Excel Guides

Controlling Chart Gridlines in Excel

Gridlines are the horizontal and vertical lines that appear on a chart to help you align data points. By default, Microsoft Excel displays gridlines on a worksheet when you view it in Normal view. You can control whether gridlines appear on a chart by making changes to the chart's Gridlines property.

To access the Gridlines property, select the chart, and then click the Format tab. In the Current Selection group, click Selection Pane. This displays a list of all the objects on the worksheet, including the chart and its associated elements.

In the list of objects, click Gridlines, and then click Format Selection. This displays the Format Gridlines dialog box.


  • You can also access the Format Gridlines dialog box by right-clicking the gridlines, and then clicking Format Gridlines. If you do this, however, any changes that you make will affect all of the gridlines on the chart.

Controlling How Gridlines Are Displayed

Show or hide gridlines on a worksheet

  1. Click the worksheet that contains the chart whose gridlines you want to control.
  2. On the View tab, in the Show group, clear or select the Gridlines check box.

Show or hide specific types of gridlines on a chart

  1. Select the chart whose gridline settings you want to change.
  2. Click the Format tab. In the "Current Selection" group ,click < strong>"Selection Pane." This displays a list of all objects on the worksheet , including charts and their associated elements . In addition to general format options such as color , line width ,and line type ,you can use specific controls to determine which types of gridlines are shown on your charts .These settings are available under "Line" in both "Major Gridlines" and "Minor Gridlines." The following table describes each option : Type of setting | Description | Applies to... -|-| - Show | Specifies whether or not to display gridlines | All types of charts Line Color | Specifies what color to use for gridline s| All types of charts Line Width | Specifies how wide (in points) to make each line | All types of charts Line Style | Specifies what type of line pattern to use (such as solid , dashed ,or dotted )| All types of charts Presets | Provides a set of predefined line styles from which you can choose| All types of charts Interval Between Lines | Specifies how often (in axis units) to place a major or minor gridline | Only applies to XY (scatter) charts and bubble charts

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