Autodesk's AutoCAD is a computer-aided design (CAD) application that provides precise tools to draw, edit and analyze a building project. Area calculation is important in the building industry to determine costs, structural loads and material quantities. Unlike hand drafting, AutoCAD calculates the area of drawn elements using an inquiry tool that quickly provides the calculations. All versions of AutoCAD require a drawn boundary around a building plan or part to provide the area of the element in question.
Open AutoCAD and select "Open" in the "File" menu. Navigate to your project file and click "Open."
Draw a polyline around the surface you would like to calculate; type "Pline" in the command line and click the vertices of the surface and type "C" to close the polyline. Press the "Enter" or "Return" key on your keyboard.
Calculate the area of the surface enclosed by the polyline; type "Measuregeom" in the command line, type "Ar" and press "Enter" or "Return" for the area calculation, and type "O" and press "Enter" or "Return" to select the object to measure. Select the polyline drawn in Step 2; the area and perimeter of the shape will appear in the command line.