Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Excel versions: 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, and Excel in Office 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: Searching for Line Breaks.

Searching for Line Breaks

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated May 11, 2019)

Veronica wondered how to search for a line break (Alt+Enter) in a cell. In Word you can search for ^l to find line breaks, but there does not seem to be a similar way to search for line breaks in Excel.

The answer is to remember that you can enter any ASCII code into the "Find What" box by holding down the Alt key and using the numeric keypad. Since the ASCII code for the line break is 10, you can follow these steps:

  1. Press Ctrl+F to display the Find tab of the Find and Replace dialog box. (See Figure 1.)
  2. Figure 1. The Find tab of the Find and Replace dialog box.

  3. In the Find What box, hold down the Alt key as you type 0010 on the numeric keypad. It may not look like anything is in the Find What box, but the character is there.
  4. Click Find Next.

If you want to find cells containing a line break through a macro, you can use the following:

Sub FindLineBreak()
    WhatToFind = Chr(10)
    Cells.Select
    Selection.Find(What:=WhatToFind, After:=ActiveCell, _
      LookIn:=xlValues, LookAt:=xlPart, _
      SearchOrder:=xlByRows, SearchDirection:=xlNext, _
      MatchCase:=False, SearchFormat:=False).Activate
End Sub

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 (9013) applies to Microsoft Excel 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, and Excel in Office 365. You can find a version of this tip for the older menu interface of Excel here: Searching for Line Breaks.

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. ...

MORE FROM ALLEN

Understanding the Select Case Structure

Programming structures are an important tool used by any programmer. The VBA language used by Word's macros includes ...

Discover More

Understanding DATE Field Formatting

One of the most commonly used fields is the DATE field. You can specify how the DATE field displays the current date by ...

Discover More

Read-Only Documents without a Password

Want to protect your document so it cannot be changed? There are a couple of ways you can do it, and not all of them ...

Discover More

Excel Smarts for Beginners! Featuring the friendly and trusted For Dummies style, this popular guide shows beginners how to get up and running with Excel while also helping more experienced users get comfortable with the newest features. Check out Excel 2013 For Dummies today!

More ExcelTips (ribbon)

A Fast Find-Next

Tired of the Find and Replace dialog box blocking the view of your worksheet when you are searching for information? Do ...

Discover More

Searching for Leading Apostrophes

Take a look at the Formula bar when you select a cell that contains text, and you may see an apostrophe at the beginning ...

Discover More

Replacing Characters at the End of a Cell

The Find and Replace capabilities of Excel can come in handy, but they can't accomplish all your replacement needs. One ...

Discover More
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in ExcelTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

View most recent newsletter.

Comments

If you would like to add an image to your comment (not an avatar, but an image to help in making the point of your comment), include the characters [{fig}] (all 7 characters, in the sequence shown) in your comment text. You’ll be prompted to upload your image when you submit the comment. Maximum image size is 6Mpixels. Images larger than 600px wide or 1000px tall will be reduced. Up to three images may be included in a comment. All images are subject to review. Commenting privileges may be curtailed if inappropriate images are posted.

What is 7 - 7?

There are currently no comments for this tip. (Be the first to leave your comment—just use the simple form above!)


This Site

Got a version of Excel that uses the ribbon interface (Excel 2007 or later)? This site is for you! If you use an earlier version of Excel, visit our ExcelTips site focusing on the menu interface.

Newest Tips
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in ExcelTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

(Your e-mail address is not shared with anyone, ever.)

View the most recent newsletter.