Education Technology

Solution 10357: Unexpected Results Returned Performing Temperature Conversions with Negative Numbers on the TI-85 and TI-86.

Why do I get the wrong answer when I perform metric conversions with negative numbers on my TI-85 or TI-86?

Conversions are of lower precedence than negation in the order of operations on the TI-85 and TI-86. Therefore, a conversion will be performed after negation. The negative number will need to be enclosed in parenthesis to receive the expected answer.

For example, -40°C>°F, will return -104 as the answer and (-40)°C>°F, will return -40, the expected answer.  Please refer to the steps provided below.

• Press [(] [(-)] [4] [0] [)]

• Press [2nd] [5] to access the conversion menu (CONV)

• Press [F5] for the TEMP menu

•Press [F1] for °C (Celsius), the conversion symbol will populate behind the °C

• Press [F2]  for °F (Fahrenheit), press [ENTER] and the result will be displayed.

Please see the TI-85 and TI-86 guidebooks for additional information.