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How to Insert Carriage Return in Excel

January 5, 2022

Using Keyboard Shortcut to Enter in Excel Cell:

1. Click the cell within the long sentence.

2. Click where we want to insert carriage return, and press the shortcut Alt+Enter.

3. Then, the carriage return has been inserted. We push the content to a new line in the same cell.

Using the Wrap Text Feature (Best for Multiple Columns):

We want to combine the values of several cells into a new cell. And, we need each value to be a new line in the new cell.

If we use the shortcut key every time, it can be a very tedious task. In order to save time and improve efficiency, we can use the character function “CHAR” to insert a carriage return.

In this case, we want to combine the values from column A, column B, and column C into column D.

1. Click cell D2, and enter “=A2&CHAR(10)&B2&CHAR(10)&C2”.

2. Click the other cell, then we can get the result in D2 after using the CHAR(10) function. (Note: “CHAR(10)” represents carriage return.)

3. Click the lower right corner of cell C2. When the cursor turns to a black cross, drop down the fill handle to fill the cells. In this way, we can fill the formula in the cell range D2:D14.

4. Select column D, click the Home tab → the Wrap Text button.

5. We find that each cell of D2:D14 is divided into 3 lines by the line break, which means that we have inserted carriage return successfully.

Insert Carriage Return Using Find and Replace Dialogue Box:

Carriage return can be inserted in a cell or a range of cells by using the find and replace dialogue box. You can do it in the following simple steps:

Step 1: Open the Excel spreadsheet

New spreadsheet in excel

Step 2: Select all the columns on which you want to insert carriage return

Selection of column for Carriage return

Step 3: On the home tab click on Find and Replace dialogue box, or you can do it by keyboard shortcut by pressing “Ctrl + H”.

Accessing the find and replace dialogue box

Step 4: Select the character in the find tab that you want to replace with carriage return

Entering character in finding what

Step 5: Press “Ctrl + J” in the replace tab

Entering Ctrl + J in Replace with

Step 6: Click on Replace All button

Clicking on replace all button

Step 7: Carriage return will be inserted in all the required columns

Carriage return inserted

How to Enter in Excel Cell with Bullet Points:

Bullet points are an effective way to present your data in separate lines. You can use enter option in Excel with bullet points. Follow these easy steps to enter bullet points in Excel using symbols:

Step 1: Select the cell where you want to enter the bullet point

Selection of cell for carriage return

Step 2: Click on the symbols button on the insert tab

Accessing symbol button in insert tab

Step 3: Choose the symbol that you want to use as a bullet

Selection of required symbol

Step 4: Press the Alt + Enter to move to the next line and add the symbol again

Inserted bullet before text

Step 5: Carriage return will be inserted with the symbol

Tips for Inserting Carriage Returns in Excel:

1. Using the CHAR function:

The CHAR function in Excel is a valuable tool for inserting line breaks within cells. It is used in combination with & function to insert enter in a cell:

  • The CHAR function can be used to insert specific characters into a cell, including line breaks.

  • To insert a line break using the CHAR function, use the formula =A1&CHAR(10)&B1, where A1 and B1 are the cells you want to join with a line break.

Carriage return through CHAR function

  • This will join the contents of cells A1 and B1, separated by a line break, into a single cell.

2. Using the REPT function:

REPT function serves as a tool to repeat a character multiple times. The REPT function is used in combination with the CHAR function to insert multiple line breaks in the cell:

  • The REPT function can be used to repeat a character a certain number of times.

  • To insert multiple line breaks using the REPT function, use the formula =A1&REPT(CHAR(10),2)&B1, where A1 and B1 are the cells you want to join with two line breaks between them.

Carriage return through REPT function

  • This will join the contents of cells A1 and B1, separated by two-line breaks, into a single cell.

3. Using VBA code:

VBA (Visual Basic for Applications) is a programming language used to automate tasks in Excel. It is also used to insert the carriage returns in Excel:

  • To insert a line break using VBA code, open the VBA editor by pressing Alt + F11 and insert the following code: Range("A1").Value ="Line1"&vbNewLine&"Line2"

  • This will insert two lines of text in cell A1, with a line break between them.

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Best Practices for Inserting Carriage Returns in Excel:

Best practices provide guidelines and recommendations for using a certain function or technique. Following are some best practices for inserting carriage returns in Excel:

Using Consistent Formatting:

It is recommended to maintain a consistent formatting style throughout your worksheet to ensure that all cells with carriage returns have the same font, size, and alignment. It gives a clean and professional appearance to your content.

Avoiding Extra Spaces

While using carriage returns, it is very crucial to be careful of extra spaces that can be mistakenly introduced. These spaces can affect the alignment and presentation of your data.

Using Cell References

Using the cell references allows you to input the data and line breaks in separate cells, making modifying or updating the content easier without affecting the formatting. It is a best practice to use cell references instead of manual entries.

Using Relative and Absolute Cell References

When using cell references for carriage returns, it's important to understand the difference between relative and absolute references. Relative references adjust their position when copied or dragged to other cells, while absolute references maintain their position. Choose the appropriate reference type based on your needs.

Common Mistakes When Inserting Carriage Returns in Excel:

When inserting carriage returns in Excel, it's important to be aware of common mistakes to avoid. Here are some mistakes that you should avoid while using carriage returns:

Overusing or Underusing Carriage Returns

It's essential to maintain a balance and use carriage returns appropriately. Overusing them can make the data difficult to read or cluttered, while underusing them can lead to cramped content.

Not Using Consistent Formatting

Failing to apply consistent font styles, sizes, or alignments to cells with carriage returns can make the data appear messy or unprofessional. You should ensure that formatting is uniform throughout the spreadsheet.

Forgetting to Use Cell References

Forgetting to use cell references can make it challenging to modify or update the content later on. By using cell references, you can easily modify the referenced cells without disrupting the formatting.

Using Unnecessary Functions

It's common to see users using unnecessary functions when inserting carriage returns. For example, using complex formulas or functions like CONCATENATE or TEXTJOIN for basic line breaks can make the process more complicated than needed. Keep it simple and use the appropriate techniques, such as using the CHAR function or pressing Alt+Enter to add line breaks.


How do I insert multiple carriage returns in a cell in Excel?

To insert multiple carriage returns in an Excel cell, you can use the Wrap Text feature and press Alt + Enter where you want to insert the carriage returns, or you can use the CHAR function or the REPT function to add multiple carriage returns between cell values.

How do I remove carriage returns from a cell in Excel?

To remove a carriage return from Excel, you need to follow these steps:

Step 1: Select the cell or range of cells that you want to remove the carriage returns from.

Selection of cells

Step 2: Press Ctrl + H to open the Find and Replace dialog box.

Accessing Find and replace dialogue box

Step 3: In the "Find what" field, type in CHAR(10) to search for the carriage returns.

Entering CHAR(10) in find what tab

Step 4: Leave the "Replace with" field blank.

Replace with is kept blank

Step 5: Click on "Replace All" to remove all instances of carriage returns from the selected cells.

Carriage return removed from selected cells


In conclusion, carriage return is a very basic and vital function that plays a key role in the presentation, readability, and outlook of your content in Excel. The article provides a comprehensive guide on effectively inserting carriage returns in Excel cells. In addition, the article also recommends the best practices to follow and highlights common mistakes to avoid when working with carriage returns. By following the guidelines described in the article, you can effectively organize and present your data in WPS spreadsheets.

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