[Fixed!] Excel File Opens Blank Grey Screen (7 Working Solutions)

Have you ever faced a situation where Excel shows a blank grey screen and you are not sure how to fix it? Well, you’ve come to the right place. In this article, you’ll learn 7 proven ways to fix when an Excel file opens a blank grey screen.


Download Workbook

You can download the practice workbook from the link below.


7 Fixes for the Problem Regarding Excel File Opens Blank Grey Screen 

Let’s consider the dataset Shipment Tracker shown in the B4:E13 cells. Here, the dataset shows the Product names, the Delivery Date, Deadline, and delivery Status respectively. So, without further delay, let’s see the solutions one by one.

Dataset 1

We have used Microsoft Excel 365 version here, you can use any other versions according to your convenience.


Solution-1: Unhide All Sheets of a Workbook

We’ll start things off with the most common fix i.e. checking for hidden documents in the workbook. So, let’s see how to unhide hidden documents in Excel.

  • Initially, go to the View tab >> next in the Window section, and click the Unhide button.

Unhide All Worksheets

This opens the Unhide dialog box with the name of the workbook.

  • Now, click on the OK button to close the dialog box.

Unhide All Worksheets

That’s it you just unhide any hidden document which might be responsible for the blank grey screen.

Excel File Opens Blank Grey Screen Fix with Unhide All Worksheets


Solution-2: Disable Hardware Graphics Acceleration

If the video configuration on your computer is incompatible with Microsoft Office then you may get a blank grey screen. Now, there is an easy fix, just disable the Hardware Graphics Acceleration option. So, follow these simple steps.

  • At the very beginning, navigate to the File tab in the top Ribbon.

Excel Options

  • Now, click the Options button.

Excel Options

This opens the Excel Options dialog box.

  • Next, go to the Advanced tab >> in the Display section, check the Disable hardware graphics acceleration option >> click on OK.

Excel File Opens Blank Grey Screen Fix with Disable Hardware Graphics Acceleration

This should resolve any incompatibilities with your PC and Microsoft Office. The results appear as shown in the picture below.

Excel File Opens Blank Grey Screen Fix with Disable Hardware Graphics Acceleration


Solution-3: Uncheck Ignore Dynamic Data Exchange Option

Because of enabling the Ignore Dynamic Data Exchange (DDE) your Excel file may show a blank grey screen. Now, allow me to demonstrate the process to disable it.

  • To start, go to the File tab in the top left corner.

File Tab

  • Next, click the Options button.

Excel Options

Immediately, the Excel Options dialog box pops up.

  • Following this, move to the Advanced tab >> in the General section, uncheck the Ignore other options that use Dynamic Data Exchange (DDE)  option >> click on OK.

Excel File Opens Blank Grey Screen Fix with Uncheck Ignore Dynamic Data Exchange Option

Hopefully, this will troubleshoot the problem and show the results as shown in the screenshot below.

Excel File Opens Blank Grey Screen Fix with Uncheck Ignore Dynamic Data Exchange Option


Solution-4: Resetting File Associations

Incorrect file associations can cause a blank grey screen in Excel. In order to ensure proper file associations, you can reset Excel’s file associations to their default setting. It’s simple & easy, just follow along.

  • Firstly, close the Excel file (here, it is Fixing Blank Grey Screen) >> select the file and right-click on the mouse >> from the list, choose the Open with option.

Reset File Associations

This opens the How do you want to open this file prompt.

  • Here, select Excel >> place a check on the option Always use this app to open .xlsx files >> click on OK.

Excel File Opens Blank Grey Screen Fix with Reset File Associations

Eventually, this will reset the file associations and fix the error. The image below shows the results.

Excel File Opens Blank Grey Screen Fix with Reset File Associations


Solution-5: Disable All Add-ins

While Excel’s Add-ins help us perform extra analysis but sometimes they may cause Excel to show a blank grey screen. So, another potential fix involves disabling all the Add-ins. Let’s see it in action.

  • Firstly, navigate to the File tab.

File Tab

  • Secondly, click the Options button.

Excel Options

In an instant, the Excel Options wizard appears.

  • Thirdly, go to the Add-ins section >> in the Manage field, choose the COM Add-ins option >> click on Go.

Excel File Opens Blank Grey Screen Fix with Disable All Add-ins

  • In turn, uncheck all the Add-ins as shown below and press OK.

Excel File Opens Blank Grey Screen Fix with Disable All Add-ins

The results should look like the image given below.

Excel File Opens Blank Grey Screen Fix with Disable All Add-ins


Solution-6: Minimizing and Maximizing Excel Window

Sometimes minimizing and then maximizing the Excel window refreshes the worksheet and causes any hidden data to appear. To do this, you can follow the steps below.

  • Firstly, click the Minimize icon at the top right corner.

Excel File Opens Blank Grey Screen Fix with Minimizing and Maximizing Excel Window

  • Then, click on the Excel icon in the Task Bar.

Excel File Opens Blank Grey Screen Fix with Minimizing and Maximizing Excel Window

You should see the results shown below.

Excel File Opens Blank Grey Screen Fix with Minimizing and Maximizing Excel Window


Solution-7: Repairing Microsoft Office Suite

If all the previous methods have failed, you can Repair Microsoft Office to fix the problem. So, just follow along.

  • Firstly, close the Excel file by clicking on the Close icon at the top right corner.

Excel File Opens Blank Grey Screen Fix with Repairing Microsoft Office Suite

  • Next, click on the Search icon >> type in Control Panel in the Search box >> go to the Control Panel.

Excel File Opens Blank Grey Screen Fix with Repairing Microsoft Office Suite

After completing this step, the Control Panel window appears.

  • Then, click on Uninstall a program button under the Programs option.

Excel File Opens Blank Grey Screen Fix with Repairing Microsoft Office Suite

This opens the Programs and Features window.

  • Now, locate the Microsoft Office app (here, it is the Microsoft 365 – en-us) >> click on the Change button at the top.

Excel File Opens Blank Grey Screen Fix with Repairing Microsoft Office Suite

  • Lastly, in the dialog box shown below, choose the Quick Repair option and press Repair.

Excel File Opens Blank Grey Screen Fix with Repairing Microsoft Office Suite

Now, this takes a couple of minutes after which you can reopen the Excel file. Finally, the results should appear as shown in the screenshot below.

Excel File Opens Blank Grey Screen Fix with Repairing Microsoft Office Suite

The methods above are all possible ways to resolve the blank grey screen. However, if the problem still persists as the last option you can contact Microsoft Support. Here, you can find many Excel experts who will provide solutions for your particular problems.


Conclusion

This article provides some quick and easy fixes when your Excel file opens a blank grey screen. Make sure to download the practice files. Hope you found it helpful. Please inform us in the comment section about your experience. We, the Exceldemy team, are happy to answer your queries. Keep learning and keep growing!

Eshrak Kader

Eshrak Kader

Hello! Welcome to my Profile. I completed my BSc. at Bangladesh University of Engineering & Technology from the Department of Naval Architecture & Marine Engineering. Currently, I am conducting research & posting articles related to Microsoft Excel. I am passionate about research & development and finding innovative solutions to problems.

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