Milwaukee Site Light
Milwaukee M18 RADIUS LED Compact Site Light 2145-20
Model number: 2145-20
Power source: AC / DC
The Milwaukee M18 RADIUS LED Compact Site Light 2145-20 Review
The Milwaukee Site Light is just one more brilliant idea from the Milwaukee lighting product design team. In the past few years Milwaukee has been steadily releasing new lighting products, improving and innovating each new release.
The Milwaukee M18 RADIUS LED Compact Site Light is designed as a general light and I envision this as a viable replacement for string lighting or temporary work lighting. The light provides 360 degrees of area light, overhead light or it can also be adjusted for 180 degrees or task lighting.
Lumens and Runtime
Let’s talk lumens. This Site Light puts off 4400 lumens of light when set on high. That’s bright enough to work with and to provide serious general lighting in large workspaces. The light features TRUEVIEW™ Technology, which utilizes quality LED technology and optical to provide a consistent beam, optimized color temperature, and true representation of colors and detail leading to a more productive, and safer work. My electrician and HVAC tech love the fact that this light doesn’t play tricks on him with wire colors, like other lights do.
While using the light we noticed that run time can be extended by using it in the 180 degree task lighting coverage versus a 360 degree area coverage. When paired with a 5.0 Ah battery the Site Light has the following lumen output and runtimes:
- 4400 Lumens on high (2 hours of runtime)
- 2100 Lumens on Medium (4 hours of runtime)
- 1000 Lumens on Low (8 hours of runtime)
The Milwaukee Site Light’s output can be directed from 360 degrees to 180s degrees through the use of Electronic Bay Switches. A dimmer button cycles the light through high, medium and low settings.
The Milwaukee Site Light is heavier in the base to prevent tip overs, and can be placed down on a surface or suspended upside down or horizontally through the use of integrated hanging features. There is an integrated 3-1/2” wide hanging hook that folds out of the bottom of the light. This hook easily hooks onto lumber or pipes and has a self-centering feature for pipes.
AC / DC – But No Battery Charging
The Milwaukee Site Light is both AC / DC and is powered by Milwaukee M18 RED LITHIUM batteries. An AC input and output allows the option to power one unit, and also string multiple lights in succession with extension cords.
The battery carriage will hold any Milwaukee M18 battery, including their 9.0 Ah battery. It unfortunately does NOT charge the battery.
Using on Job site
We use LED lighting on a lot of our jobsites, mostly in two ways; On large remodels and new constructions we use cordless lighting until string lights can be installed by our electrician. Once we have power we pretty much rely on the 50’ string lights, which have 5-150 watt bulbs. The frustration with these lights is always the bulbs, and storage.
The second way we use LED lights is on our smaller remodels like bathrooms and kitchens, where string lights are not always the best solution. In these situations we use AC/DC LED lighting but usually plug them into an extension cord to avoid dealing with the batteries. then there’s always the specific task lighting that requires one of us to bring a cordless light to a work area.
I recently brought the Milwaukee Site Light to a jobsite where we were working outdoors but under a sunroom, in a crawl space. There are three things I really liked about this light. The first is the quality of light. The light is bright, clean and color rendering is excellent. I also like and appreciate that I can position this light in several ways from floor to the wall or ceiling. I ended up placing the light on the ground but eventually figured out that by suspending it from a ceiling joist I could achieve better lighting.
Lastly I like the easy, simple design of the power controls. I was super impressed with its durability, flexibility and versatility.
After using on the crawl space project, I placed the Site Light on my trailer floor for transport. Since its so new there is no space on the shelves to store it. Sometime between the job and home-base a few items fell off the shelf and onto the light and floor with no visible damage. The lens is a durable high impact polycarbonate plastic and can easily survive most drops and impacts. The carry handle and is durable and both side outlet hatches have durable hinges and rubber gaskets. The carry handle rotates 180 degrees, and securely clips into the top lens for storage. The unit has a ton of screw holding parts together – nothing cheap here.
The Milwaukee site light weighs 10.7 pounds. The unit is IP54 rated, which means it was designed to have protections from dust and water A 3.5’ aluminum security cable is provided [no lock] to secure the light in place.
Cutting The Cord
There is no doubt that the light is capable of replacing string lighting and temp lighting on my jobsites.
“With the launch of the M18 RADIUS™ LED Compact Site Light, our users will no longer have to rely on extensions cords and outdated light technology, such as halogen or metal halide, to light their jobsites.”
Says Jason Isaacs, Product Manager for Milwaukee Tool, who believes this new light will cut the cord at jobsites.
The only ding I have with the Milwaukee Site Light is price and fact that it does not charge the battery. It sells for $284.00 and is a bit steep for an LED light. When you compare it to string lighting, bulbs and storage it will eventually pay off but when? I guess if you amortize this light over 6-years it’s a 100 bucks a year … but that still makes me squint!
This is a fantastic light. Its easy to use, easy to hang in a variety of positions, stable on the base, and perhaps most importantly the light output is even and very bright. It’s definitely going to cost you some coin, but I think you get what you pay for here.
It’s certainly worth considering as a safe, viable lighting solution.
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