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Freezing Rows and Columns

What Does Freezing Mean?

When working with a spreadsheet, you can scroll horizontally and vertically to view more of the active worksheet.

However, all rows and columns move when you scroll, and this is where freezing rows and columns changes things.

When a row or column is frozen, it will not move when you scroll the worksheet.


For example, if rows one through three are frozen, they will always stay in view when scrolling down the worksheet.

Why is Freezing Helpful?

Freezing rows and columns is helpful because sometimes you want to keep certain pieces of information in view at all times.

For instance, if you have a large table with data, it may be beneficial to always have the table headers in view.

How To Freeze Cells in Excel

To freeze cells in Excel, go to the View tab in the Excel Ribbon and click on Freeze Panes.


You can click on Freeze Top Row to always keep the first row visible. You can click on Freeze First Column to always keep the leftmost column visible. And finally, you can click on Freeze Panes to freeze a specific set of rows and columns based on your selection.

Freeze Cells Based on Your Selection

Whenever you click the Freeze Panes option, all rows above the selected cell and all columns to the left of the selected cell will freeze.


Here are a few examples.

To freeze rows 1 through 4, select cell A5 and click the Freeze Panes button.


To freeze columns A through C, select cell D1 and click the Freeze Panes button.


To freeze rows 1 through 3 and columns A and B, select cell C4 and click the Freeze Panes button.

Unfreeze Cells in Excel

To unfreeze any rows or columns in Excel, go to the View tab in the Excel Ribbon, click on Freeze Panes, and then select Unfreeze Panes.

How to Freeze Cells in Google Sheets

To freeze cells in Google Sheets, click on the View tab and select the Freeze option.


At this point, you have the options to select:

  • No rows
  • 1 row
  • 2 rows
  • Up to row (whatever row contains the selected cell)
  • No columns
  • 1 column
  • 2 columns
  • Up to column (whatever column contains the selected cell)

The first several options are pretty straightforward. If you select the 2 rows option then the top two rows will freeze. If you select the 1 column option then the first column will freeze.

And of course, the last row and column options are based on the currently selected cell.


If you want to freeze rows 1 through 4, select any cell in row 4, and then go to View > Freeze > Up to row 4.


If you want to freeze columns A through D, select any cell in column D and go to View > Freeze > Up to column D.

Unfreeze Cells in Google Sheets

Finally, to unfreeze any rows or columns in Google Sheets, go to View > Freeze > No Rows or No Columns.


This Post Has One Comment

  1. Thanks for the clarification on which cell to select in Excel for freeze panes to work. Usually I just use trial and error, but now knowing that it’s everything above and to the left will be super helpful!

    And who knew on Google Sheets? I can always count on these blog posts to learn new things!

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