5 excel problems and fixes

Often you might have these little bugs that bother you in life but since I write about Excel, I’ll try to fix your bugs in that context 😀

Let’s take a look at 5 of the most common problems

#1 Formulas not working

It might have had happened that while confirming a formula (by pressing enter) the result doesn’t show up, instead the formula itself is displayed in the cell

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The Fix – The problem is that the cell has a text format so excel thinks your formula is a piece of text. To fix this, simply convert the cell in a Number or General format and then confirm the formula once again. I am pretty sure it’ll work


#2 Formula View

This one happens mostly by accident when your spreadsheet is showing all formulas but not their results

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This is not because of cell formatting but it is because you might have switched over to the formula view by pressing Ctrl ~ (tilde).

The Fix – Just press Ctrl ~ (tilde) again and you’ll come back in the normal mode


#3 Hashes (######) in a Cell

At times the cell will be filled up hashes.

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This could be because

  1. The cell value does not fit in the current cell width
  2. The number or text is in excess of 253 characters
  3. A negative number in the cell has been formatted as a Date or Time format. Note that date and time must be +ve numbers


The Fix – 

  1. Widen the column width. Shortcut ALT OCA (auto-fit) or ALT OCW (for specifying custom width)
  2. Cut short the cell value / number of characters
  3. Make sure that a negative number in the cell is not formatted as date or time


#4 Page Breaks

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Although these are harmless but they untidy my sheet

The Fix – Go to Excel Options --> Advanced --> Scroll down to Display Options for This Worksheet --> Un-check Page Breaks

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#5 Page Break Or Layout View

This mostly happens when you receive a printable file from someone. The view might look a like Page Break (left) or Layout (right) and you are unsure how to get back to normal excel screen

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The Fix – At the right bottom corner of your excel screen there are 3 buttons to toggle between 3 views (2 views from above and normal view)

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Can you think of any more?

I could think of just 5 problems, but I am sure there are plenty of them. If you have any more please drop in a comment and I’ll try to give you a fix


Some More Awesome Hacks

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  2. Beauty tips for your excel reports
  3. Data formatting tips
  4. Running Total Tricks
  5. Excel Productivity Hacks


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