Related Functions:

The SUM function adds together a supplied set of numbers and returns the sum of these values.


=SUM(num_1,[num_2], … )

Note: Beginning with Excel 2007, you can enter up to 255 number arguments to the function. Excel 2003 would only accept up to 30 number arguments. However, each argument can consist of an array of values or a range of cells, each of which can contain many values.


Argument Description
[num_2], …
The arguments, num_1, [num_2], etc, are a set of numbers, or arrays of numbers, that you want to find the sum of

  Numbers can be supplied to the function either directly, as values returned from other functions, or as references to cells containing numeric values.

Values Counted as Numeric

Numbers and dates are always counted as numeric values by the SUM function. However, text representations and logical values are handled differently, depending on whether they are values stored in the cells of your spreadsheet, or they are supplied directly to the function.

    Value Within a Range of Cells  Value Supplied Directly to Function
Numbers   Included Included
Dates   Included Included
Logical Values   Ignored Included
(True-1; False=0)
Text Representations of Numbers & Dates   Ignored Included
Other Text   Ignored #VALUE! Error
Errors   Error Error


  A B C D
1 Data      
2 -5 =SUM(A2:A6) 35  
3 10 =SUM(5+6,7,8,9) 35  
4 15 =SUM(A2:A4,8,0) 35  
5 20 =SUM(A2,A3,A4,”8″,”9″) 35  
6 ’10 =SUM({5,6,7},8,9) 35  
7 TRUE      
9 Formula Result Notes
10 =SUM(A2,A3) 5 Adds the value in A2 and A3
11 =SUM(A2:A4,15) 20 Adds the values in A2 through A4, and then adds 15
12 =SUM(“5”,15,TRUE) 21 Adds 5, 15 and 1. The text value “5” is translated into a number and the logical value TRUE is translated into the number 1
13 =SUM(A3,A5,A6,A7) 30 Adds the values in A3 and A5 through A7. Because non-numeric values in references aren’t translated; the value in cell A6 (’10) and the value in cell A7 (TRUE) are both treated as text

Common Function Error(s)

Problem What went wrong
Some numbers aren’t added If an argument is a cell range or reference, only numeric values in the reference or range can be added. Empty cells, logical values like TRUE, or text are ignored
#NAME? error This usually means that the formula is misspelled