How to Remove Grid Lines in Excel
Learn how to remove gridlines from sheets or workbooks in Excel. Find out how to remove lines on single cells or a selection using borders.
Excel automatically shows grid lines on its worksheets, using them as cell guides so you can see where your data goes. Although they help navigate around a sheet or workbook, you can turn them off without affecting cells or data. However, the program takes an all-or-nothing approach to grid line views. You can see them all or switch them all off, but you can't remove lines around individual cells or selected areas in your sheet unless you use a workaround with the program's border tools.
Excel doesn't print grid lines by default, so you don't need to do anything if your only reason for removing them is to not show them on print copies.
Remove Grid Lines From Sheets and Workbooks
You can remove grid lines from individual worksheets, from entire workbooks or from selected sheets in a workbook.
To remove lines from the sheet in which you're working, open the View tab. Go to the Show area and uncheck the Gridlines box. All the lines in the sheet disappear.
If you want to apply the change to all sheets in a workbook, go to the sheet tabs at the bottom of the screen, right-click on any sheet and choose Select All Sheets. When you uncheck the Gridlines box now, you'll remove lines from the whole workbook.
- You can also use the sheet tabs menu to remove grid lines from some sheets in a workbook but not all. To hide them on adjacent sheets, select the first sheet in the menu, hold down the Shift key and select the next sheet; to hide them on non-adjacent sheets, use the same process but hold down the Ctrl key instead. When you've made your selection, uncheck the Gridlines box.
- Check the Gridlines box to restore lines.
Remove Selected Grid Lines
You can't remove selected grid lines in Excel but you can change their border color so they don't display on the screen. Select the cells whose lines you want to remove and go to the Borders button on the Home tab. Select Line Color and choose white in the color palette.
Go back to the Borders button and choose a border outline. For example, to remove lines from one cell, use Outside Borders; to remove them from a selection of cells, use All Borders. When you select a border, the grid lines on your cell or selection turn white and look like they've been removed.
Other Grid Line Editing Features
Set Grid Lines to Print
Open the Page Layout tab. Go to the Sheet Options area and check the Print box. This applies the change to your current worksheet.
Change Grid Line Color
Excel allows you to change the color of all grid lines in a sheet. Go to File and then Options. Open the Advanced tab and scroll down to Display Options for This Worksheet. Open the Gridline Color box and choose the color you want. Select OK to apply the change.
- To apply the print command or a color change to a workbook, right-click on a sheet in the tab menu at the bottom of the screen and select Select All Sheets before checking the Print box or changing the color.
- To print lines or change color on selected sheets, hold down Shift (for adjacent sheets) or Ctrl (for non-adjacent sheets) and select the sheets to group. When you're done, follow the steps to set lines to print or change color.
Excel prints all the grid lines in a worksheet. If you want only selected lines to print, use Border tools to add borders to your cells. These print automatically. You can also use borders to change the color or thickness of lines around selected cells.
- You can't change the color of selected grid lines -- Excel applies the change to the whole sheet -- but you can use borders to change the color and style of lines around selected cells.
Excel has a couple of other grid line editing features that you may find useful. For example, you can set lines to print or change their color on sheets or workbooks. If you want to work with selected cells within a sheet or apply other effects, use the program's Border tools.