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: Maintaining Formatting when Refreshing PivotTables.

Maintaining Formatting when Refreshing PivotTables

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated March 31, 2018)

PivotTables provide a great way to analyze large amounts of data and pull out the summarizations that you need. Once you have the PivotTable displaying the values you need, you can then format the table to make the data presentable—for a while. You see, when you update the data on which the PivotTable is based, and then refresh the PivotTable, all your formatting work may go away.

The way around this is to follow these steps:

  1. Make sure that your PivotTable displays the values you want.
  2. Format the PivotTable in whatever way desired.
  3. On the PivotTable toolbar, choose Table Options from the PivotTable menu. Excel displays the PivotTable Options dialog box. (See Figure 1.)
  4. Figure 1. The PivotTable Options dialog box.

  5. Make sure the Preserve Formatting check box is selected.
  6. Click OK.

Now, when you refresh the PivotTable, your previously applied formatting should remain on rows and columns previously in the PivotTable. If the refresh results in new rows being added to the PivotTable, then you will still need to format those, unless you are using an AutoFormat.

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (3099) 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: Maintaining Formatting when Refreshing PivotTables.

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

Setting Your Default Document Directory

Word allows you to specify where it should start looking for your documents. This setting can come in handy if you store ...

Discover More

Copying a File in VBA

Need to have your macro copy a file from one place to another? It's easy to do using the FileCopy command, described in ...

Discover More

Quickly Updating Values

If you need to update a bunch of values in a worksheet by a standard amount, you can use the Paste Special feature of ...

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)

Reducing File Sizes for Workbooks with PivotTables

Need to reduce the size of your workbooks that contain PivotTables? Here's something you can try to minimize the ...

Discover More

Setting Stable Column Widths in a PivotTable

When you update a PivotTable, Excel can take liberties with any formatting you previously applied to the PivotTable. ...

Discover More

Formatting a PivotTable

You can format PivotTables using either manual formatting or automatic formatting. You need to be careful, however, as ...

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 four more than 6?

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 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.