How to Resolve an Excel Formula Not Working Unless Double-Clicking (5 Solutions)

Solution 1 – Formula Calculation Options Set to Manual

Check if your Calculation Options are set to Manual.

To change this,

  • Go to Formulas > Calculation Options (in the Calculation section) > Click Automatic.

This ensures instant formula execution.

Calculation Options-Excel Formula Not Working unless Double Click Cell

Read More: Excel Formulas Not Calculating Automatically

Solution 2 – Maintain Cell Formats

Format worksheet cells (except for Text).

To change this,

  • Home tab > Number section or by pressing CTRL+1 to access the Format Cells window.

Avoid using the Text format for formula cells.

Cell Format

Solution 3 – Use Text to Column Feature

Sometimes the cells containing the formula have been formatted to text.  The formula will not execute when the cell is formatted to text.

To change this,

  • Highlight the cells where you want to execute formula results.

Text to Column-Excel Formula Not Working unless Double Click Cell

  • Go to Data > Data Tools > Text to Columns.

Text to Column Feature

  • Follow the steps in the Convert Text to Columns Wizard to adjust cell formats.

Wizard window 1

Wizard window 2

Wizard window 3

  • Return to the worksheet and drag the Fill Handle to execute the formula automatically.

Calculated values

Solution 4 – Remove Leading Spaces

Often, Excel users copy and paste Excel formulas from external sources. As a result, spaces may exist before the formula Equal Sign resulting in the formula executing.

To change this,

  • Check for spaces before the formula Equal Sign.
  • Remove any preceding spaces to ensure proper formula execution.

Leading Space-Excel Formula Not Working unless Double Click Cell

Read More: [Fixed!] Formula Not Working in Excel and Showing as Text

Solution 5 – Changing Excel File Types May Resolve the Formula Not Working without Double Clicking

If you’re experiencing formula execution problems that require double-clicking, consider changing the Excel file type. Files saved in older formats (such as .xls) may contribute to this issue.

To change this:

  • Go to File > Save As.
  • Choose the .xlsx Excel file format to save the existing file.
  • This change in file format may resolve the formula execution issue.
  • Additionally, you can press SHIFT+F9 to recalculate all the formulas in your active worksheet (or simply F9 for all worksheets).

Excel File types

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Maruf Islam
Maruf Islam

MARUF ISLAM is an excellent marine engineer who loves working with Excel and diving into VBA programming. For him, programming is like a superhero tool that saves time when dealing with data, files, and the internet. His skills go beyond the basics, including ABACUS, AutoCAD, Rhinoceros, Maxsurf, and Hydromax. He got his B.Sc in Naval Architecture & Marine Engineering from BUET, and now he's switched gears, working as a content developer. In this role, he creates techy content... Read Full Bio

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