The 10 Best Tape Measures

Sara Mandeed
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Are you a home handyman? Do you need to measure everything from a deck to a door frame? Do you have a penchant for DIY, and do you own a small business that needs a lot of measuring done?

If so, you’re probably someone who uses a tape measure quite frequently. Which is why it’s important to have an excellent tape measure.

A good tape measure will be long enough for almost any measuring job you might have. Most tape measures measure around 25 feet long, and some go as long as 100 feet. A good tape measure will also be accurate. A 10-foot tape should read a 10-foot distance exactly.

NameCategoryProduct
Measuring Tape Measure By KutirBest Overall
Measuring Tape Measure By Kutir
Komelon SM5425 Speed Mark Gripper Acrylic Coated Steel Blade Measuring TapeBudget Pick
Komelon SM5425 Speed Mark Gripper Acrylic Coated Steel Blade Measuring Tape
eTape16 ET16.75-db-RP Digital Tape MeasureUpgrade Pick
eTape16 ET16.75-db-RP Digital Tape Measure

1. Measuring Tape Measure By Kutir

Our rating: 9 / 10


Measuring Tape Measure By Kutir

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Pros:

  • Measuring tape is easy to use, lags, and can be used by all users
  • A variety of length options are available
  • Tape measure has both metric and imperial measurements
  • Rubber casing has good grip and is shock absorbent
  • Locks in place when you need it to and retracts easily
  • Tape measure has a durable and sturdy construction
  • Magnetic hook is very strong
  • More than decent price point
  • Tape measure also includes a 1 year warranty
  • Can serve all of your measuring needs

Cons:

  • Tape measure isn’t completely scratch-proof
  • Thickness of the casing can feel uncomfortable when in use
  • Numbers are difficult to read in poorly-lit settings
  • 500mm version does not extend to 500mm
  • Handle might be too long for some users

Durable.

From measuring ceilings to shopping for furniture, the typical tape measure will have you covered. But after dozens of smart home projects and dozens of measurements, a good tape measure can go a long way.

2. Komelon SL2825 Self Lock 25-Foot Power Tape

Our rating: 9 / 10


Komelon SL2825 Self Lock 25-Foot Power Tape

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Pros:

  • Power rewind function
  • Lightweight and durable
  • Comfortable grip
  • Made from reliable materials and can take heavy use

Cons:

  • May be larger than some people prefer
  • Takes time to lock for measuring

The Komelon SL2825 Self Lock is a 25-foot wide, lightweight, heavy duty power tape with a power rewind function for ease. The body of the power tape is made from a strong aluminum material. It weighs less than one pound and has a bright yellow measure to provide quick reference and instant visibility. The tape measure also features an ergonomic handle with a comfortable slip-resistant grip for a confident and secure hold. This measuring tool locks automatically and is suitable for most basic measurements, be it full or measuring for small angle cuts. It is suitable for different scenarios from the shop or plant floor to the jobsite. The steel tape measure has a durable rubber coating to protect the tool against the harsh working environment.

3. Komelon SM5425 Speed Mark Gripper Acrylic Coated Steel Blade Measuring Tape

Our rating: 9 / 10


Komelon SM5425 Speed Mark Gripper Acrylic Coated Steel Blade Measuring Tape

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Pros:

  • Easy to grip
  • Durable and well manufactured
  • Highly visible markings on both sides
  • Available in a variety of lengths
  • Measuring scale easy to read
  • Can last years if properly taken care of

Cons:

  • Plastic pouch is flimsy
  • Markings wear off with repeated use
  • The end hook is very narrow
  • Twist lock feels flimsy

(2 Pack)

Measuring tools are important in any body shop or workshop as well as in any crafts or home renovation project. They are used to measure horizontal and vertical distances. A tape measure is one of the most relied upon tools of any handyman.

The Komelon Speed Mark Gripper Tape measure is one of these invaluable measuring tools. It features a specially designed Speed Mark Enhanced Visibility that allows the user to quickly determine measurements in three different ways. The tape also has a pencil sharpener on the back and an eraser in the front.

4. Crescent Lufkin 1-3/16" x 25' Black Widow Black Dual Sided Tape Measure

Our rating: 8 / 10


Crescent Lufkin 1-3/16" x 25' Black Widow Black Dual Sided Tape Measure

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Pros:

  • Excellent carrying case
  • Easily identify level or difficult surfaces
  • Durable case
  • Crystal-clear markings
  • An absolute favorite for most users

Cons:

  • The trigger release can get in the way
  • The clip can make it difficult to store
  • Users have experienced durability issues

This is a best-selling 25-foot tape measure that gives you an option to choose between dual-sided markings and a standard side for measuring. The dual-sided markings include metric measurements (cm, m, and mm) on one side and US measurements on the other. It has a heavy-duty steel blade and a rubberized housing that makes it ideal for use in tool boxes.

