Cubic Yard Calculator
By: Danny Lipford
A cubic yard is the volume of material which fits in a space one yard wide by one yard deep by one yard high. Cubic yards are used to measure materials ranging from concrete to mulch for your garden.
Common materials that are measured in cubic yards include:
- Concrete
- Gravel
- Sand
- Rock
- Fill dirt
- Topsoil
- Mulch
- Compost
To determine the amount of materials you need in cubic yards, you must first convert all three dimensions to the same unit of measurement. There are:
- 27 cubic feet in one cubic yard (3’ x 3’ x 3’)
- 46,656 cubic inches in one cubic yard (36” x 36” x 36”)
For example, to find the amount of concrete needed for a slab 6” thick by 12’ long by 12’ wide:
- Convert the dimension in inches to feet (6” ÷ 12” = 0.5’)
- Multiply the three dimensions together to find the number of cubic feet (0.5’ x 12’ x 12 = 72 cubic feet)
- Divide the cubic feet by the number of cubic feet in a cubic yard (27) to find the number of cubic yards (72 ÷ 27 = 2.67 cu. yd.).
You can find the same result by converting all three dimensions to yards by:
- Convert the dimension in inches to yards (6” ÷ 36” = 0.167 yards)
- Convert the dimensions in feet to yards (12’ ÷ 3 = 4 yards)
- Multiply the three dimensions together to find the number of cubic yards (0.167 x 4 x 4 = 2.67 cu. yd.)
Or, simply input your dimensions in our handy calculator below, then click “calculate” to find the number of cubic yards.
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Lester Langlais Says:
January 3rd, 2017 at 12:27 pm
Infotrmative Love it . I would like to know how much material do you need for a cubic yard of concrete thanks
Lindsay Hughes Says:
December 22nd, 2016 at 9:03 am
Cheryl, 12 divided by 6 is 2.
6 divided by 12 is .5.
Cheryl Delorfano Says:
December 21st, 2016 at 10:10 am
6divided by 12 is not 0.5!
It’s 2!
A Says:
October 31st, 2016 at 9:04 am
i want to cast a slab of concrete 10 ft in lengthx 6ft in width x 3 inches thick,how much concrete it would take for that space,can you give me details on how to do the calculation on how much sand and to to buy?
thank you in Advance
Bev Says:
October 21st, 2016 at 3:03 pm
Thank you for the calculator. It saved me a lot of brain pain trying to calculate gravel for my driveway!
JOE Says:
August 31st, 2016 at 6:35 pm
how can i calculate in millimeter all of the measure of the house L 16.5m W 9m thickness is 500 mm
Dave Downs Says:
August 21st, 2016 at 8:35 am
We have a wall behind the tub and planning to put river rock on it . It is 6ft wide and 7 ft high . The rock comes in cubic ft ,what would i need to cover it . Thanks
Richard Says:
May 28th, 2016 at 8:19 pm
Thanks for the calculator. it showed me the error in my own calculations. on a 16’x4’x30. ( thought I only needed 4 cu yards. boy I was off, it also allowed me to confirm the amount of soil that was delivered was what I ordered and I wasn’t shorted).
Serena Says:
May 2nd, 2016 at 7:13 pm
For a free waste pickup we have old railroad ties. The requirements are 7 cubic yards per pick up. Can you please tell my how many feet long, wide and high this stack of wood should be to stay within 7 cubic yards?
Thank you
Chris Miller Says:
April 10th, 2016 at 8:23 am
Thanks for this calculator, this is exactly what we needed…
Building 8 raised bed for a garden, 8×4 each, 10″ deep= 1 cubic yard each.
Thanks agian,
C+C
Lindsay Hughes Says:
March 16th, 2016 at 2:54 pm
We’ll get it fixed as soon as we can. Thanks for letting us know!
chrus Says:
March 11th, 2016 at 8:27 am
The calculator does not work? When you hit calculate.
