The best bubble levels in the UK 2023

A spirit level is an indispensable tool. Whether you're putting up a shelf or laying down siding, its use is essential to help you get any job done, horizontally and vertically. But with prices ranging from a few dollars to nearly a hundred, it's not easy to make the right choice. That's why we've put together this guide to help you make the right choice.

Bosch Professional 60 cm 1

Best value for money

Bosch Professional 60 cm

The best bubble level

Extremely versatile spirit level, compact and easy to store, this Bosch model is suitable for do-it-yourselfers and professionals.

See price

This tool is a testament to the quality of Bosch manufacturing. Measuring 60 cm in length, this level is mostly made of aluminum, which guarantees exceptional durability. And despite its dimensions and design materials, its weight remains correct.

This Bosch level is particularly stable horizontally and offers great precision. Its handle makes it very easy to handle. Thanks to its compactness, it can also be hung on a wall or in a vehicle for professionals. Finally, the perfect calibration provides an easy reading at all 3 levels, whatever the situation.

Stanley 042130

Best value for money

Stanley 042130

The best entry-level bubble level

The Stanley 042130 comes in a handy pocket size and can be read both horizontally and vertically. It has a magnet that allows you to hold it on metal surfaces.

4,82 £ on Amazon

Compact, the Stanley 042130 will have no difficulty in slipping into a pocket of your jacket or pants. It has 2 vials that make it easy to read. This way, you can make horizontal or vertical alignments. Its magnetic base makes it easy to hold on a metal surface. Also, it is equipped with a hook at the back, which allows you to easily attach it to your belt.

This magnetic spirit level is made up of an ultra-resistant and solid case. This means it will last you for many years. It offers fairly accurate information, but would only be suitable for small DIY jobs. For larger jobs and if you want to have optimal accuracy, it would be wise to use a digital level. It should be noted that this is a must have for those who lack space in their toolbox.

Bosch GIM 60 2

Best value for money

Bosch GIM 60

The best high-end bubble level

If you want to use a top of the line level and never have to worry about alignments while working, choose this electronic model made by Bosch.

107 £ on Manomano

This model is a modern tool with a precision electronic system. Two levels allow it to be used as a spirit level. It guarantees precise measurements and inclinations in degrees. Arrows will warn you in case of deviation from the horizontal or vertical.

If you're looking for lasting accuracy, you'll appreciate the easy-to-use calibration feature. You'll also enjoy the audible signal for 0° and 90° adjustments. Finally, to protect your tool during transport, the tool comes with a shoulder bag.

OX Tools T500206 3

A great choice

OX Tools T500206

A great alternative

If you are looking for a high performance, robust and affordable level, the T500206 from OX Tools is the perfect choice. It offers an accuracy of plus or minus 5 mm/m.

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Use this OX Tools brand level to bring precision to your work, whether it's common DIY, masonry, plumbing or other work. This particularly strong device is made of aluminum profile and has rubber on both ends.

With the T500206 model by OX Tools, you will benefit from an optimal precision of more or less 5 mm/m. With this accessory sold at an unbeatable price, you can say goodbye to misalignment during your work.

Buying guide • November 2023

Best spirit level

Any specific needs?

The best bubble level

The best entry-level bubble level

The best high-end bubble level

A great alternative

Your guide : Samuel

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Comparison table of the best bubble levels

Bosch Professional 60 cm 4
Stanley 042130
Bosch GIM 60 5
OX Tools T500206 6
Bosch Professional 60 cm
Stanley 042130
Bosch GIM 60
OX Tools T500206
Extremely versatile spirit level, compact and easy to store, this Bosch model is suitable for do-it-yourselfers and professionals.
The Stanley 042130 comes in a handy pocket size and can be read both horizontally and vertically. It has a magnet that allows you to hold it on metal surfaces.
If you want to use a top of the line level and never have to worry about alignments while working, choose this electronic model made by Bosch.
If you are looking for a high performance, robust and affordable level, the T500206 from OX Tools is the perfect choice. It offers an accuracy of plus or minus 5 mm/m.
Accuracy of ± 0.5 mm/m in normal position
Pocket size
Simple calibration function for long-lasting accuracy
Accuracy of ± 0.5 mm/m
Innovative transparent window placed on top
Magnetic base
Sturdy aluminum housing
Shock-absorbing rubber at the ends
Magnetic bubble level
Horizontal and vertical reading
IP 54 protection rating

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Report an error, request the addition of a feature to the table, or suggest another product. Thank you for your kindness!

