DeWalt DW088K VS DeWalt DW089K: Which One Is Better?

Crafted Garage is supported by its readers. This post contains affiliate links, we may earn a commission at no additional costs to you. We hope you love the products we recommend

So you’re looking at the DW088K and the DW089K and wondering what’s the difference between the two and should you get the latest and greatest version?

Good question, should you really spend your hard earned money on the latest tool or will the previous version do all you need without any regrets?

In a hurry? Well for me the DW089K won hands down it’s just a better tool, that said… you won’t have any issues with the DW088K and you’ll save money buying it.

DeWalt is widely considered by many industry pundits to be one of the best makers of tools and equipment for the construction sector and other manufacturing purposes.

This is why this brand’s products are highly recommended pretty much all over the world.

Company Purview

DeWalt is no stranger to outdoor equipment and construction tools.

The company was launched almost a hundred years back in 1924. And in the past century, the company has earned a well-deserved reputation for creating products which have proved to be very helpful for all types of construction projects.

One such product is their line of laser levels. This handy little tool is widely used by the construction sector as well as civil engineers and other people to check the level of a surface with the help of a laser beam.

While DeWalt offers many different lasers in its lineup, here, I will be reviewing the pros and cons of two of their most popular laser models – DW088K and DW089K.

Product Warranty

Both the products come with a limited three-year warranty. This warranty includes any defects and problems because of workmanship and faulty materials.

However, the warranty will not cover any parts-based failures that may have been caused during the normal wear and tear of the device.

DeWalt DW089K 3-Beam Line Laser 

Built for continuous operation for all manner of professional construction work, DW089K is very accurate and reliable for the purpose at hand.

Moreover, it is not difficult to operate since it has a one-button operation feature as well as a hassle-free control panel. You do not have to be an expert to operate this laser level.

Like its DW088K counterpart, it also boasts of an extremely durable exterior. Apart from that, it has a very bright laser diode so that it can be used even in places where there is a lot of ambient light. It is also one of the most accurate laser levels currently available in its class.

DEWALT Line Laser, Self-Leveling, Red, 3-Beam (DW089K) DEWALT Line Laser, Self-Leveling, Red, 3-Beam (DW089K)
  • DEWALT laser level has 3-beam line laser to aid in 90-degree layout
  • Laser level tool has 2 times brighter diode to increase visibility in bright job-site conditions
  • Self leveling laser level features built-in magnetic pivot bracket mounts easily on metal surfaces
We earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.

Product Features

Some of its core features include a third beam that acts as a 2nd plumb line. It will create a right angle on the ceiling and the floor. This is a useful feature if you want a wall-to-wall layout or if you want to map the room.

Again, like its DW088K counterpart, DW089K triple beam laser level is also equipped with a magnetic pivot bracket for greater mounting flexibility on various metallic surfaces., both of these are on my list of best laser levels for good reason.

The 620 to 690nm < 1.5mW laser diode illuminated dot is twice as bright as a standard laser. This means that you will be able to see it even during broad daylight on an external construction project.

Another feature of this laser level is the single-button OS and extremely user-friendly control panel. This means that the user can easily learn to operate all of the device’s features within minutes of unboxing the device for the very first time.

The device also has a micro-adjustment knob that is exceedingly precise. It only requires a very small amount of tuning for you to align the 90-degree intersecting lines.

Benefits of DW089K

Think of DW089K as a more evolved version of DW088K.

Thanks to its extra beam, DW089K user will not have to keep resetting the unit every time they move to a new location. Apart from that, the micro-adjustment knob can simply realign the laser so that you can check for both squareness and leveling as well.

The second plumb line is ideal for cabinets, wall layouts, floor tiling, drop ceilings, chair rails, even doors, windows and pictures. It also has an enhanced visual range of 50-feet in its standalone capacity.

This range can be extended up till 165 ft when used with DeWalt DW0892 Line Laser Detector. This makes it an excellent option for very large construction projects and sites.

DeWalt DW088K

DeWalt DW088K has been created keeping the harsh conditions of a construction site in mind. This is why it is a very robust tool which is built for workmen who would be working in dusty conditions.

Apart from that, it is also protected against impact and water damage thanks to its highly durable plastic and thick rubber construction.

It is a great purchase when it comes to affordable laser levels in its class. That is, its reliability and durability do not translate into a high price tag. You can use this laser with complete peace of mind even in the harshest conditions.

