VBA Type Mismatch Explained
A VBA Type Mismatch Error occurs when you try to assign a value between two different variable types.
The error appears as “run-time error 13 – Type mismatch”.
For example, if you try to place text in a Long integer variable or you try to place text in a Date variable.
Let’s look at a concrete example. Imagine we have a variable called Total which is a Long integer.
If we try to place text in the variable we will get the VBA Type mismatch error(i.e. VBA Error 13).
Sub TypeMismatchString() ' Declare a variable of type long integer Dim total As Long ' Assigning a string will cause a type mismatch error total = "John" End Sub
Let’s look at another example. This time we have a variable ReportDate of type Date.
If we try to place a non-date in this variable we will get a VBA Type mismatch error
Sub TypeMismatchDate() ' Declare a variable of type Date Dim ReportDate As Date ' Assigning a number causes a type mismatch error ReportDate = "21-22" End Sub
In general, VBA is very forgiving when you assign the wrong value type to a variable e.g.
Dim x As Long ' VBA will convert to integer 100 x = 99.66 ' VBA will convert to integer 66 x = "66"
However, there are some conversions that VBA cannot do
Dim x As Long ' Type mismatch error x = "66a"
A simple way to explain a VBA Type mismatch error, is that the items on either side of the equals evaluate to a different type.
When a Type mismatch error occurs it is often not as simple as these examples. For these more complex cases we can use the Debugging tools to help us resolve the error.
Using the Debugger
VBA has some very powerful tools for finding errors. The debugging tools allow you to pause the code and check the values in the current variables.
You can use the following steps to help you tackle any VBA Type mismatch error.
- Run the code so that the error appears.
- Click Debug on the error dialog. This will highlight the line with the error.
- Select View->Watch from the menu if the Watch Window is not visible.
- Highlight the variable to the left of the equals and drag it into the Watch window.
- Highlight everything to the right of the equals and drag it into the Watch window.
- Check the values and the types of each.
- You can narrow the error further by examining the individual parts of the right hand side.
The following video shows how to do this
In the screenshot below, you can see the types in the Watch Window.
By using the Watch Window, you can check the different parts of the line of code with the error. You can then easily see what the variable types are.
The following sections show the different ways that the VBA Type Mismatch error can occur.
Assigning a string to a numeric
As we have seen, trying to place text in a numeric variable can lead to the VBA Type mismatch error.
Below are some examples that will cause the error
Sub TextErrors() ' Long is a long integer Dim l As Long l = "a" ' Double is a decimal number Dim d As Double d = "a" ' Currency is a 4 decimal place number Dim c As Currency c = "a" Dim d As Double ' Type mismatch if the cell contains text d = Range("A1").Value End Sub
VBA is very flexible when it comes to assigning a date to a date variable. If you put the month in the wrong order or leave out the day, VBA will still do it’s best to accommodate you.
The following code examples show all the valid ways to assign a date followed by the cases that will cause a VBA Type mismatch error.
Sub DateMismatch() Dim curDate As Date ' VBA will do it's best for you ' - These are all valid curDate = "12/12/2016" curDate = "12-12-2016" curDate = #12/12/2016# curDate = "11/Aug/2016" curDate = "11/Augu/2016" curDate = "11/Augus/2016" curDate = "11/August/2016" curDate = "19/11/2016" curDate = "11/19/2016" curDate = "1/1" curDate = "1/2016" ' Type Mismatch curDate = "19/19/2016" curDate = "19/Au/2016" curDate = "19/Augusta/2016" curDate = "August" curDate = "Some Random Text" End Sub
A subtle cause of the VBA Type Mismatch error is when you read from a cell that has an error e.g.
If you try to read from this cell you will get a type mismatch error
Dim sText As String ' Type Mismatch if the cell contains an error sText = Sheet1.Range("A1").Value
To resolve this error you can check the cell using IsError as follows.
Dim sText As String If IsError(Sheet1.Range("A1").Value) = False Then sText = Sheet1.Range("A1").Value End If
However, checking all the cells for errors is not feasible and would make your code unwieldy. A better way is to check the sheet for errors first and if errors are found then inform the user.
