Thread: [SOLVED] Difference of two Squares

1. [SOLVED] Difference of two Squares

Q.Use the difference of two squares method to factorise:

$(y + 4)^2 - (y - 2)^2$

the answer is $12(y + 1)$ but i have absolutely no idea how to work it out.

thanks

2. Originally Posted by waven
Q.Use the difference of two squares method to factorise:

$(y + 4)^2 - (y - 2)^2$

the answer is $12(y + 1)$ but i have absolutely no idea how to work it out.
Do you know how to factor a difference of squares? Use

$a^2-b^2=(a+b)(a-b).$

Compare this with what you have. Then you should see that $a=y+4$ and $b=y-2.$ Go ahead and substitute, and then simplify.

3. Originally Posted by Reckoner
Do you know how to factor a difference of squares? Use

$a^2-b^2=(a+b)(a-b).$

Compare this with what you have. Then you should see that $a=y+4$ and $b=y-2.$ Go ahead and substitute, and then simplify.
ok i got
$=(y+4+y-2)(y+4-y-2)$
$=(2y+2)(2)$
$=2y+4$
$=2(y+2)$
thats definately wrong, could someone perhaps show me the full working please from beginning to end?

4. Originally Posted by waven
ok i got
$=(y+4+y-2)(y+4-y-2)$
$=2y+2+2$
$=2y+4$
$=2(y+2)$
thats definately wrong, could someone perhaps show me the full working please from beginning to end?
You have said that $y+4-(y-2) = y+4 - y - 2$ which is incorrect. $(y+4)-(y-2) = y+4-y+2 = 6$ since subtracting a negative means you add it on.

Doing that gives you 6(2y+2) = 12y+12 = 12(y+1)

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$[(y+4)+(y-2)] \times [(y+4)-(y-2)]$
$(y+4+y-2) \times (y+4-y+2)$
$(2y+2) \times 6$
$6(2y+2) = 6 \times 2(y+1) = 12(y+1)$