Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Excel versions: 2007, 2010, 2013, and 2016. 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: Changing the Default Font.

Changing the Default Font

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated March 22, 2021)

David wonders how he can change the default font for Excel when he opens a new workbook. Setting the default font that you want Excel to use is actually quite easy. All you need to do is follow these steps:

  1. Display the Excel Options dialog box. (In Excel 2007 click the Office button and then click Excel Options. In Excel 2010 and later versions display the File tab of the ribbon and then click Options.)
  2. Make sure Popular (Excel 2007) or General (Excel 2010 and later versions) is clicked at the left side of the screen. (See Figure 1.)
  3. Figure 1. The General options of the Excel Options dialog box.

  4. Change the Use this Font drop-down list (Excel 2007 and Excel 2010) or the Use This As the Default Font drop-down list (Excel 2013 and Excel 2016) so that it reflects the font you want used.
  5. If desired, use the Font Size drop-down list to pick the size of font you want Excel to use.
  6. Click OK.
  7. Restart Excel.

Now every time you create a new workbook, Excel will use these settings as the default. The only times it won't is if you base a new workbook on a template or store a template named Book.xltx or Book.xltm in the XLStart folder. (In this second case, you've overridden how Excel formats a new workbook by whatever is set within the Book.xltx or Book.xltm template file.)

Also keep in mind that these steps won't change the font in any previously created workbooks; those stay as they were when you saved them.

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (12618) applies to Microsoft Excel 2007, 2010, 2013, and 2016. You can find a version of this tip for the older menu interface of Excel here: Changing the Default Font.

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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