurate up to a certain distance, all of them provide the exact accuracy that a physical measurement usually can’t provide.
And the final benefit of a laser level is that it allows you to do more work on your own. Other techniques to check the level of something often require at least two people. With a good laser level, you can mount it on a tripod or to a wall and then take care of everything on your own.
What are the most important qualities in a good laser level? The accuracy of the laser is at the top of the list. Without accuracy, a level can’t really do its job at all.
Some of the best models in the business are accurate within about +4/-4 degrees of tolerance. That may sound like a lot, but to the naked eye, everything will look completely level.
Generally speaking, cheaper models usually have less accuracy than more expensive models. And regardless of the laser level, you need to pay attention to how the range affects accuracy. Some levels begin losing accuracy at around 10 feet. If you need the laser to shine farther than that, make sure to invest in the right model.
Another major factor with laser levels is how user-friendly they are to operate. Chances are that you want a level to help reduce how much work goes into your next project. So the last thing you want is a level that will add to your headaches during a major project.
The biggest factor when it comes to user-friendly design is a self-leveling feature. This means that the model will automatically level out without you having to do any extra work, which is great if you want to make your project easier.
Sounds great, so what’s the catch? Just this: most models that come with automatic leveling are going to be a bit more expensive than their cheaper cousins. This is another example where “you get what you pay for,” and it’s up to you to determine if the self-leveling is worth a premium price tag.
How to Mount
One of the biggest factors to consider is where you will place the level. Do you intend to place it on a wall or other surface, or will you be using a tripod?
In theory, sticking the level to a surface such as a wall is the easiest route. In reality, though, the adhesive on many laser levels is not as strong as advertised. You may have to deal with issues such as the level falling off the wall. Even worse, it may damage your wall by taking a chunk off as it falls.
Because of this, your best bet is to mount the laser level on a tripod. However, not all laser levels are tripod-ready. And of those that are ready, only certain models and kits come with their own tripods.
Does setting your level up on a tripod each time sound like too much work? If so, consider the alternative. If you can’t easily mount the level to the wall, you might end up stacking books and other objects to rest the level on. And if those objects aren’t very stable, then you may be right back at the drawing board when it comes to getting a level reading.
With our reviews, you have gotten a solid glimpse of the laser level market. And with our buyer’s guide, you have a good idea of what to look for before you make a purchase. That really leaves just one question: who were the biggest winners when it came to modern laser levels?
For the best overall level, we have to go with the DEWALT DW088K Line Laser. It provided a consistently solid performance while offering a great blend of features and price.
If price is your main consideration, though, we’d go with the BLACK+DECKER BDL220S Laser Level as our best value pick. It provides the functionality you expect from the brand name at a very affordable price that doesn’t feel like a severe compromise.
There are countless handymen out there who need a good laser level and countless laser levels available for purchase. With any luck, our reviews and buyer’s guide have helped you narrow down your choices and find the best level for you, your home, and your projects.
Now comes the fun part: with the right level in hand, you can make those dream projects come to life!
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- A Quick Comparison of Our Favorites
- The 10 Best Laser Levels for Homeowners – Reviews 2021
- 1. DEWALT DW088K Line Laser – Best Overall
- 2. BLACK+DECKER BDL220S Laser Level – Best Value
- 3. Klein Tools Self-Leveling Cross-Line Laser Level – Premium Choice
- 4. Bosch GTL2 Laser Level
- 5. BLACK+DECKER BDL170 Line Laser
- 6. Qooltek 004-00251-2 Laser Level
- 7. Johnson Level & Tool 9250 Laser Level
- 8. Johnson Level & Tool Self-Leveling Cross Line Laser
- 9. SKIL 65ft. Green Self-leveling Cross Line Laser
- 10. Stanley STHT77148 Manual Wall Laser
- Buyer’s Guide