How to Convert Degrees Minutes Seconds to Decimal Degrees in Excel

To denote angular dimensions, degrees, minutes, and seconds are commonly used (DMS). Because one-minute equals 60 seconds and one degree equals 60 minutes, you may describe angular observations in degrees and decimal fractions of degrees to simplify mathematical calculations. This article explains some customized functions to convert degrees, minutes, seconds to decimal degrees in Excel.


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2 Ways to Convert Degrees Minutes Seconds to Decimal Degrees in Excel

We’ll utilize Excel’s built-in options first, then use a formula to convert the degrees to decimal format in the sections below. Later on, we’ll use VBA code to create a custom option for decimal conversion. Here is an example data set that we will use to accomplish it.

Sample Data

1. Apply a Formula to Convert Degrees Minutes Seconds to Decimal Degrees in Excel

We’ll start by using a formula to convert degrees, minutes, and seconds to decimal format. To do so, we must first remove the degrees, minutes, and seconds symbols before using the formula. Follow the instructions below to do so.

Step 1:

  • First of all, copy the degree (°)

Apply a Formula to Convert Degrees Minutes Seconds to Decimal Degrees in Excel

Step 2:

  • Select the cells.

Apply a Formula to Convert Degrees Minutes Seconds to Decimal Degrees in Excel

Step 3:

  • Click on the Data.
  • Then, select the Text to Columns.

Apply a Formula to Convert Degrees Minutes Seconds to Decimal Degrees in Excel

Step 4:

  • Choose the Delimited.
  • After that, click on the Next.

Apply a Formula to Convert Degrees Minutes Seconds to Decimal Degrees in Excel

Step 5:

  • From the options, click on the Other.

Apply a Formula to Convert Degrees Minutes Seconds to Decimal Degrees in Excel

Step 6:

  • Paste the degree (°).
  • Then, click on the Next.

Apply a Formula to Convert Degrees Minutes Seconds to Decimal Degrees in Excel

Step 7:

  • After that, click on the Finish.

Apply a Formula to Convert Degrees Minutes Seconds to Decimal Degrees in Excel

Step 8:

  • Therefore, you see that degrees are separated and the symbols are removed.

Apply a Formula to Convert Degrees Minutes Seconds to Decimal Degrees in Excel

Step 9:

  • To remove the minutes (’) symbol, repeat the previous steps after copying the minutes (’).
  • Simply, paste the minutes (’) symbol in the box.
  • Then, click on the Next.

Apply a Formula to Convert Degrees Minutes Seconds to Decimal Degrees in Excel

Step 10:

  • As before, click on the Finish.

Apply a Formula to Convert Degrees Minutes Seconds to Decimal Degrees in Excel

Step 11:

  • Again, for eliminating the seconds (”) symbol, paste the symbol in the box.
  • After that, select the Next.

Apply a Formula to Convert Degrees Minutes Seconds to Decimal Degrees in Excel

Step 12:

  • Finally, click on the Finish option again as we do before.

Apply a Formula to Convert Degrees Minutes Seconds to Decimal Degrees in Excel

  • As a result, the degrees will be separated into degrees, minutes, and seconds without the symbols.

Apply a Formula to Convert Degrees Minutes Seconds to Decimal Degrees in Excel

Step 13:

  • Type the formula in cell  F5  to convert the degrees, minutes, and seconds into decimal degrees.
=B5+C5/60+D5/3600

Apply a Formula to Convert Degrees Minutes Seconds to Decimal Degrees in Excel

Step 14:

  • Press Enter to see the conversion.

Apply a Formula to Convert Degrees Minutes Seconds to Decimal Degrees in Excel

Step 15:

  • Use the AutoFill tool to autofill the next cells.

