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: Ensuring Rows and Columns are Empty.

Ensuring Rows and Columns are Empty

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated April 8, 2017)

1

It is a well-known fact that if you delete a row or column, Excel dutifully does your bidding, removing whatever was in that row or column. This means that it is easy to delete rows or columns you think are blank, which in fact contain information you cannot see on the screen.

So how do you tell if there is any data without scrolling through the gazillion rows and columns in your worksheet? There is a quick way you can check for data in a row or column. To check a column, follow these steps:

  1. Click on the first cell of the column (A1, H1, etc.).
  2. Press the End key once. The characters END should appear at the right side of the status bar.
  3. Press the down arrow if checking out a column or the right arrow if checking out a row.

If you prefer, you can accomplish this same task using only two steps:

  1. Click on the first cell of the column (A1, H1, etc.)
  2. Hold down the Ctrl key as you press the down arrow or right arrow.

Performing these simple steps causes Excel to move to the next cell containing data. If there is no data, Excel selects the last cell in the column (at row 66,536) or the last cell in the row (at column IV). You then know that the row or column is empty and you can safely delete it.

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (2111) 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: Ensuring Rows and Columns are Empty.

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

Wildcards in 'Replace With' Text

When doing searches in Excel, you can use wildcard characters in the specification of what you are searching. However, you ...

Discover More

Replacing Links with Values

Need to get rid of the links in your workbook but save the values that were retrieved by those links? It could be easy or ...

Discover More

Removing Author Information

Word automatically stores lots of author-related information within a document. Because this data is stored in several ...

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 (menu)

Canceling an Edit

When editing a cell, you may want to cancel the edit at some point. There are two ways to do this, both described in this ...

Discover More

Contingent Validation Lists

Data validation can be used to create lists of choices for entry into a particular cell. Using the techniques in this tip you ...

Discover More

Searching Comments

Need to find that misplaced comment in your worksheet? It's easy to do using the Find and Replace capabilities of Excel.

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 five more than 2?

2017-04-10 11:41:50

Ray Austin

Does this find more than simply selecting a col (or an area) and using FIND "*" ?


This Site

Got a version of Excel that uses the menu interface (Excel 97, Excel 2000, Excel 2002, or Excel 2003)? This site is for you! If you use a later version of Excel, visit our ExcelTips site focusing on the ribbon 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.