How to Freeze Panes in Excel


- Written by Puneet

The freeze Panes option use to lock the rows and columns while scrolling down the spreadsheet anywhere. When you are working with huge data, it is difficult to compare them with each other.

But, you can freeze the header or some specific rows and columns to make them visible always on the top.

In this tutorial, I would like to share the steps to freeze the top row or first column, and the combination of rows and columns accordingly.

Steps to Freeze the Top Row in Excel

  1. First, select the “Header Row” that you want to freeze.
  2. Next, go to the “View” tab on the ribbon, and from the “Window” group, click on the “Freeze Panes” command.
  3. Now, in the freeze panes drop-down, select the “Freeze Top Row” option to lock the row.
  4. Here, you will notice a thin horizontal line below the header row that shows the above area of the sheet is locked.

The keyboard shortcut is Alt ⇢ W ⇢ F ⇢ R to freeze the top row.

Freeze Multiple Rows at the Top in Excel

In this, you can also freeze several rows in the worksheet as per your need. Here, below are the steps to do this:

  1. First, head over the cursor to the row header number of the targeted row to freeze the above area of it. (For Instance, if you want to freeze the top three rows then you must select the 4th row for this).
  2. After that, on the “View” tab, click on the freeze panes drop-down and select the first option which is “Freeze Panes”.
  3. Now, scroll down the sheet and you’ll observe that all the rows above the 4th row will be visible on the top just as it is.

Freeze the First Column in Excel

To know how to freeze the first column in the spreadsheet, you must follow the steps below:

  1. Select the column from the top alphabet “A” that denotes the Column A of the sheet.
  2. Again, in the Window group, click on the freeze panes drop-down.
  3. In the next step, you need to click on the “Freeze First Column” option.
  4. In the end, the first column will freeze which shows a dark vertical line.

The keyboard shortcut to freeze the first column is Alt ⇢ W ⇢ F ⇢ C.

Freeze Multiple Columns

  1. First, you need to select the first column by its header and then press and hold the Ctrl key to select the multiple columns to lock. For Example, if you want to freeze the first two columns (A, B) of your sheet, then for this, you need to select column C as well.
  2. After that, go to the “View” tab> Freeze panes >and again click on freeze panes from the drop-drop box.
  3. Once you click on the freeze panes, the first two columns (A and B) will be locked, and these columns will be separated from the others by a straight vertical line.

Unfreeze Panes in Excel

  1. Just go to the “View” tab on the ribbon.
  2. Then, click on the “Unfreeze Panes” button from the freeze panes.
  3. Within a second, you’ll see all locked rows and columns convert back to normal.

Point to Remember

  • The columns or rows which are locked will always start from the top row and first column. As it’s not possible, to lock the middle row or column in the sheet.
  • Make sure that all the rows and columns you want to lock are visible on the worksheet.
Last Updated: August 10, 2023