Apply a Formula to Convert Degrees Minutes Seconds to Decimal Degrees in Excel

Read More: How to Convert Hours and Minutes to Decimal in Excel (2 Cases)


Similar Readings:


2. Run a VBA Code to Convert Degrees Minutes Seconds to Decimal Degrees in Excel

When converting degrees to decimal fractions, VBA offers a handy option. We’ll create a custom function to do the conversion in a matter of seconds, regardless of the symbols involved. Follow the steps outlined below to complete it.

Step 1:

  • Firstly, press  Alt  + F11  to start a Macro.
  • Click on the Insert.
  • Then choose the Module.

Run a VBA

Step 2:

  • Paste the following VBA.
Function Convert_to_Decimal(Degree As String) As Double
    'At first Declare the variables
   Dim deg As Double
   Dim min As Double
   Dim sec As Double
   ' Replace Degree set degree to value before "°"
   Degree = Replace(Degree, "~", "°")
   deg = CDbl(Left(Degree, InStr(1, Degree, "°") - 1))
   ' between "°" and "'" set minutes to a value
   ' as for the Degree variable divided by
   ' 60. Val is a function that turns a text string into a number.
   min = CDbl(Mid(Degree, InStr(1, Degree, "°") + 1, _
             InStr(1, Degree, "'") - InStr(1, Degree, "°") - 1)) / 60
   ' Set the second counter to the number to the right of "'," which is
   ' changed to a number, and after that divided by 3600
   sec = CDbl(Mid(Degree, InStr(1, Degree, "'") + _
           1, Len(Degree) - InStr(1, Degree, "'") - 1)) / 3600
   Convert_to_Decimal = deg + min + sec
End Function
  • Save the program and press  F5  to run it.

Run a VBA

Step 3:

  • Therefore, you will see a new function will appear named Convert_to_Decimal. Simply, write the following formula.
=Convert_to_Decimal(B5)

Run a VBA

  • As a result, you will get the changed value of the degree.

Run a VBA

Step 4:

  • Finally, use the AutoFill tool to fill the next cells.

Run a VBA

Read More: How to Convert Text to Number with Excel VBA (3 Examples with Macros)


Conclusion

To summarize, I hope you now have a firm grasp on how to convert degrees minutes seconds to decimal degrees in Excel. These methods should all be taught and used to your data. Examine the practice book and apply what you’ve learned. We’re inspired to keep producing seminars like this because of your important support.

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us. Please share your thoughts in the comments section below.

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Bhubon Costa

Bhubon Costa

Myself, Bhubon Costa, an engineer, is currently employed with Exceldemy as an Excel & VBA Content Developer. I appreciate solving analytical difficulties, finding practical answers, and, for the most part, I enjoy taking on new tasks. I write articles on Exceldemy about various ways to get out of Microsoft Excel's stuck conditions. My passion is to leave my mark on the world through my work and to have an impact on the community who benefit from it.

2 Comments
  1. Hi I am trying to use Convert_to_Decimal in VB. I have also tried the function from the Microsoft website, which appears to be the same coding. I am unable to get it to work, it returns a #VALUE. I don’t have a great understanding of the code and am wondering if other users have come across this issue and there is a solution.
    Could you help me with this issue.

    Much appreciation
    Justin

    • Greetings Justin,
      #VALUE error occurs when the function doesn’t find any recognized source value. It might have occurred if the degree values were not in degree formats. Follow the steps below to convert the value into degree format first and then apply the function Convert_to_Decimal with our VBA.

      Step 1:
      Add a degree (°) symbol after a number with a keyboard shortcut.

      Alt + 0176

      (Example: 32°).

      Step 2:
      Add a minute (‘) symbol after the minute’s value with the apostrophe (‘) key from the keyboard (Example: 16’).

      Step 3:
      Add a second (“) symbol after the second’s value by pressing

      SHIFT + Apostrophe (')

      (Example: 48″)

      Step 4:
      Your degree format will show like (32°16’48”).
      Finally, apply the Convert_to_Decimal function to the degree value.

      Hope this will work with your issue. You can also mail us the Excel file. We will provide the Excel file with the required solution. Please give us your further feedback.

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