Often, the entire purpose of using Excel is to create printed output, such as a report. Excel includes tools to help make printing on your device as easy as possible. Learn how to make Excel work for various printing projects and how to resolve issues you may encounter along the way with the following articles.
Tips, Tricks, and Answers
The following articles are available for the 'Printing' topic. Click the article''s title (shown in bold) to see the associated article.
Adding Page Borders to a Printout
Need a full-page border on your Excel printouts? It's not as easy to get one as you might wish. There are a few ways you can get the border of your dreams, however.
Automatic Selection of Portrait or Landscape
Should you print in portrait or in landscape? The decision can greatly affect the way your printout looks. Wouldn't it be great to have the decision made automatically? Here's how.
Automatically Printing a Range
If you want to automatically print a particular area of your worksheet at a specific time of day, you'll love this tip. With the use of two small macros, you can get just the automatic output you need.
Black and White Blues
Getting a chart looking its best on a black-and-white printer can be a challenge. This tip examines different ways you can improve the printout.
Can Only Print to Default Printer
It is helpful to be able to print out worksheets when you need to share them with others. It is even more helpful if you can print to the printer you really want to use. If you have problems printing to anything but the default printer, you'll find the information in this tip helpful.
Changing Cell Values while Printing
When printing mulitiple copies of the same worksheet, you may have a need to change something simple for each of the copies. This tip examines how you can easily change the value in a single cell between each printed copy.
Changing Orientations within a Single Printout
Excel allows you to print out information in either portrait or landscape orientation, but what if you need both types of orientation in a single workbook? It's easier than you might think!
Changing Paper Size for a Complete Workbook
If you need to change the size of paper on which your worksheets will be printed, it can be bothersome to make the change on each worksheet individually. Here's how to make the change on the entire workbook, at one time, regardless of how many worksheets it contains.
When you print multiple copies of worksheets that require more than one page each, you'll probably want those copies printed as sets. By turning on collation, you can direct Excel to print the sets that you need.
If you need to make what Excel prints be based upon conditions in a worksheet, you'll love the information in this tip. There are a variety of ways you can approach the task and get just what you need.
Controlling the Printer in a Macro
Need to access the advanced capabilities of a printer from within an Excel macro? You may be out of luck, unless you apply the technique described in this tip.
Creating a Multi-Worksheet Report
It is not uncommon to use Excel to print out regular reports. If your report needs to span multiple worksheets, here's one approach you can use to get the output you need.
Creating Individual PDFs by Worksheet
Want to print your worksheets to their own PDF? This can be quite manually intensive, unless you put the macro in this tip to work for you.
Custom Page Numbers on Printouts
Excel is rather weak on giving you control over how page numbers appear on a printout. This is never more apparent than when you want to create some sort of custom page number scheme, as illustrated in this tip.
Defining a Custom Paper Size
Need to print your worksheet on a non-standard paper size? Excel is rather limited in printing to such papers, and here is why.
Displaying the Print Dialog Box in a Macro
Want to print a document by using a macro? One way is to display the Print dialog box and allow the user to interact with it. This tip demonstrates how easy it is to actually pull up the desired dialog box.
Easily Printing to PDF
It used to be quite difficult to produce a PDF file from an Excel workbook. Times change, though, and you now have a variety of ways that you can create PDF output.
Executing a Macro After Printing is Done
You can modify Excel's BeforePrint event handler to change how the printing process occurs. Unfortunately, though, Excel doesn't provide an AfterPrint event handler. Here are some ways you can make changes both before and after printing.
Fitting Your Printout on a Page
Tired of wasting paper when you print a worksheet? You can scale Excel's output so that it fits only the number of pages you want to use.
Flipping Landscape Orientation when Printing
When printing a worksheet, you may want to rotate the output on the page to fit a certain orientation. Excel doesn't allow you to do this, but there are workarounds available that may help.
Forcing Worksheets to Print on a New Sheet
Excel allows you to easily print an entire workbook. Doing so, however, may not give the desired results if you a printing double-sided. This tip looks at ways you can force each worksheet to start on a new piece of paper when you are printing double-sided.
