How To Freeze Multiple Rows in Excel (Easy 2024 Guide)

Fact Checked By Cindy Wong

There may come a time when you need to learn how to freeze multiple rows in Excel. Luckily, freezing rows in Excel is easy when you know how. It’s a handy feature for keeping specific rows in the view while tracking large sets of information, making it easier to compare data.

The most straightforward way to freeze rows in Excel is to go to the View tab in the Excel ribbon and choose the option “Freeze panes,” then choose the option “Freeze panes” in the drop-down menu. However, there are several ways you can freeze rows in Excel.

In this guide, I’ll show you how to freeze multiple rows in Excel using every method possible. I’ve also included some helpful screenshots and step-by-step instructions, giving you everything you need to freeze a row. Read on to learn more.

How To Freeze the Top Row in Excel

When working with extensive datasets in a Microsoft Excel worksheet, it’s common to lose track of column headers or essential information as you scroll down the spreadsheet. (On a related note, I also have a step-by-step guide on how to freeze rows in Google Sheets).

Freezing rows allows you to keep essential headers or labels visible at all times, providing context and making navigating the data easier.

Freezing the top row in Excel is easy. Follow the simple steps below:

  1. Go to the “View” menu.
How to freeze multiple rows in Excel—Go to the View menu
  1. Choose the Freeze Panes option.
Choose the option freeze panes option.
  1. Select “Freeze top row.”

    Select Freeze top row.

This method will only freeze the first row. If you want to freeze multiple rows, you must adapt the process slightly. Keep reading as I walk you through the steps on how to freeze multiple rows in Excel when scrolling.

How To Freeze Multiple Rows in Excel

Freezing the top row in Excel is straightforward, unlike having Excel freeze multiple rows. One thing to note is that following these steps will also freeze the top row in your spreadsheet. This means you can use these steps to learn how to freeze multiple rows in Excel, including the top two rows.

To learn how to freeze multiple rows, follow the steps below:

  1. Select the row below the rows you want to freeze.
Selected row in Excel
  1. Go to the “View” menu in the Excel ribbon.
How to freeze multiple rows in Excel—Go to the View menu
  1. Choose the option “Freeze panes.”
Choose the option freeze panes option.
  1. Select “Freeze panes” in the drop-down menu.
Select Freeze panes in the drop down menu.

A lie will appear above the row you selected, meaning the rows above that lie are frozen.

Note: If you need to adjust the frozen rows or unfreeze them altogether, repeat the process outlined above.

Interested in learning how to freeze rows in Excel? Watch my latest video above, which covers all these methods in 2 minutes! Alternatively, head over to the Spreadsheet Point YouTube channel to catch the full selection of our videos on all things Excel-related! I try to cover all the most common issues you’ll face when working with a spreadsheet.

And on a related topic, check out my guide on how to remove duplicates in Excel.

How To Freeze Multiple Rows in Excel: Top Two Rows

Aside from freezing the top row, you can also have Excel freeze the top two rows if you want to have them remain in place. Here’s how:

  1. Select the 3rd row” in your spreadsheet.
  2. Go to the “View” menu in the Excel ribbon.
How to freeze multiple rows in Excel—Go to the View menu
  1. Choose the option “Freeze panes.”
Choose the option freeze panes option.
  1. Select “Freeze panes” in the drop-down menu.
Select Freeze panes in the drop down menu.

To help you understand the process better, I have also included a helpful GIF below, showing how to freeze the top two rows in Excel:

GIF showing how to freeze the top two rows in Excel.

Using this method above, you can have Excel freeze the top two rows so that they are always in view when you are scrolling through your dataset in the Excel spreadsheet.

How To Freeze Multiple Rows in Excel: Top 3 Rows

Of course, there may be times when you have large datasets, so you need to freeze additional rows. In such cases, you can use the method above to freeze three rows.

To clarify the process, follow the steps below to freeze the top three rows in Excel:

  1. Select the 4th row in your spreadsheet.
  2. Go to the “View” menu in the Excel ribbon.
How to freeze multiple rows in Excel—Go to the View menu
  1. Choose the “Freeze panes” option from the view ribbon.
Choose the option freeze panes option.
  1. Select “Freeze panes” in the drop-down menu.

And that’s how to freeze the third row and above! You can use the same process for multiple rows, whether four, five, six, or more.

How To Unfreeze Rows in Excel

Of course, there will also be instances when you need to unfreeze rows from an area of the worksheet in Excel. In this case, the method for unfreezing rows is pretty similar to freezing them, but it’s even easier because you don’t need to select any single row.

Here is how to unfreeze your rows in Excel:

  1. Go to the “View” menu in the Excel ribbon.
How to freeze multiple rows in Excel—Go to the View menu
  1. Choose “Freeze panes.”
Choose the option freeze panes option.
  1. Select “Unfreeze panes.”
The Unfreeze panes option.

Once selected, the line below the frozen panes will disappear, as will your frozen rows.

What To Do if the Freeze Panes Button Is Disabled (Grayed Out)

The freeze panes button is grayed out

There are also occasions when I notice the “Freeze Panes” button is grayed out. Therefore, I  figured out the reasons and included them below so you can navigate this issue if it occurs:

1. The Wrong Page View

If you are in the “Page Layout” view, you can’t freeze any rows or columns. Here’s how to get out of the page layout view.

  • Go to the “View” menu.
  • Choose the “Normal” view.
  • Try freezing panes again.

2. Cell Editing Mode

You’ll notice the cursor blinking in one of the cells to confirm if you’re in “Cell” editing mode. Select a different cell or row to eliminate cell editing and try freezing the rows again.

3. Compatibility Mode

If you’re working with a workbook created in an older version of Excel or saved in compatibility mode, certain features may be restricted. Therefore, you should check if your workbook is compatible by looking at the “Compatibility Mode” text in the Excel title.

4. Using the Online Version of Excel

You should also remember that the freeze option is not available in Excel online.

Top Mistakes To Avoid When Freezing More Than One Row in Excel

When handling datasets in Excel, it is common to make mistakes. That’s why I’ve also put together a list of common mistakes so you can avoid making them to increase your productivity:

  • Remember to save changes in your workbook.
  • Ensure that you select the row immediately below the last row you want to freeze.
  • After freezing multiple rows, remember to unfreeze them when they are no longer needed.
  • Don’t forget about hidden rows.

If you have hidden rows within the range you want to freeze, remember to unhide them before freezing to ensure consistency. This is the same for combined rows.

How To Freeze Non-Adjacent Rows in Excel

Unfortunately, you can’t freeze nonadjacent rows of Excel. Excel’s “Freeze Panes” feature primarily works with consecutive rows or columns; therefore, it doesn’t support freezing non-adjacent rows.

However, a clever workaround that I sometimes use is to freeze rows, not including the top row. This means you can combine splitting the window and freezing panes.

Follow the steps below to learn how to do it:

  1. Select a cell in your dataset depending on how many rows you want to freeze.
    • For example, if you want to freeze three rows, you select a cell in the 4th row.
  2. Go to the “View” tab on the Excel ribbon.
How to freeze multiple rows in Excel—Go to the View menu
  1. In the “Window” group, click on the “Split” option.
    In the Window group, click on the Split option.
    • This will split your Excel window into multiple panes, which will be indicated by gray lines.
  2. Scroll to the first cell in the group where you want to freeze (the first split pane and select the row).
    • We want to freeze from row six, so we’ll scroll until row six becomes the first row and select it.
Split panes in Excel.
  1. Go back to the “View” tab.
  2. Click on the “Freeze Panes” drop-down menu.
Choose the option freeze panes option.
  1. Select the “Freeze Panes” option.
    • This will freeze all the selected rows above the active cell, including the non-adjacent rows.
Select Freeze panes in the drop down menu.

You can adjust the split panes by dragging the split bars to resize the panes. Ensure that the rows you want to freeze are visible in the frozen pane and the rest of the data is visible in the unfrozen pane.

This will help lock the cells in place for the rows you want to freeze, excluding the top row.

Frozen rows in Excel GIF.

Final Thoughts

In this guide, I’ve included all the methods for how to freeze multiple rows in Excel. By now, you know how to freeze rows to keep your important headers or labels visible as you scroll through your spreadsheet. You can also have Excel freeze two or more rows and unfreeze rows, improving your workflow efficiency.

Have you come across any challenges freezing rows in Excel not mentioned above? How do you think Excel can improve the freezing feature? Let us know in the comments below. Note that I also covered moving rows in Excel. If you’re looking to make even bigger changes to your workbook, I’ve got you covered. Check out my guide on removing blank rows in Excel, too.

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