9 Quick Tricks to Fix “Can’t Type in Excel” Problem

If you can’t type in Excel and want to fix the issue then read on to know more. This article explains why Excel won’t let you type and how to fix the issue when you can’t type in Excel.

This is a common problem and as per the users they are unable to type in any cells in the Excel spreadsheet. Even when the cells in their Excel spreadsheets were neither protected nor were any macros had been enabled on their sheet.

So, in this article, we have tailored the entire possible fixes which help you to fix the problem and start typing in an Excel sheet.

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What Causes the “Can’t type in Excel” Problem?

If your Excel won’t let you type then there may be several reasons behind it, below find out some of the possible ones:

  • Due to the incorrect Excel Editing options settings
  • Add-ins installed are causing confliction
  • Some of the recently installed apps and software are causing conflict and stopping you from typing in the Excel spreadsheet
  • During installation, some of the office files get corrupted and cause problems.
  • Another possible reason is if the cell is locked or protected you are most likely to edit or type in the cell.

So, these are some of the common reasons why you can’t type in Excel, now follow the fixes given one by one.

How to Fix “Can’t type in Excel” Problem?

Solution 1 – Preliminary Fixes

Before starting with the tricky solutions, here it is suggested to try the basic steps to solve the Excel won’t let me type problem.

  • The first thing you can do is close the current instances of Excel running, and reopen it. You can also reboot your computer to solve the technical glitches that might be causing the problem.
  • If this won’t work for you then open a new Excel spreadsheet and type something on the newly opened spreadsheet
  • Try opening the original Excel sheet and try to type something in it

Usually, by doing these basic steps, the issue has been seen to be fixed in the case of most users who complain that they can’t type in Excel.

However, if you still can’t type in Excel, then follow the next potential solutions enlisted as follows;

Solution 2: Running in Safe Mode

A second reason why people can’t type in Excel may be attributed to certain add-ins that are preinstalled with the application and might be conflicting with the Excel file and causing the problem.

So, in this situation start the MS office application in Safe mode as this helps you to locate the problematic add-ins.

Here follow the steps to launch Excel in safe mode:

  • Very first save the changes in the Excel sheet and close it.
  • Press the Windows + R key from the keyboard at once, to open the run dialogue box.
  • In the Run box type Excel/safe hit Enter.

Can't type in Excel

  • Now launch the Excel in Safe Mode and try to type in the cells, if you are able to type in Excel, then it is clear that one of the disabled Add-ins is causing the problem.
  • But if in case you are after booting Excel in safe mode you are still unable to type in Excel then the enabled add-ins might be the culprit.

So below find out what you need to do in these two different cases:

Case 1:  When you are able to type

If you are able to type after running Excel in safe mode, then it is probably because some add-ins are disabled in safe mode, and thus you can type easily.

To find out the culprit:

  • Go to file and then click on options.
  • You will find the Add-ins option; click on it and select COM Add-ins, and select Go

Can't type in Excel

  • Now you will see the entire enabled add-ins in the Safe Mode and note down the entire enabled add-in.
  • Close safe mode and launch Excel normally. Then click on File and then on options
  • And click on Add-ins and choose COM Add-ins then click on GO

Inspect issues with Add-ins 2

  • Turn off the enabled add-ins and click OK. But make sure not to disable the add-ins that are enabled in the Safe mode
  • Then after disabling the add-ins, relaunch Excel in the normal mode and type to verify if you are able to type or not.
  • Now if you are able to type then it is clear the recently disabled add-ins are causing problems. In this situation repeat the 5-7 steps to find the problematic add-in you find the culprit one then remove it. And the problem can’t type in Excel is resolved.

Case 2: When you are still unable to type

  • If you are still unable to type, then there is likely an add-in enabled in safe mode, that is preventing you from typing in Excel. Follow the steps mentioned above, and go to the COM Add-ins option.
  • Disable the add-ins and click on ok.
  • Try to type in the Excel cell, to see if you are able to type or not. If the problem is solved and you are able to type then it is clear the recently disabled add-ins are causing the problem so remove it.
  • But if in case unable to type simply disable another add-in in Safe mode and recheck if the issue is resolved

Solution 3: Verify the Editing Options Settings

Check if Allow editing directly in cells option is turned off in the Excel options settings then this might be a reason why you are facing difficulty in typing in the Excel sheet.