The black plastic case is well designed, and can be held in the hand with ease for better control. It also features a dual-position belt clip that makes it take up less space compared to other tape measures. It also has a non-stretch belt that makes it easier to take measurements, and a Power-Throw lever that makes measuring easy as it releases the tape at an angle of 65 degrees for improved visibility.

5. eTape16 ET16.75-db-RP Digital Tape Measure

Our rating: 8 / 10


eTape16 ET16.75-db-RP Digital Tape Measure

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Pros:

  • Easy grip for smooth operation
  • Measures in feet, inches, decimals, and centimeters
  • Accurate distance measurements
  • Highly recommended for heavy-duty projects
  • Durable and easy to use

Cons:

  • Doesn't hold up very well over time
  • The plastic limit markings will wear off with time

This digital tape measure has an innovative design that will allow you to see measurements through the numbers and also has a dual-line display for better accuracy. Also, it has an automatic shut-off feature that helps preserve battery life and can measure up to 16 feet.

With a 16-foot length capacity, the measure houses a measuring tape that extends up to 25.25 inches, along with an LCD measuring tape that has an accuracy of 0.25 inches. Additionally, this measure has a high contrast LCD display that provides clear and precise measurements.

Here’s the thing: if you want a tape measure with all the bells and whistles, this is not it. But if you want a good quality tape measure at a reasonable price, this is definitely a great choice for you.

6. Swanson Tool SVPS25M1 25-Feet Magnetic Savage Proscribe Tape Measure

Our rating: 7 / 10


Swanson Tool SVPS25M1 25-Feet Magnetic Savage Proscribe Tape Measure

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Pros:

  • Stainless steel blade
  • Secure locking system
  • Large magnetic nail point
  • Color coded feet for easy measuring
  • Sturdy and well-constructed
  • Great value for the money

Cons:

  • Some reports of weak magnet
  • Flimsy case

Swanson Tools a recognized leader in the tailoring tools industry for more than twenty years. Over the years, Swanson has been committed to consumer satisfaction through high quality tools at lower than average pricing.

The company has been dedicated to this cause, and the Swanson Tool SVPS25M1 is a testament to Swanson’s mission to provide the highest quality product at a competitive price. The 25-foot tape measure has a high-quality steel blade covered with a clear protective coat. The construction is made of heavy-duty stainless steel, which makes the tape measure virtually unbreakable. The ends of the tape measure are color coded– red for the left end, yellow for the center, and blue for the right end. The color coding helps to ensure that you are not off when taking an important measurement.

The tape seems to read the same reads each time you use it. It is also easy to lock and unlock the tape, though the lock could use more force than the current amount.

7. Tape Measure

Our rating: 7 / 10


Tape Measure

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Pros:

  • Affordable
  • Accurate measurements
  • Durable aluminum frame

Accuracy, Durable Narrow Belt Clip for Contractor or DIY Use.

If you’re looking for a tape measure that’s accurate enough for measuring around the home, then this is the one for you. The DMS steel measuring tape features a durable aluminum frame and a visible numerical scale. Its In/Ft accuracy gives you extra precision while you measure, while its narrow belt clip makes it easy to take with you on the go.

Bottom line: The DMS measuring tape is a bargain and gives you more than what you pay for. It’s highly accurate, durable, and compact size make it the perfect tape for home use.

8. QUICKDRAW DIY Self Marking 25' Foot Tape Measure

Our rating: 7 / 10


QUICKDRAW DIY Self Marking 25' Foot Tape Measure

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Pros:

  • Most affordable choice
  • Good customer feedback
  • Can be expanded up to 34 feet
  • Excellent locking mechanism
  • Can be switched to metric units
  • Sturdy case construction
  • Comes with a free carabiner
  • Calibrated in two places
  • Durable aluminum blade
  • Etch-proof retraction button

Cons:

  • Doesn’t work well with thick gloves
  • Screw falls off

9. Stanley Tools 33-725 25-Feet FatMax Tape Measure

Our rating: 7 / 10


Stanley Tools 33-725 25-Feet FatMax Tape Measure

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Pros:

  • Super-bright laser
  • Tough resin case
  • Sharp and sensitive hook
  • Low-friction ball-bearing tape (0.2 inches every 1.8 inches)
  • Riveted rubber over molded handle
  • Quick-snap blade lock
  • Warranty
  • Shoulder strap

Cons:

  • Skipping when measuring long distances
  • Speed of measurement is determined by slow hand movements

The Stanley Tools 33-725 Fatmax 25-foot Tape Measure is a 15mm wide tape which is made of a 0.2-inches thick polyethylene material. The maximum measurement that the tape can reach is 25 feet. The tape is in its most extended position, which is 3 feet 7 inches. The tape has high accuracy and durability which the manufacturer boasts. It reads down to 1/16 of an inch and has a crisp, yellow, opaque blade with a super-bright laser. There is a case of a resin material with the name Stanley upon it. The tape measure has a thumb button for retracting the blade and has a razor-sharp, sensitive hook on one end of the tape. On the other side, the tape measure features an aluminum universal design with a rubber grip and a low-friction ball-bearing tape. A carrying case comes included in the price along with a lifetime warranty.

