In ArcGIS Pro, to replace a text value in a field using Field Calculator you can use:

!FieldName!.replace("Old Value", "New Value")

However, this does not work on an integer field. For example:

!IntegerFieldName!.replace(1250, 810)


!IntegerFieldName!.replace("1250", "810")

Will both produce syntax errors.

So in a Long, Short, or any numeric field, what is the correct way to replace a specific number with another number?

This function will eventually be implemented in a standalone Python script like:

import arcpy
arcpy.management.CalculateField(r"C:\Shapefile.shp", "FieldName", "!FieldName!.replace(1250, 810)", "PYTHON3", None)
  • You could just select by attributes all 1250:s and then Field Calculate to 810
    – Bera
    Commented Sep 17, 2018 at 10:00
  • @BERA I should mention that eventually I'm writing this script to be run outside of ArcGIS Pro. So there'd be no selecting by atributes etc. This would be a pure standalone python code.
    – Theo F
    Commented Sep 17, 2018 at 10:01

2 Answers 2


As far as I know, replace is a string function (along with e.g. capitalize and rstrip) and will not work on integer fields (hence the syntax error).

You can do this easy with a code block:

def replaceInt(number):
    if number == 1250:
        return 810
        return number

Then run: replaceInt(!IntegerFieldName!)

  • Yes that was my feeling regarding it being a string function. I'm still a bit of an arcpy noob. So what would the code be if I wanted to replace 1250 with 810? Do I need to type in the Code Block area?
    – Theo F
    Commented Sep 17, 2018 at 9:59
  • I've edited in a suggestion in the answer above. If there are several replaces they can be added in as elif statements in the same code.
    – HavardMoe
    Commented Sep 17, 2018 at 10:10
  • thanks. that works fine in Field Calculator within the application. However, I'd like to implement this as part of a standalone Python script (see my edited original question). Do you know how I could do this?
    – Theo F
    Commented Sep 17, 2018 at 10:12
  • 1
    You can use field calculator in arcpy, see here (example 3 shows use with a code block): pro.arcgis.com/en/pro-app/tool-reference/data-management/…
    – HavardMoe
    Commented Sep 17, 2018 at 10:24
  • Although... in a standalone script it would be more efficient to use an UpdataCursor, as @BERA mentions above
    – HavardMoe
    Commented Sep 17, 2018 at 10:34

As an alternative you can use the da.UpdateCursor. It is like a more versatile and powerful field calculator:

import arcpy

fc = r'C:\data.gdb\featureclass123' #Change to match your data
field_to_update = 'IntegerFieldName' #Change to match your data

with arcpy.da.UpdateCursor(fc,field_to_update) as cursor:
    for row in cursor:
        if row[0] == 1250:
            row[0] = 810

If you have many values to change, you can use a dictionary instead of many if-elif-else:

integer_dictionary = {1250:810, 1251:900, 1300:1000} #Add keys and values here
with arcpy.da.UpdateCursor(fc,field_to_update) as cursor:
    for row in cursor:
        if row[0] in integer_dictionary:
            row[0] = integer_dictionary[row[0]]

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