How Do You Read a Grade Rod?


Quick Answer

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.

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Full Answer

The following steps demonstrate the general process in reading a grade rod.

  1. Extend the grade rod to its full length
  2. Stretch the device to increase the accuracy of the reading. Ensure that the rod is held plumb throughout the entire procedure.

  3. Determine the spots to be measured
  4. 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.

  5. Record the measured values
  6. Take note of the measurements from the marked portions on the grade rod. Calculate the differences in elevation from the various readings.

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