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: Adjusting Row Height for Your Text.

Adjusting Row Height for Your Text

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated September 5, 2020)

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. (It also won't work properly if you have merged cells in your row. More on that in a moment.) 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.

If your row has merged cells in it, this can present its own set of challenges. This is better addressed in a different tip, which you can find here.

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (9578) 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: 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

Changing Stubborn Ruler Measurements

Can't get the Ruler to reflect the measurements you want? Chances are good that you are suffering from a glitch caused by ...

Discover More

Automatically Using Smart Quotes

As a way to make your documents look more professional, Word can utilize "smart quotes" for both quote marks and ...

Discover More

Displaying Blanks when Summing to Zero

If you use fields to sum the information in your table columns, you might want to display a blank when the sum is zero. ...

Discover More

Comprehensive VBA Guide Visual Basic for Applications (VBA) is the language used for writing macros in all Office programs. This complete guide shows both professionals and novices how to master VBA in order to customize the entire Office suite for their needs. Check out Mastering VBA for Office 2010 today!

More ExcelTips (ribbon)

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

Hiding a Huge Number of Rows

Need to hide a large number of rows? It's easy to do if you combine a few keyboard shortcuts. Here are several techniques ...

Discover More

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. ...

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 two more than 3?

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.