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Decimal vs. Double
By Richard Rost     11 months ago

Decimal vs. Double Number Field Sizes in Access

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In this Microsoft Access tutorial I'm going to teach you the difference between decimal and double number types, their specifications, benefits & problems, and when you should use each of them.

Avery from Burlington, Vermont (a Platinum Member) asks: I'm new to Access. I created a field to hold the number of gallons of fuel a particular vehicle used, and selected the Decimal data type. I try typing in 5.5 and it just rounds to 5. What's the problem? I thought decimal values could have digits after the decimal point.

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# Notes

• If you are a beginner with Access, don't use the Decimal field size. Stick with Double. It's easier to deal with.
• Decimal is specifically designed for scientific or financial applications that demand exacting precision but is more difficult to use.
• By default, Decimal values don't allow values after the decimal point (which I think is dumb).
• Double is a floating point value. You can store much larger numbers, but with less precision, and they are prone to rounding errors.
• Decimal is a fixed point value. They store smaller numbers, but with exact precision, and they are not susceptible to rounding errors.

# Keywords

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