This page discusses what you can do when your function wont calculate in Excel.
We discuss the following two cases:
|Case 1: The Cell Displays the Function Instead of its Calculated Value|
|Case 2: The Formula Doesn't Update|
If none of these cases describe your problem and your Excel function is returning an error (rather than simply not calculating), you may find help on the Excel Formula Errors page.
|1||TEXT1||=LEFT( A1, 1 )|
|2||TEXT2||=LEFT( A2, 1 )|
This problem often arises because the cells containing your formula are formatted as 'text' instead of the 'General' type.
This frequently arises when you insert a new column, next to a column that is formatted as text. In this case, the new column 'inherits' the formatting of the adjacent column.
To correct this, you need to change the formatting of the cell and then force the cell to recalculate:
The quickest way to change the formatting in Excel is to select the cell(s) to be formatted and then select the required cell formatting from the drop-down menu in the 'Number' group on the Home tab of the Excel ribbon (see below):
The key combination CTRL-` (i.e. press the control key, and while this is depressed, press the ` key) displays all the formulas in a spreadsheet.
Therefore, if this key combination has been pressed you will see the formulas, rather than their results.
Return to the normal view (showing the results, rather than the formulas) by repeating the same key combination (i.e. press CTRL-`)
You have a function that you know you have entered correctly, but when you change the values of its dependent cells the function continues to show the old value.
This problem is usually caused by the setting of the Calculation option for your Excel spreadsheet.
By default, Excel will recalculate its functions every time a cell value changes. However, the Calculation option can be set to switch off automatic recalculation, and once switched off, it is very easy for the user to forget about this option.
To correct this you need to set the Calculation option to Automatic. To do this: