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dm Converter

Created by Davide Borchia
Reviewed by Komal Rafay
Last updated: Jan 18, 2024

Converting dm to other length measurement units is straightforward. If you are performing a conversion from decimeter to the meter or any other metric unit, you only need to divide or multiply an adequate number of times by ten. With other units, you must also remember how to pass from one system to another. In this short article, you'll learn:

  • What is a decimeter?
  • How to perform the basic dm conversions: dm to m conversion and dm to cm conversion.

Let's go!

What is a decimeter?

The decimeter is a metric measurement unit for length. The decimeter is part of the International System of Units, but it's rarely used in science and for technical purposes. However, the decimeter is probably the most accessible metric unit of length for us to grasp. Most objects we can handle with ease are in the scale of a few decimeters. Less than a decimeter in length, and we start calling those objects "small".

A decimeter is the tenth part of a meter. In mathematical terms, we'd write:

1 dm=0.1 m1 \ \mathrm{dm} = 0.1 \ \mathrm{m}

This also gives us the conversion factor to convert dm to m:

0.1 mdm\footnotesize 0.1\ \frac{\mathrm{m}}{\mathrm{dm}}

🙋 The name decimeter comes from the Latin word for tenth (decimus) used as prefix (deci-) for the base unit (the meter).

In the next section, we'll use this dm to m conversion factor to teach you how to pass from any measurement in decimeters to the corresponding one in meters.

How to I convert dm to m? The basic dm conversion

The conversion from decimeter to meter is the fundamental decimeter conversion, the only one you really need to know as it brings you to the base unit for the length measurement in the SI. To convert from dm to m, take a measurement in decimeters, and divide it by 10. For example, if you want to convert from dm to m the length of a US letter-sized sheet of paper, follow these simple steps:

  1. Take the length of the sheet: 2.794 dm2.794 \ \mathrm{dm}.
  2. Multiply this measurement by the dm to m conversion factor.

The result is:

2.794 dm2.794 dm0.1 m/dm=0.2794 m\footnotesize \begin{split} 2.794 \ \mathrm{dm} &\equiv 2.794 \ \mathrm{dm}\cdot 0.1\ \mathrm{m/dm}\\ & = 0.2794 \ \mathrm{m} \end{split}

Converting dm to cm: conversion factor and example

If the conversion from dm to m reduces the magnitude of the measurement, converting dm to cm makes your number grow!

The centimeter is the decimeter's neighboring unit: thanks to the regularity of the metric system, if there are ten decimeters in a meter, then there will be ten centimeters in a decimeter. The conversion from dm to cm is then:

1 dm=10 cm\footnotesize 1 \ \mathrm{dm} = 10 \ \mathrm{cm}

Let's take the example above. Multiply the length of the sheet of paper by the new conversion factor:

2.794 dm2.794 dm10 cm/dm=27.94 cm\footnotesize \begin{split} 2.794 \ \mathrm{dm} &\equiv 2.794 \ \mathrm{dm}\cdot 10\ \mathrm{cm/dm}\\ & = 27.94 \ \mathrm{cm} \end{split}

More than converting decimeters


How do I convert from dm to cm?

To convert from dm to cm, follow these simple steps:

  1. Measure your object in decimeters.
  2. Multiply your measurement but the dm to cm conversion factor: 10 cm/dm.
  3. You are all set. The magnitude of your measurement increased as the centimeter is a smaller unit compared to the decimeter.

How much is 1.75 m in dm?

1.75 m equals 17.5 dm. To find this result, apply the m to dm conversion factor: 10 dm/m, which tells us that you can fit precisely 10 decimeters in a meter. The result is given by:
1.75 m × 10 dm/m = 17.5 dm.
As you can see, the magnitude of this measurement makes the decimeter a suitable unit to express the average height of a human!

What is the relationship between dm and L?

The decimeter (dm) is a measurement unit for length, while the liter (L) is a measurement unit for volume. However, thanks to the regularity of the metric system, there is an intimate connection between these two units: a liter corresponds to the volume of a cube with a side equal to 1 dm.

Davide Borchia
Measure in decimeters
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