Buying guide - spirit level

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How to choose your spirit level

An essential tool for ensuring that your work is horizontal or vertical, the spirit level is chosen according to a few criteria. No more risk of making a bad investment!

#1 - The shape

Bubble levels are distinguished by their shape:

  • The Trapeze spirit level has a minimum length of 40 cm. Made up of two or three vials, depending on the model, it is more suitable for outdoor work.
  • The Tubular or Rectangular spirit level is designed for indoor work. It is easy to handle and to use, which is why beginners are so fond of this model.

#2 - The size

The length of the spirit level plays a significant role in the accuracy obtained, especially if you are doing large jobs. Usually, spirit levels are between 40 and 80 cm long. Most do-it-yourselfers choose 40 cm for the small footprint, ease of handling and transportation.

If you are working on a large surface, simply apply your spirit level to a long ruler (1 or 2 meters) to ensure the horizontality and/or verticality of your work.

#3 - The number of vials

Generally speaking, this type of level has two vials to check verticality and horizontality separately. The most elaborate levels today are equipped with 3 vials, the third of which is designed for measurement at 45°C. Of course, to have 3 of them, you will have to put the price you need.

#4 - The material

You are certainly not without knowing that the material of your spirit level will determine its longevity. Trapeze models are usually made of metal; manufacturers prefer to bet on aluminum alloy: light, strong, durable and easy to maintain. This is why trapezoidal spirit levels are recommended for outdoor work.

Beginner or entry-level models are made of plastic. Sure, they're less durable, but that shouldn't affect the accuracy they offer.

#5 - Ease of reading

There's no point in choosing a spirit level that proves to be a real headache to use. That's why you should choose a model with which you can easily read the measurements shown. To do this, nothing beats spirit levels with millimeter graduations. Not only do they make your job easier, but these graduated models also offer more precision.

How to use a spirit level?

An indispensable tool for all building professions, the spirit level allows you to determine and verify the accuracy of the verticality or horizontality of an element. It works thanks to two transparent tubes that contain a liquid, usually yellow, in which there is an air bubble. It is this bubble that displays the degree of the angle formed by the element on which the spirit level has been positioned.

It is very important to know how to use your spirit level correctly. In order to check the horizontality or verticality of your support, you must take your spirit level and place it directly on the support to be measured. If the bubble of your level is in the center, between the two lines, your support is perfectly horizontal or vertical.

Otherwise, if the bubble is not exactly between the two marks or is offset, it means that the support is not horizontal or vertical. To get the right angle, you will have to manipulate the element until the bubble is perfectly wedged between the two marks, in the center. It is recommended to mark the location with a pencil, so you know where to place the screws or nails.

This is because you measure verticality and horizontality in the same way. You should always start by placing the level against the support. This technology is also adopted on tripods. Indeed, the bubble level, having the shape of a sphere, allows you to position the tripod well and to place a laser level on it, for example, in order to have more defined measurements. Finally, the direction taken by the bubble must always go in the direction of the top of the slope.

Rectangular or trapezoidal spirit level?

Rectangular spirit level

Of the different types of spirit levels, the rectangle level is the easiest to read. Light and compact, it is suitable for indoor work. You can choose a plastic or metal model. As for its size, its length varies between 40 and 80 cm. To use it effectively, you only need to calibrate it.

However, the rectangular spirit level can give wrong measurements. This can happen because some types of spirit levels only work if the entire surface is glued to one part. On the other hand, it is also possible that its measurement is distorted by the slightest impact.

Trapezoidal spirit level

The trapezoidal spirit level is reserved for outdoor work. It is mainly used to determine angles and inclinations. Made of metal, it is very resistant and that is why it is sometimes called a "mason's level". It is about 60 cm long, which is a very good size for showing relatively constant lines.

However, there are some aspects of the spirit level that are similar to drawbacks. Indeed, after a few months of use, the bubble may no longer be level. On the other hand, some models are not absolutely accurate, if you tilt it for example at 45°.


In short, the choice between these 2 types of spirit levels will depend on where you are doing the work. As mentioned above, the rectangular spirit level is convenient for indoor work while the trapezoidal model is better suited for outdoor work.

