With construction output beginning to grow after a long period of reduced activity, contractors are beginning to return to work – and new projects are beginning to take shape. The first – and in some cases the last – steps in the construction process require specialist levelling tools to ensure construction is completed safely and to code. The laser levelling tool comes in many shapes and sizes, each of which have a different practical utility on the job site. Here are some of the considerations project managers make with regard to laser levels, and which ones are used for which job.
Red or Green?
Whichever laser level you eventually decide upon, there remains another decision for you to make, regarding the colour of the laser. This may seem like a purely cosmetic decision at first, but the two commonly available colours have different characteristics and utilities. Red is the most common colour, and is perfectly fine in the majority of cases, though it is perhaps better suited to indoor and short to medium range jobs. This is because green laser levels are generally brighter and more visible, making them more useful and less prone to human error in external and longer-range applications.
Dot (or Point) Laser Level
The dot level, otherwise referred to as a point level or plumb laser, works by projecting individual laser beams – one or multiple depending on the specific product – which appear as laser dots on a perpendicular wall, or when received by the laser target receiver. These are commonly handheld, and best used for indoor applications where plumbing or alignment of fixtures may be required.
Line Laser Level
The line laser level produces a far wider beam than that of the dot laser level, creating a horizontal or vertical line across a perpendicular surface depending on orientation. These are more commonly found on larger job sites, and used for levelling tasks, such as in the building of walls – or larger indoor fixtures, such as the installation of coving.
Cross Line Laser Level
The cross line laser level utilised both horizontal and vertical laser beams, to produce a laser ‘cross’ on a perpendicular surface. These have much the same uses as the line laser level, but with the added bonus of providing an additional plane of reference when measuring – enabling accurate alignment of features and fittings.
Rotary Laser Level
The rotary laser level is particularly useful for larger construction projects, from the levelling of ground and digging of foundation to the laying of pathways, patios and plazas. The rotary laser level works by producing a laser beam and spinning it at a high RPM, creating a laser sweep around the area. This can be used to swiftly and efficiently measure levels across large areas.
Pipe Laser Level
Piper laser levels are unique from the above listings in both usage and form factor. They are designed to assist in the laying and alignment of piping, whether new water, drainage or cabling pipelines. They are often designed to fit inside pipes with splayed legs to secure it against the walls, enabling alignment in-situ – though they can be used above-ground also.