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Random Width and Height Changes

Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Excel versions: 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003. If you are using a later version (Excel 2007 or later), this tip may not work for you. For a version of this tip written specifically for later versions of Excel, click here: Random Width and Height Changes.

Gary has a workbook set up with twelve worksheets, one for every month. He has framed the information in these worksheets so it just fits on his screen. At some point he opens his workbook to find that the June column widths have expanded so that they don't all fit on his screen. It is only the June columns that expand, but all worksheets will have their row heights expand from 12.75 to 13.50. If Gary resizes everything back so it once more fits his screen, everything is fine for a week or so, and then the resizing happens again.

It is unclear what might be causing this problem, but there are a few things you can check. If the workbook is stored on a network, where it can be accessed by other people, it could be that the change is occurring while someone else has the workbook open. In addition, if the workbook is opened on different machines, it could be that the other machines on which it is opened may be affecting the workbook, provided they have different screen resolutions or different printer fonts installed.

Being unsure as to the cause, it may be that the best solution is to create a macro that runs automatically when the workbook opens. This macro could go through the worksheets and set the column widths and row heights to what you need The following macro will perform these steps:

Private Sub Workbook_Open()
    Dim wSheet As Worksheet

    For Each wSheet In Worksheets
        ' Change to the columns you need
        ' Change to the width you need
        Selection.ColumnWidth = 12

        ' Change to the rows you need
        ' Change to the height you need
        Selection.RowHeight = 13
    Next wSheet
End Sub

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (3175) applies to Microsoft Excel 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003. You can find a version of this tip for the ribbon interface of Excel (Excel 2007 and later) here: Random Width and Height Changes.

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Comments for this tip:

Morris Manning    30 May 2014, 09:43
Judy, such are the mysteries (miseries) of errant row changes! Suggest printing with a different model printer or with a printer where same file printed OK. Depending on outcome, this may help determine if this is an Excel issue or print driver issue. Then, at least, you will have a starting point for further diagnosis or conversation with tech folks.
Judy    29 May 2014, 18:03
Help! I had a new HP printer installed and today is the first time I pulled up Excel 2007 and discovered almost all my spreadsheet row heights changed from 12.75 to 15. Even when I correct a spreadsheet back to 12.75 it still prints out messed up. Some rows are 12.75 then some go to 40 row heights (some more, some less). What happened? Is the printer setting?
Morris Manning    22 Feb 2014, 12:25
I have a twelve sheet workbook similar to Gary's and have experienced a similar issue with rows changing height, particularly the row on the sheet where the cursor rests at time of save. I solved the problem in a similar fashion as suggested. Note: this workbook is not on a network or accessible to others.

Still have one unresolved issue. When workbook is saved as a template, the row in which the cursor resides resizes rather dramatically. Added a Rows("6:6").RowHeight = 19 line to the Workbook_Close code for the sheet where the cursor rests but it does not work. A workaround is to add the same code to Workbook_Open. But basic mystery of the errant row height phenomena remains.

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