Why review the 2-Speed Milwaukee M18 Grease Gun 2646-22CT? Greasing equipment can be a real task, especially on commercial construction and agriculture equipment that requires large volumes of grease. Pumping that grease with a manual grease gun can become tiresome, painful…and downright boring. The result is often a lack of proper maintenance and unnecessary wear and tear on bearings and moving parts. At the very least it just wastes a lot of your time or your employees’ time.
Several years ago cordless grease guns started showing up on job sites. Most of them were in the 12V and 14.4V range and utilized NiCd battery packs. The smaller versions worked pretty well on “residential” equipment like riding mowers, snow blowers and things of that nature. However, they lacked the power and capacity to handle large farm tractors, excavators, and huge pieces of construction equipment. They simply couldn’t push the grease—a problem that grows even worse when cold weather comes around.
Milwaukee recently introduced several new cordless grease guns including an 18V version that runs on their Milwaukee M18 RedLithium battery platform. The Milwaukee M18 Grease Gun 2646-22CT is a 2-speed model that finally offers a cordless solution suitable for large and small equipment. And it does it on a battery platform that many users may already own. They also offer the 2446-20 grease gun that runs off the M12 battery platform and is best suited for smaller equipment that doesn’t require high pressure. This review deals with the M18 model as we needed more performance for the large machinery we were lubricating.
Milwaukee M18 Grease Gun Features
The Milwaukee 2646-20 produces an impressive 10,000 PSI (about 2,000–3,000 PSI above most other comparable models and 2,000 PSI over the Milwaukee M12 great gun) and two flow rates of 3.5 ounces per minutes and 10 ounces per minute. Combine this with the ability to pre-set the amount of grease to dispense, and you have a cordless grease gun that finally offers an attractive solution to large equipment operators.
That’s the big feature set, but Milwaukee has typically been all about the details. With the 2646-20 that translates into a few features that are simply convenient and appropriate to a tool of this type. For one, the hose is 48 inches long—a full 12 inches longer than most other brands on the market. That means you’re going to be able to able to reach in further to get to that fitting, without having to worry about where the base is located. Dual spring guards surround both ends of the hose as well, providing a lot of protection at the strain relief points where you’re more likely to kink or damage the hose.
There’s also an on-board LED light, like those you find on the Milwaukee M18 impact wrenches and drills. This is nice, because almost all of the places I tend to apply grease are out of the sunlight. There’s a lock-on/lock-off trigger to keep you from making a real mess when you don’t mean to, and a built-in plunger rod has markings to let you know how much grease is left in the barrel. And speaking of the barrel, Milwaukee makes a clear model for if you want a visual way to see the remaining material.
Also included with this kit is the Milwaukee multi-voltage battery charger which can handle M12 batteries in addition to M18 batteries (though just one at a time).
Milwaukee M18 Grease Gun Field Tested
I recently gave the M18 Cordless Grease Gun to one of our site construction crews in order to get their feedback and thoughts on this new tool. Our site crews are responsible for maintaining daily maintenance on their John Deere excavators, dozers and loaders. Each piece of equipment has dozens of fittings (pins, bushings, etc.) that require grease daily in order to run at maximum performance. If you don’t think this is a big deal, realize that some of these machines have literally dozens of fittings! I wanted to know if this grease gun would save time and energy by allowing in-field greasing of the equipment due to the speed and ease with which a cordless tool allows these tasks to be performed.
The overwhelming response has been very positive, with everyone commenting on just how quickly it delivers the grease—even on the large excavation equipment which has an almost ridiculous number of grease points. This high pressure cordless grease gun allowed our guys to perform their daily maintenance almost as fast as doing it in the shop. Time is money in the field, and so the response is certainly a positive one for those curious about their ROI on such a unique tool.
So the tool is clearly adept at commercial applications, but what about residential use? I just so happened to have a chance to use the grease gun while doing some spring maintenance on my John Deere mower and my snow blower before I stored it for the summer. While this personal use may not necessarily be enough to cause frugal shoppers to spring for a $179 tool, the applications are perfect when you look at rental houses and similar applications. On large excavators, the issue is the number of fittings per machine, but with rental shops you’re looking at a large number of machines that require a smaller amount of grease. Both applications seem like an excellent fit for Milwaukee’s grease gun.
As I used it on my own equipment, the extra-long 48-inch flexible hose was easily one of my favorite features. It allowed me to reach stubborn grease fittings that were otherwise problematic with the shorter hoses I typically have to use. The speed was also much appreciated. Effort is near-zero and the job gets done quickly and without making me feel like I’ve just done 30 minutes with a hand-grip exerciser.
Milwaukee M18 Grease Gun Specifications
- Model: 2646-21CT
- Battery: M18 1.5 Ah Li-ion
- PSI: 10,000 PSI
- Run Time: Up to 10 cartridges/charge
- Hose Length: 48 in.
- Charger: M18 and M12 multi-voltage
- Charge Time: 30 minutes
- Length: 15 in.
- Weight: 8.5 lbs.
- Warranty: 5 year (tool); 2 year (batt) limited
- Price: $269 (kit); $179 (tool-only)