How to Unmerge Cells in Excel: A Step-by-Step Guide

Unmerging cells in Excel is a quick and straightforward process. To unmerge cells, first select the merged cell that you want to unmerge. Then, head to the ‘Home’ tab on the Excel ribbon, find the ‘Alignment’ group, and click on ‘Merge & Center’. This will unmerge the highlighted cells, breaking them back into individual cells.

Step by Step Tutorial to Unmerge Cells in Excel

Before we dive into the step-by-step process, let’s clarify what we’re about to do. Unmerging cells in Excel will take a cell that has been combined with other cells and reverse the process. This is useful if you’ve changed your mind about the layout of your spreadsheet or need to reformat it for better data analysis.

Step 1: Select the merged cell

Click on the merged cell that you want to unmerge.

Selecting the right cell is crucial. If you have a range of merged cells, you’ll need to click on any part of that merged area to select the whole thing. If you only click on what looks like one of the individual cells within the merged area, it won’t work.

Step 2: Click on the ‘Home’ tab

Navigate to the ‘Home’ tab on the Excel ribbon.

The ‘Home’ tab is where most of the formatting options are housed in Excel. It’s also where you will find the commands to merge and unmerge cells.

Step 3: Find the ‘Alignment’ group

Locate the ‘Alignment’ group within the ‘Home’ tab.

The ‘Alignment’ group is where you’ll find the ‘Merge & Center’ button, which is used both for merging and unmerging cells.

Step 4: Click on ‘Merge & Center’

Tap on the ‘Merge & Center’ button to unmerge the selected cells.

When you click on ‘Merge & Center’ with a merged cell selected, it automatically unmerges it. There’s no separate “unmerge” button; it’s all handled by this one button. It’s a toggle action – clicking it once merges, clicking it again unmerges.

After unmerging the cells, you’ll see that the original cells are restored to their individual state. Any data that was in the merged cell will remain in the upper-left cell of the range that was merged.

Tips for Unmerging Cells in Excel

  • Always make sure you have the correct range of cells selected before unmerging to avoid any accidental changes.
  • If you have content in a merged cell that you want to distribute to the individual cells after unmerging, you’ll need to copy it manually to each cell.
  • Unmerging cells will not affect the data integrity of your spreadsheet, but it can change the visual layout, so double-check your work.
  • Using the ‘Undo’ function (Ctrl + Z) is the quickest way to reverse the unmerging if you make a mistake.
  • Keep in mind that merged cells can cause issues with sorting and filtering, so it’s generally a good practice to unmerge cells before performing such actions.

Frequently Asked Questions

What happens to the data in the merged cells after unmerging?

The data that was in the merged cells will remain in the upper-left cell of the range that was merged. The other cells will be blank.

Can I unmerge multiple ranges of merged cells at once?

Yes, you can select multiple ranges of merged cells and unmerge them all at once by following the same process.

Will unmerging cells mess up my spreadsheet’s layout?

Unmerging cells will change the visual layout of your spreadsheet, but it won’t affect the actual data. You may need to do some additional formatting to get things looking the way you want.

How do I merge cells in Excel?

To merge cells, you select the cells you want to merge, click on the ‘Home’ tab, locate the ‘Alignment’ group, and then click on ‘Merge & Center’.

Why can’t I unmerge certain cells in Excel?

If the ‘Merge & Center’ button is grayed out, it means that the selected cells are not merged. You can only unmerge cells that are currently merged.


  1. Select the merged cell.
  2. Click on the ‘Home’ tab.
  3. Find the ‘Alignment’ group.
  4. Click on ‘Merge & Center’.


Unmerging cells in Excel is a valuable skill that can help you better organize and analyze your data. Whether you’re a newbie or a seasoned pro, understanding how to manipulate cell structure in Excel is critical for presenting data in a way that’s both meaningful and accessible. Remember, unmerging cells is just as important as merging them. It allows for greater flexibility in how you arrange your spreadsheet and ensures that your data can be sorted, filtered, and analyzed effectively. So, the next time you find yourself staring at a block of merged cells that no longer serve your purpose, don’t panic. Just follow the simple steps outlined above, and you’ll have them unmerged in no time. Keep experimenting with Excel’s versatile features, and you’ll soon master the art of spreadsheet management!

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