10. Magnelex Tape Measure 33-Foot

Our rating: 6 / 10


Magnelex Tape Measure 33-Foot

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Pros:

  • Great customer service
  • Perfect for home improvement
  • Economical price
  • Easy to use

Cons:

  • Won’t last very long if you need to remove the masking tape often
  • Feels fragile
  • Not ideal for construction

Attachment Hooks for Hanging.

Have you ever used a tape measure before? If you have, you’ve probably experienced the tell-tell ripping sound toward the end of the tape. Measuring accurately with this tool can be problematic. But, that’s no longer the case thanks to this Magnelex tape measure from ProAccurate.

This Magnelex Tape Measure from ProAccurate is crafted with a magnetized strip and a flexible rubber coating that wraps around the entire tape. It’s also extra wide for more than one person to measure at a time, helping to speed up the process during home improvement projects.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

What is the most accurate tape measure?

If you are looking for a tape measure, then you'll be happy to discover that they all provide the promised length, with the exception of the Stanley FatMax Blue Steel 21-Foot Tape Measure, which has a maximum length of 20 feet. All but one of the units tested here claim to provide a range of 2" to 12, "two inches to twelve inches."

We also measured the extensions of each unit to see whether the accuracy continued beyond the basic range of the measuring tape. We wanted to see if the tape measures provided the lengths they advertised.

This isn't a life or death issue, of course, because even a small miscalculation isn't destructive, but for people who are trying to get measurements as accurate as possible or who are paying by the inch for carpentry work, it's important to know that you're getting what you're paying for.

How accurate are tape measures?

I found variation from 3 mm over 5 m to 6 mm over 10 m. Most of our tape measures performed within 5 mm over 20 m. The reading stayed consistent between tapes.

Measurement tapes have been around in various designs for thousands of years, and are still widely used as they are the easiest method of making measurements.

The accuracy of a tape measure is not greatly affected by its price. Most are around 95% accurate. The problem lies in the trigger mechanism and the calibration mechanism. Triggers can be slow to work, and they may stick when pulled, adding an inaccurate amount of distance to your measurements. The calibration mechanism, the part that makes your measuring tape spring back to its original length, can be faulty if cheaply designed.

There are some cheap tape measures available which perform poorly, but there are also some very expensive tape measures which fail just as much. However, there are some high-quality, very accurate tape measures to be found.

What are the measurements on a tape measure?

The most common measurements you want to find on any tape measure are the Overall Length and Maximum Length.

The Overall Length (in inches) gives you the size of the tape measure itself. The Maximum Length, or the total distance of the tape, (in inches) tells you the maximum size of any object you can measure with that tape.

The Longest Distance Between Marks (in inches) tells you just that, and might be less useful than the Maximum Length (perhaps another reason you should pay more for a tape measure!).

The Maximum Distance Between Hooks (in inches) tells you the maximum distance between the two hooks; where the tape measure body connects to the hook. If this number is shorter than the Maximum Length, it means that hook is closer to the end of the tape measure, meaning that hook is not very durable or sturdy. In that case, try to avoid buying a tape measure with that pattern.

What is a Class 1 tape measure?

A Class 1 tape measure has a minimum breaking strength of 6,500 lbs and an accuracy of +/- 1/16th inch at 25 feet. For comparison, most class 2 and class 3 tape measures have a maximum breaking strength of about 3,000 lbs.

If you're looking to purchase a new tape measure, you should demand a class 1 tape measure.

However, the correlation between accuracy and breaking strength is not universal. While it's true that the higher the breaking strength of a measuring tape, the more accurate it is, that is not always the case

Conclusion

Our research included considering the benefits of a tape measure, researching what current users have to say about their own experiences with the product and also what expert reviews have to say about the product. We considered all aspects of owning a tape measure like durability, reliability and portability. We have five recommendations for you that we feel will best fit your needs.​

We hope our review and the research we’ve conducted has helped you find the best tape measure for your needs.

Our Recommendation

NameCategoryProduct
Measuring Tape Measure By KutirBest Overall
Measuring Tape Measure By Kutir
Komelon SM5425 Speed Mark Gripper Acrylic Coated Steel Blade Measuring TapeBudget Pick
Komelon SM5425 Speed Mark Gripper Acrylic Coated Steel Blade Measuring Tape
eTape16 ET16.75-db-RP Digital Tape MeasureUpgrade Pick
eTape16 ET16.75-db-RP Digital Tape Measure