Excel Freeze Panes (Table of Contents)
Introduction to Freeze Panes in Excel
Freeze Panes in Excel is used to fix any frame or row or section of the table to access the data located so down below so that the user can see the header’s name as well. There is 3 type of Freeze Panes option available in View menu tab under Window section, Freeze Panes, Freeze Top Row and Freeze First Column. Freeze Panes is used to freeze the worksheet from the point where we keep our cursor. This freezes both the row and column both. Then to freeze a Row and a Column, we have a separate option to freeze each of them. Once we do that, we will see some portion of the worksheet will not move until we unfreeze it.
- A Frozen top row to know which parameters we are looking at during a review:
Before Freezing Top Row:
After Freezing Top Row:
This shows how the same dataset looks like with a frozen row. This makes it easy to know which parameter we are referring to when analysing data beyond the first few records in the workbook.
- A frozen first column to know which record we are evaluating for a particular parameter.
Before freezing first column:
After freezing the first column:
The figure above compares the same dataset with and without the first column frozen in place. Freezing Panes also enable us to split the dataset into multiple parts to ease analysis: The worksheet gets split into different parts, which can be browsed independently. The Grey Lines in the middle of the worksheet indicate where the rows and columns have been frozen in place.
How to Freeze Panes in Excel?
The Freeze Panes feature is not very complicated to use if we know the database we are working with. In the next few paragraphs, we will learn how to use the features associated with freezing panes and using them for analysis.
Here are a few examples of Freeze Panes in Excel:
Freeze Top Row – Example #1
To do this, we have to perform the following steps:
- Select View from the Excel toolbar. Select Freeze Panes from the view options; this will open a dropdown menu where there are options to select the rows or columns which we want to freeze. Select Freeze Top Row; this will freeze the top row of the active worksheet in place and allow us to browse the rest of the data without disturbing the top row.
- A Tiny grey straight line will appear just below the 1st row. This means the first row is locked or frozen.
Freeze First Column – Example #2
Next, we take a look at the next most commonly used function in the Freeze Pane feature, freezing the first column. This can be done using the following steps:
- Select Freeze Panes from the view options. From the dropdown menu, select Freeze First Column and this would freeze the first column in place, allowing us to browse the rest of the data without disturbing the first column.
A Tiny grey straight line will appear just below the 1st Column. This means the first column is locked or frozen.
Both of these features can be used simultaneously and make it easier for us to analyze data. As we have seen in the examples, knowing the table’s basic structure helps us decide what we want to freeze.
Freeze First Row and First Column – Example #3
Freeze first row and first column
Here is an example of the practice table with the first row and first column frozen.
This brings us to the most useful function in the freeze panes feature, freezing multiple columns and rows.
This is a function I like to use the most because it enables the user to freeze rows and unfreeze rows and columns based on any number of parameters depending on the structure of the worksheet’s data.
To freeze the first row and first column, we need to perform the following steps:
- Select Cell B2 from the worksheet.
- Now, from the view options, select Freeze Panes. From the dropdown that appears, select the first option, Freeze Panes.
These actions freeze the first row and first column in place.
Freeze Multiple Columns – Example #4
We can use similar steps to freeze multiple rows and columns. The following steps illustrate this:
- Select any cell above which the rows and columns have to stay in place:
- Repeat steps 2 and 3 from the previous illustration to freeze all rows and columns above and left of the selected cell.
The solid grey lines that appear indicate that the rows and columns on the top left of the sheet have been frozen. We can also choose either a whole row above which we need data to stay in place or a column.
Unfreezing rows and columns to their default state is very simple. We just have to go into the freeze panes dropdown and click on Unfreeze Panes as shown below.
Freeze panes in excel is an option that makes it very easy for us to compare data in large datasets. In fact, freezing panes in excel are so useful that software providers provide additional features based entirely on freezing panes in excel. One such example is the ability to freeze and unfreeze multiple worksheets and tables at once, which is provided as a product by many software vendors.
Things to Remember
- Freeze Panes does not work while we are editing something inside a cell, so care must be exercised while selecting the cell we want as the frozen data boundary; never double click that cell before freezing the data.
- Freeze panes in excel is a default configuration that can freeze data to the left of the boundary column or above the boundary row depending on what we choose as a boundary. There are add on available from various software providers to enhance these.
This has been a guide to Freeze Panes in Excel. Here we discussed how to freeze panes in excel and different methods to freeze panes in excel, along with practical examples and a downloadable excel template. You can also go through our other suggested articles to learn more –
- Freeze Panes and Split Panes (Detailed)
- Excel Move Columns
- Freeze Columns in Excel
- Excel Freeze Rows