How to Fix Freeze Panes Not Working on Excel

Can’t figure out why the freeze panes function is not working on Microsoft Excel?

A normal Microsoft Excel worksheet contains hundreds of rows and tens or dozens of columns. While working on large Excel files, you might get confused with the various data stored in each cell. 

Fortunately, there is a Freeze Panes function on Excel, which can help users recognize entries by looking at freeze panes. 

However, there have been reports that the Freeze Panes feature is not working correctly. 

Most of the time, this issue occurs when the datasets on your worksheet are exported or acquired from other sources. On the other hand, this problem could also be due to improper configurations, outdated software, or corrupted data. 

In this guide, we will show you how to fix the Freeze Panes feature if it’s not working on Microsoft Excel. 

Let’s get right into it!

1. Restart Your Computer. 

When you encounter problems with Microsoft Excel, the first thing you should do is restart your system. This should allow your device to reload its resources and eliminate temporary bugs and errors on your computer. 

See the steps below to restart your PC: 

  1. First, press the Windows key on your keyboard to open the Start Menu
  2. After that, access the Power Options tab. 
  3. Lastly, choose Restart and wait for your system to reboot. 
Restart your PC

Go back to Microsoft Excel afterward and check if the problem is solved. 

2. Check Your File Preview. 

One of the most common reasons why the Freeze Panes feature is not working is if your Excel file is not in normal file preview mode. Depending on the situation, you can address this problem by setting your preview to Normal or Page Break Preview. 

Navigate to the View tab and click on Normal or Page Break Preview and see what works for you. 

3. Remove Protection. 

When protection is enabled on your workbook or worksheet, you won’t be able to use the freeze panes feature or even modify cells and other formatting. If the feature is not working, check your workbook protection and disable it. 

Follow the steps below to remove the protection on your worksheet:

  1. First, go to the Review tab on Microsoft Excel
  2. After that, click on Protection
  3. Lastly, click on Unprotect Sheet and Unprotect Workbook
freeze panes not working on Excel

Go back to your workbook afterward and check if the problem is solved. 

4. Update Microsoft Excel. 

The version of Microsoft Excel you are using might have an underlying issue related to the Freeze Panes feature. To rule this out, we suggest updating Microsoft Excel to the latest version possible to patch problems. 

Here’s what you need to do: 

  1. First, launch Microsoft Excel on your computer. 
  2. After that, click on File > Accounts
  3. Lastly, access the Update Options tab and click on Update Now or Enable Updates.
freeze panes not working on Excel

Restart Microsoft Excel to apply the changes and see if the Freeze Panes feature works. 

5. Repair Your File. 

If none of the solutions above worked, you can try repairing your Excel file to resolve any underlying issues on your worksheet. 

See the steps below to repair your file: 

  1. Launch Microsoft Excel on your computer. 
  2. Next, click on File and choose Open. Locate the file you want to repair.
  3. Finally, click on the drop-down arrow beside the Open button and choose Open and Repair
freeze panes not working on Excel

Once done, try working on your file and see if the problem still occurs. 

That sums up our guide for fixing the Freeze Panes function if it’s not working on Microsoft Excel. If you have questions, please drop a comment below, and we’ll do our best to answer them. 

If this guide helped you, please share it. 🙂


  • John Sixto

    John is a staff writer at Saint and comes from a SAP ABAP development background. He has a Bachelors in IT and has been writing since 2018, with over 500 posts published. He loves to build PCs and has a deep curiosity in understanding how different components and configurations work. John spends hundreds of hours at a time, researching and testing the software and apps, before he proceeds to write about it. LinkedIn X (Twitter) Website

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *