Customize your Excel Sheets for Printing

MS Excel helps you to maintain records in the form of large spreadsheets which may cover hundreds of pages when printed. It is easy to work on these spreadsheets using the Excel tool but printing such large sheets can easily put you into trouble. Today, we will explore some tweaking tips which will enable you to prepare your large excel sheets for printing easily.

Print Parts of Spread Sheet:

Let’s start with printing some selected part of the spread sheet. You can do so by selecting a portion of it or by hiding un-wanted columns.

  • Highlight the range of cells.
  • Go to Page Layout tab -> Print Area -> Set Print Area.


You can set multiple portions of spreadsheet to be printed on different pages.

  • Go to Page Layout tab -> Print Area -> Add to Print Area.
  • Go to Home -> Print Preview. 
  • Click ‘Next/Previous Page’ button to see the preview of different portions.


The limitation to ‘Set Print Area’ is that you can not pick data randomly from the spreadsheet and print it altogether. Rather, different selected portions are printed on different pages. So, we need to find a way to print data that is scattered in the spreadsheet but gets printed at one page.

Print Specific Results:

This brings us to our next question: What if you want to print the results that answer some of your queries? You may like to mention the criteria and get the data which meets those specific conditions only. Yes, we are talking about printing the ‘Filtered Results’.

  • Go to Home-> Sort & Filter tab.
  • You will notice that a dropdown option appears in the top row of every column.
  • This list provides with all the possible filtering options that can be applied on any column.
  • Set the filtering criterion.
  • Click ‘Clear’ in Sort & Filter tab to get back your entire sheet.




Print Entire Spread Sheet:

Now, lets talk about printing entire spreadsheets. We have to set some page settings so that the spreadsheet is printed properly. Initially, we need to look at the ‘Print Preview’ .  You will see many settings are disturbed, so:

  • Go to the Home -> Print Preview -> Page Setup.  
  • ‘Page Setup’ lets you specify the different print out settings including the layout, margins, displaying grid lines and adding header/footer etc.
  • You can also select the paper size and quality so that the data fits the page well, when printed.
  • You can either zoom it to any size using scaling or fit it to 1 page by width and height to display result in one page.
  • Margins tab allows you to describe the spacing of margins.
  • You may also select if you want to display the gridlines or not.


To add a little customization to your sheets, you may want to display headers/footers at every page of your workbook.

  • Go to Print Preview -> Page Set Up.
  • Go to the Header/Footer tab.
  • You may like to select from the list of available header/footer or choose a custom header/footer for your sheets.


Since, we loose track of the entries in larger spread sheets as we move down or right to the sheet. This is because we either forget the name of the column or the product/item itself we are referring to. How if we could display the column names at every printed page? And, how if we could print the first column (which is usually item id or name) every time with the farther columns? This would ease to refer to the product directly and the column name will tell us the particular attribute.

  • Go to Page Layout -> Page Titles.
  • Select the row which contains the column names in ‘Rows to repeat at top’ box.
  • Select the column which is supposed to be printed at every page in ‘Columns to repeat at left’ box.


Your print preview should display the data in a fully customized form now.