Some users have reported that when they open Microsoft Excel, it displays a white flash on the screen or flickers. The process repeats itself after every 8 – 10 seconds. Sometimes, the rate of flickering increases, and users experience this issue after every 2 – 3 seconds. This is a very frustrating issue as it makes Excel unusable for the users. If Excel keeps flickering on your Windows 11/10 computer, the solutions listed in this article may help you fix it.
Fix Excel keeps flickering on Windows 11/10
If after opening Microsoft Excel, it starts flickering, you can try the following fixes to get rid of the problem.
- Update Microsoft Office
- Toggle Hardware Graphics Acceleration in Excel
- Disable Dropbox in Startup apps
- Turn off OneDrive sync for Office applications
- Change your default printer
- Troubleshoot Excel in Safe mode
- Set the same Scale and Layout on all your displays
- Update your graphics card driver
- Repair Microsoft Office
Below, we have explained all these solutions in detail.
1] Update Microsoft Office
Check if you are running an outdated version of Microsoft Office. If so, consider updating it. Installing the latest updates is mandatory as it fixes minor bugs and adds new features to the software.
2] Toggle Hardware Graphics Acceleration in Excel
Some users were able to fix the issue by disabling the Hardware Graphics Acceleration in Excel, whereas for some, enabling the Hardware Graphics Acceleration worked. Check if the Hardware Graphics Acceleration in Excel is enabled or disabled. Toggle the checkbox to turn it on or off and see if this fixes the problem.
Follow the instructions listed below:
- Launch Microsoft Excel.
- Go to “File > Options.”
- Select the Advanced category from the left side.
- Scroll down and locate the Display section.
- Now, toggle the Disable hardware graphics acceleration checkbox to turn it on or off.
- Click OK to save the changes.
- Restart Excel.
3] Disable Dropbox in Startup apps
A lot of users have confirmed that Dropbox was causing the problem. To confirm this, exit the Dropbox application, and then launch Excel. Now, see if flickering occurs after exiting the Dropbox. If this works, you can disable Dropbox in Startup applications so that it will not start every time you turn on your computer.
You can disable the Startup programs by using:
- The Task Manager
- Windows 11/10 Settings
- Windows Management Instrumentation Command line
- Group Policy Editor
- Task Scheduler
4] Turn off OneDrive sync for Office applications
The OneDrive sync feature for Office applications lets you work on Office files with other people at the same time. Sometimes, issues occur with Office applications due to sync conflicts. In such a case, disabling the OneDrive sync for Office Applications may fix the problem. The following instructions will guide you on this:
- Click on the OneDrive icon on the Taskbar.
- Click on the gear-shaped icon and select Settings.
- Select the Office tab and clear the checkbox that says Use Office applications to sync Office files that I open.
- Click OK.
Now, check if the issue persists.
5] Change your default printer
Try to change the default printer and then check if this solves your problem. If you have allowed Windows to manage your default printer, you will not be able to change the default printer until you turn off the “Let Windows manage my default printer” option.
6] Troubleshoot Excel in Safe mode
There might be an Add-in causing Excel to flicker. You can check this by troubleshooting Excel in Safe mode. When you launch an Office application in Safe mode, some of the Add-ins remain disabled. This will help you find the problematic Add-in. Follow the procedure below:
- If Excel flickers in the Safe mode, one of the Add-ins enabled in the Safe mode may be the culprit. Now, go to “File > Options > Add-Ins,” select COM Add-ins and click Go. Now, start disabling the Add-ins in the Safe mode one by one and see if the problem disappears.
- If Excel does not flicker in the Safe mode, one of the Add-ins disabled in the Safe mode may be the culprit. Now, go to “File > Options > Add-Ins.” After that, select COM Add-ins in the drop-down at the bottom and click Go. Note down the Add-ins enabled in the Safe mode.
Exit the Safe mode in Excel and launch it in the normal mode. Now, go to “File > Options > Add-Ins” and select COM Add-ins in the drop-down. Click Go. Start disabling the Add-ins one by one except those enabled in the Safe mode because those Add-ins are not causing any problem.
Once you find the problematic Add-in, consider removing it.
Read: Microsoft Excel displays High CPU usage.
7] Set the same Scale and Layout on all your Displays
This solution is for the users who are experiencing the problem on their second display. Windows 11/10 lets users set different Display Scaling levels for different Displays. Sometimes, this may cause problems. Set the same Scale and Layout on all your Displays and check if it fixes the problem. For some users, setting the Display and Layout to 125% fixed the issue.
8] Update your graphics card driver
One possible cause of the problem is the corrupted or outdated graphics card driver. If this is the case with you, updating the graphics card driver may stop Excel from flickering. When we say updating a driver on Windows 11/10, you can follow any of the following methods:
- Update your graphics card driver via the Windows Optional Updates feature.
- You can visit the manufacturer’s website to download the latest version of your graphics card driver and install it manually by running the installer file.
9] Repair Microsoft Office
If your Microsoft Office application is corrupted, you may experience several issues like this one. In this case, you have to repair Microsoft Office to fix the issue.
Read: Fix Errors were detected while saving Excel files.
Why does my Excel keep flickering?
The reasons for this issue are many. You might be facing the problem due to a corrupted graphics card driver or a conflicting application. According to the feedback of some users, Dropbox was causing the problem. Sometimes, the Sync Office files setting in OneDrive also creates issues in Office applications.
If the problem has started after installing an Add-in, that Add-in may be causing Excel to flicker. Troubleshooting Excel in Safe mode will help you identify the problematic Add-in.
How do I stop Excel from flashing?
First, check if you are using the latest version of Microsoft Office. If not, update it. Other things that you can try to stop Excel from flashing are:
- Disable Dropbox.
- Disable OneDrive sync for Office applications.
- Troubleshoot Excel in Safe mode.
- Update your graphics card driver.
If nothing works, you should repair Microsoft Office.
Hope this helps.
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