How to Split Screen in Excel (Compare Side-by-Side)

Excel has some really useful features that can help you be a lot more efficient in your day-to-day work.

One of the common tasks many people have to do is to compare data in the same sheet.

This is especially useful for people who work with large data that requires a lot of back and forth in the same worksheet.

Excel has a split-screen feature that divides your window into horizontal or vertical panes, and then you can scroll these separately.

This way, you can view row # 1 and Row # 500 in the same window (without scrolling back and forth)

I will show you how the split-screen feature works in excel and why you should be using it.

How to Split Screen in Excel (View Same Sheet Side-by-Side)

Below are the steps to split-screen in Excel:

  1. Activate the worksheet that you want to split
  2. Click any cell in the worksheet (the split will happen at this selected cell)
  3. Click the View tab
Click the View tab
  1. In the Window group, click on the Split option
Click the Split icon

The above steps would split the screen as shown below (where you see two thick gray lines – a vertical split line and a horizontal split line).

Screen split in four parts in Excel

To quickly explain what’s happened here, Excel has divided the worksheet screen into four different parts (separated by the thick gray lines)

Each of these parts is independent and has its own scroll bars, so you can scroll each of these sections horizontally and vertically.

In most cases, you would only need to divide your screen either horizontally or vertically, but not both.

To get rid of the thick gray line, select and drag it upwards (for horizontal split) or to the left (for vertical split), and it will remove that gray line as well as that split.

Drag the gray lines to make the split screen go away

Note: Although you see the worksheet as four independent parts, in the backend, it’s still the same worksheet. So if you make any change in any of the split-screen areas, it would be applied to the entire worksheet.

How to Remove Split Screen in Excel (Un-Split Screens)

If you want to remove all the screen splits and get back one single screen, you can repeat the same process.

The split-screen option is like a toggle, where doing it once will enable it, and doing it again will disable it.

To remove Split Screen:

  1. Click the View tab
  2. In the Window group, click on the Split option

If your screen is split into four parts, and you want to remove the horizontal or the vertical split, click on the thick gray line that splits the window and drag it to the left to remove the vertical split (and upwards to remove the horizontal split)

Split Screen Shortcuts

If you need to split your screen often, you’ll be able to do it faster using the below shortcut:

ALT + W + S

Hit the ALT key, followed by the W and S key in succession (no need to hold the ALT key).

The above shortcut will split the screens into four parts, and this same shortcut will also remove the splits.

So this is how you can use an in-built option (or a shortcut) in Excel to split screens.

I hope you found this tutorial useful!

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