How to change number automatically when extending cells

New Contributor

Hello all,


I have (what I think it is) a simple question.

When copying a cell with a number by selecting it and pulling it with the mouse to the next empty cell, the number usually increases automatically.

I have a spreadsheet where this doesn't happen and I don't know why.


For instance

*select and extends to the following, the numbers become*



In my spreadheet, it continues




The column is formatted as Number, Decimal places as 0.

Any idea why this is happening?



4 Replies


Excel doesn't work that way - never has.

Excel will increase a date when you fill it down, and also a text value that ends in a number, such as Item1.

If you want to create a series of numbers, enter the first two numbers, then select the two cells and drag the fill handle.



Alternatively, enter the first number, then select Fill > Series... on the Home tab of the ribbon.

Specify that you want a series in columns, and enter the stop (last) value, then click OK.



Excel only automatically increases numbers when you pull the fill handle on ONE cell, it that cell does not contain a number, but if that cell contains a text which happens to end with a number. This can also be just a number which is formatted as text.

To get what you want, either select TWO cells (with the difference you want to fill) and use the fill handle, or use the RIGHT mouse button while you drag the fill handle. When you release the right mouse button, Excel will show a menu.

@Jan Karel Pieterse thank you for answering.

Indeed, changing it for text and selecting 2 or more cells did the trick

@Hans Vogelaar thank you for the extra tip!

I managed to make it work now, tks!