The method of reading a grade rod varies by type. Engineer's and builder's rods are read from the bottom to the top, while direct elevation rods are read from top to bottom.
The following steps demonstrate the general process in reading a grade rod.
- Extend the grade rod to its full length
- Determine the spots to be measured
- Record the measured values
Stretch the device to increase the accuracy of the reading. Ensure that the rod is held plumb throughout the entire procedure.
Place the grade rod in the ground in an upright position. Indicate the measured elevation on the grade rod. Make necessary adjustments for new measurements and then transfer the device to the next location.
Take note of the measurements from the marked portions on the grade rod. Calculate the differences in elevation from the various readings.