How to Unmerge Cells in Microsoft Excel

Updated on August 8, 2017
davidlivermore profile image

David has some interesting ideas and views about the happenings regarding computers and the internet.

A screenshot of merged cells in Microsoft Excel.
A screenshot of merged cells in Microsoft Excel. | Source

The Merging of Cells Excel

Merged cells in Microsoft Excel is the merging of cells in adjacent columns, rows, or both. While there are ways to increase the size of cells, sometimes that is not feasible. In that case cells have to be merged together.

There are other benefits to having merged cells. When attempting to get your spreadsheet looking right, you may have to unmerge cells and then merge them back together again in a different way. Microsoft Excel allows multiple ways to do this, either through mouse clicks or keyboard shortcuts.

This article covers all you need to know about merging and unmerging cells in Excel.

How to Unmerge Cells in Excel

Below are three easy to use methods on how to unmerge cells in Excel. They will involve:

  1. Use of the "ribbon", which is the bar at the top of of the Excel program.
  2. Another method is using menus to format the cells.
  3. The last method involves using keyboard shortcuts.

A screenshot showing how to unmerge cells using the mouse and ribbon.
A screenshot showing how to unmerge cells using the mouse and ribbon. | Source

Unmerging Cells in Excel Using the Ribbon

The first method on unmerging cells in Microsoft Excel involves using the mouse and ribbon. The ribbon is the toolbar at the top of the screen with various tools, including the tool to merge and unmerge cells.

  1. Click on the cell group you wish to unmerge. You will know when you have selected a group of merged cells when you see the row and column numbers change color. In the screenshot above, it shows rows 1 - 2 and columns A - U selected.
  2. In the ribbon you will look for the "Merge & Center" tool. It should already be selected since the cells are already merged.
  3. Simply click on the "Merge & Center" tool and the cells will unmerge. Any text in the cell will move to the first row and column of the previously merged cells. The "Merge & Center" button will also be unselected.

This method involves only a couple motions of the mouse, making it quick and easy.

A screenshot showing how to unmerge cells using the "Format Cells" menu.
A screenshot showing how to unmerge cells using the "Format Cells" menu. | Source

Using the Format Cells Menu to Unmerge Cells in Excel

The second method to unmerge cells in Microsoft Excel involves the "Format Cells" menu, which can be accessed multiple ways.

  1. Click on the cell group you wish to unmerge. You will know when you have selected a group of merged cells when you see the row and column numbers change color. In the screenshot above, it shows rows 1 - 2 and columns A - U selected.
  2. Open the "Format Cells" menu. The information below describes how you can access that menu.
  3. Click on the "Alignment" tab, if necessary, and then uncheck the box next to "Merge Cells". Then click "OK". Any text in the cell will move to the first row and column of the previously merged cells.

This method takes longer, but is worth doing if you have multiple things you wish to do in the "Format Cells" menu.

How to Access the "Format Cells" Menu in Excel

There are multiple ways to access the "Format Cells" menu in Microsoft Excel:

  • Right-click over the cells you wish to unmerge, and in the menu that comes up select "Format Cells".
  • Select the cells you wish to unmerge. Then in the ribbon, click on "Format". Then in the menu that comes up, select "Format Cells".
  • On your keyboard, hold down the "Alt" key. Then on your keyboard, press "H", then "O", and then "E" to bring up the "Format Cells" menu.

A screenshot showing how to unmerge cells using a keyboard shortcut.
A screenshot showing how to unmerge cells using a keyboard shortcut. | Source
Using a keyboard shortcut is the fastest and easiest method to umerge cells in Microsoft Excel.
Using a keyboard shortcut is the fastest and easiest method to umerge cells in Microsoft Excel. | Source

Keyboard Shortcut to Unmerge Cells in Excel

The third method to unmerge cells in Microsoft Excel involves using keyboard shortcuts to unmerge the cells. For those who like to use keyboard shortcuts, this is the preferred method.

  1. Click on the cell group you wish to unmerge. You will know when you have selected a group of merged cells when you see the row and column numbers change color. In the screenshot above, it shows rows 1 - 2 and columns A - U selected.
  2. On your keyboard, hold down the "Alt" key. Then on your keyboard press "H", then "M", and then "U". Any text in the cell will move to the first row and column of the previously merged cells.

If you know the keys on the keyboard, this can be even faster than using the mouse.

What method do you prefer to use when unmerging cells in Microsoft Excel?

See results

Questions & Answers

    © 2012 David Livermore

    Comments

      0 of 8192 characters used
      Post Comment

      • davidlivermore profile imageAUTHOR

        David Livermore 

        5 years ago from Bakersfield, California, United States

        Glad you enjoyed it. I used the program CamStudio. It allows just a portion of the screen to be recorded. Can be a tricky program to work with, but it did the job well enough.

      • ExpectGreatThings profile image

        ExpectGreatThings 

        5 years ago from Illinois

        I am slightly addicted to Excel, so this hub caught my eye. You did a nice job on it. How did you do the video? I'm just asking because it looks just like a screen shot, but I didn't know you could do video that way.

      • davidlivermore profile imageAUTHOR

        David Livermore 

        5 years ago from Bakersfield, California, United States

        I get bombarded with those questions daily when it comes to Word/Excel, so when I saw this hub up for grabs, I took it. Thanks for your comment!

      • literatelibran profile image

        literatelibran 

        5 years ago from Williamsburg, Virginia

        Great hub! Love all of the images. This Hub is bound to save people from asking others at the office to "show me how to..."

      • davidlivermore profile imageAUTHOR

        David Livermore 

        5 years ago from Bakersfield, California, United States

        I have to teach people every day on functions i feel that are basic, but i know to others they may not be. Which is why I wrote this hub, since I know a lot of people have trouble with merging and unmerging. Thanks for your comment!

      • Novel Treasure profile image

        Novel Treasure 

        5 years ago from US

        I love the great simple instructions. I use excel every day in my job, but I am often surprised at how many people don't know how to use it. So I think providing lessons on some of the basic functions is a great idea. Voted Up and Useful.

      working

      This website uses cookies

      As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, turbofuture.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

      For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://turbofuture.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

      Show Details
      Necessary
      HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
      LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
      Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
      AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
      HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
      HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
      Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
      CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
      Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
      Features
      Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
      Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
      Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
      Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
      Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
      VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
      PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
      Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
      MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
      Marketing
      Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
      Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
      Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
      Statistics
      Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
      ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
      Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)