How to Unmerge Cells in Google Sheets (3 Ways + Shortcuts)

Do you no longer need merged cells in your spreadsheet? Here's how to unmerge cells in Google Sheets...

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Shivam Kumar
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Merging cells is a quite useful feature in Google Sheets when you’re formatting data and have a section where you need to display a cell content across multiple cells.

But, it can quickly turn into a headache when you want to sort or move data in your spreadsheet.

Luckily, you can easily unmerge all the merged cells in your sheet.

In this tutorial, I will show you how to find and unmerge cells in Google Sheets.

01. How to Unmerge Cells in Google Sheets Using Toolbar Menu?

Suppose you have a dataset as shown below:


Notice there are four cells (B1:E1) is merged into one cell.

The quickest way to unmerge these cells is to make use of the merge icon in the toolbar menu.

Here’s how it works:

  1. Select the range of cells you want to unmerge. In our example, I am going to select B1:E1
select B1 to E1
  1. In the toolbar, there is a ‘Merge cells’ icon. Click on the dropdown arrow appearing next to the merge icon.
merged icon in toolbar
  1. Select Unmerge from the dropdown list that appears.
unmerge cells Google Sheets

That’s it… All merged cells within the selected range will be unmerged.

unmerged cells

02. How to Unmerge Cells in Google Sheets Using Format Menu?

This time we have two merged cells in our table (B1:E1 and C4:C5)

merged cells in google sheets app

Now let’s see how we will unmerge both the cells using the format menu:

  1. Select the range of cells which contains merged cells. Simple click and darg your mouse from the first merged cells to the last merged cells.
Select cell range to unmerge
  1. Click the “Format” option in the top menu.
Format option in toolbar menu
  1. Hover the cursor over the “Merge Cells” option and select “Unmerge.”
How to unmerge cells in Google Sheets

That’s it… All the merged cells in the selected range will be unmerged.

unmerged cells google sheets

What if you have hundreds of merged cells in a sheet and you want to unmerge all of them?

No problem…

Just press ctrl + A on your keyboard to select all the cells in your sheet and then click format >> Merge Cells >> Unmerge.

This will unmerge all of the cells in your sheet.

03. Update – Unmerge Option is Greyed out

Recently, I got an email from one of our readers saying that the “unmerge” option is greyed out in their Google sheet.

unmerge option not available in Google Sheets

Well, this is because the active cell which started the selection of merged cells is itself not a merged cell.

Let’s understand it with an example:

In the image below, I have 3 cells merged in each row of 2-4, but in row number 5, I have only the first 2 cells merged leaving C5 as an unmerged cell.

Merged cells google sheets

Now, if I start my selection from a merged cell such as row number 2 (A2:C2) and highlight down the other row, then unmerge option should be available.

Merged option available

On the other hand, If I start my selection from an unmerged cell such as C5 and highlight up, then the unmerge option is unavailable.

Merged option not available in Google Sheets

Therefore, it is important that your first selected cell is a merged cell to get the unmerged option in Google Sheets.

04. Unmerge Cells with a Keyboard Shortcut

There are also spreadsheet-compatible shortcuts to unmerge cells in Google Sheets.

To use the shortcut, first, you’ll need to enable the compatible shortcuts in your Google Sheets.

(Compatible shortcuts are the ones that work in other popular spreadsheet programs like Excel)

To enable this option, go to Help > Keyboard shortcuts.

Google sheets help keyword shortcuts

At the bottom of the dialog box, turn on the toggle next to enable compatible spreadsheet shortcuts.

enable compatible spreadsheet shortcut in Google Sheets

Once enabled, select a merged cell and then press one of the following shortcuts to unmerge that cell.

  • Alt + H, M, U
  • Alt + O, M, U


05. Final Thought

Merged cells features provide flexibility if you want to create a nice and structured spreadsheet report, but when it comes to usability, it becomes a headache.

For instance, you cannot sort data in columns that have even one merged cell. Filtering and even selecting a range sometimes also become a problem due to merged cells.

Fortunately, unmerging merged cells is not at all a big task. In this tutorial, I have shown you multiple ways to unmerge cells in Google Sheets. Any of the above methods do not take more than 3 clicks.

Which method did you find more convenient in this Google Sheets tutorial? Let me know in the comments.

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