The availability of different measurement units of length necessitates conversion. For example, you may want to know the number of kilometers making up a mile and vice versa. Doing these calculations manually and be difficult and time-consuming.

However, with a dedicated length conversion calculator, you can easily move from one unit of length to another. But what exactly is the length and how can you use a calculator to convert its units? That’s what this article is all about, so keep reading.

## What Is Length

Length is a measurement of the distance between any two points on a surface. It is also the distance of an object’s shortest horizontal dimension from one end to the other. For example, the length of a triangle is its longest edge.

There are two main systems used in measuring length – the metric system and the Imperial (US Customary) System. Here’s a detailed review of these systems:

### Metric System

The metric system is also called the Standard International (SI) system. It’s the most widely used around the world, with the meter being the base unit of length. In these systems, other measurements of length are based on predefined prefixes to the meter.

For example, the kilometer represents 1000 times the meter, and the centimeter is the meter divided by 100. Besides the meter, other units of length include the centimeter, kilometer, decameter, decimeter, millimeter, micrometer, and nanometer.

### Imperial System

The Imperial ( US Customary) System is mainly used in the United States and a few other countries. This system was established in Britain by the Weights and Measures Act of 1824 and the revised and of 1878. It’s also called the British Imperial System.

There are several units of length in the Imperial system, including the inch, mile, foot, and yard. Additional units have been established for survey purposes, including the furlong, chain, rod, league, survey mile, and survey foot.

## How to Convert Units of Length

Converting units is easier when a base unit is used. So, you take one unit and convert it to the base unit. You can then convert from the base unit to the second unit.

The most commonly used base unit for length is the meter. So, a conversion starts by changing the first unit to meters. Then a conversion is made from meters to the target measurement units. Our length conversion calculator has built-in algorithms based on this concept.

## How to Use the Length Conversion Calculator

Converting units of length by changing to a base unit and onward can be difficult, especially if mathematics isn’t your cup of tea. If you try it, you will likely make small or substantial mistakes that render your answer unreliable.

However, with our length conversion calculator, you can get accurate results in a few steps. Here is a step-by-step description of how to use the calculator:

### Step 1: Select the Source System

Our length conversion calculator can convert units from Imperial to Imperial, metric to metric, Imperial to metric, and metric to Imperial. That’s why you must start by collecting the system from which you get the first system.

Using a simple built-in switch, you may opt for the Imperial or metric system. Your choice will affect the units that will populate the **Source Unit **field. Of course, the units will appear automatically since they’ve been built into the system.

### Step 2: Select the Target System

The target unit is that which you intend to express your final answer. For example, if you want to express your answer in meters, then the target system is the metric system. Otherwise, it’ll be the Imperial System.

On the calculator interface, you’ll see a switch for moving from one target system to the other. Leave the switch intact if you want the Imperial System. For the metric system, you must toggle the switch.

### Step 3: Select the Source Unit

Now you must select the source unit based on the source system you selected above. If you had chosen the Imperial System, you’ll choose inches, feet, yards, and miles from a drop-down menu that appears once you touch the small arrow.

On the other hand, the metric system has substantially more units than the Imperial System. If you had chosen the metric system, you’ll select between the meter, centimeter, millimeter, and kilometer. The calculator offers only a few units in the drop-down menu.

### Step 4: Select the Target Unit

To which unit do you want to convert length? Is it in the Imperial System or the metric system? The process of selecting the units is the same as the one used in Step 3, above. You click the arrow and pick a unit from the drop-down menu.

For the Imperial System, you will select miles, inches, feet, or yards. On the other hand, the metric system has units such as the millimeter, centimeter, meter, and kilometer. Select the one you want.

**Step 5: Enter the Value of the Source Unit**

Now you must enter the value of the source unit that you wish to convert to the target unit. For example, you may want to convert 45 inches into feet. You’ll enter 45 in the Value field.

### Step 6: View the Results

The last step in using our calculator is viewing the results. Our calculator provides the results swiftly without you having to press Calculate. As soon as you finish entering the value of the source unit, you’ll see results in terms of the target unit. From our example above, 45 inches are equivalent to 3.75 feet.

**Benefits of a Length Conversion Calculator**

Why would you want to grapple with difficult mathematics problems when you can use a convenient calculator? The length conversion calculator makes it easier for you to automatically convert units without handling numbers yourself.

It’s available online and can be used by anyone from anywhere. All you need is an internet connection. After opening our calculator in a browser, you can do your conversions using the process described above. It takes only a few seconds to get the results without even pressing **Calculate**.