Rodney Says:
March 5th, 2016 at 10:29 am
Building a raised garden for my son. Need to figure out cubic yards for fill dirt!!!!! Thanks
Kyle Says:
February 25th, 2016 at 5:09 pm
I need to level out back yard but still keep a slope for run off. Currently back slope is 26″ in 45′. Way too much can’t keep grass growing. Yard is 150′ x 55′. I want to go with a 1″ slope every 10′ distance. I have run a string line and from one side set at 4″ to other side is 22″ ( this is 55′ wide). Wondering how many yards of top soil need to complete yard
Shari Says:
January 5th, 2016 at 8:58 am
I am moving and the logistics person sent me this message:. So the height of the container/trailer is about 7’ 4” the pallet can go up to 6’8 inches and the pallets are 4’x4’x4’ perfect square. You can obtain the cubic feet by using LxWxH and divide by 1728. Let me know if you need any help calculating the sizes.
What?! Why would I divide by 1728?
Ben Erickson Says:
January 5th, 2016 at 11:03 am
Reuben,
The 1.27 cubic yard figure is correct. You can’t add the lengths and widths up when calculating cubic yards. For an explanation of why, see my comment reply above in yellow on November 15, 2015.
Reuben Says:
January 4th, 2016 at 12:48 pm
I have 6 different slabs to pour, using your calculator,
1st slab= 4’x6’x4″=.29 cubic yds
2nd slab= 3’x4’x4″=.14 cubic yds
3rd slab= 4’x7’x4″=.34 cubic yds
4th slab= 3’x4’x4″=.14 cubic yds
5th slab= 3’x5’x4″=.18 cubic yds
6th slab= 3’x5’x4″=.18 cubic yds
Add all these up and I come up with 1.27 cubic yards. When I calculate all the length and width up, I come up with a different cubic yard amount. When I add the above amount of length 20x31x4″ I come up to 7.65 cubic yds. What am I doing wrong?
Carolyn Says:
December 31st, 2015 at 11:11 pm
Thanks for the calculator! I must have been doing the math wrong earlier, because your calculator really helped me figure out how much potting soil I will need for my new garden beds.
Joe Dvoracsek Says:
December 12th, 2015 at 8:58 pm
Just what I needed for a new Driveway costing exercise.
Thank you. I’ll keep it in my “Favourites” File
Stacey Says:
December 3rd, 2015 at 2:22 pm
Very helpful I can never remember the formulas. Thank you
Don Says:
November 25th, 2015 at 10:54 pm
Very Helpful.
Thanks
Mike Says:
November 15th, 2015 at 12:23 pm
Please ignore the above post, I figured out the math. Thank you.
Ben Erickson Says:
November 15th, 2015 at 8:38 pm
Mike,
You calculation of 3.03 cubic yards is correct (actually it would be closer to 3.037 cubic yards if it’s not rounded off). The calculation won’t be correct if you add all the widths together and all the lengths together and multiply the two totals because you’ll be doubling one of the dimensions. If you simplify the dimensions and draw it out on paper, you’ll see why. Say you have two 5′ x 10′ slabs. If you calculate each one separately you get 5×10=50 for each slab and 50+50=100 for both. If you added the widths together and the lengths together, then multiplied them, you’d get (5+5=10 and 10+10=20 and 10×20=200 for them both). The reason this is not correct is that when you combine the two slabs, one of the dimensions (either width or length) will adjoin the other one and cancel itself out, so you’d have either a 5′ x 20 slab or a 10’x 10′ slab, each of which equals 100 (5×20=100).
Mike Says:
November 15th, 2015 at 10:37 am
Great summary and calculator!! Thanks for the post.
I have three sections to fill with gravel:
1) 92′(L) x 3.5′(W) x 2″ (T)
2) 20′(L) x 5′(W) x 2″ (T)
3) 14′(L) x 5′(W) x 2″ (T)
If I calculate each section separately and sum of the cubic yards I get 3.03 cubic yards. If I sum up the L & W of all 3 sections then calculate the cubic yards (126’x13.5’x 2″), I get 10.5 cubic yards.
