SQL Server: DATEDIFF Function

This SQL Server tutorial explains how to use the DATEDIFF function in SQL Server (Transact-SQL) with syntax and examples.


In SQL Server (Transact-SQL), the DATEDIFF function returns the difference between two date values, based on the interval specified.


The syntax for the DATEDIFF function in SQL Server (Transact-SQL) is:

DATEDIFF( interval, date1, date2 )

Parameters or Arguments


The interval of time to use to calculate the difference between date1 and date2. It can be one of the following values:

Value (any one of) Explanation
year, yyyy, yy Year interval
quarter, qq, q Quarter interval
month, mm, m Month interval
dayofyear Day of year interval
day, dy, y Day interval
week, ww, wk Week interval
weekday, dw, w Weekday interval
hour, hh Hour interval
minute, mi, n Minute interval
second, ss, s Second interval
millisecond, ms Millisecond interval
date1, date2
The two dates to calculate the difference between.

Applies To

The DATEDIFF function can be used in the following versions of SQL Server (Transact-SQL):

  • SQL Server 2017, SQL Server 2016, SQL Server 2014, SQL Server 2012, SQL Server 2008 R2, SQL Server 2008, SQL Server 2005


Let’s look at some SQL Server DATEDIFF function examples and explore how to use the DATEDIFF function in SQL Server (Transact-SQL).

For example:

SELECT DATEDIFF(year, '2012/04/28', '2014/04/28');
Result: 2

SELECT DATEDIFF(yyyy, '2012/04/28', '2014/04/28');
Result: 2

SELECT DATEDIFF(yy, '2012/04/28', '2014/04/28');
Result: 2

SELECT DATEDIFF(month, '2014/01/01', '2014/04/28');
Result: 3

SELECT DATEDIFF(day, '2014/01/01', '2014/04/28');
Result: 117

SELECT DATEDIFF(hour, '2014/04/28 08:00', '2014/04/28 10:45');
Result: 2

SELECT DATEDIFF(minute, '2014/04/28 08:00', '2014/04/28 10:45');
Result: 165