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How to change a digital thermometer to read fahrenheit

Updated February 21, 2017

Readings from digital thermometers can often be converted between different temperature-measuring units, such as Celsius and Fahrenheit. Especially if you live in the United States, readings in Fahrenheit could be more useful than those in Celsius. Even if your thermometer does not offer readings in Fahrenheit, calculating the conversion yourself requires only a few moments of your time.

Read the user's manual for your device to see if your digital thermometer is capable of producing readings for multiple units of measure. Follow the directions to change your settings to Fahrenheit. The steps you need to take will depend on the model of your thermometer.

If you cannot locate your user's manual, check to see if your device has a button to change the units of its readings. Buttons that toggle between Fahrenheit and Celsius are especially common in cooking thermometers. Browse the settings menu on your thermometer to locate further options for selecting units of your choice.

Calculate between Fahrenheit and Celsius yourself if your digital thermometer does not have the capacity to do so. To convert a reading in Celsius to Fahrenheit, multiply your reading by 1.8 and add 32. For example, if your thermometer reads 45 degrees C, your reading in Fahrenheit would be (45 x 1.8 = 81 + 32) or 45 degrees C.

Verify your calculation with an online temperature converter, such as the one at the National Weather Service Forecast Office at www.wbuf.noaa.gov/tempfc.htm

Things You'll Need

  • Digital thermometer
  • User's manual
  • Calculator
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About the Author

Heather Laurent is a nomadic writer and photographer who has worked and/or studied in over 10 different countries on five continents. She graduated magna cum laude from the University of Denver in 2007 with a B.A. in languages and international studies. Laurent's work has appeared in the reports and official websites of non-governmental organizations (NGOs) working in Zambia's refugee camps.