Step 1 Get to Know Your Tape Measure
Before you can understand how to read a tape measure, you must first get to know the tape measure and how it works. These little pieces of tape measure terminology will help you on further steps.
- Case: Tape measures are wound within a durably constructed case that are typically contoured to fit comfortably in the hand as you work. The case is marked with the brand and the maximum length the tape measure can accommodate.
- Hook Slot: There’s a small hole at the end of the tape measure that allows for it to be attached to a nail or screw as an anchor point for your measurement.
- Measuring Tape: The measuring tape itself is the retractable piece that pulls out from the case and features markings like a ruler. They are typically white or yellow in hue to make them visible against any product and can be made of fabric, plastic, or metal according to the individual design.
- Thumb Lock: The measuring tape case will have a thumb lock located on the top that slides up and down, in the up position it allows for the measuring tape to pull out and retract with ease. Press the thumb lock down and it locks the tape in place precisely where it is so you can take your measurements without the tape retracting.
- Belt Clip: Most measuring tapes feature a clip attached to the back of the case that allows you to clip the measuring tape to your belt, keeping it within easy reach as you work on a project.