How Do You Measure a Box?

To measure a box, find an appropriately sized ruler, align it with a straight edge from each dimension of height, width and depth, and record the measurements. These measurements are used to determine volume and surface area.

  1. Choose a unit of measure and an appropriate measuring tool

    After deciding between metric and imperial units, find a measuring tool big enough for your box. For small boxes, a 12-inch ruler should do. In other cases, a yard or meter stick is more than enough. If the box is too big for a yardstick, use a measuring tape.

  2. Measure an edge of each dimension

    Align your measuring tool with a straight edge of each dimension, and record your findings. Those three measurements are used to find the surface area of one side, the total surface area and the volume of your box.

  3. Use the measurements from each dimension to find the volume and surface area

    To find the volume, multiply the height, width and depth. The result is written in cubic units. To find the surface area of a specific side, multiply the two perpendicular edges of that side. The result is written in units squared. To find the total surface, add together the surface areas of each side.