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

Finding the End of the Worksheet

Want a quick way to get to the last cell in your worksheet? This tip provides a handy shortcut and a potential "gotcha."

Discover More

Using SUM In a Macro

Want to use a worksheet function (such as SUM) from within a macro? Here's how easy it is to accomplish the task.

Discover More

Stopping Date Parsing when Opening a CSV File

Excel tries to make sense out of any data that you import from a non-Excel file. Sometimes this can have unwanted results. ...

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 (MENU)

Displaying Letter Grades

Grading in schools is often done using numeric values. However, you may want to change those numeric values into letter ...

Discover More

Checking for a Value in a Cell

Need to figure out if a cell contains a number so that your formula makes sense? (Perhaps it would return an error if the ...

Discover More

Splitting Text to Multiple Cells

When processing data, you may have a need to split a long text string into shorter chunks of text consisting of whole words. ...

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 for this tip:

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. 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 9 - 7?

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.

Links and Sharing