Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Excel versions: 2007, 2010, and 2013. 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: Adjusting Row Height for Your Text.

Adjusting Row Height for Your Text

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated March 8, 2014)

9

It is fairly easy to put more text in a cell than can be readily displayed. While you can widen the column to fit your text, sometimes this is not a good (or viable) option. Instead, you can wrap the text within the cell, so that the cell height is increased to display all the text. Follow these steps:
  1. Select the cells whose formatting you want to affect.
  2. Press Ctrl+Shift+F. Excel displays the Format Cells dialog box.
  3. Click on the Alignment tab. (See Figure 1.)
  4. Figure 1. The Alignment tab of the Format Cells dialog box.

  5. Make sure the Wrap Text check box is selected.
  6. Click on OK.
It is important to remember that your row height will only increase automatically if you haven't explicitly specified the row height. If the height doesn't expand to fit the contents of the cell, follow these steps, after doing the previous steps:
  1. Select the row.
  2. Make sure the Home tab of the ribbon is displayed.
  3. Within the Cells group, click Format. Excel displays a drop-down menu of choices.
  4. Choose AutoFit Row Height from the menu.
The text should now be wrapped within the cell and all visible.

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (9578) applies to Microsoft Excel 2007, 2010, and 2013. You can find a version of this tip for the older menu interface of Excel here: Adjusting Row Height for Your Text.

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

Creating Sideheads

A sidehead can be used as a layout element for a document. You can create sideheads in a document by using text boxes, as ...

Discover More

Adding a File Path and Filename

If you need to stuff the current workbook's filename and path into a cell or a header or footer, you'll appreciate the ...

Discover More

Saving a Workbook Using Passwords

One of the security features built-in to Excel is the ability to save a workbook using a password that limits access to the ...

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)

Increasing Row Height for Printing

You may have a need to increase the height of the rows in your worksheet to "spread out" the data when it is printed. This ...

Discover More

Changing Default Row Height

Changing the default row height used for a worksheet is relatively easy, as long as you don't mind the row height never ...

Discover More

Formatting Subtotal Rows

Excel automatically formats subtotals for you. But what if you want to change the default to something more suitable for your ...

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}] 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 3 + 8?

2015-03-27 14:21:30

PJSH

I produced a nice document with row height adjusted for appropriate text, but on closing and re-opening document row heights all grew larger and messed up the document.

Suggestions??


2014-04-03 08:52:30

BigJaker

Thanks Micky. I have created my own macro that does about the same presented in the tip. Mine has a few more variables involved but same concept.


2014-04-03 06:18:49

JD Murphy

Autofit problem.
Last line -particularly if short - doesn't show. Any Ideas?
JD


2014-04-02 13:45:30

Michael (Micky) Avidan

@Roger + BigJaker,
Have a look at the hereubder link:
http://excelribbon.tips.net/T010228_Adjusting_Row_Height_when_Wrapping_Text.html
Michael (Micky) Avidan
“Microsoft® Answers" - Wiki author & Forums Moderator
“Microsoft®” MVP – Excel (2009-2014)
ISRAEL


2014-04-01 08:40:19

BigJaker

Roger, I had a similar situation on a sheet. I created a macro to trigger when the number of characters in the merged cell hit a certain number it would expand to a specified height. If the length of characters was in another range it would expand further. Their are some gotchas though with this type of macro answer, the width of the merged cells has to be a certain width. If the columns are smaller less text will fit. Hope this can get you started to creating an answer for your situation.


2014-03-10 11:51:09

Roger Barnes

This doesn't seem to work if multiple cells in the row are merged. Any attempt to auto adjust the row height makes it a single line high even if the merged cells content is multiple lines in length.


2014-03-09 20:38:23

Karen

Am not seeing figures in any of the tips with either Firefox or Explorer - any suggestions?


2014-03-08 10:34:31

Henry Noble

Alt-Enter is very handy for a short bit of text, but its function is not quite the same as letting wordwrap do the job.
Alt-Enter inserts a hidden return and line-feed, thereby forcing a new line regardless of the size of the cell. Sometimes this is precisely what is wanted. With a long block of text, using wordwrap without Alt-Enter usually is preferable because the text will auto-adjust if the column width is changed.


2014-03-08 05:48:29

Arif Choudhary

Adjusting Row Height for Your Text

If you select the cell containing data and press Alt+enter you will get the same wrapping of data. It is a simple and short method.


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.