How to Calculate the Surface Area of a Table

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Things You'll Need

  • Measuring tape

  • Calculator (optional)

Take two measurements to calculate the area of this table.

Determining furniture placement when moving or redecorating your home can be challenging. Knowing the surface area of a table helps you determine where it fits best. For square, rectangular or round tables, use the geometric formulas for area to find the surface area. Oval tables often have straight sides with half-circles on each end; find their surface area by combining the areas of the rectangular and circular parts.

Square or Rectangular Table

Step 1

Measure an edge of the table with the measuring tape and record the measurement in feet and inches.

Step 2

Measure one of the edges that is perpendicular to the first edge you measured and record the measurement in feet and inches. If the table is square the two measurements should be the same, but measure to make sure.

Step 3

Convert the measurements to decimal form if one or both of them contain inches. For example, if one measurement is 10 feet and 3 inches, divide 3 inches by 12 inches to obtain the decimal form -- 10.25 feet.

Step 4

Multiply the two measurements together and record the surface area in square feet.

Round Table

Step 1

Measure the table at its widest point and record the measurement in feet and inches.

Step 2

Convert the measurement to decimal form if it contains inches.

Step 3

Divide this number by two and square the result. Record the result in square feet.

Step 4

Multiply this number by pi (3.14). The resulting number is the surface area; record it in square feet.

Oval Table

Step 1

Measure the width of the table and record it in feet and inches.

Step 2

Measure the length of the table from the beginning of one curved end to the beginning of the other curved end. It may be difficult to determine exactly where the edge of the table begins to curve, but approximate it as well as you can. Record the length in feet and inches.

Step 3

Convert the measurements to decimal form if one or both of them contain inches. For example, if one measurement is 10 feet and 3 inches, divide 3 inches by 12 inches to obtain the decimal form -- 10.25 feet.

Step 4

Multiply the length of the table by its width to obtain the area of the rectangular section. Record this result in square feet.

Step 5

Divide the width of the table by two and square the result. Multiply this number by pi -- 3.14 -- to obtain the combined area of the two half-circle sections of the table, and record the result in square feet.

Step 6

Add together the area of the rectangular area and the area of the half-circle areas to obtain the total surface area. Record the result in square feet.

Tip

For a table that is a complete oval with no straight sides, use the formula pi_a_b -- a is half the length at the longest part of the table, and b is half the width at the widest part of the table.

Approximate the surface area of an oddly shaped table by dividing it into simple geometric shapes, calculating the area of each one and adding the areas together.

references

Petra Wakefield

Petra Wakefield is a writing professional whose work appears on various websites, focusing primarily on topics about science, fitness and outdoor activities. She holds a Master of Science in agricultural engineering from Texas A&M University.