How to Print Excel with Lines: A Step-by-Step Guide

Printing Excel with lines is as easy as pie. All you need to do is go to the ‘Page Layout’ tab, click on the ‘Print Titles’ option, and then under the ‘Sheet’ tab, select the ‘Gridlines’ checkbox under the ‘Print’ section. Voilà! You’re all set to print your document with all those lines in place, making your data much easier to follow on paper.

After you’ve completed this action, your Excel spreadsheet will print with gridlines, which are the lines that separate the cells on your sheet. This will make it much easier to read and follow the data on a printed page.


Imagine you’ve spent hours, maybe even days, meticulously entering data into an Excel spreadsheet. You’ve got everything organized just the way you want it, and now it’s time to print. But when you hit that print button, you’re met with a mess of data with no lines to guide you — it’s a nightmare to read! Printing Excel sheets with lines is crucial because it keeps data organized and readable, especially when dealing with hard copies.

This may seem like a small detail, but it’s incredibly important for anyone who relies on printed data for meetings, presentations, or record-keeping. Lines help to visually separate and define data, making it easier to read, interpret, and reference. Without gridlines, data can blend together, making it difficult to find specific points or understand the layout at a glance. So, whether you’re a student, an office worker, or anyone who uses Excel, knowing how to print with lines is a simple but essential skill.

Step by Step Tutorial: How to Print Excel with Lines

Before we dive into the steps, let’s understand what they will accomplish. By following these steps, you will enable Excel to print gridlines on your document — the default setting is not to print these lines, as they’re just there to guide you while you’re working on the document on your computer.

Step 1: Open the ‘Page Layout’ Tab

First, click on the ‘Page Layout’ tab in the Excel ribbon.

This tab contains several options that let you control the appearance of your spreadsheet when printed, including the gridlines.

Step 2: Choose ‘Print Titles’ from the ‘Page Setup’ Group

Within the ‘Page Layout’ tab, look for the ‘Page Setup’ group and click on ‘Print Titles.’

The ‘Print Titles’ button opens a new window with several tabs that let you adjust various print settings.

Step 3: Select the ‘Sheet’ Tab in the ‘Page Setup’ Window

In the ‘Page Setup’ window, click on the ‘Sheet’ tab to view options specific to printing your spreadsheet.

This is where you’ll find the option to print gridlines, as well as other features like printing headings.

Step 4: Check the ‘Gridlines’ Box Under the ‘Print’ Section

Find the ‘Gridlines’ checkbox under the ‘Print’ section and tick it.

By ticking this box, you are telling Excel that you want to include the gridlines when you print your document.

Step 5: Click ‘OK’ to Save Your Settings and Close the Window

After you’ve selected the ‘Gridlines’ checkbox, click ‘OK’ to save your settings and close the ‘Page Setup’ window.

Now, your settings are saved, and you’re ready to print with lines.


Improved ReadabilityPrinting Excel with lines significantly improves the readability of your spreadsheet, making it easier to follow and understand the data.
Better OrganizationWith lines, data is clearly segregated, reducing the chance of errors when interpreting printed data.
Enhanced PresentationA printed Excel sheet with lines looks more professional, which is particularly important in a business setting.


Ink/Toner ConsumptionPrinting with lines uses more ink or toner, which can be a concern if you’re printing large quantities.
Potential ClutterIf your spreadsheet is already very busy, adding gridlines might make it look cluttered.
Limitations with Colored CellsIf you use colored cells, the gridlines may not be as visible when printed, which could defeat the purpose.

Additional Information

When printing Excel with lines, there are a few extra tips that can come in handy. For instance, if you’re dealing with a large spreadsheet, you might want to print headings (the top row or the first column) on each page for better navigation. In the same ‘Page Setup’ window where you found the option to print gridlines, you can also find the option to print row and column headings. Just check the box next to ‘Row and column headings’ under the ‘Print’ section.

Another useful tip is to preview your document before printing. Excel has a ‘Print Preview’ feature that shows you exactly how your document will look when printed. This can save you from wasting paper and ink if something isn’t quite right. To access this feature, go to the ‘File’ menu, click on ‘Print’, and then you’ll see the preview on the right side of the screen.

Lastly, remember that printing with lines is just one part of making your data readable. Pay attention to font size, cell alignment, and data format to ensure that your printed document is as clear and comprehensible as possible.


  1. Open the ‘Page Layout’ tab.
  2. Click on ‘Print Titles’ in the ‘Page Setup’ group.
  3. Select the ‘Sheet’ tab in the ‘Page Setup’ window.
  4. Check the ‘Gridlines’ box under the ‘Print’ section.
  5. Click ‘OK’ to save settings and close the window.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I also print row and column headings?

Yes, you can print row and column headings by checking the corresponding box in the same ‘Page Setup’ window where you select to print gridlines.

Will printing with lines use up more ink or toner?

Yes, printing gridlines will consume more ink or toner than not printing them.

Can I preview how the gridlines will look before printing?

Absolutely, you can use the ‘Print Preview’ feature in Excel to see how your document will look with the gridlines before you print.

What if I only want to print gridlines for a specific section of my spreadsheet?

You can set print areas in Excel by selecting the range you want to print, then going to the ‘Page Layout’ tab, and choosing ‘Print Area’ > ‘Set Print Area.’

If my cells have a background color, will the gridlines still show?

Gridlines may not be as visible on colored cells when printed. You might want to adjust the color intensity of your cells for better visibility.


Printing Excel with lines makes a world of difference in terms of readability and professionalism. It’s an essential skill that can save you from the frustration of trying to read data that’s just floating on a piece of paper without any guidance. Remember, it’s all about making your data easy to access, interpret, and present, and printing with lines contributes significantly to achieving this.

With the simple steps and additional tips provided, you’re now well-equipped to handle any printing task that comes your way. So go ahead, give it a try, and see how much clearer your printed spreadsheets can be!

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