Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Excel versions: 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, and Excel in Microsoft 365. If you are using an earlier version (Excel 2003 or earlier), this tip may not work for you. For a version of this tip written specifically for earlier versions of Excel, click here: Find and Replace in Headers.

Find and Replace in Headers

Written by Allen Wyatt (last updated January 17, 2023)
This tip applies to Excel 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, and Excel in Microsoft 365


One of the very useful tools provided in Excel is Find and Replace, which allows you to locate and change information stored in cells. One place that Find and Replace won't work, however, is with information stored in headers or footers for your worksheets.

The only way to handle the finding and replacing of information in a header or footer is to use a macro. It is a rather trivial task to access what is stored in the various parts of the header and footer, check them for what you want to find, and then replace it with some new text. The following macro provides an example.

Sub FnR_HF()
    Dim sWhat As String, sReplacment As String
    Const csTITLE As String = "Find and Replace"

    sWhat = InputBox("Replace what", csTITLE)
    If Len(sWhat) = 0 Then Exit Sub
    sReplacment = InputBox("With what", csTITLE)

    With ActiveSheet.PageSetup
        ' Substitute Header/Footer values
        .LeftHeader = Application.WorksheetFunction.Substitute( _
                      .LeftHeader, sWhat, sReplacment)
        .CenterHeader = Application.WorksheetFunction.Substitute( _
                        .CenterHeader, sWhat, sReplacment)
        .RightHeader = Application.WorksheetFunction.Substitute( _
                       .RightHeader, sWhat, sReplacment)
        .LeftFooter = Application.WorksheetFunction.Substitute( _
                      .LeftFooter, sWhat, sReplacment)
        .CenterFooter = Application.WorksheetFunction.Substitute( _
                        .CenterFooter, sWhat, sReplacment)
        .RightFooter = Application.WorksheetFunction.Substitute( _
                       .RightFooter, sWhat, sReplacment)
    End With
End Sub

Note how the macro does the replacements in all three parts of the header and all three parts of the footer.

If you prefer to not use your own macro, or if you want a more full-featured Find and Replace for Excel, you might consider the free FlexFind add-in from Excel MVP Jan Karel Pieterse:

http://www.jkp-ads.com/officemarketplaceff-en.asp

This add in searches regularly, but also searches in lots of other areas including headers and footers.

Note:

If you would like to know how to use the macros described on this page (or on any other page on the ExcelTips sites), I've prepared a special page that includes helpful information. Click here to open that special page in a new browser tab.

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (3388) applies to Microsoft Excel 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, and Excel in Microsoft 365. You can find a version of this tip for the older menu interface of Excel here: Find and Replace in Headers.

Author Bio

Allen Wyatt

With more than 50 non-fiction books and numerous magazine articles to his credit, Allen Wyatt is an internationally recognized author. He is president of Sharon Parq Associates, a computer and publishing services company. ...

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