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: Adjusting Row Height for Your Text.

Adjusting Row Height for Your Text

Written by Allen Wyatt (last updated March 18, 2023)
This tip applies to Excel 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003


It is fairly easy to put more text in a cell than can be readily displayed. While you can widen the column to fit your text, sometimes this is not a good (or viable) option. Instead, you can wrap the text within the cell, so that the cell height is increased to display all the text. Follow these steps:

  1. Select the cells whose formatting you want to affect.
  2. Choose Cells from the Format menu. Excel displays the Format Cells dialog box.
  3. Click on the Alignment tab. (See Figure 1.)
  4. Figure 1. The Alignment tab of the Format Cells dialog box.

  5. Make sure the Wrap Text check box is selected.
  6. Click on OK.

It is important to remember that your row height will only increase automatically if you haven't explicitly specified the row height. If the height doesn't expand to fit the contents of the cell, follow these steps, after doing the previous steps:

  1. Select the row.
  2. Choose Row from the Format menu. Excel displays a submenu.
  3. Choose AutoFit from the submenu.

The text should now be wrapped within the cell and all visible.

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (3187) 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: Adjusting Row Height for Your Text.

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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