Why Aren’t My Arrow Keys Working in Excel 2019? Troubleshooting Guide

Are you struggling with your arrow keys not working in Excel 2019? You’re not alone. Many users face this issue and it can be quite frustrating. However, fear not! In this article, I’ll walk you through the simple steps to fix this problem and get you back to navigating your spreadsheets with ease.

Step by Step Tutorial: Fixing Arrow Keys in Excel 2019

Before we jump into the steps, let’s understand what we’re trying to achieve here. By following these steps, you’ll be able to restore the functionality of your arrow keys in Excel 2019, allowing you to move between cells as usual.

Step 1: Check if Scroll Lock is on

Check if the Scroll Lock key on your keyboard is activated.

Scroll Lock is often the culprit when it comes to arrow keys not working in Excel. This key can be toggled on and off, and when it’s on, your arrow keys will scroll the worksheet instead of moving between cells.

Step 2: Disable Scroll Lock

If Scroll Lock is on, press the key to disable it.

Once you’ve pressed the Scroll Lock key, try using the arrow keys again. They should now function correctly, moving you from cell to cell rather than scrolling the entire worksheet.

Step 3: Check Excel Options

If disabling Scroll Lock doesn’t work, go to Excel Options.

In Excel, go to File > Options > Advanced, and under the “Editing options” section, make sure that “Allow editing directly in cells” is checked. This option can sometimes affect the way arrow keys work.

Step 4: Check for Sticky Keys

Ensure that Sticky Keys feature is not enabled on your computer.

Sticky Keys is a feature that allows for modifier keys to remain active, even after being released. To check if it’s on, go to your computer’s Control Panel, find the Ease of Access Center, and look for the option to turn Sticky Keys on or off.

Step 5: Update Keyboard Drivers

Update your keyboard drivers.

Outdated or corrupted keyboard drivers can sometimes cause issues with key functionality. Updating them can resolve these issues. You can do this through the Device Manager on your computer.

After completing these steps, your arrow keys should be working in Excel 2019. If they’re still not functioning, there may be a deeper issue at play, and you might need to consult further technical support.

Tips for Maintaining Arrow Key Functionality in Excel 2019

  • Regularly check for updates on Excel and your operating system.
  • Keep an eye on the Scroll Lock key, as it’s easy to toggle on by accident.
  • Take care of your keyboard and keep it clean to prevent physical issues.
  • Consider using Excel keyboard shortcuts for navigation to reduce reliance on arrow keys.
  • Familiarize yourself with Excel options and settings that could affect key behavior.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is Scroll Lock?

Scroll Lock is a key on your keyboard that can toggle between allowing arrow keys to move between cells or scroll the worksheet.

Can I use my mouse if my arrow keys aren’t working?

Yes, you can use your mouse to navigate between cells, but it may be less efficient than using arrow keys.

What are Sticky Keys?

Sticky Keys is a feature that keeps modifier keys like Shift, Ctrl, and Alt active after they’ve been pressed, until they’re pressed again.

Will updating my keyboard drivers affect other programs?

Updating your keyboard drivers should not negatively affect other programs. It generally improves functionality across all applications.

What if none of these steps work?

If none of these steps resolve the issue, there may be a deeper software or hardware problem. Consider reaching out to Microsoft Support or a professional technician.


  1. Check if Scroll Lock is on.
  2. Disable Scroll Lock.
  3. Check Excel Options.
  4. Check for Sticky Keys.
  5. Update Keyboard Drivers.


The frustration of non-responsive arrow keys in Excel 2019 can put a damper on your productivity. However, by following the simple steps outlined in this article, you can quickly resolve this issue and get back to smoothly navigating your spreadsheets. Remember to keep your software updated, be mindful of accidental keystrokes, and maintain your hardware to avoid similar issues in the future. With a little troubleshooting, you’ll have your arrow keys working in no time, and you can dive back into your data analysis with confidence. If you find yourself stuck again, just come back to this guide for a quick refresher on why aren’t my arrow keys working in Excel 2019. Happy spreadsheeting!

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