Why buy a spirit level?

Versatile tool

This measuring tool is very versatile as it is used in various construction sites and can be used for many tasks. It is used by all those who work in the building trade, but it is also very much in demand by small DIY enthusiasts for hanging furniture. It is also an extremely precise device for carrying out many jobs such as hard fencing, tiling, etc.


The spirit level can be used for a wide range of jobs, from the smallest to the largest. With this device, there is no risk of distorting the degree of horizontality or verticality of what you are undertaking. There are many different types of spirit levels depending on their purpose and your needs. The classic spirit level is used to obtain a uniform level between two ends, while the digital spirit level is used for different finishes in large constructions.

Easy to use

The spirit level is a simple device to use. Just read the instructions to understand how it works and get everything right. That's why everyone, no matter who they are, uses this little device.

Easy to store

Because of its compact, lightweight and often small size, a spirit level is easy to store. You can put it in any place and corner of your house once you are done using it. It can easily be placed in a garage, shed, or even hung on the wall in a bag.

Easy to maintain

When we talk about maintenance, we immediately refer to cleaning. The spirit level, unlike laser levels and other measuring tools, is an easy-to-clean device. Simply wipe it with a damp cloth and let it dry in the open air.

The best brands of bubble levels

In our opinion, the best brands of bubble levels in 2022 are :

Ox Tool

Bosch is a German multinational engineering and technology company founded in 1886. The company has been best known for the design and distribution of car batteries. But it has diversified its business well, so that today it is also known for everything from the design, production and distribution of hand tools to DIY tools, including spirit levels.

OX Tools is a leading global manufacturer of hand tools, diamond tools, workwear and safety products. Founded in Australia in 1974, the brand offers strong, high performance and durable products.

The company has been around since 1843 and specialises in the design and development of hand tools such as spirit levels, saws and more. Synonymous with quality, reliability, innovation and value, Stanley is a must-have brand for DIY enthusiasts and professionals alike.

Ferrestock is a Spanish company, founded in 1981, dedicated to the distribution of hardware items. Its product range includes measuring tools, cutting tools, gardening articles, adhesives, etc. This company is beginning to expand towards the international market and is starting to be on the same level as Bosch, Stanley and Makita.

Irwin Tools manufactures and distributes professional quality hand tools and power tool accessories worldwide. The Irwin Tools brand portfolio includes prestigious brands such as Irwin, Marble, Hanson, Quick-grip, Marathon, Vise-grip and Speedbor. Irwin Tools products are impressively durable and of the highest quality.

What is the price for a spirit level

The diagram below will help you to get an idea of the typical prices for each price range (entry-level, mid-range and high-end).

However, more expensive does not necessarily mean better.

We therefore advise you to always consult our ranking before deciding, rather than blindly relying on price ranges.

10 £ to 40 £
40 £ to 90 £
more than 90 £
Price range diagram


Avoid storing them in hot areas.

Bubble levels should be stored at moderate temperatures so that they do not warp.

If you need to make a long level line and you don't have a laser, try this method.

Mark the desired height of your line on the wall. Hold your level at this mark and adjust it until the bubble is centered. Then make a mark at the other end of the level. Extend the line by stretching a chalk line and aligning it with the two marks. And continue this until you complete your line.

Do not use too much force.

Bubble levels can easily bend and become inaccurate. Always handle yours with care.

Don't rely on cheap or overused bubble levels.

Before leveling, test the vials for level (horizontal) and plumb (vertical). Check the leveling flasks by placing your level on a flat surface and stacking the playing cards under one end until the bubble is centered. Now lift the level and rotate it 180 degrees, end to end, and place it on the cards in the same location. The bubble should still be centered. If it's not, your leveling bottle is inaccurate.

Easy to level the unit.

Here's a two-part tip for leveling devices. First, use a magnetic level to free up both hands. Most spirit levels have a built-in magnet. The second part of the tip is to lift the front of the device with a lever to relieve pressure on the leveling feet. It's much easier to turn the feet when they're off the ground.


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March 2022 : Translation of this buying guide from our partner

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Our selection
Bosch Professional 60 cm 7
Bosch Professional 60 cm
Stanley 042130
Stanley 042130
Bosch GIM 60 8
Bosch GIM 60
OX Tools T500206 9
OX Tools T500206


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