Python Convert String to Float

1. Introduction

In Python, data types are dynamic, but when it comes to numerical computations or data processing, you may need to explicitly convert strings to floating-point numbers. This could be the case when extracting numerical values from text files, user input, or web responses. This post explains how to convert a string that represents a floating-point number into a float in Python.


String to float conversion in Python is the process of transforming a string containing a decimal point and numeric characters (such as '123.45') into a floating-point number (float). This is performed using Python's built-in float() function, which can convert integers and strings to floating-point numbers.

2. Program Steps

1. Have a string that represents a floating-point number.

2. Use the float() function to convert the string to a float.

3. Handle any potential ValueError that occurs if the string cannot be converted to a float.

4. Use the converted float for calculations or any other desired purpose.

3. Code Program

# Step 1: Initialize a string that represents a floating-point number
float_string = '123.45'

# Step 2: Use the float() function to convert the string to a float
float_value = float(float_string)

# Step 3: Print the float value

# Handling a case where the conversion might fail
    # Trying to convert a non-numeric string will raise a ValueError
    invalid_float_string = 'abc'
    invalid_float_value = float(invalid_float_string)
except ValueError as e:
    print(f"Error: {e}")


Error: could not convert string to float: 'abc'


1. float_string is initialized with the string '123.45', which looks like a floating-point number.

2. float_value is the variable that stores the floating-point number after conversion using the float() function.

3. The print() function is called to output float_value, confirming the successful conversion of the string to a float.

4. The try block is used to demonstrate error handling when invalid_float_string does not represent a valid floating-point number. This results in a ValueError, which is caught and printed as an error message, showing a robust way to handle conversion errors.