DEWALT Line Laser, Self-Leveling, Cross Line, Red Beam (DW088K) DEWALT Line Laser, Self-Leveling, Cross Line, Red Beam (DW088K)
  • DEWALT laser level is durable and has over molded housing with a 1 meter drop rating
  • Laser level tool has patented integrated magnetic bracket
  • Self leveling laser level is water and debris resistant with an IP54 rating
We earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.

Product Features

The unit is capable of self-leveling right up to 4 degrees. This makes it perfect for quick and easy set-up and operation. It has an integrated magnetic base so that you can set it up on a metal surface.

Apart from that, it has a low battery indicator, so you will always know when you need to insert fresh batteries. All of these features work to make it user-friendly.

It is made of heavy-duty molded housing and thick glass and works with any standard 4.5 volts AA Zinc Chloride batteries.

Also, it is important to mention that it is a class 2 laser with a total output power of>/= 1.3mW @ 630-680nm.

Drawbacks of DW088K

  • The laser dot is not powerful enough to be seen if you are working under direct sun. Any outdoor work will require laser goggles or even a receiver unit.
  • Since the pre-set option is on the “always-on” position, it is not possible to manually position the laser level.
  • It does not have the third beam, so it is not possible to acquire a 90-degree angle with it.

The Major Difference Between the DW088K And the DW089K

Both DW088K and the DW089K offer excellent value for money. However, there are a few differences between the two. Let us take a close look and see for ourselves which unit wins the DeWalt DW088K VS DeWalt DW089K debate.


DeWalt 089K is just a little bit bigger than its older counterpart. While it will not matter in most circumstances, it will certainly create a bit of a nuisance in a tight spot. It will also mean a bigger toolbox.  


Since DW88K is the larger unit of the two, it is also correspondingly heavier as well. But this does not detract on its performance in any way since you would not be holding it in your hands when you take the measurements.

But it does have one unexpected drawback. If you have not secured the unit correctly or if you are hanging it from the ceiling or any other surface, it might fall down. And its greater weight makes it more susceptible to breakage.

This is why you have to be extra careful when you set up DW089K laser level.

Number of Batteries

DW088K laser level requires only 3 AA sized batteries while its DW089K counterpart uses 4 AA type batteries. That’s a lot of extra juice, especially since DW089K consumes a lot of power.

This is why it’s a good idea to switch the unit off when not in use.

3rd Laser Level Beam

This is the single biggest difference between the two units. DeWalt DW088K is a double beam laser level while DW089K is a three-beam one. The latter’s third beam creates an awesome 90 degrees angle that can be used for a wide variety of purposes.

So Which One Wins Out?

There is no doubt that DW088K is an excellent tool that can work well on many projects. It is small, it is accurate, and it is rugged to boot. All in all, it is a really handy device for anyone involved in the construction industry.

However, the true professional just might fall in love with DW089K. If you are a pro, and always want to try out the latest and coolest gadgets in the industry, this is the unit you will want to purchase.

As discussed above, DW089K’s most significant advantage is its 3rd beam. Once it is switched on, you will be able to see a 90-degree plan.

If you are a drywall installer, your job will suddenly become very easy. You will just need to take the relevant measurements and markdown everything you will need to start creating your room extensions.

Add to that the fact that the laser line that is projected by DW089K is twice as bright as the laser lines of its predecessor model.

Since it is more visible at considerably longer distances and even in brightly lit areas, it can easily outperform DW088K.

DW088K vs DW088CG: What’s the difference?

DEWALT TSTAK Laser Level & Laser Measure Tool Kit, Cross Line (DW0889CG) DEWALT TSTAK Laser Level & Laser Measure Tool Kit, Cross Line (DW0889CG)
  • DEWALT laser level has green beam for enhanced visibility and range
  • Laser level tool comes with cross Line and 100 ft. LDM
  • Self leveling laser level has full Time pulse mode for use with a detector (DW088CG)
We earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.

DW088K vs. DW088CG if you are confused as to what the differences between these, it’s straightforward.

The 88K is a red beam laser, and the 88CG is the green laser beam variant. Given the choice, I would personally go for the DW088CG due to green laser beams being more versatile in all environments regardless of sun exposure.


For me the DW089K wins hands down, it’s a fantastic upgrade well worth the investment. However you won’t be wanting if you purchase the DW088K unless you work in a lot of ambient light.

If you work indoors and ambient/direct sunlight isn’t an issue, then you can save money by going for the DW088K.