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Avoir chaud / froid = To be hot / cold

Look at these cases:

J'ai chaud. 
I'm hot.


informal:

Tu as froid?
Are you cold?

 

The verb avoir (to have) is used to express being cold and hot (and not être / to be as in English), effectively "I have hot"!

Note that even if the person is female, the masculine adjective chaud is used, not chaude :
you cannot say J'ai chaude.

 

 

Learn more about these related French grammar topics

Examples and resources


Tu as froid?
Are you cold?


J'ai chaud. 
I'm hot.


Vous avez froid
You are cold



Q&A

Judy

Kwiziq community member

24 August 2017

2 replies

Hello Aurélie, I noticed the "L'eau est froide" in one of the quizzes.

Is there a tip for knowing when to use être (and the feminine form of the adjective)?

Ron

Kwiziq community member

24 August 2017

24/08/17

Bonjour Judy,
While you addressed your question to Aurélie, know that I am not attempting to answer for her as that would be uncool.
In your example, it says the water (a feminine noun, hence the use of the feminine form of the adjective) is cold. In this case the use of être instead of avoir is correct.
Here is the part of the lesson that addresses the use of avoir:
The verb avoir (to have) is used to express being cold and hot (and not être / to be as in English), effectively "I have hot"!
Note that even if the person is female, the masculine adjective chaud is used, not chaude :
you cannot say J'ai chaude.
It can be seen from the lesson that when one speaks of their perception of hot and cold then the use of avoir is needed, i.e. J'ai chaud, J'ai froid.
So, the takeaway is this, when speaking of a person, the verb avoir is used; however, when speaking about water, coffee, and other items that are hot or cold, excluding the weather, être is used. Weather expressions have their own verb, faire, i.e. il fait chaud, il fait froid, etc.
J'espère que cela vous aiderait et merci de me permettre à répondre à votre question.
Bonne chance,

Judy

Kwiziq community member

5 September 2017

5/09/17

Thanks Ron. That was a good explanation and I hope I'll get it right every time now!

Athina

Kwiziq community member

18 May 2017

1 reply

When it wrong the " I am cold" why is learning such sentence then ?!

J'ai froid J'ai chaud is only for excersise ?

Gruff

Kwiziq language super star

18 May 2017

18/05/17

Hi Athina - I'm not sure if I've understood what you are saying. "J'ai froid/chaud" isn't wrong it's the correct way to express "I'm cold/hot". Can you elaborate what you are struggling with?

Randa

Kwiziq community member

5 August 2016

1 reply

the note says no feminine for chaud, what about froid....can I say Elle a froide

Laura

Kwiziq language super star

5 August 2016

5/08/16

No, for the same reason as I explained here: https://french.kwiziq.com/questions/view/is-tort-raison-for-feminine-and-masculine

This applies to all expressions with avoir + noun that are equivalent to "to be + adjective" : avoir chaud, froid, soif, faim, etc.

Advika

Kwiziq community member

11 July 2016

1 reply

Je suis chaud

Je suis froid

Jim

Kwiziq community member

6 December 2016

6/12/16

As I understand it, if you use être you are describing a "state of being".
So to say "Je suis chaud" could convey a sexual connotation. Similarly with "Je suis froid".
That is why in the company of native french speakers you may sense that they seem a bit embarrassed.

Advika

Kwiziq community member

11 July 2016

1 reply

Je ne suis pas froid

Aurélie

Kwiziq language super star

11 July 2016

11/07/16

Bonjour Advika !


Unfortunately, this sentence is not correct in French, because as the lesson states, you will not use "être" (to be) in French, but "avoir" (to have) in this case, as such:
"Je n'ai pas froid"


I hope that's helpful!
À bientôt !

Advika

Kwiziq community member

11 July 2016

1 reply

Je ne suis pas chaud

Aurélie

Kwiziq language super star

11 July 2016

11/07/16

Bonjour Advika !

Unfortunately, this sentence is not correct in French, because as the lesson states, you will not use "être" (to be) in French, but "avoir" (to have) in this case, as such:
"Je n'ai pas chaud"

I hope that's helpful!
À bientôt !

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