Measure the height, width, or area of objects

The Measuring toolbar contains tools you can use to measure distances and areas of objects in PDF documents. The measuring tools are especially useful when you need to know the distances or areas associated with objects in a form or computer-aided design (CAD) drawing, or when you want to measure certain areas of a document before sending it to a professional printer. The measuring tools are available to Reader users only if the PDF creator enables measuring functionality.

When you use a measuring tool, the tool dialog box displays the measurements of the line segments you draw.

Measuring tools

Measuring toolbar
Object being measured
Tool display
  1. Choose Tools > Measuring, and select a measuring tool. Or, right-click/Control-click the toolbar area, and then choose Measuring.
  2. To measure areas of your PDF document, do any of the following:
    • Select the Distance tool  to measure the distance between two points. Click the first point, move the pointer to the second point, and then click again. The measurements appear in the tool dialog box. 

    • Select the Perimeter tool  to measure a set of distances between multiple points. Click each point you want to measure. Then, double-click the last point, or hold the pointer over the last point and click. 

    • Select the Area tool  to measure the area within the line segments that you draw. Click each point you want to measure. After you have clicked at least two points, click the first point to complete the area measurement. 

      Note: You can also finish a measurement by right-clicking/Control-clicking and choosing Complete Measurement from the context menu.
  3. While measuring objects, do any of the following:
    • To change the scaling ratio (such as 3:2) on the drawing areas, specify the appropriate numbers in the tool dialog box. If desired, change the unit of measurement next to this ratio.

    • Select Measurement Markup in the tool dialog box if you want the lines you draw to appear as a comment. You can then use the Hand tool to double-click the comment and view the measurement for the line segments that you draw. Unless Annotate is selected, the object you draw will disappear when you measure another object or select another tool.