Any suggestions on a laser level?

I am looking to purchase a laser level. Do any of you all have any suggestions?

Jeff Cardile

You’re getting beyond the scope of a generalist. I don’t use one and if I had one, certainly would not let anyone see me using it.

I’m a “specialist” (I guess). I use one occasionally. Got it at Lowes for about $35.00. No particular brand name.

Maybe he wants to buy one for personal use?

Actually, you would probably need several different types of laser levels. There was a good article in Fine Homebuiding a month or so ago on this subject.


Without knowing the reason you need one can’t recommend one, but if you go to Home Depot you will find what you need for less than $100.

I used one in 1978 for a T-Bar ceiling [first generation] and the cost was $15,000.

I use one on every inspection, don’t wave it around, believe it has enabled me to educate my clients, and has almost definitely helped me to avoid complaints and worse. To each his own.

Checkpoint levels are the Cadillac in the electrical trade. Mine was approx $50. It can be customized with different degrees for each vial. They also have “Earth Magnets” which are very strong. Just Google checkpoint levels.

Which one do you use Keith?

I use a torpedo-type level. It’s good quality alloy, and reads: “Webb,” Made in USA “Checkpoint 8-80.” I don’t remember what I paid for it, but I’ve written about how it has served me well. I’m seriously considering buying a self-leveling one, although I don’t mind holding the bubble between the lines while taking a reading, but it would be more convenient to walk over to the laser dot with my tape and take a “perfect” reading. As I say, to each his/her own.

Interested in this area of Inspection, recently attended a training session for HI’s relating to foundations and subsidence.
The speaker was a well respected contractor.
His basic opinon from numerous incidents was that he would see us in court acting for the plaintiff if we did not pay more attention to foundation settlement and cracking.
He demonstrated a digital type construction altimeter, which had a datum point set and a portable handset took readings elsewhere on the property.
He strongly advised we all rigged up lower tech water levels.
Laser levels in some types of homes can’t give a decent run.
In this regard I’d be interested in what others do and what tolerances cause alarm, I’ve heard it range from >1/2-1" per 10 ft linear run.
Also as an aside from my construction experience I would say drawing conclusion from measurement taken on the slab, on slab on grade construction, may or may not have relevance to foundation settlement.
I know from a bit of research that foundations come up as high liability in terms of E&O claims.
Allthough these measures exceed most standards of practice I am left wandering if the visual macro approach to Inspections may be leaving a lot of us vulnerable?
I saw this online any takers?

The digital read-out water level is of course superior to a torpedo laser level and would allow an inspector to complete an accurate “survey” of the entire footprint. (A laser level doesn’t shoot around corners). However, if I decided to to that (a manometer survey with the digital water level) I would certainly charge for it, as do the geo-techincal guys. Settling is to be anticipated, and a certain degree of slope is no doubt acceptable. I use my laser level for my own comfort, and for deciding when to recommend a foundation contractor or geo-structural specialist.

I keep a laser level in the truck for such purposes.

I’ve only used it on one inspection when I suspected foundation/level problems. Several interior doors were chocked open. When the stops were removed, the doors would swing shut. I checked the longest room in the house (living room) and my suspicions were confirmed.

They help, but I don’t use it on every one.

Purchased from Lowes on clearance for $20 (originally $80). Included tripod, case, etc. has a nice laser level, that can tell you pitches as well…