Units of Measure
Volume
Weight and Mass

How many kilograms are in a liter?

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2016-08-09 12:19:26
2016-08-09 12:19:26

A litre is a unit of volume and a kilogram is a unit of mass (weight). You can not directly equate different units of measurement.

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The Units are not compatible, It depends upon the substance. The weight of a liter of a substance varies with the substance and, to a small extent, its temperature. A liter of Mercury weighs much more than a liter of water.

A typical answer is: 1 liter of water "weighs" 1 kilogram, but don't forget it's water at 3.98 degrees Celsius or 39.164 degrees Fahrenheit.

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There are two problems with this common answer, which is why I am not just changing the answer.

1. The kilogram is not a unit of weight, it is a unit of mass. So it is incorrect to say that a liter of water weighs one kilogram. In fact one liter of pure water has a mass of one kilogram.

2. Technically this conversion is not exact since the density of water changes depending on it's state. Since a liter is a unit of volume, then, since water expands when frozen, a liter of solid ice has less mass than a liter of liquid water. Water is maximally dense at near 4 degrees Celsius.
These are two different variables Kilograms is unit of mass, and liter is a unit of volume. To relate both you would need to know the density of the material. (Density = mass in kg/ volume in Liters)

However, for water at 4ยฐC, one kilogram is the weight of 1 liter.

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