6 Main Reasons for Excel Formula Not Working (with Solution)
- Reason #1 – Cells Formatted as Text
- Reason #2 – Accidentally Typed the keys CTRL + `
- Reason #3 – Values are Different & Result is Different
- Reason #4 – Don’t Enclose Numbers in Double Quotes
- Reason #5 – Check If Formulas are Enclosed in Double Quotes
- Reason #6 – Space Before the Excel Formula
#1 Cells Formatted as Text
Now let’s look at the solutions for the reasons given above for the excel formula not working.
Now take look at the first possibility of formula showing the formula itself not the result of the formula. Look at the below image where SUM function showing the formula not result.
First thing we need to look into is the format of the cells, in these cells are D1, D2, and D3. Now take a look at the format of these cells.
It is formatted as text when the cells are formatted as text excel cannot read numbers and return the result for your applied formula.
Change the format of the cells to General or Convert to Numbers. Select the cells and on the left-hand side you will see one small icon, click on that icon and choose the option “Convert to Numbers”.
Now we must see the result of the formula.
Oh hang on still we are not getting the result we are looking for. Now we need to examine the formula cell whether it is formatted as text or not.
Yes, it is formatted as text, so change the cell format to GENERAL or NUMBER. We must see the result now.
#2 Accidentally Typed the keys CTRL + `
Often in excel when we are working in a hurry we tend of type keys that are not required and it is an accidental incident. But if we don’t know which key we typed we may end up with getting an unusual result.
One such moment is SHOW FORMULAS in excel shortcut key CTRL + `. If you have typed this key accidentally we may the result like the below picture.
As I told reason could be the accidental pressing of show formula shortcut key.
The solution is to try typing the same key again to get back the results of the formula rather than the formula itself.
#3 Values are Different & Result is Different
Sometimes in Excel, we see different numbers but formula shows different results. The below image shows one such situation.
In cell D1, D2, and D3 we have 10 as the value. In cell D4 we have applied SUM function to get the total value of cell D1, D2, and D3. But the result says 40 instead of 30.
All the excel file calculations are set to Automatic. But in order to enhance the speed of the large data files, the user might have changed the auto calculation to a manual one.
We fix this in two ways. One is we can turn on the calculation to automatic.
Either we can do one more thing we can also press the shortcut key F9 which is nothing but CALCULATE NOW under Formulas bar.
#4 Don’t Enclose Numbers in Double Quotes
In situations inside the formula, we require to pass the numerical values to get the desired result. Take look at the below image it shows cities and the average temperature in the city.
If the temperature is greater than 25 then the average should be 25 and the temperature is less than 25 then the average should be 20. I will apply the IF condition in excel to get the results.
I have supplied the numerical results double-quotes =IF (B2>25,”25″,”20″). When the numbers are passed in double-quotes excel treats them as text values, we cannot do any kind of calculation with text numbers.
Always pass the numerical values without double quotes like the below image.
Now we can do all sorts of calculations with these numerical values.
#5 Check If Formulas are Enclosed in Double Quotes
We need to make sure formulas are not wrapped in double-quotes. This happens when we copy formulas from online websites and we paste as it is. If the formula is mentioned in double-quotes for understanding we need to remove double quotes and paste otherwise we will end up getting only the formulas not the result of the formula.
#6 Space Before the Excel Formula
We all humans make mistakes. Typing mistake is one of the error for excel formula not working, we usually commit day in day out in our workplace. If you type one or more space before you start your formula it breaks the rule of the formulas in excel. We will end up with only the excel formula not the result of the formula.
This has been a guide to Excel Formula Not Working and Updating. Here we discuss the Top 6 Reasons and Solutions of those Excel Formulae not working and updating along with practical examples and downloadable excel template. You may learn more about excel from the following articles –