Hiding a Hyperlink on a Printout
Hyperlinks can be real handy in a workbook, but you may not always want them visible when you send the workbook to the printer. Here are a variety of ways you can hide a hyperlink so it doesn't clutter up your printout.
Hiding Errors on Printouts
If there are error values in a worksheet, you may not want those error values to appear on a printout. Excel actually allows you to specify how those error values are handled.
Incrementing Copy Numbers for Printouts
When printing copies of a worksheet, it is sometimes helpful to have an actual copy number in one of the cells printed. This tip shows a simple way to make sure this happens.
Limiting Printing to a Workbook from a Set Location
When you share workbooks on a company server, it can be frustrating if the workbooks are downloaded to individual systems, modified, and printed. (It can make tracing the provenance of a printout challenging.) This tip looks at ways that you can make sure that only a printout of the original on-server workbook can be made.
Have you ever wanted to do a simple printout, only to find that Excel spit out dozens of pages, and most of them were blank? It's happened to all of us; here is why the problem happens and what you can do about it.
Omitting Page Numbers on Some Pages
Excel doesn't allow for as robust of headers and footers as Word does. Even so, there are some things you can do to modify which page numbers are printed on a printout and how those page numbers appear.
Out of Kilter Borders
Borders not printing properly? It could be any one of a number of reasons causing the problem. This tip provides some guidance on what you can do to correct the situation.
Preventing Changes to Multiple Selected Worksheets
It is common to select a group of worksheets and then print them. When done, any edits you make may affect the entire group, if you don't remember to deselect the group first. Here's a workaround that can help you avoid this potential error.
Printing a Chart
It is inevitable that if you spend time creating a chart you will want to print that chart on your printer. Here's how you can get the printed output you want in Excel.
Printing a Chart Across Multiple Pages
Wouldn't it be great to have your huge charts print out on multiple pieces of paper that you could then piece together? While Excel doesn't provide this capability directly, this tip looks at some ways that you can get the multi-page printout you want.
Printing a Draft of a Worksheet
Want to print out the fastest possible copy of your worksheet? You do so by printing a draft, discussed in this tip.
Printing a Draft Watermark
Adding a watermark to the background of a printout can be challenging. This tip explains the different ways you can implement your own watermarking techniques.
Printing a List of Named Ranges
You already know that you can define names that apply to different ranges of cells and other elements such as formulas. Here's how to print out a reference list of those ranges.
Printing a Number of Different Pages
If you don't need to print an entire workbook, it can be confusing to figure out how to print just certain pages. This tip explains your options and shows you how to get just what you want.
Printing a Portion of a Worksheet
Need to print a portion of a worksheet, but don't want to waste paper by printing the whole thing? It's easy to print just the selection you make by following these steps.
Printing a Range of Pages
If your worksheet, when printed, requires more than a single page to print, you may want to only print a range of the possible pages. Here's how to specify exactly which pages you want printed.
Printing a Short Selection
Need to print just a portion of a worksheet? It's easy to do if you follow the steps in this tip.
Printing a Single Column in Multiple Columns
Ever printed out a worksheet only to find that you have text only at the left side of each page? You can use more of each printed page by applying the techniques in this tip.
Printing a Week of Planner Sheets
If you want to print multiple copies of a worksheet using a different footer for each copy, the easiest way is to rely on a macro. This tip shows you how to easily create the necessary code.
Printing a Worksheet List
Want a list of all the worksheets in your workbook? Here's a short, handy macro that will place all the worksheet names into a single worksheet where you can work with them.
Printing All or Nothing
Want to make sure that when you worksheet is printed that everything in the workbook is really printed? You can accomplish this with an easy macro.
Printing an Entire Workbook by Default
Need to print an entire workbook? It's as easy as adding a single line of code to your macros.
Printing Based on Cell Contents
Would you like to have a worksheet automatically printed when a particular cell contains a specified value? You can achieve this nifty task by using a macro to handle the printing.