You can use the following function to do this
Function CheckForErrors(rg As Range) As Long On Error Resume Next CheckForErrors = rg.SpecialCells(xlCellTypeFormulas, xlErrors).Count End Function
The following is an example of using this code
Sub DoStuff() If CheckForErrors(Sheet1.Range("A1:Z1000")) > 0 Then MsgBox "There are errors on the worksheet. Please fix and run macro again." Exit Sub End If ' Continue here if no error End Sub
Invalid Cell Data
As we saw, placing an incorrect value type in a variable causes the ‘VBA Type Mismatch’ error. A very common cause is when the value in a cell is not of the correct type.
A user could place text like ‘None’ in a number field not realising that this will cause a Type mismatch error in the code.
If we read this data into a number variable then we will get a ‘VBA Type Mismatch’ error error.
Dim rg As Range Set rg = Sheet1.Range("B2:B5") Dim cell As Range, Amount As Long For Each cell In rg ' Error when reaches cell with 'None' text Amount = cell.Value Next rg
You can use the following function to check for non numeric cells before you use the data
Function CheckForTextCells(rg As Range) As Long ' Count numeric cells If rg.Count = rg.SpecialCells(xlCellTypeConstants, xlNumbers).Count Then CheckForTextCells = True End If End Function
You can use it like this
Sub UseCells() If CheckForTextCells(Sheet1.Range("B2:B6").Value) = False Then MsgBox "One of the cells is not numeric. Please fix before running macro" Exit Sub End If ' Continue here if no error End Sub
If you use the Module name in your code this can cause the VBA Type mismatch to occur. However in this case the cause may not be obvious.
For example let’s say you have a Module called ‘Module1’. Running the following code would result in the VBA Type mismatch error.
Sub UseModuleName() ' Type Mismatch Debug.Print module1 End Sub
Different Object Types
So far we have been looking mainly at variables. We normally refer to variables as basic data types.
They are used to store a single value in memory.
In VBA we also have objects which are more complex. Examples are the Workbook, Worksheet, Range and Chart objects.
If we are assigning one of these types we must ensure the item being assigned is the same kind of object. For Example
Sub UsingWorksheet() Dim wk As Worksheet ' Valid Set wk = ThisWorkbook.Worksheets(1) ' Type Mismatch error ' Left side is a worksheet - right side is a workbook Set wk = Workbooks(1) End Sub
In VBA, the workbook object has two collections – Sheets and Worksheets. There is a very subtle difference
- Worksheets – the collection of worksheets in the Workbook
- Sheets – the collection of worksheets and chart sheets in the Workbook
A chart sheet is created when you move a chart to it’s own sheet by right-clicking on the chart and selecting Move.
If you read the Sheets collection using a Worksheet variable it will work fine if you don’t have a chart sheet in your workbook.
If you do have a chart sheet then you will get the VBA Type mismatch error.
In the following code, a Type mismatch error will appear on the Next sh line if the workbook contains a chart sheet.
Sub SheetsError() Dim sh As Worksheet For Each sh In ThisWorkbook.Sheets Debug.Print sh.Name Next sh End Sub
Array and Range
You can assign a range to an array and vice versa. In fact this is a very fast way of reading through data.
Sub UseArray() Dim arr As Variant ' Assign the range to an array arr = Sheet1.Range("A1:B2").Value ' Print the value a row 1, column 1 Debug.Print arr(1, 1) End Sub
The problem occurs if your range has only one cell. In this case, VBA does not convert arr to an array.
If you try to use it as an array you will get the Type mismatch error
Sub UseArrayError() Dim arr As Variant ' Assign the range to an array arr = Sheet1.Range("A1").Value ' Type mismatch will occur here Debug.Print arr(1, 1) End Sub
In this scenario, you can use the IsArray function to check if arr is an array
Sub UseArrayIf() Dim arr As Variant ' Assign the range to an array arr = Sheet1.Range("A1").Value ' Type mismatch will occur here If IsArray(arr) Then Debug.Print arr(1, 1) Else Debug.Print arr End If End Sub
This concludes the post on the VBA Type mismatch error. If you have a mismatch error that isn’t covered then please let me know in the comments.
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