How to Quickly Unhide Columns in Excel

There are various ways to hide and unhide columns in Excel. It may happen that one of the methods may not work for you, in that case, it is good to know alternatives that can work.

How to Unhide Columns in Excel

In this tutorial, you’ll learn the following methods to unhide Columns in Excel:

  1. Using a keyboard shortcut.
  2. Using the Mouse.
  3. Using the Format options in the ribbon.
  4. Changing the column width.
#1 – Using a Keyboard Shortcut

To unhide columns in Excel using a keyboard shortcut:

  • Select the column that have the hidden columns in between. For example, if you are trying to unhide column C, then select column B and D.How to Unhide Columns in Excel - Select Columns
  • Hold the Control key and press the 0 key from the numeric keypad. If you don’t have the numeric keypad in your keyboard, use Control + Shift + 0 Key from the regular keyboard.How to Unhide Columns in Excel - Shortcuts
    Note: This shortcut may not work in all cases as it is dependent on the operating system settings. Here is more about this issue. In that case, you can use the following keyboard shortcut:How to Unhide Columns in Excel - ALT Shortcuts
  • This will instantly unhide the columns.How to Unhide Columns in Excel - Shortcuts Demo

If you want to unhide all the columns in the worksheet, select the entire worksheet and use the shortcut.

#2 – Using the Mouse to Unhide Columns

One quick and easy way to unhide a column is to use the mouse.

To do this:

  • Hover your mouse in between the columns alphabets that has the hidden column. For example, if Column C is hidden, then hover the mouse between Column B and D (at the top of the worksheet). You will see a double line icon with arrows pointing on left and right.How to Unhide Columns in Excel - Double Arrow Icon
  • Hold the left key of the mouse and drag it to the right. It will make the hidden column appear.How to Unhide Columns in Excel - drag using mouse
#3 Using the Format Option in the Ribbon

Under the home tab in the ribbon, there are options to hide and unhide columns in Excel.

Here is how to use it:

  • Select the columns between which there are hidden columns.
  • Go to Home –> Cells –> Format –> Visibility –> Unhide Columns. This will instantly unhide the columns.How to Unhide Columns in Excel - Format Ribbon

Another way of accessing this option is by selecting the columns and right clicking using the mouse. In the menu that appears, select the unhide option.

How to Unhide Columns in Excel - left Click Menu

#4 Changing the Column Width

There is a possibility that none of these methods work when you try to unhide column in Excel. It happens when you change the Column Width to 0. In that case, even if you unhide the column, it’s width still remains 0, and hence you can’t see it or select it.

To change the column width:

  • In the name box, type any cell address in that column. For example, if it is column C, type C1.
  • Although the column is not visible, the cursor would go in between B1 and D1 (indicating that C1 has been selected).How to Unhide Columns in Excel - Name Box
  • Go to Home –> Format –> Column Width. It will open the Column Width dialogue box.How to Unhide Columns in Excel - Column Width
  • Enter a column width value to make the column visible. In Excel 2013, if you enter any value less than .039, it hides the column completely. For any value higher than or equal to .039, the column is visible (although it would be a thin line for such a small value).How to Unhide Columns in Excel - Column Width value

This is by far the most reliable way to unhide columns in Excel. If everything fails, just change the column width.

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