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How to freeze rows and columns in Google Sheets
Scrolling back and forth to find your data can take forever and leave you with a headache. After all, our short-term memory can only store up to seven items for as long as thirty seconds. Thankfully, there’s a way to pin datasets to the same place to see them when you scroll, making the whole process a little easier. Here’s how to freeze rows and columns in Google Sheets.
In Google Sheets, select the column or row you wish to freeze and click View--> Freeze. After that, they will be locked in place. To unfreeze a column or row, select it again and find the option under View.
How to freeze columns and rows in Google Sheets on a computer
We will use a model budget for our example because it’s one of the most common spreadsheets you may encounter. Plus, these steps should work no matter which way you need to scroll. There are a few ways to get the job done, so you can pick which one works the best.
Method one: Click and drag
This first method is easiest if you have a row or column header to keep in place.
Once you’ve opened your sheet, navigate to the top left corner below the formula bar. Notice that the cell between the column letters and row numbers has a dark gray border. This border is all you need to freeze the top row.
Click and hold the bottom line of the dark gray border. Now drag it to beneath row 1 and above row 2.
That’s all there is to it! You can also move the border as low as you like to freeze multiple rows.
You can also drag the right side of the dark gray border to freeze columns. In our example, this would help to check where your payments went.
Method two: Menu options
This section is for you if you prefer to use the menu options.
Head to the View tab to get started, then select Freeze at the top of the dropdown menu.
Once you open the Freeze menu in Google Sheets, you’ll notice four options for both rows and columns.
Here’s a brief overview of what each option does:
- No rows/columns: Essentially, this is the unfreeze option. It resets the sheet to nothing frozen so that you can scroll freely.
- One row/column: This freezes the top row or column like the click and drag method above. In our case, that means the headers.
- Two rows/columns: This option freezes the top two columns or rows. As you scroll, you’ll always see the headers.
- Up to current row (number)/column (letter): If you want to freeze more than two rows or columns, this is your go-to.
We’ll use the last option as our example. We will freeze everything above the paycheck entry, so we’ve selected a cell in row nine.
Head back to the Freeze menu and select Up to current row. You’ll notice that the number nine is in parentheses to show you how much will freeze.
Now, you’ll see that the top nine rows are frozen in place as you scroll up and down.
How to freeze columns and rows in Google Sheets on Android or iOS
Open a spreadsheet on your Android or iPhone in the Google Sheets app. Then, touch and hold the row or column you wish to freeze.
From the menu that appears, tap the three-dot icon to view more options.
Then, tap Freeze. You can also Unfreeze rows or columns from here.
Lastly, you’ll see that the spreadsheet separates into two sections. In this case, you can scroll up or down above and below the frozen row. If it were a frozen column, you’d be able to scroll on either side of the divide.
That’s all it takes to freeze rows and columns in Google Sheets. Of course, there are more features to master with the help of our guides.
Read more: How to lock cells in Google Sheets
You can’t freeze columns that contain only part of a merged cell. Try to break apart merged cells or freeze more columns to include the complete merged cells. Learn more about how to merge cells in Google Sheets.
Freezing a row means it will stay in place on the screen no matter how far you scroll up or down.