Level of Detail in BIM and why does it matter?

What is the Level of Detail (LOD)?

The Level of Development (LOD) specification enables experts to explain how an element’s shape and accompanying information have evolved. LOD specs were created to standardize the LOD framework’s use and make it a practical and collaborative communication tool.

The construction sector is working via Building Information Modeling (BIM) in this Digital Age since the detail level can range from a broad geometric representation to constructing an accurate as-built model. To complete a project successfully, everyone must speak the same language. Because the difference in comprehension will cause issues. It is critical to have a better method of conveying needs amongst Project Owners, Designers, Contractors, and so on, and that method is known as the Level of Detail (LOD). LOD is a method for disciplines to convey their needs to one another.

The Level of Detail (LOD) describes the quantity and type of building information required in a BIM Model.

LOD 100

The model element is graphically represented with generic forms and symbols. The project’s spaces are modeled as generic objects with approximate sizes, shapes, and locations. This level will help you grasp the design and spatial requirements. The model element is a block depicting the project. It does not have a standard shape or size.

LOD 200

Model elements are graphically represented as a generic system, object, or assembly within the model at this level, with approximate specifications, numbers, size, shape, placement, and orientation. LOD 200 element information must be regarded as inaccurate. Non-graphic information can also be supplied to the model element. However, it lacks precise detail but perfectly represents the geometry. It provides an approximate floor design, supporting framing components, and structural grids.

LOD 300

LOD 300 is a level in which the model has exact quantity, size, position, orientation information, detailing, fabrication, assembly, and installation information. The information contained in LOD 300 models can be utilized during the project’s construction phase.

All structural elements with the same overall size, geometry, placements, and orientations. It should include, but not be limited to, the specification of material qualities and finishes. Sloping surfaces or floor depressions, primary entrances such as elevators or shafts, the top and size of the pier, and so on should all be modeled.

LOD 350

LOD 350 elements include the same data as LOD 300 features but also interfaces, supports, or linkages to other building components. “ODL 350 models would include modeling places modeling impair cooperation with other systems.” It comprises any permanent shaping or shoring components and all penetrations to be modeled to rough opening dimensions. Actual construction element size and shape are modeled, as well as spacing, location/connections of plumbing components and equipment, pipe slope, valves, fittings, and insulation. All hangers, supports, vibration, anchors, and seismic control were used in the design.

LOD 400

The Model Element is visually displayed within the Model as a specific system, object, or assembly that is accurate in terms of size, shape, location, quantity, and orientation, as well as detailing, fabrication, assembly, and installation information. Non-graphic data can also be attached to a Model Element.

The LOD is 400 when complete manufacturing and assembly information can be driven directly from the model. In other words, the data and information included in LOD 400 objects can be directly sent to suppliers for them to manufacture the architectural components represented. The following items should be modeled at LOD400. Pipework and process piping with a diameter of 12 inches or greater diameter will be insulated as needed. Where coordination with the operations of other specialties is essential, hangers must be modeled.

Every piece of equipment, including its overall height, width, depth, and connection points. Access zones for items such as equipment fixtures, valves, and cleanouts that require access.


This model level will include all the geometry and information required to support building operations and maintenance throughout its lifecycle. They’ve been finished and installed, their placement has been field-verified, and they limit the information clients can access when the construction is complete. These include, among other things, a model number, a production date, and a purchase date.

System class, equipment name, BIM model of a building, look description (word/picture), and so on.

Dimensions, material, elevation, accurate model detail (word/picture), and so on are all examples of geometric information.

Equipment resume, history records, checklist, staff and schedule record book, and so on are all part of the maintenance record.


Field tools such as the Trimble Robotic Total Station can be used around LOD 300 when certain assemblies are recognized in the model. This includes walls, mechanical and electrical equipment, ducts, conduits, and cable trays. LOD levels for electrical and mechanical estimation activities may differ from those required for other phases of the BIM process.

LOD establishes a consistent definition of completion and removes the possibility of project completion disputes. Teams from many disciplines can communicate more efficiently and clearly with one another while using LOD. LOD improves design clarity by utilizing modern techniques and technologies. The Level of Development (LOD) specification is a reference for AEC practitioners to articulate the content and reliability of Building Information Models with high clarity (BIMs)

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