Difference Between Pounds and Kilos

Pounds vs Kilos

It is easy to remember the difference between pounds and kilos as a ratio of 2.2:1. That is, 2.2 pounds is equal to 1 kilo. In other words, 2.2 pounds are in a kilogram, or else, we can say 0.45 kilo is in a pound. But, this is only an approximation. Basically, both Pounds and Kilos, or Kilograms, are units of measurement of weight. Pound is the imperial system of measurement of weight. Since the adoption of the SI system in 1959, the world has moved over to kilogram as the unit of measurement of weight. However, there are countries like the US and UK that are still using the imperial system of weights containing pounds and stone. The exact relation between a pound and a kilogram will be discussed in this article apart from some interesting facts.

What is a Kilo?

Kilo is, in fact, a prefix but, in weight measurement, it refers to kilogram. The symbol ‘kg’ indicates kilos or kilograms. Kilogram is the American English spelling while kilogramme is the British English spelling. Kilogram is the standard unit of measurement of weight in the SI system where the weight of the International Prototype Kilogram is taken to be the mass of one liter of water. In reality, kilogram is a unit of mass and not weight as weight of a person is the product of his mass and the gravity of earth at that place. IPK is a cylindrical figure made of Iridium-Platinum and weighs exactly 1 kg. This is the primary standard of measurement for any mass in the world. It is kept in a vault at International Bureau of Weights and Measures in France. When measured with standard,

1kg = 2.20462 lb

So an object that has mass of 1000kg is 2204.62 pounds. 100kg is 220.462 pounds.

Difference Between Pounds and Kilos

What is a Pound?

Pound is one of the popular units of measurement of mass in the Imperial system (other two being ounce and stone). It is also known as a unit of mass. Since pound is also the unit of currency in Britain, to differentiate it from currency pound, the abbreviation of pound (weight) has been chosen as ‘lb’. This abbreviation has to do with this unit having its association with the Roman Libra. There are other abbreviations that are used for pounds such as ‘lbm, and lbm.’ As there are many different versions of a pound used in different countries, the pound as the world knows has been termed as International Avoirdupois Pound which is equal to 0.45359237 kilograms. As this is one conversion that is difficult to remember, one can use a simpler conversion which is a rough value of the pound.

1 lb= 450g

So, 100lb is 45.3592kg. 1000 lb is 453.592kg.

What is the difference between Pounds and Kilos?

• Both pounds and kilos are units of mass. These are both accepted measurements for measuring mass in US and the countries of the Commonwealth. They are actually mentioned in Acts. For example, the United Kingdom implemented the use of international pound in the Weights and Measures Act 1963.

• Pound uses the abbreviation ‘lb.’ other than this the abbreviations ‘lbm’ and ‘lbm’ are also used for a pound. For a kilo, the abbreviation ‘kg’ is used. Both of these abbreviations come at the end of the number indicating the mass.

• Pound is always pronounced in whole as a pound. However, kilogram is the full term for kilo. However, you will find that people using kilo instead of kilogram most of the time.

• Pound is spelt in the same way in British and American English. However, kilo is spelt as kilogram in American English and kilogramme in British English.

• Kilo is now used more as the measurement unit in most countries. Pound is still used much in US and UK.

• Though both pounds and kilos are known as units of mass, you will see that in day to day life they are used as measurement units for weight. Every item that you buy in the market has a ‘kg’ or ‘lb’ number in front of the word ‘weight.’

• Finally, 1lb = 0.45359237 kilograms or 1kg = 2.20462 lb.


Images Courtesy:

  1. 1 kilo by Martinvl (CC BY-SA 3.0)