How to Change Chart Data Range in Excel: A Step-by-Step Guide

Changing the chart data range in Excel might seem daunting at first, but it’s really quite straightforward once you get the hang of it. Essentially, you’ll be selecting the new range of data that you want your chart to represent. By following a few simple steps, you can easily update your charts to reflect the latest data, making your presentations and reports more accurate and up-to-date.

How to Change Chart Data Range in Excel

In this section, we’ll walk through the steps to change the chart data range in Excel. By the end, you’ll know how to update your chart to include new or different data.

Step 1: Select the Chart You Want to Edit

Click on the chart to select it. You’ll know it’s selected when you see a border around it with small squares at the corners and midpoints.

Once the chart is selected, Excel will display the Chart Tools on the ribbon. This is where you’ll find all the tools and options to edit your chart.

Step 2: Go to the Chart Tools Design Tab

Navigate to the "Chart Tools Design" tab in the ribbon. This tab contains various options to customize your chart.

The Design tab appears only when the chart is selected. Here, you’ll see options for changing the chart type, layout, and style, but for now, we’re focused on the data range.

Step 3: Click on "Select Data"

In the Design tab, click on the "Select Data" button. This will open the Select Data Source dialog box.

The Select Data Source dialog box is where you can specify which cells in your worksheet the chart should use for its data. This box allows you to add, remove, or edit data ranges.

Step 4: Edit the Chart Data Range

In the Select Data Source dialog box, you’ll see a Chart Data Range field. Click inside this field and then select the new range of cells on your worksheet.

You can either type the range manually or use your mouse to select the range directly from your worksheet. Press Enter once you’ve selected the new range.

Step 5: Click OK

After selecting the new data range, click the "OK" button to apply the changes and update your chart.

Excel will now update your chart to reflect the new data range. You should see the changes immediately in your chart.

Once you complete these steps, your chart will display the data from the new range you specified. This is useful when you’ve added new data to your worksheet or need to change the focus of your chart.

Tips for Changing Chart Data Range in Excel

  • Always double-check your new data range to ensure it includes all the necessary data points.
  • If you’re frequently updating your chart’s data range, consider using named ranges for easier management.
  • Use the "Switch Row/Column" button in the Design tab to quickly change how data is displayed.
  • If your chart is not updating, make sure the worksheet isn’t protected.
  • Use Excel’s "Table" feature for dynamic data ranges that automatically update when you add new data.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I change the chart data range without using the Select Data Source dialog box?

Yes, you can directly edit the formula in the formula bar after selecting the chart.

What if Excel won’t let me select the new data range?

Ensure the worksheet is not protected and that you have the necessary permissions to edit it.

How do I include non-adjacent ranges in my chart?

Hold down the Ctrl key while selecting multiple ranges to include non-adjacent data.

What happens if I select an invalid range?

Excel will display an error message, and the chart will not update until a valid range is selected.

Can I automate the process of changing the chart data range?

Yes, you can use Excel macros to automate repetitive tasks, including updating chart data ranges.


  1. Select the chart you want to edit.
  2. Go to the Chart Tools Design tab.
  3. Click on "Select Data."
  4. Edit the Chart Data Range.
  5. Click OK.


Changing the chart data range in Excel is a handy skill that enhances your ability to present accurate and up-to-date information. Whether you’re adding new data or shifting the focus of your chart, knowing how to adjust the data range ensures your charts remain relevant and insightful.

By following a few straightforward steps, you can master this task in no time. Remember to double-check your new data range and consider using named ranges for easier updates. If you’re frequently updating charts, leveraging Excel’s advanced features like tables and macros can save you a lot of time.

For further reading, consider exploring Excel’s other charting features or diving into the world of dynamic charts. Excel offers a plethora of tools that can transform your raw data into compelling visual stories. Happy charting!

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