check level with spirit bubble

How to check spirit level

In this tutorial, I will show you how to check your spirit level for accuracy whenever you have a suspicion that your level is out of level or plumb.

  • Level refers to the horizontal plane from right to left or one end to the other such as a tabletop. 
  • Plumb refers to the vertical surface another word top to bottom.

you will need

  • a flat surface
  • a vertical surface
  • a pencil or dry wipe pen

A step-by-step guide to checking the LEVEL accuracy of a spirit level

  1. Place level on a flat surface
  2. draw a line along with the level and at each end
  3.  Inspect the spirit bubble
  4.  Mark the ends of the spirit bubble with a pencil
  5.  pick up a spirit level and turn around end for end
  6.  put level down onto the flat surface
  7.  along with the pencil marks you drew on that flat surface
  8.  inspect the spirit bubble once more
  9.  if your spirit bubble is in the same position as it was the first time your level is accurate
  10. test your spirit level regularly.



A step-by-step guide to checking the PLUMB accuracy of your spirit level

  1. Place Your spirit level on to a vertical surface
  2. Mark the end and along with your spirit level
  3. using your soft pencil Mark the position of the bubble
  4. put away the spirit level from the vertical surface
  5. turn level from edge to edge
  6. again use a soft pencil and Mark the position of the spirit level bubble
  7. inspect the spirit level bubble and is it in the same position as it was the last time
  8.  if the bubble is in the same position as before your level is accurate
  9.  yet again don’t forget to check your spirit level regularly

spirit-plumbe level-accuracy-test-03

Our video on testing the spirit level

Watch this video to see for yourself how to test a spirit level for accuracy. It is a bit to the point but it has the direction needed to help you understand the methods of testing a spirit level.

Remember to check your spirit levels for accuracy often.

Testing The 45-degree  Vial on a spirit level

If your spirit level has a 45-degree vile and you wish to test it for true there is a way. I will try to explain to you how you can check the 45 degrees on your spirit level. you will require another piece of equipment to test the 45 degrees on a level.

We have also written a tutorial on how to ‘Check a square for 90°’

What you will need for testing the 45 degrees vial

  • A vertical board or wall
  • A framing square
  • A pencil

A step-by-step guide to checking the 45° accuracy of your spirit level

  1. Hold a level against the wall on its side
  2. position level so it is at 45 degrees 
  3. align the bubble so it is is exactly in the middle
  4. draw a line on the wall
  5. reposition the level in a mirror image
  6. position that level so it is that 45 degrees
  7. align the bubble so it’s exactly in the middle
  8. check that the end of the level crosses over your previous pencil line
  9. you should at this point of drawn a 90 degree right angle
  10. put Level too one side
  11. use the framing Square and check the pencil-drawn 90 degree
  12. if the right angle is 100% 90 degrees
  13. then your 45-degree level is true

Just like a square you can easily check that your spirit level is level and Plumb. Any tool for the checking of surfaces for either level plum or Square are required tools that are accurate. When you first buy your first spirit level it should be factory set and tested. In time I’m with your nice shiny level been thrown into a tool bag or box and used on-site in a less than careful manner. It is quite likely that the level might be knocked out of level or Plumb.

QUICK FACTS – How did the spirit level get its name?

The name spirit refers to the fluid in the spirit levels vial. Spirit level fluid is a high percentage of alcohol.

Why is alcohol used in a spirit level vial?

This is simple, have you ever put Vodka in the freezer and wondered why it does not freeze. Well, vodka is around 40% Alc and it doesn’t freeze so if you fill the vial with an alcohol of 90% it won’t even change its viscosity. So that is why our spirit level vials do not freeze on-site in the winter. 

Why is alcohol called Spirits?

Spirits such as that warming beverage whisky are known to summons the spirits when you drink it. The spirits are the hallucinations that come to you in the form of ghosts!

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