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Excel: Calculate sum - how to let Excel calculate for you

In Microsoft Excel you have the possibility to let calculations within your tables be done automatically. All you need is the appropriate formula or function. Learn how to add values using the sum function and what you need to keep in mind.

How to use the sum function in Excel

If you want to add several values to a sum in Excel, it works completely automatically if you use the sum function.

The syntax of the formula looks like this: "=SUM(number1;[number2];...)"

  • The argument "number1" is required for the function to work. A value such as 2, a cell reference such as C4, or a cell range such as A4: A9 can be used.
  • All subsequent values are optional and can be added with the specifications of argument Number1. Using the sum function, Excel is able to add up to 255 numbers together and give you a result.

Sum function: What to consider

To avoid getting an error message as a result, there are some small things to consider when using the sum function. As with other formulas and functions, it is important that the values are in the same format. Although the sum function ignores text values, it can still fail if there are non-numeric values in the reference cells.If you delete any of the reference cells or columns, you must manually update the formula, otherwise you will get the error message "#REFERENCE". The same applies if you add new cells or columns.

By Suu Dahl

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