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show blank cell when adding non consecutive cells that are blank ("")

Posted on 2011-03-25
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Last Modified: 2012-06-27
I have a table where I want to add some non consecutive cells. However, if all the cells are blank ("" due to the formulas in these cells), I want the result to be blank ("").
The only thing I've come up with so far is:
=IF((L4="")*(N4=""),"",SUM(L4,N4))
But, this will get a bit cumbersome when there are many cells to add up.

The only other thing I might be able to take advantage of, is the fact that adjacent cells will always be blank (""), although, they will not be summed. (in the above example, M4 and O4 would be blank if their counter parts, L4 and N4, are blank too, it's just I don't want them summed with L4 and N4.

thanks
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Question by:avoorheis
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LVL 81

Expert Comment

by:zorvek (Kevin Jones)
ID: 35217684
The SUM function ignores blank cells even if they are generated with formulas so that will not be an issue.

Using adjacent cells to determine whether or not a cell is blank is smart. I do it all the time to simplify formulas.

Kevin
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LVL 39

Expert Comment

by:nutsch
ID: 35217717
If you want the result to show as "" instead of 0, you can use a custom format to that end, e.g. 0;-0;


Thomas
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Author Comment

by:avoorheis
ID: 35218336
if I use the sum function and sum 2 cells that both = "", then the result is 0. If I sum 2 cells and one is 0 and one is "", then I want the result to be 0.
Maybe I'm stuck with my original thought?
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LVL 81

Expert Comment

by:zorvek (Kevin Jones)
ID: 35218357
You will get 0 in both cases just as you desire.

What is your question?

Kevin
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Author Comment

by:avoorheis
ID: 35218359
oh, when I say that the cell = "", that from a formula, like =if(a<>b,"",a+c).
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LVL 39

Accepted Solution

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nutsch earned 200 total points
ID: 35218385
You could use

=IF(COUNTIF(L4:O4,"")>2,"",SUM(L4,N4))

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LVL 43

Assisted Solution

by:Saqib Husain, Syed
Saqib Husain, Syed earned 200 total points
ID: 35218490
Try this formula

=IF(COUNTIF(H2:H16,"")=ROWS(H2:H16),"",SUM(H2:H16))
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Author Comment

by:avoorheis
ID: 35218491
I like that nutsch.
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LVL 43

Assisted Solution

by:Saqib Husain, Syed
Saqib Husain, Syed earned 200 total points
ID: 35218522
or if the data is in a row then

=IF(COUNTIF(L4:N4,"")=COLUMNS(L4:N4),"",SUM(L4:N4))

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Assisted Solution

by:Harper-IT
Harper-IT earned 100 total points
ID: 35218787
How about this formula:  =IF(AND(L4="",N4=""),"",SUM(L4,N4))
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