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Last Updated: Wednesday 1st November 2023

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There aren't many easy tricks you can use to easily convert Fahrenheit to Celsius (or vice versa) in your head. Unless you're great with numbers, the formulas aren't exactly something you can you figure out using mental math. If you're not so great with numbers, there's calculators for that.

Or, if you feel so inclined, the formulas can be solved using Python. These formulas involve addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division -- some of which we've covered in previous tutorials, so if you need a refresher, be sure to check those out.

The Fahrenheit scale is most commonly used in the United States. On the other hand, Asia, Africa, and Europe measure temperature on the Celsius scale.

Let's start with the formula to convert Fahrenheit to Celsius. In order to do this, we'll need to subtract 32 from the Fahrenheit value, then divide that number by 1.8. See how it would look in Python below.

fahrenheit = 82

celsius = (fahrenheit - 32) / 1.8

So the output of the example above would be 27.8. So 82 degrees Fahrenheit is the equivalent of 27.8 degrees Celsius. Pretty neat.

It’s interesting to note that the Fahrenheit scale isn’t used in Germany, though named after German physicist Daniel G. Fahrenheit. Daniel invented the scale in 1725 to measure temperature using mercury thermometers (which he also invented).

But what if you want to convert Celsius to Fahrenheit? The method for doing so is pretty similar to to formula in the example above. To convert Celsius to Fahrenheit, you need to sort of do the opposite of what happens in the example above. The celsius needs to be multiplied by 1.8, and then add 32 to that number. See an example of how it should look in Python below.

celsius = 10

fahrenheit = (celsius * 1.8) + 32

This one might be a little bit easier to try to do in your head. The output of the example above would be 50 degrees Fahrenheit.

Many don’t know that the “Celsius” measure was originally called “Centigrade.” Later on, in 1742, the original name was changed to Celsius after Andres Celsius, the Swedish astronomer. 

Andres denoted 100 degrees as the freezing point instead of the boiling point, but after he passed away, 100 degrees was labeled the boiling point by a Swedish taxonomist. As you’d know, the scale has remained unchanged since. 

The formulas can be used to convert any numerical value from Fahrenheit to Celsius or from Celsius to Fahrenheit. As Python equations, they might come in handy or you may find them useful when writing functions for your projects. Play around with them on your own and see it helps you get any better at trying to make the conversions in your head!

Commonly Used Temperatures 

Celsius Fahrenheit
Normal body temperature 37 ºC 98.6 ºF
Absolute zero 99.9839 ºC 211.9694 ºF
Melting point -273.15 ºC -459.67 ºF
Boiling point 0 ºC 32 ºF
Real melting point -0.0001 ºC 31.99982 ºF