How to fix Why can’t I merge cells issue in Microsoft Excel

Merging cells in Excel involves combining adjacent partitions into a larger, unified cell. The merged cells then appear as singular entities stretching across multiple columns and rows.

In this tutorial, we will explore the possible causes behind why a user might encounter difficulties when attempting to merge cells in Microsoft Excel. There may exist more than one reasons why you cannot merge cells. We have listed the possible reasons and their solutions below.

Case 1:  The Sheet is Protected

It is possible that the owner might have protected the sheet to avoid changes. This can be one of the reasons why the cells are not being merged or the merge option is grayed out.

To enable the merge option we have to utilize the following steps.

Step 1 – Locate the Review Tab

  • Locate the “Review” tab in the menu bar.

Step 2 – Perform a Click on the “Unprotect Sheet” Option

  • Perform a click on the “Unprotect Sheet” option.
  • Enter the password.
  • Hit the OK button.

Case 2 – The Cells are in a Part of Table

If the cells to be merged are a part of a table Excel would not allow them to be merged. In this case, we can simply convert the table into a simple range and then merge the cells.

To counter this issue we have to follow the mentioned steps.

Step 1 – Locate the Table Design Tab

  • Locate the “Table Design” tab in the menu bar.

Step 2 – Utilize the “Convert to Range” Option

  • Perform a click on the “Convert to Range” option.
  • The table will be converted to a range.
  • Now merge the cells.

Case 3 – The Workbook is in Share Mode

An additional factor that can prevent users from merging cells is when the workbook is in a shared mode. To resolve this we can utilize the following method.

Step 1 – Check whether the Workbook is in Share Mode

  • Check whether the workbook is in “Share Mode”.
  • For this, in the “Quick Access Bar” add the “Share Workbook (Legacy)” option.
  • Perform a click on the “Customize Quick Access Toolbar” drop-down arrow.
  • Choose the “More Commands” option, in the “All Commands” search the “Share Workbook (Legacy)” option.
  • Add the option in the Quick Access Toolbar.
  • Now utilize the “Share Workbook (Legacy) option.
  • In the “Editing” tab, if the first check box is checked then the book is in “Share Mode”.

Step 2 – Uncheck the Check Box in the “Share Workbook” Dialog Box

  • Uncheck the check box in the “Editing” tab of the “Share Workbook” dialog box.