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What’s the dif? Gridlines vs borders in spreadsheets

Excel worksheet with gridlinesA lot of you want to know the difference between gridlines and borders.

Gridlines help you while you’re working in a spreadsheet; while borders help you highlight important information for people to see. Gridlines appear automatically showing you how the data is organized into rows and columns; while borders need to be added if you want to highlight certain cells.

One more difference: gridlines aren’t automatically printed, while borders are.

Gridlines: Now you see them, now you don’t

Let’s say you set up a home remodeling project in Excel so you can keep track of the color you want to paint each room and how much the different colors cost. With gridlines you can easily see the rows and columns and so quickly know see where to add information in order to update your project.

To turn gridlines off and on: On the Page Layout tab, in the Sheet Options group, click View.

Clicking View makes your gridlines visible; unclicking View makes your gridlines invisible:

To set gridlines to print or not:

On the Page Layout tab, in the Sheet Options group, select or deselect Print.

Borders:  Highlight important information

In a worksheet you might want to highlight the three top sales people in your organization.  Or you might want to make the largest sales-dollar figure stand out from the rest in a long list. To do these things, you can highlight certain cells by adding borders around them, and if you change your mind, you can remove them.

To add borders:

First, select the cells you want to highlight:

Then on the Home tab, in the Font group, click the arrow next to Borders and choose the border style that you want. This highlights the selected cells with the border you’ve chosen.

 

To remove borders:

Select the cells you want to remove the border from. Then on the Home tab, in the Font group, click the arrow next to Borders and choose No Border. This removes the border from your selected cells.

 

For more information on working with borders, see Apply or remove cell borders on a worksheet.