BITLSHIFT function

This article describes the formula syntax and usage of the BITLSHIFT function (function: A prewritten formula that takes a value or values, performs an operation, and returns a value or values. Use functions to simplify and shorten formulas on a worksheet, especially those that perform lengthy or complex calculations.) in Microsoft Excel.


Returns a number shifted left by the specified number of bits.


BITLSHIFT(number, shift_amount)

The BITLSHIFT function syntax has the following arguments.

  • Number    Required. Number must be an integer greater than or equal to 0.
  • Shift_amount    Required. Shift_amount must be an integer.


  • Shifting a number left is equivalent to adding zeros (0) to the right of the binary representation of the number. For example, a 2-bit shift to the left on the decimal value 4 converts its binary value (100) to 10000, or 16 in decimal.
  • If either argument is outside their constraints, BITLSHIFT returns the #NUM! error value.
  • If Number is greater than (2^48)-1, BITLSHIFT returns the #NUM! error value.
  • If the absolute value of Shift_amount is greater than 53, BITLSHIFT returns the #NUM! error value.
  • If either argument is a non-numeric value, BITLSHIFT returns the #VALUE! error value.
  • A negative number used as the Shift_amount argument shifts the number of bits to the right.
  • A negative number used as the Shift_amount argument returns the same result as a positive shift_amount argument for the BITRSHIFT function.


The workbook below shows examples of this function. Inspect them, change existing formulas, or enter your own formulas to learn how the function works.

To work more in-depth with the example data in Excel, download the embedded workbook to your computer, and then open it in Excel.

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Applies to:
Excel 2013, Excel Online