If you want to subtract time in Excel, it helps if you understand the way that Excel stores times.
Times are actually stored as positive decimal values in Excel. It is only the formatting of an Excel cell that causes a numerical value to be displayed as a time, rather than a decimal.
The table below shows examples of numerical values and the times that they represent in Excel.
If you have a cell containing a positive decimal value, this can be diplayed as a time, by formatting the cell with a time format.
Further time formatting options can also be introduced if you select the Custom formatting category and enter your own format.
As times are stored as simple decimal values, you can subtract time in Excel in the same way that you can subtract any other numbers. This is illustrated in the examples below.
The following spreadsheet shows four examples in which Excel times are subtracted.
The formulas used are shown in column C of the top spreadsheet and the results are shown in the spreadsheet below.