I expected to get the same total regardless of calculating each section separately or in aggregate and now not sure what the correct number is. Thanks again!!
Wes Says:
October 31st, 2015 at 11:12 am
I have a cone of gravel. We are trying to find out the tonnage in the cone. The cone circumference is 400 feet. The height is 40 feet. Our calculation for the radius is 63.7 feet (but, could be wrong). What is the volume of the cone in yards?
Norma Moss Says:
October 20th, 2015 at 9:30 am
I am replacing a section of patio:L ength 14.5 X W 11.5 X H 6″
Could you please calculate for me. I have but not sure how you get the cubic yards. My husband just recent passed away and the neighbors are helping just wanted to be sure on the amount of cement ordered.
Krishna Murthy Says:
October 10th, 2015 at 2:26 am
I would like to know the details of area diagram as my plot area is 38.7 feet width in south face, 38.2 feet in North face, 60.10 feet in East face and 61.3 feet in West face thus total area is 259 yards kindly let me know my diagram
bruno Says:
September 21st, 2015 at 1:05 pm
I would like to know how many yards of dirt or tons 1 yard = 1 ton of material into one acre at 40 ft high, 210 long, 210 wide, at 40 ft high?
Ronald Robinson Says:
September 16th, 2015 at 7:16 pm
WOW, how easy was that. I sure could not come up with the right amount. Thank You
Chris Says:
September 3rd, 2015 at 7:50 pm
Thanks for the info, sure came in handy. I’m saving the calculator, gonna make me look smart for my son. lol.
Ben Erickson Says:
August 25th, 2015 at 12:58 pm
Dede,
It would be 72.6 cubic yards (220 x 0.33 = 72.6).
Dede Says:
August 25th, 2015 at 8:53 am
If you have 220 sq Yds x 12″ deep, how many cubic yards is that?
Jim Saxon Says:
August 24th, 2015 at 9:18 pm
Wow, the calculator really saved me a lot of time. Thanks!
Ben Erickson Says:
August 23rd, 2015 at 7:49 pm
Neville,
To figure out the cubic yards it would take to fill you trench, just put the numbers in the length, width, and height fields in the calculator, then click “calculate”.
Neville Says:
August 23rd, 2015 at 10:55 am
How to calculate for a trench that is 12″ in width 18″ in depth and 21′ long
yvonne Says:
August 21st, 2015 at 12:47 pm
Building a 2508 sq. ft. home in a flood plain and need to build up 2 feet. How many cubic feet or yards would be needed for fill on this size house?
Sandy Says:
August 19th, 2015 at 9:36 am
This was so easy to use and I thank you very much!
RYAN Says:
August 14th, 2015 at 12:25 pm
I calculated using your calculator it just seems to be quite more than I thought unless im doing something wrong im waterproofing my basement instead of fill it back in with dirt. im using 6a stone please help me. trench is 3 ft wide 7 ft deep and 192 ft around house. how many yards of stone will I need?
Ronald Harper Says:
August 12th, 2015 at 1:51 pm
My daughter is putting up a good size playground in her back yard. Dimensions of mulch area is 30ft.x 20ft. And laying 3″ deep. How many cubic YARDS of mulch do they need and any economical suggestions for material? Thank you.
Stephanie Says:
August 7th, 2015 at 12:47 pm
How many yards of sand will it take to fill a horseshoe pit 9x9x6
Trish Horn Says:
August 3rd, 2015 at 5:08 pm
Need to fill an area behind a new retaining wall on sloped land. Leanth is 44 feet from existing level of yard to new fence. Wall is 49 feet across. Highth of wall is 5 feet. Now I failed math miserably so I have come nowhere close to figuring this out. Please help!!!!!
