How To Fix Corrupted Spreadsheet Excel File On Windows/Mac?

In spite of having Excel workbook backup, corruption is always a very frequent problem that we all fear to face. To deal with such a situation it’s important to have knowledge on how to fix corrupted spreadsheet.

As these spreadsheets are used mainly for the official purpose and hence stored data are extremely important files that no wants to lose. If any of these Excel spreadsheets gets corrupted then the data in it becomes completely inaccessible.

Without wasting any more time, let’s know how to fix corrupted spreadsheet with some easy tricks. Apart from that, I have also shared some easy tricks to detect Excel spreadsheet corruption.

So, just check it out….!

How To Fix Corrupted Spreadsheet?

Make use of the best repair utility MS Excel Repair & Recovery Tool. This is a professional recommended solution to easily repair both .xls and .xlsx file. This easily resolves the Excel file issues and restores the excel data without any modification done to it.

It is a unique tool that can repair multiple corrupted Excel files at one time and also recover everything included charts, cell comments, worksheet properties, and other data. This can also recover corrupted Excel spreadsheet to a new blank file. It is extremely easy to use even a novice user can use it and supports both Windows as well as Mac operating system.

* Free version of the product only previews recoverable data.

Steps To Utilize MS Excel Repair & Recovery Tool:


How To Detect Excel Spreadsheet Corruption?

Detecting Excel file corruption is not so difficult for users. Below mentioned are some of the situations where you can easily detect that the Excel file is corrupted and you may no longer able to access it.

  1. Excel Crashes Randomly: The most common warning every Excel user faces: “Excel has stopped working” or “Excel has crashed”. If the AutoRecover feature is enabled then it becomes very easy to recover the entire workbook. Sometimes, the excel file crashes randomly but they were usually created in other versions and migrated and repaired in another version.
  2. Detected on File Open: Most of the time, the corrupted files are detected when Excel attempts to open a file. When excel file is corrupted, it will display corruption and repair warnings like:
  • “Excel cannot open the file“, because the file format or file extension is not valid. Verify that the file has not been corrupted and that the file extension matches the format of the file.
  • Can’t find project or library. Microsoft Excel is restarting...”
  • The workbook cannot be opened or repaired by Microsoft Excel because it is corrupt.
  • Multiple custom UI parts were found in the file. Only one part is expected.

Manual Steps To Fix Corrupted Spreadsheet

Try the below-mentioned solutions to fix corrupted spreadsheet.

Solution 1: Use Open And Repair Utility

The following methods may help you to recover corrupted spreadsheet that might otherwise be lost. so try it…

  1. On your Excel workbook, go to the File tab and click to Open option.
  2. In the open dialog box, select the corrupted workbook that you want to open.
  3. Click the arrow next to the Open tab and then hit Open and Repair Option.

excel open and repair 1

You need to do one of the following things:

  • Click to the Repair option in order to recover as much of workbook data as possible.

excel open and repair

  • Or else click Extract Data option in order to extract values and formulas from the workbook when an attempt to repair the workbooks is not successful.

excel open and repair 2

Solution 2: Revert The Workbook To The Last Saved Version:

If you are editing a worksheet and the workbook becomes corrupted before you save your changes, you can recover the original worksheet by reverting it to the last saved version.

To revert workbook to the last saved version, do the following things:

  1. Click the Microsoft Office Button, and then click Open.
  2. Double-click the name of the workbook that you have open in excel.
  3. Click on the Yes option to re-open the workbook.

Note: This step will revert the workbook to the last saved version of the workbook. Any changes that may have caused the workbook to get corrupted have been discarded.

Solution 3: Save The Workbook In SYLK (Symbolic Link) Format

Save the workbook in the SYLK format, you may need to filter the corrupt elements. SYLK format is mainly used to remove printer corruption.

To saving the workbook in SYLK format, do the following.

  • Click the Microsoft Office Button, and then point to the arrow next to Save As.
  • In the Save as type list, click SYLK (Symbolic Link), and then click Save.

Save The Workbook In SYLK

 Note: this step will save only the active sheet in the workbook.

  • If you get an error message regarding that the selected file type doesn’t support workbooks that contain multiple sheets, click on the OK option to save only the active sheet.
  • If a message displays that the workbook contains features that are not compatible with the SYLK format then click yes.
  • Click the Microsoft Office Button, and then click Close.
  • If a message prompts you to save the changes that you made then click “YES”.
  • Click the Microsoft Office Button and then click open.
  • Select the .slk file that you saved, and then click Open.
  • Click the Microsoft Office Button, and then press Save As option.
  • In the Save as type box, click Excel Workbook.
  • In the File Name box, type the new name for the workbook to create a copy without replacing the original workbook and then click to the save option.

I hope this works for you to repair corrupted Excel spreadsheet.

Solution 4: Use External References To Link To The Corrupted Workbook

  • If you want to retrieve data and not formulas or values from the workbook, then you can use external references to link to the corrupted workbook.
  • To use external references to link to the corrupted workbook, try the following steps:
  • Click the Microsoft Office Button, and then click Open.
  • In the Look in box, select the folder that contains the corrupted workbook and then clicks Cancel.
  • Under the New Blank option, select the Blank Document option.
  • In cell A1 of the new workbook, type= File Name!A1, where FileName is the name of the corrupted workbook file and then press Enter.
  • Click the workbook and then click ok.
  • If the select sheet dialog box appears, select the appropriate sheet and then click OK.
  • Select cell A1. On the Home tab, in the Clipboard group, click Copy.
  • Select the area that is approximate of the same size as the range of the cells that contain data in the corrupted workbook.
  • On the Home tab, in the Clipboard group, click Paste.
  • With the range of cells still selected, on the Home tab in the Clipboard group and copy again.
  • On the Home tab in the Clipboard group, click the arrow below Paste and then click Paste Special.
  • Under Paste, select Values, and then click OK.


Try the above-given methods to recover corrupted Excel spreadsheets.

I tried my best to put together the entire working solutions to fix corrupted spreadsheet.

Make use of the manual solutions or else try the automatic solution to recover and repair corrupted spreadsheets with ease.

In case you have any additional workarounds that proved successful or questions concerning the ones presented.

Do tell us in the comments or you can visit the Repair MS Excel, Facebook and twitter account.

Good Luck….

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.