Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Excel versions: 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, and Excel in Office 365. If you are using an earlier version (Excel 2003 or earlier), this tip may not work for you. For a version of this tip written specifically for earlier versions of Excel, click here: Replacing Dashes with Periods.

Replacing Dashes with Periods

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated June 19, 2021)

If you have a need to normalize the appearance of your data, you might want to replace any dashes in a text string with periods. For instance, if you have a phone number such as "123-555-1212" you might want to change it to "123.555.1212". This is easy to do using the SUBSTITUTE function:

=SUBSTITUTE(A7,"-",".")

The result is that any dashes appearing in the string in cell A7 are replaced with periods.

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (11028) applies to Microsoft Excel 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, and Excel in Office 365. You can find a version of this tip for the older menu interface of Excel here: Replacing Dashes with Periods.

Author Bio

Allen Wyatt

With more than 50 non-fiction books and numerous magazine articles to his credit, Allen Wyatt is an internationally recognized author. He is president of Sharon Parq Associates, a computer and publishing services company. ...

MORE FROM ALLEN

Correcting Student Papers

If you are a teacher, you may be looking for ways you can use Word's features to correct papers your students send to you ...

Discover More

Changing the Comment Color

Normally Excel displays comments in a color reminiscent of sticky notes you keep around your office. If you want them to ...

Discover More

A Shortcut for Switching Focus

Word provides keyboard shortcuts for lots of things, but it doesn't provide one for switching to the desktop and back to ...

Discover More

Excel Smarts for Beginners! Featuring the friendly and trusted For Dummies style, this popular guide shows beginners how to get up and running with Excel while also helping more experienced users get comfortable with the newest features. Check out Excel 2013 For Dummies today!

More ExcelTips (ribbon)

Calculating Statistical Values on Different-Sized Subsets of Data

Discovering different ways to analyze your data can be a challenge. Here's how to work with arbitrary subsets of a large ...

Discover More

Working with Imperial Linear Distances

Excel works with decimal values very easily. It is more difficult for the program to work with non-decimal values, such ...

Discover More

Formulas Don't Calculate as Formulas

Enter a formula (starting with an equal sign) and you may be surprised if Excel doesn’t calculate the formula. Here's a ...

Discover More
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in ExcelTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

View most recent newsletter.

Comments

If you would like to add an image to your comment (not an avatar, but an image to help in making the point of your comment), include the characters [{fig}] (all 7 characters, in the sequence shown) in your comment text. You’ll be prompted to upload your image when you submit the comment. Maximum image size is 6Mpixels. Images larger than 600px wide or 1000px tall will be reduced. Up to three images may be included in a comment. All images are subject to review. Commenting privileges may be curtailed if inappropriate images are posted.

What is two less than 8?

There are currently no comments for this tip. (Be the first to leave your comment—just use the simple form above!)


This Site

Got a version of Excel that uses the ribbon interface (Excel 2007 or later)? This site is for you! If you use an earlier version of Excel, visit our ExcelTips site focusing on the menu interface.

Newest Tips
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in ExcelTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

(Your e-mail address is not shared with anyone, ever.)

View the most recent newsletter.