Follow the steps given below to enable the option.

  • Open Excel, go to File and then select Options.
  • Select the Advanced option.
  • In all probability, the Allow editing directly in cells option checkbox is likely unmarked. Tick the checkbox and click Ok. You should now be able to type in Excel.

Can't type in Excel

Solution 4: Changing directories

This step involves moving the installation directory for Excel from the default C/: drive and into another hard disk partition.

  • To do so, press the Windows + R key simultaneously from your keyboard and type %appdata%\Microsoft\Excel in the space provided and click on Ok.

Can't type in Excel

  • This file saves the temporary files for Excel so that they can be recovered in case of a system crash. Move all the files from this directory to a different location and check if the problem persists. If you still can’t type in Excel, move the files back to the original location and follow the next solution.

Solution 5: Uninstalling the Recently Installed Software

If the above steps still do not allow you to type in Excel, then the problem may have arisen from a recently installed software or application.

Some third-party apps may cause this troubleshooting issue, and uninstalling them may allow you to type in Excel without hassle.

If however, uninstalling the recently installed app does not resolve the issue, you can reinstall it to your system again and try a different method.

Solution 6: Disabling the Hardware Graphics Acceleration

Sometimes, enabling hardware graphics acceleration may result in Excel causing some troubleshooting issues and may not allow you to type in Excel.

  • In such a case, go to the File menu and select Options.
  • Go to the Advanced menu and scroll down to find the Display
  • From there tick the checkbox named Disable Hardware Graphics Acceleration and click on OK to save the changes.

Can't type in Excel

Restart the Excel file and check if the problem is resolved.

Solution 7: Changing the settings in the Trust Center

The following steps enlist how to open the Windows Trust Center and make certain changes to resolve the issue when you can’t type in Excel.

  • To do this, open Excel and go to the File menu. Select Options, and go to the Trust Center Category in the pane on the left-hand side.
  • Select the Protected View option and select File Block Settings.

Can't type in Excel

  • Uncheck all the checkbox options and click on Ok to save all the settings. Open the Excel spreadsheet and you should now be able to type.

Also Read: How To Fix Protected View Office Has Detected A Problem With This File Excel 2016?

Solution 8: Repair MS Office

If the above tips and tricks do not work and you still can’t type in Excel, then there is a likely chance that some of the files in MS Office that have been installed on your computer may have been corrupted.

In such a case, you need to fix the office files either by using the Online Office Repair option to reinstall certain features.

You could also go to the Microsoft website and fix your Office settings directly from the site online. If this still does not work then you need to change your entire MS Office software to replace all the files, instead of only the corrupted ones.

Solution 9: Uninstall and Reinstall MS Office

If repairing MS Office does not work and you still can’t type in Excel, then it is time to uninstall and reinstall your entire MS Office.

  • To do this, open the Control Panel and click on Programs.
  • Select Add/Remove programs from the list and uninstall MS Office.

Uninstall The Program

  • You could then either use your disk to reinstall the MS Office or download it online from the Microsoft Website.

This ultimate step is sure to eliminate any and all problems related to all the applications in your MS Office and you will be able to type in Excel once again.

If however this does not resolve the issue, then it is time to check your operating system for potential errors and bugs that may have originally led to this problem.

Also, you may need to scan your system with a good antivirus program to help clean your system from any potential virus attacks, that may have originally led to this particular problem.

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So, this is all about can’t type in Excel problem.

Here follow the simple tricks to solve the Excel won’t let me type problem, try the solutions given one by one till you find the one that works for you.

I hope you have found this tutorial helpful. If you are facing any other issue related to this specific one then do let us know by sharing your experience on our social media FB and Twitter Page.


Priyanka is an entrepreneur & content marketing expert. She writes tech blogs and has expertise in MS Office, Excel, and other tech subjects. Her distinctive art of presenting tech information in the easy-to-understand language is very impressive. When not writing, she loves unplanned travels.