What Is an RVT File?

You can open or convert RVT design projects with various Autodesk programs

What to Know

  • An RVT file is a Revit project file.
  • Open one for free with Autodesk Viewer; Revit and Architecture work, too.
  • Convert to DWG, IFC, PDF, NWD, and more with those apps and others.

This article describes what an RVT file is and how to open or convert one on your computer.

What Is an RVT File?

A file with the .RVT file extension is a project file used by Autodesk’s Revit BIM (Building Information Modeling) program. 

Inside an RVT file is all the architectural details related to the design, such as a 3D model, elevation details, floor plans, and project settings.

RVT is also short for technology terms like remote video terminal, route verification test, and requirements verification and testing. However, none of those terms have anything to do with the file format described on this page.

How to Open an RVT File

The Revit program from Autodesk is used to create RVT files, so it can open files in this format, too. If you don't already have that software, and you're not planning on buying it, you can still open the RVT file for free with the Revit 30-day trial.

Autodesk’s Architecture and MEP, both included in AutoCAD, is another way to open an RVT file. It's also a paid program, but you can use it free for a month if you download the AutoCAD trial.

If you’d rather not go the traditional route of installing a program on your computer, you can view the RVT file online instead, with the free Autodesk Viewer. The same tool supports similar formats, too, like DWG, STEP, etc., and makes sharing the RVT file easy.

RVT File Open in Autodesk Viewer
RVT file open in Autodesk Viewer.

To use Autodesk Viewer as a free RVT viewer, select Sign up for free on the top of the website to make your free user account, and then upload the file from the Design Views page.

How to Convert RVT Files

Revit lets you convert RVT to DWG or DXF via Export > CAD Formats. That program can also save the file to the DWF format.

Navisworks (also from Autodesk) is one way to convert RVT to NWD. If you have that software, you can save the Revit file to the Navisworks file format and then open the file with their free Navisworks Freedom tool.

To convert RVT to IFC, you might have luck with the online Revit to IFC converter tool. However, this might not be a great option if your file is really large, since you have to both upload the file to that website and then download the converted IFC file when it's done.

An RVT to PDF conversion is also possible if you use a PDF printer. Open the file in any program that supports the format and will let you print the model, and then when you go to print, choose the PDF printer instead of your real printer.

Revit Family file conversions are also supported. To turn your RVT file into an RFA file, first export the model to SAF. Then, make a new RFA file and import that SAT file into it.

RVT to SKP is another conversion you might need to perform. One way to is to install rvt2skp (it works with Revit), or you can convert to a SketchUp file manually:

  1. Go to Revit’s Export > Options > Export Setups DWG/DXF menu.

  2. Select ACIS solids from the Solids tab, and then select OK.

  3. Go to Export > CAD Formats > DWG.

  4. Now you can import the file into SketchUp and use SketchUp’s options to convert the file to any format supported by that software.

Still Can’t Open It?

The most likely reason for why your file won’t open with Revit or the other programs mentioned above, is because you’re misreading the file extension. It’s really easy to confuse another format with a Revit project because some file extensions look an awful lot alike, even when they’re not at all related.

For example, at first glance, RVG looks like RVT. In reality, those are x-ray images taken by dental imaging sensors. You can open one with the Aeskulap DICOM viewer.

RVL is another example of a suffix that closely resembles RVT, but you need muvee Reveal to open one of these movie project files. And yet another is ReadWrite Think Timeline's RWT file.

If your file does end in RVT, but it has nothing to do with Revit, open it with a text editor. It’s possible it's just a plain text file that can be read easily with any text file viewer. If not, you might find some kind of descriptive information within the text that can help you figure out what format it’s in, which you can then use to narrow down your research in finding a compatible program that will open it.

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