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A Fast Way To Clean & Trim Cell Values With VBA Code

By Chris Newman •  Updated: 05/09/15 •  4 min read
A Fast Way To Clean & Trim Cell Values With VBA Code

What This VBA Macro Code Does

I found this code snippet on an Ozgrid forum post written by a fellow named Armando Montes. What this code allows you to do is circumvent testing (ie looping) each individual cell and handling trimming (removing leading and ending spaces) and cleaning (removing unprintable characters) process for your Excel data. It's a great way to clean up your data getting exported from an outside database.

Don't Do This!

Sub CleanTrimCells_Looping()
'PURPOSE: Clean/Trim cell values in user selection
'SOURCE: www.TheSpreadsheetGuru.com/the-code-vault

Dim cell As Range
Dim rng As Range

'Weed out any formulas from selection
  If Selection.Cells.Count = 1 Then
    Set rng = Selection
  Else
    Set rng = Selection.SpecialCells(xlCellTypeConstants)
  End If

'Trim and Clean cell values
  For Each cell In rng.Cells
    cell.Value = Application.WorksheetFunction.Clean(Trim(cell.Value))
  Next cell

End Sub

Do This!

Sub CleanTrimCells_Evaluate()
'PURPOSE: A Fast way to Clean/Trim cell values in user selection
'AUTHOR: Armando Montes
'SOURCE: www.TheSpreadsheetGuru.com/the-code-vault

Dim rng As Range
Dim Area As Range

'Weed out any formulas from selection
  If Selection.Cells.Count = 1 Then
    Set rng = Selection
  Else
    Set rng = Selection.SpecialCells(xlCellTypeConstants)
  End If

'Trim and Clean cell values
  For Each Area In rng.Areas
    Area.Value = Evaluate("IF(ROW(" & Area.Address & "),CLEAN(TRIM(" & Area.Address & ")))")
  Next Area
  
End Sub

Using VBA Code Found On The Internet

Now that you’ve found some VBA code that could potentially solve your Excel automation problem, what do you do with it? If you don’t necessarily want to learn how to code VBA and are just looking for the fastest way to implement this code into your spreadsheet, I wrote an article (with video) that explains how to get the VBA code you’ve found running on your spreadsheet.

Getting Started Automating Excel

Are you new to VBA and not sure where to begin? Check out my quickstart guide to learning VBA. This article won’t overwhelm you with fancy coding jargon, as it provides you with a simplistic and straightforward approach to the basic things I wish I knew when trying to teach myself how to automate tasks in Excel with VBA Macros.

Also, if you haven’t checked out Excel’s latest automation feature called Power Query, I have put together a beginner’s guide for automating with Excel’s Power Query feature as well! This little-known built-in Excel feature allows you to merge and clean data automatically with little to no coding!

How Do I Modify This To Fit My Specific Needs?

Chances are this post did not give you the exact answer you were looking for. We all have different situations and it's impossible to account for every particular need one might have. That's why I want to share with you: My Guide to Getting the Solution to your Problems FAST! In this article, I explain the best strategies I have come up with over the years to get quick answers to complex problems in Excel, PowerPoint, VBA, you name it

I highly recommend that you check this guide out before asking me or anyone else in the comments section to solve your specific problem. I can guarantee that 9 times out of 10, one of my strategies will get you the answer(s) you are needing faster than it will take me to get back to you with a possible solution. I try my best to help everyone out, but sometimes I don't have time to fit everyone's questions in (there never seem to be quite enough hours in the day!).

I wish you the best of luck and I hope this tutorial gets you heading in the right direction!

Keep Learning

Chris Newman

Chris Newman

Chris is a finance professional and Excel MVP recognized by Microsoft since 2016. With his expertise, he founded TheSpreadsheetGuru blog to help fellow Excel users, where he shares his vast creative solutions & expertise. In addition, he has developed over 7 widely-used Excel Add-ins that have been embraced by individuals and companies worldwide.