Removing Formulas from Google Sheets: Preserve Your Data

Removing formulas from Google Sheets without affecting data can seem like a daunting task, but it’s quite simple once you know the steps. Essentially, you’ll be copying the data and pasting it as values only, which will remove any formulas associated with the data. This process preserves the data that was generated by the formulas, but gets rid of the formulas themselves.

Step by Step Tutorial: Removing Formulas from Google Sheets Without Affecting Data

Before we dive into the steps, let’s understand what we’re aiming to do here. We want to keep all the valuable data that our formulas have calculated for us, but we don’t need the formulas hanging around anymore. Maybe we’re sharing the sheet with someone who doesn’t need to see the formulas, or we just want to clean up our workspace. Whatever the reason, here’s how to do it:

Step 1: Select the cells with the formulas you want to remove

Click and drag to highlight the cells, or use the keyboard shortcuts like Ctrl+A to select all cells.

When you select the cells, make sure you’re only highlighting the ones with the formulas you want to remove. If you select too many, don’t worry – you can always undo with Ctrl+Z (Cmd+Z on a Mac).

Step 2: Copy the selected cells

Use Ctrl+C or right-click and select "Copy" to copy the cells.

Remember, at this point you’re copying both the data and the formulas. We’ll take care of removing the formulas in the next steps.

Step 3: Right-click and select "Paste special"

Right-click on the selected cells again, and from the menu that appears, choose "Paste special."

This is where the magic happens. "Paste special" is a powerful feature in Google Sheets that gives you more control over how you paste your copied content.

Step 4: Click on "Paste values only"

From the "Paste special" options, select "Paste values only."

By choosing "Paste values only," you’re telling Google Sheets to only paste the data that was displayed in the cells, not the formulas that calculated that data.

After completing these steps, all the formulas in the selected cells will be gone, but the data will remain intact. You can now share or save your spreadsheet knowing that only the values are present and the formulas have been removed.

Tips: Maximizing Efficiency While Removing Formulas from Google Sheets

  • Use keyboard shortcuts to speed up the process. For example, after copying the cells with formulas (Ctrl+C), you can use Ctrl+Alt+V, then E to quickly paste values only.
  • If you’re working with a large dataset, consider pasting the values into a new sheet to avoid any accidental data loss.
  • Double-check your data after pasting values only. Formulas can sometimes have references to other cells that might not be immediately obvious.
  • If you need to remove formulas from the entire sheet, using Ctrl+A to select all cells can be a quick way to do this.
  • Consider using the "Find and replace" feature to search for "=" if you’re having trouble locating all the formulas in your sheet.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I ensure that I’ve removed all formulas from my Google Sheet?

After pasting values only, you can use the "Find and replace" feature to search for "=" to ensure there are no remaining formulas.

Can I undo this process if I accidentally remove a formula I needed?

Yes, you can use the undo feature (Ctrl+Z or Cmd+Z) to revert to the state before you pasted values only.

Will removing formulas affect my data in any way?

No, removing formulas will not alter the data that was generated by those formulas, it only removes the formula itself.

Is there a way to remove formulas from multiple sheets at once?

Unfortunately, Google Sheets doesn’t currently support actions across multiple sheets at once. You’ll need to repeat the process for each sheet.

Can I remove formulas from a protected range in Google Sheets?

No, you cannot edit or remove formulas from a range that has been protected unless you have permission to edit that range.


  1. Select the cells with formulas.
  2. Copy the selected cells.
  3. Right-click and choose "Paste special."
  4. Click on "Paste values only."


Removing formulas from Google Sheets without affecting data is a nifty trick that can come in handy in various situations. Whether you’re tidying up your spreadsheet before a presentation, sharing it with colleagues who only need the data, or simply preventing any accidental formula edits, the process is straightforward and quick. Remember to double-check your data afterwards to ensure everything is as it should be, and don’t hesitate to use the "Find and replace" feature if you’re unsure whether all formulas have been removed. With this guide, you should now feel confident in your ability to manage your Google Sheets more effectively and maintain the integrity of your data. So, go ahead and give it a try – you’ll be a Google Sheets whiz in no time!