Subtracting fractions calculator
Subtracting fractions involves finding a common denominator and then subtracting the numerators. The steps to subtract two fractions are as follows:
- Find a common denominator: Find a common multiple of the denominators of the two fractions. This will be the least common multiple (LCM) of the denominators.
- Convert the fractions: Rewrite each fraction with the common denominator. To do this, multiply the numerator and denominator of each fraction by the appropriate factor so that the denominators are the same.
- Subtract the numerators: Once the fractions have a common denominator, subtract the numerators and write the result over the common denominator.
- Simplify: Simplify the resulting fraction, if necessary, by reducing it to lowest terms.
For example, let’s subtract 1/3 from 2/5:
Step 1: Find a common denominator
The LCM of 3 and 5 is 15.
Step 2: Convert the fractions
Rewrite 1/3 as 5/15 and 2/5 as 6/15.
Step 3: Subtract the numerators
6/15 – 5/15 = 1/15
Step 4: Simplify
The result, 1/15, is already in lowest terms, so we’re done. Therefore, 2/5 – 1/3 = 1/15.