Printing Columns and Rows
If you want to print just the contents of a number of rows and columns, it can be challenging to get the output you want. Here are some ideas on how to limit what is printed to just what you need.
Printing Gridlines by Default
When you print a worksheet, Excel allows you to also print handy gridlines for the worksheet. If you want to include the gridlines more often then not, you'll appreciate the pointers provided in this tip.
Printing in Black and White and Color
Excel can print your worksheets in either black and white or color. If you want to print everything in black and white except for a single worksheet, then you can use a macro to do your printing for you, as described in this tip.
Printing Individual Worksheets for Vendors
If you use a worksheet to track data for multiple vendors, you may wonder if there is a way to print individual information specific to those vendors. This tip looks at four distinct ways that you can get the reports you want.
Printing Just the Visible Data
In a large worksheet, you may want to display and print just a portion of the available data. Displaying the desired information is easy; printing it is a bit trickier. This tip discusses how you can approach the problem of printing only what you've displayed on the screen.
Printing Limited Pages from a Range of Worksheets
Need to print just a few pages from a group of worksheets? The easiest way to handle the task may be through a macro, as described in this tip.
Printing More than One Copy
Need to print more than a single copy of a worksheet? You can do it easily by using the printing controls provided by Excel.
Printing Multiple Pages On a Piece of Paper
If you want to save paper on a printout, you might consider printing multiple pages on a single piece of paper. This can be done by using the capabilities of your printer, as described in this tip.
Printing Multiple Worksheets on a Single Page
Got a bunch of worksheets and you want to save paper by printing multiple worksheets on a single piece of paper? There are several ways to approach the issue, and the one you choose will depend (to a degree) on the characteristics of the data you need to print.
Printing Odd or Even Pages
When you print a worksheet, Excel normally prints all the pages or a consecutive series of pages that you specify. If you want to print only odd or even pages, you may be out of luck unless you successfully try one of the techniques in this tip.
Printing Only Non-Blank Worksheets
If you have a workbook containing many worksheets, you might want to print only those worksheets that have some sort of "flag" set, such as a value in a particular cell. This can be done relatively easily by using a macro to do the printing, as discussed in this tip.
Printing Row Numbers
Excel displays row numbers on-screen that help you easily see what is in each row. If you want to print these row numbers, you will need to use a workaround, as they can't be printed by themselves.
Printing Rows Conditionally
Need to only print out certain rows from your data? It's easy to do if you apply the filtering or sorting techniques presented in this tip.
Printing Selected Cells by Default
Want a one-button approach to printing? Excel provides the Quick Print tool, but it may not do exactly what you want. This tip looks at a couple of ways to print just your selected cells, by default.
Printing Selected Worksheets
When you accumulate quite a few workbooks in a folder, you might need to print out selected worksheets from all of the workbooks. Here's a macro that will load each workbook and print the desired worksheets.
Printing Two Worksheets on a Single Page
Getting your printouts to appear on a printed page exactly as you want can be a challenge at times. What if you want to print multiple worksheets to a single sheet of paper? Your success in doing this will depend, in large part, on the capabilities of your printer driver, as discussed in this tip.
Printing without Opening
Want to print one or more workbooks without the need of actually opening the file? It's easy to do when you rely on Windows instead of on Excel.
Printing Workbook Properties
Want to create a printed record of the properties associated with a workbook? There is no easy way to do it in Excel. Here's a macro, however, that you can use to create a worksheet that contains all your workbook properties.
Printing Workbooks in a Folder
This tip presents two techniques you can use to print multiple workbooks all at the same time. Both techniques involve creating selection sets and then acting on those sets.
Protecting Print Settings
Need to have your print settings always be a certain way? Tired of resetting the settings after others use the workbook or your system? Here's how you can make sure that the printer settings are always just as you want.
Repeating Rows at the Bottom of a Page
Excel allows you to repeat rows at the top of every page of a printout. If you want to repeat rows at the bottom of every page, there is no easy way to perform the task, but there are some workarounds.
