Hanging the perfect picture or getting absolutely level countertops are common tasks that homeowners may be faced with when improving their homes. However, old bubble levels aren’t always accurate, and they can take a lot of time to operate.
Laser levels are the next great thing, and they’ve gotten good enough, and cheap enough, that no home is complete without one. There are a ton of models to choose from online, and that selection process can begin to feel overwhelming if you don’t know what you’re looking for.
However, we believe that a well-informed buyer can find the model that’s right for them, at a price that they’ll love if they’re given all the facts. Our guides are designed to do that just, and our reviews highlight the good and bad on each model so that you can find one that makes your next job easy and frustration-free.
|Johnson Level 40-0921 Self-Leveling Kit|
|AdirPro Cube 790-360 Horizontal||3 lbs||4.65/5|
|SKIL Self-Leveling LL932301|
(Best for the Money)
|Qooltek Multipurpose Laser Level||1 lb||4.2/5|
|BLACK+DECKER BDL220S||2 lbs||3.9/5|
If you want the best laser level on the market today, look no further than the Johnson Level 40-0921 Self-Leveling Kit. This kit comes with a great laser level, which can project horizontal or vertical leveling lasers, or both at the same time. And, it maintains accuracy of up to a 1/4″ when as far away as 35 feet, making it a good choice for those who need supremely accurate leveling. It also self-levels to within six degrees of perfect leveling, so you only have to make minor adjustments to get it to an exactly-level line.
The range of this model makes it the best laser level for hanging pictures, shelves, or other items which need precise leveling but may be spread out, making it hard to get the right placement using only your eyes. It also comes with safety glasses and a case, further adding to the value. The included tripod is a nice touch, though it only expands to be four feet tall. Unfortunately, the laser level uses a proprietary thread, so you can’t use standard camera tripods to raise it up further. Still, this model is one that will make most precision-hanging jobs easy and frustration-free.
The AdirPro Cube 790-360 Horizontal laser can cast a laser up to 230 feet away for easy leveling, even when the base is far from the area in which you’re working. It can throw a laser 360 degrees around the model, which is useful for leveling cabinets without repositioning the base. It also comes with a tripod and case, which make transportation and use easy and safe, even in rough conditions. It is also accurate to within an eighth of an inch at 30 feet, meaning it’s one of the most accurate laser levels on the market today, even when not terribly close to the area in which you’re working.
Like the top model on our list, it’s self-leveling and is accurate to within 4 degrees when being used in that mode. It also comes with batteries, which is a nice touch, and lets you get to work immediately without further expense. However, this model isn’t water or dustproof, which make it bad for outdoor use. It also isn’t very visible when outside, so if you’re looking for a model that will be used outside, you’ll need a different model. For indoor work, this model performs great.
The SKIL Self-Leveling LL932301 laser is a great model for those who need good performance, but don’t want to break the bank in order to get it. This model can be had for about half of what you’d pay for the top two models on our list. That makes it the best for the money model, and one that’s worth checking out, no matter what your budget is. This model automatically levels, making it a good tool to use if you don’t want to spend too much time doing the leveling yourself, and since it’s accurate to within four degrees, you can be confident in its results.
It also comes with a rechargeable battery. That’s good for the environment, but also means that you’ll save money on batteries which would have otherwise had to buy. Since it’s accurate to within 3/16ths of an inch at 30 feet, it will be good for most indoor uses. It doesn’t come with a tripod, which limits its functionality, though it does comes with a stand attached to a clamp, so you have some mounting options. If you don’t need a tripod and want to save some money, this is a product you’ll love.
The Qooltek Multipurpose Laser Level is an interesting design available at a bargain-basement price. You can get this model for a fraction of what you’d pay for any of the preceding models on our list, and it holds up well, despite that low price. This model comes with a tape measure, and a bubble level, so you can double check that a surface is flat without the laser. It’s also accurate to within 2 millimeters at 10 meters, which is one of the better accuracies on our list. Additionally, it comes with two sets of batteries, adding further to its already exceptional value.
However, this model is bulky compared to the other models on our list. That makes it good for home use, but if you’re looking for a laser level for traveling, you’ll probably want a slimmer model. This model is not rated for outdoor use. You won’t want to get it wet or expose it to dusty conditions. If you can’t carry around a bubble level, measuring tape, and laser level all at once, then you might like this model, even though its use is limited, and given the low price, it’s longevity is questionable.
The BLACK+DECKER BDL220S is another cheap laser level. If you need simple laser leveling, then this might be the model for you. It comes with a rotating base that allows it to be used on the wall. It also comes with a spike for securing it in sheetrock while you position the items in a straight line. However, you have to have this model up against the wall in order to see the line. It won’t work from across the room like it would with these other models. However, its compact size and low price make it good for other activities that value straightness and many people have started using it to make their calligraphy projects easier.
Unfortunately, this model lacks self-leveling, so you shouldn’t expect to get a lot of use out of that function. It also has a relatively short range. It can draw a line about ten feet long, which will be long enough for many projects, but too short for some. And, since it has to be held against or mounted on the wall, there’s no way to use a tripod while you work, making this a poor choice for people who will be working alone.
When it comes to getting the right laser level for your home, there are three key features that you should consider before you buy.
The first is accuracy. This is an area where laser levels can really shine over their bubble-based predecessors. The best models come with about plus-or-minus four degrees of tolerance, so you can get a nearly perfect level line without doing a lot of work. Acceptable models can achieve within six degrees of accuracy, but you probably don’t want to a model that’s any more inaccurate than that, as it can start to cause problems.
The second is ease of use. The best models come with self-leveling features. Not only are these levels accurate, but you can use them in their automatic mode, and let them do all the work. While you can usually only find this feature in models that cost $50 or more, it’s a feature that’s well worth the cost.
The third thing to consider is mounting options. Some models come with the ability to mount them on a tripod, which can make them very steady, as well as easy to move around if you’re working in tight spaces and need to reposition them. If they’re tripod-ready, you won’t have to make a stack of objects in order to get your level to the right height for your project, which saves time and frustration.
The Johnson Level 40-0921 Self-Leveling Kit is our favorite laser level for homeowners due to its great accuracy, long range, self-leveling features, and inclusion of a case and tripod. In second is the AdirPro Cube 790-360 Horizontal laser which comes with a good range, excellent accuracy, and a tripod, though its poor performance outdoors costs it a position. The SKIL Self-Leveling LL932301 laser includes a rechargeable battery, auto-leveling, and is very accurate. Since you can get it for half the cost of our top two models, it’s easily the best value for the money on our list. The Qooltek Multipurpose Laser Level is inexpensive and comes with a tape measure and bubble level, but its bulk and lack of use outdoors drop it to fourth place. In last is the BLACK+DECKER BDL220S which is inexpensive and good for calligraphy, but lacks self-leveling, and has a short range, which costs it positions on this list.
Hopefully, our reviews and buyer’s guide have helped you understand the world of laser levels. Armed with this information, you should be able to find the model that makes your next job easy.