Using a Water Level
All you really need is a length of plastic tubing and a bucket of water
Although this simple device lacks the sex appeal of a builder’s level or a high-tech laser, it’s just as accurate and even more versatile. It operates on the principle that every body of water seeks its own level.
In this video, associate editor Tom O’Brien demonstrates a couple of tips for its use; the setup takes only minutes.
For more on this topic, see Herrick Kimball’s article, Making and Using Water Levels.