If you don’t have the right measurements for your project, there’s no way you can successfully complete it.

Take, for instance, installing flooring. You need to get the right inside-corner measurements so you can purchase the exact amount of flooring plus trim you need — and not waste a trip back to the store for more.

And what about installing new kitchen cabinets? What could be worse than not getting the right inside-corner measurements and having those brand new cabinets sticking slightly too far out or in?

Of course, the go-to instrument for measuring is the tape measure. But to get into those corners, you have to bend the tool. And the problem is, once it’s bent, it’s hard to tell where the ticker marks for the exact edge of the surface lie.

Don’t be so quick to grab your calculator and start computing measurements for angles. Try this quick trick to ensure the accuracy of your measurement and eliminate any guesswork.

Tape measure with plastic card and binder

1. Join the tape measure and the card. Clamp a plastic card onto the measuring tape with a binder clip. You can use an old credit card or a retail store rewards card, just as long as the card is nice and rigid.

Plastic card binded to tape measure

2. Adjust the card. Take the measurement and slide the card up against the inside vertical surface. Make sure both ends of the tape are against both surfaces.

Measuring stair with tape measure

3. Read the accurate measurement. Straighten the tape measure and read the number where it crosses along the edge of the credit card.

Now that you have your accurate measurement, be sure to write it down. If you don’t have a notepad handy, try this Simple Solution for writing down measurements straight on the tape measure!

Watch the video above to find out more.

Further Reading

Editorial Contributors
avatar for Joe Truini

Joe Truini

Radio Show Co-Host

Joe Truini is a contractor, author, and the host of “Simple Solutions” on Today’s Homeowner TV and the weekly Today’s Homeowner radio show. He has worked on both large commercial projects and residential remodeling, and has written for national publications such as This Old House and Popular Mechanics. He has also written eight books, including three best-selling shed-building books. Joe lives in Connecticut with his family and enjoys hiking, traveling, and baseball in his spare time.

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