Repeating Rows on a Printout Except On the Last Page
When setting up a worksheet for printing, you can specify that Excel repeat some of your rows at the top of each page printed. If you want to have the repeating occur on every page except the last, then you will need to use a macro to do the printing.
Resetting Page Setup
If you ever open a workbook and find that your carefully crafted worksheets no longer print on the number of pages you expect, it could be because of a change in your computer system. This may mean a lot more work crafting the worksheets again.
Scaling Your Printing
If you want to cram more of your worksheet onto each page of a printout, one way to do it is by using scaling. Here's how you can scale the information to get just the right printout size.
Selecting a Paper Size
Excel can print your worksheet on just about any paper size you can imagine. How you select the paper size you want used depends on your printer's capabilities and what Windows allows you to do.
Selecting a Paper Source
When you print a worksheet, you may want to specify that the printout be done on a particular paper tray in a particular printer. This tip will help you figure out how to do that with your printer.
Setting Default Print Margins
Don't like the print margins that Excel uses by default? You can change the default by changing the workbook on which Excel bases the new workbooks you create.
Setting Print Quality
When printing information in a workbook, you may want to take advantage of the different print quality settings available in your printer. Excel tries to make this print specification easy. Just follow these steps.
Setting Print Titles
Excel allows you to specify certain rows or columns that will be repeated on the pages of a printout. Here's how to set those titles so Excel knows what to do with them.
Setting the Active Printer in VBA
Your macros can control where printed output is directed, but sometimes it can be difficult to get the settings correct. This tip explains why this is and shares some ideas on how you can make the setting correctly.
Setting Up Your Printer
Need your printed output to look its best? You may need to change the settings used by your printer, then. Here's how to get to those settings.
Showing Print Preview for the Current Page
The Print Preview feature in Excel can be quite helpful. You might think it would be more helpful, though, if it automatically displayed the page on which you were working in the worksheet. This is a bigger challenge than you might think, for reasons described in this tip.
Specifying a Paper Tray in a Macro
If you are using a macro to create your printed Excel output, you may need a way to specify that paper should come from a specific printer tray. That is not as easy as it may first seem. Here's a discussion on the options you have.
Specifying a Print Tray for a Worksheet
If you need to modify where a worksheet is printed (meaning, which paper tray it should use), Excel doesn't provide a lot of options. Here's a description of one approach that may work for you, however.
Specifying an Order for Page Printing
If a printout of your worksheet requires multiple pages, you may want to specify the order in which Excel prints those pages. This is done by using the Page Setup dialog box, as illustrated in this tip.
Specifying Print Quantity in a Cell
When you print a worksheet, you can specify in the Print dialog box how many copies you want printed. If you want the print quantity to be based on the value entered in a cell, instead, then you'll need to use one of the macro approaches described in this tip.
Specifying the Y Value in X of Y Page Numbering
Page numbers in Excel headers and footers have always been a source of frustration for users. This tip recounts one frustration with page numbering and a way that you can work around it.
Top Margin Ignored when Printing
When you press the Print button in Excel, you want your worksheet to go to your printer and produce output as you expect. When it doesn't happen that way, it can be frustrating trying to figure out where the problem lies.
Using Duplex Printing
Need to print on both sides of a piece of paper? If your printer can handle it, you can duplex your output from within Excel. Here's how.
Using Less Paper on Printouts
If a worksheet contains nothing but a bunch of values in column A, you may be loathe to print the worksheet and "waste" a bunch of paper. There are a few ways you can better utilize the paper, as discussed in this tip.
Using the Keyboard to Control Page Display in Print Preview
Sometimes it is just easier to use the keyboard than it is to use the mouse. If you are a keyboard-oriented person, you can apply the shortcuts in this tip to easily change what is displayed in Print Preview.
Working with Multiple Printers
If you have multiple printers accessible to your computer, you may need a way to quickly print your worksheet on a specific printer. This is an easy task for a macro, as described in this tip.