Ben Erickson Says:
July 28th, 2015 at 4:25 pm
Kisha,
Our cubic yard calculator measures the volume of the material as delivered. If you compact it, you would probably need more.
Kisha Says:
July 28th, 2015 at 3:05 pm
Does this calculation for cubic yards take into a count that the gravel will be compacted?
John Says:
July 16th, 2015 at 6:16 pm
Great. Easy to use and fast thanks for the support
LPowers Says:
July 15th, 2015 at 3:10 pm
I need to figure out how many cubic yards of dirt I need to order to fill in where my above ground pool was. It is 27′ round and about 3 inches deep.
Thanks,
L Powers
Marcia Seehorn Says:
June 29th, 2015 at 2:28 pm
My Grandson cut or trimmed my pink camelia from 9′ down to 4′. It was very healthy. Is there any thing I can do to help it live and grow or will it just replace with new limbs?? Thanks Marcia
Ben Erickson Says:
June 29th, 2015 at 9:00 am
Hi Bill,
Glad to hear you found our cubic yard calculator useful. Thanks for the feedback!
Bill Says:
June 29th, 2015 at 1:40 am
Thanks for this tool. I have several areas around my house to fill with rock. This tool was so helpful. So glad you were able to share it.
Carlos Garcia Says:
April 27th, 2015 at 9:08 am
Thanks for the crash course – You make it simple and easy to understand.
chris Says:
April 14th, 2015 at 7:45 pm
I’m building a flower box that is 36ft long 46in wide and 2in deep how much cubic yards would I need to fill it
Dan Mahoney Says:
March 27th, 2015 at 5:39 pm
Simple and straightforward,
Jerry Hilbert Says:
March 9th, 2015 at 10:00 am
THANKS I LIKE IT
charles farrel;l Says:
February 14th, 2015 at 3:01 pm
how much pit-run gravel to fill a hole 14in x15 in x 72 in
Alex Says:
January 26th, 2015 at 11:23 pm
Thank you!
Well explained, great samples.
And if math is not your thing, just use the calculator provided.
Cosmas Okolie-Alfred Says:
January 10th, 2015 at 10:24 am
Am stockpiling sand on a land That’s length is 1000 meters by 500 meters wide, and height of the sand is 30 ft. How do I calculate the amount of sand in place…
Doug Says:
January 7th, 2015 at 9:45 pm
Thank You This Will Be Printed And Placed In My Cheat Sheet Folder Again Thank You
Steven R. Marshall Says:
January 5th, 2015 at 2:31 pm
Very informative and much appreciated
Thank you!
Fatkid Says:
December 16th, 2014 at 6:02 pm
I should have payed better attention in school.thanks for making my project easier
Myles Says:
November 26th, 2014 at 11:10 pm
Irene I think you will need about 115 dump truck loads each one will have about 15 yards a truck if it’s a random ten wheel truck
Irene Lackey Says:
November 6th, 2014 at 11:06 pm
I live in a hillside area and they are building a lot down the street from me. They expect to remove 1,735 cubic yards of earth and anticipate taking 20 full days to do so. Can anyone give me an idea of how many builder’s dump trucks will be passing by my house in total?
Ralph Says:
November 2nd, 2014 at 12:52 pm
Calculate the volume of a cylinder. It works out to 1.4 cubic feet of sand for every foot of length of the casing. A yard of sand is 27 cubic feet, divided by the 1.4 cu/ft = 19 feet of 16″ casing can be filled with a yard of sand.
Thomas Rench Says:
October 17th, 2014 at 4:16 pm
I am filling 16 in. casing or Pilon with sand how do I come up with the yards of Sand I need to do this Job
John Says:
September 11th, 2014 at 10:19 am
Thank you. I’ve been calculating these measurements every few years. But not enough to hold the formulas in my head. Now I have to figure out the square yards of the trapazoid for this project. Thank you again.
robert cap Says:
October 19th, 2012 at 8:26 am
awesome so easy , thank you