Convert Character String with AM & PM to Date & Time in R (Example)
This tutorial illustrates how to remove AM and PM from a date and time object in the R programming language.
The tutorial will contain this:
Let’s dive right into the example:
Creation of Example Data
The following data is used as a basis for this R tutorial:
my_dt <- c("5/02/2022 11:59:22 PM", # Create example dates & times "7/12/2024 07:15:59 AM", "3/10/2022 10:12:03 PM", "5/09/2023 08:11:27 PM") my_dt # Print example dates & times #  "5/02/2022 11:59:22 PM" "7/12/2024 07:15:59 AM" "3/10/2022 10:12:03 PM" #  "5/09/2023 08:11:27 PM"
The previous output of the RStudio console shows that our example data is a vector containing four different dates and times. As you can see, our data contains AM and PM specifications.
Let’s also check the data class of our example vector:
class(my_dt) # Check class of data #  "character"
Currently, our data is formatted as a character string.
Example: Drop AM & PM from Dates & Times Using parse_date_time() Function of lubridate Package
This example demonstrates how to transform a character string containing dates and times with AM and PM to a proper date and time object.
We first have to install and load the lubridate package:
install.packages("lubridate") # Install & load lubridate package library("lubridate")
In the next step, we can convert our character strings to dates and times without the AM and PM components.
For this, we have to specify %I for the hours, and %p for the AM and PM component:
my_dt_new <- parse_date_time(my_dt, # Remove AM & PM from dates & times "%d/%m/%y %I:%M:%S %p") my_dt_new # Print updated dates #  "2022-02-05 23:59:22 UTC" "2024-12-07 07:15:59 UTC" #  "2022-10-03 22:12:03 UTC" "2023-09-05 20:11:27 UTC"
As you can see, the format of our date and time elements has been changed: The AM and PM components have been dropped.
Let’s check the class of our updated data:
class(my_dt_new) # Check class of data #  "POSIXct" "POSIXt"
We have converted our character string to the POSIXct class. Looks good!
Video, Further Resources & Summary
Do you want to know more about the removal of AM and PM from a date and time object? Then you could watch the following video on my YouTube channel. I show the R syntax of this page in the video:
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In addition, you may want to have a look at the other tutorials that I have published on statisticsglobe.com:
- Convert POSIXct Date & Time to UNIX Epoch Timestamp
- Convert Data Frame with Date Column to Time Series Object
- Convert Character String to Variable Name
- Convert Character String to Date Object
- All R Programming Examples
In this R tutorial you have learned how to drop AM and PM from a date and time. Let me know in the comments below, if you have additional comments and/or questions.
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