The Excel BITLSHIFT function shifts a number by the specified number of bits, effectively doubling or halving the number a specified number of times.


Returns a number shifted left by some number of bits

Return value 

Decimal Number


  • number - The number to be bit shifted.
  • shift_amount - The amount of bits to shift, if negative shifts bits to the right instead.

How to use 

For any bit shift that results in integer overflow, where the result is larger than 2^48 -1, the function returns the #NUM! error.

How It Works

The shift_amount can either be positive or negative. If a negative number is provided, the bits are shifted to the right instead.

BITLSHIFT Internal Binary Representation
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Dave Bruns

Hi - I'm Dave Bruns, and I run Exceljet with my wife, Lisa. Our goal is to help you work faster in Excel. We create short videos, and clear examples of formulas, functions, pivot tables, conditional formatting, and charts.