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May 7, 2021

Professional Tool Reviews for Pros


Milwaukee M12 Soldering Iron

Milwaukee M12 Soldering Iron
Remember that sweet Milwaukee M18 Heat Gun that we previewed about a month ago? Well, they’ve come up with another great cordless innovation, this time on their M12 RedLithium Battery platform. The Milwaukee M12 Soldering Iron, due out this month, will enter the market as the first lithium-powered soldering solution. Not only will this new soldering iron eliminate the annoyances of cords or butane, it will also be able to reach operational temperatures in only a few seconds.

Milwaukee Says

“The vast majority of soldering options available to users right now come with various drawbacks such as uncontrolled temperature, slow heat-up time, and limited portability. When designing the M12 Soldering Iron, we focused on pairing the performance and temperature control of higher end benchtop soldering units, with the portability of butane. By leveraging our M12 technology, we’ve developed a soldering solution that eliminates the previous frustrations associated with current tools and ensures users experience improved productivity no matter the application.”

-Brian Alves, Senior Product Manager for Milwaukee Tool

Milwaukee M12 Soldering Iron Features

Milwaukee M12 Soldering Iron

Apart from the cordlessness of this soldering iron, which is pretty cool in and of itself, one of the biggest deals about this release centers on how quickly the tool heats up. The M12 Soldering Iron reaches an operational temperature in just 18 seconds. It also utilizes Milwaukee’s RedLink Plus Intelligence System, which monitors the temperature of the tip and protects the unit from overheating or damaging wires.


When turned on, the onboard LED status light will blink green as the unit heats up. When the soldering iron reaches an appropriate soldering temperature, the status light turns a solid green to indicate that it’s ready. The tip will continue to get hotter until it reaches its maximum temperature at 750°. When you turn the iron off, the LED turns red until it reaches a cool enough temperature that the tool can be stored away.

The Milwaukee M12 Soldering Iron also features a 3-Stop pivoting head which allows the tool to lock into various orientations, adapting the tool to whatever the application calls for.  The iron weighs in at under 1 lb and can run for up to 45 minutes on a single charge. It also features tool-free tip change capability, allowing the user to switch between a chisel tip or a pointed tip.

The kit retails for $129 and comes with an M12 1.5ah battery, an M12 charger, a pointed tip, chisel tip, and a case. The bare tool is also available for $115.89, and both options will hit stores this month.Milwaukee M12 Soldering Iron

Final Thoughts

I don’t get a ton of opportunities to do soldering work, but I always enjoy it when I do. Or, rather, I really enjoy the work, but I am constantly annoyed by, and usually cussing at, the cord getting in my way. Or, at the stand getting knocked over. Or, at myself burning the ever-loving crap out of my fingers.


Admittedly, there’s probably not a lot that Milwaukee can do about that last point; I just need to learn to be more careful. But the idea of soldering without the dopey cord involved makes me happy. The thought of eliminating the stand altogether is a good one and the M12 battery makes for a stable platform – even more so with the 6.0 AH pack. It might be nice to have a manual temperature control, but I like the price point where it is, so I can forgo it.

The LED lights are a great feature as well. But, an 18-second heat up time flat out rules. I’ve never timed it before, but I’m pretty sure my (soon to be someone else’s) corded iron at home takes at least ten times that. Good corded irons can heat up pretty quickly too, and there are some that can give this one a run for its money, but 18 seconds is pretty quick by most standards. At any rate, we’re pretty jazzed about this product release, and we’re looking forward to putting the Milwaukee M12 Soldering Iron to use.

Milwaukee M12 Soldering Iron Highlights

  • Maintains Optimized TemperatureMilwaukee M12 Soldering Iron
  • Ready-to-Use & Safe-to-Store Tip Indicator
  • 3-Stop Pivoting Head for Unmatched Access
  • 18 Second Heat Up Time
  • Green LED Indicates Operating Temperature Reached
  • Red LED Indicates Tool is Off and Still Hot
  • Tool-Free Tip Change: Easily Switch Between Chisel and Pointed Tips
  • LED Work Light
  • Up to 45 Minutes of Run-Time on M12 Compact Battery Pack
  • Part of the M12 System, Featuring 80+ Tools
  • Available: November 2017
  • MSRP:  $115.89 (bare);  $129(kit)
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Milwaukee M12 Soldering Iron Specs

  • Model #: 2488-21 (Kit)
  • Heat Output: 90 watt
  • Heat-up Time: 18 seconds
  • Interchangeable Tips: Chisel & Pointed
  • LED Work Light: Yes
  • Run-Time: 45 minutes with M12 RedLithium Compact Battery
  • Length: 11.6”
  • Height: 1.385″
  • Width: 1.136″
  • Weight: 0.9 lbs
  • 5-year warranty
  • Kit Includes M12 Soldering Iron, 1.5ah Battery (48-11-2401), M12 Charger (48-59-2401), Pointed Tip, Chisel Tip, and Case

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Robbie Depesa

How will it work on 1/2” copper?

Matt Hoyle

Will this have proper temperature regulation like a real soldering iron, unlike the butane ones?

Michael R. Rhum

I am seriously impressed.

Andrew Smith

Oh man I wanna try that out. Hook a brother up clint🙂

John Williams

Kyle Graham

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