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Measuring Up

You have a 3 and a 5 litre water container, each container has no markings except for that which gives you its total volume. You also have a running tap. You must use the containers and the tap in such away as to exactly measure out 4 litres of water. How is this done?

see explanation.

There are two ways to solve this.

Method 1

Fill the 5 litre can from the tap Empty the 5 litre can into the 3 litre can – leaving 2 litres in the 5 litre can. Poor away the contents of the 3 litre can. Fill the 3 litre can with the 2 litres from the 5 litre can – leaving 2 litres in the 3 litre can. Fill the 5 litre can from the tap. Fill the remaining 1 litre space in the 3 litre can from the 5 litre can. Leaving 4 litres in the 5 litre can.

Method 2

Fill the 3 litre can from the tap. Empty the contents of the 3 litre can into the 5 litre can. Fill the 3 litre can from the tap. Empty the contents of the 3 litre can into the 5 litre can. – Leaving the 5 litre can full and 1 litre in the 3 litre can. Poor away the contents of the 5 litre can Poor the 1 litre from the 3 litre can into the 5 litre can. Fill the 3 litre can from the tap. Empty the contents of the 3 litre can into the 5 litre can. Leaving 4 litres in the 5 litre can.



fill both containers full of water, then tip to make each only have a half of it's water because 1.5+2.5 equals 4


Here's a simpler way (and doesn't waste as much water): Fill up the 3 litre container till it is full. Pour it into the 5 litre container. Then start filling both containers at the same time until the 5 litre is full. Pour enough from the 5 litre into the 3 litre to make the 3 litre container full (1 litre). You are then left with 4 litres inside the 5 litre container. :D


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over 9 years ago
Difficulty 3.1 ?

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