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All articles TEXT Remove unwanted characters

Remove unwanted characters

Figure 1. Remove Unwanted Characters in Excel.

If we are required to remove/delete certain unwanted characters from a text string, we are going to make use of the Excel SUBSTITUTE function.

Generic Formula

=SUBSTITUTE(B4,CHAR(code),"")

The Excel SUBSTITUTE function can be used for finding and replacing text in a cell.

How to use the SUBSTITUTE function in Excel.

To utilize the SUBSTITUTE function in Excel, carry out the following 3 simple steps;

1.The example illustrated below has an ORIGINAL column, containing the text string that we are going to clear of any unwanted characters, and a CLEANED column for Excel to return the desired results.

Figure 2. Remove Unwanted Characters in Excel.

  1. Assign the following SUBSTITUTE formula to cell B2 of our worksheet;

=SUBSTITUTE(A2,CHAR(202),"")

Figure 3. Remove Unwanted Characters in Excel.

Any unwanted characters are very easily removed from the string by the SUBSTITUTE formula.

  1. Modify and apply the SUBSTITUTE formula in cell B2 to the other cells in the CLEANED column for the desired results to be returned;

Figure 4. Remove Unwanted Characters in Excel.

The Excel SUBSTITUTE Function is very useful when we are working with large volumes of text.

Figure 5. Final Result.

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Another blog reader asked this question today on Excelchat:
Solution examples
I am trying to figure out how to use a sumif on SUBSTITUTE(A2,"*","~*") where A2 is a formula with 3371-4
Solved by M. Y. in 19 mins
Hello, I need help with IF and SUBSTITUTE formula in excel
Solved by A. A. in 43 mins

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