hiding columns

Copper Contributor

Why does data in a cell still show when column is hidden?

Data bleeds over into unhidden cell.

3 Replies
best response confirmed by VI_Migration (Silver Contributor)


When you hide a column in Excel, the column itself becomes invisible, but the data in the hidden column can still be displayed in adjacent cells. This behavior is known as "data bleeding" or "data leakage."

Data bleeding occurs because Excel adjusts the column width based on the visible cells. If there is data in a hidden column that extends beyond the width of the adjacent visible cells, it will still be displayed in those cells. This can be misleading because it gives the impression that the hidden column's data is visible when, in fact, only a portion of it is displayed.

To avoid data bleeding, you can take the following steps:

  1. Select the column(s) that you want to hide.
  2. Right-click on the selected column(s) and choose "Hide" from the context menu.
  3. Adjust the column width of the adjacent visible cells to prevent the hidden data from being displayed. You can do this by dragging the column boundary or using the "Column Width" option in the "Format" menu.

By ensuring that the adjacent visible cells do not overlap with the hidden column, you can prevent the data bleeding effect and keep the hidden column's data from being displayed.

It's important to note that hiding a column is primarily a visual feature, and the hidden data can still be referenced in formulas and calculations. If you want to completely hide the data and prevent it from being used in calculations, you may need to consider other techniques, such as protecting the worksheet or using data filtering.


Thank you so very much!

I'm glad I could help. I wish you continued success with Excel!