Excel Having Trouble Calculating Basic Formulas

Copper Contributor

Hello all, I am new to this community, but hopeful I can find a solution to an issue.  


I am in real estate development and I have a financial model that has effectively quit calculating many formulas, including basic "A1 * B1" and "= A1" formulas.  I have my formulas set to automatically calculate; however, sometimes this issue can be resolved by selecting "Calculate Sheet" while most other times this does not work either. 


Does Microsoft provide experts that can walk through a spreadsheet to help?  I have been troubleshooting this online and with multiple others who have vast Excel knowledge, so looking for a way to connect with an expert to help.  Thanks for your time in sharing your experience.  

1 Reply


I'm just a simple user here, but that doesn't stop me from pointing out a few steps that might help you. If you are experiencing issues with basic formulas not calculating properly in Excel, here are several steps to troubleshoot the issue:

1. Ensure Automatic Calculation Mode is Enabled

Check if Excel is set to automatic calculation mode:

  1. Go to the Formulas tab.
  2. Click on Calculation Options.
  3. Ensure that Automatic is selected.

2. Force a Recalculation

You can force Excel to recalculate all formulas:

  1. Press Ctrl + Alt + F9 to recalculate all formulas in all open workbooks.
  2. Press Shift + F9 to recalculate only the active worksheet.

3. Check for Circular References

Circular references can cause calculation issues. To check for them:

  1. Go to the Formulas tab.
  2. Click on Error Checking.
  3. Select Circular References.

4. Format of the Cells

Ensure the cells involved in the calculation are not formatted as text:

  1. Select the cells.
  2. Right-click and choose Format Cells.
  3. Select General or the appropriate number format.

5. Look for Issues with Named Ranges

If your model uses named ranges, ensure there are no issues:

  1. Go to the Formulas tab.
  2. Click on Name Manager.
  3. Check for any errors or invalid references.

6. Check for Corruption

Sometimes, a workbook can become corrupted. To test this:

  1. Copy the content to a new workbook and see if the issue persists.

7. Update Excel

Ensure you are running the latest version of Excel. Sometimes, updates fix bugs that might be causing the issue.

8. Disable Add-ins

Sometimes, add-ins can interfere with Excel's functionality:

  1. Go to File > Options > Add-Ins.
  2. At the bottom, in the Manage box, select COM Add-ins and click Go.
  3. Clear the checkboxes for any enabled add-ins and click OK.

9. Check for Hidden Worksheets

Hidden worksheets or data connections might affect your calculations. Ensure there are no hidden sheets that contain errors or dependencies.

10. Example VBA Macro for Manual Calculation

If you need a quick fix to force recalculation using a macro, you can use the following VBA code:

vba Code is untested, please backup your file.

Sub ForceRecalculate()
    ' Recalculate the entire workbook
    MsgBox "Recalculation complete!"
End Sub

Steps to Add the Macro:

  1. Press Alt + F11 to open the VBA editor.
  2. Click Insert > Module.
  3. Paste the code into the module window.
  4. Close the VBA editor.
  5. Run the macro by pressing Alt + F8, selecting ForceRecalculate, and clicking Run.

By following these steps, you should be able to diagnose and resolve the calculation issues in your Excel workbook. If none of these steps help you, I recommend adding more information to your topic. Information such as Excel version, operating system, storage medium, file extension, etc.

In this link you will find some more information about it:

Welcome to your Excel discussion space!

The text and steps were edited with the help of AI.


My answers are voluntary and without guarantee!


Hope this will help you.

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