Excel: Adding to a chart

I made a chart in Excel. It’s a line chart with data points. The date and data are on the left, and the chart takes up most of the page. I added another row, but it was not added to the chart. I know I can delete the chart and start over by selecting the columns and making a new chart, but is there a way that I can just add data without starting from scratch?

When you added the row, did you expand the area (however many columns by however many rows) that the chart was supposed to draw from?

I added a row. I thought that it might update the chart automatically, or else there would be a button that says ‘update chart’ or something.

I did see that I can go to Chart Design => Select Data and then change the row number in Chart data range. It still seems clunky – especially since I already have to copy columns from Sheet 1 onto Sheet 2 instead of just making a chart on Sheet 2 and using the data on Sheet 1.

I think the following would work. Go to the area where the data is and add a row (or more than one if you have multiple rows of data to add) just before the last row of data. This should automatically change the chart data ranges.

If the chart is just x vs y so the order of the data doesn’t matter, then just put the new data into the open row.

If the order does matter, then copy the final row into teh blank row. Do not move the data, but copy it. I think moving it will reset the chart data ranges

Then overwrite the new data in the last row.

In the long run you can define a chart to include more rows than actually have data, then you can add new data into the empty rows.

I inserted a row after the last row. (i.e., ctrl+click, Insert.) I entered a date and a number. The chart did not change.

I copied the last row, then inserted the copied row after the last row and changed the date and data. The chart did not change.

I thought of that, but I won’t want to mess up the trend line.

So it looks like Excel can’t automatically update a chart when new data is added. I’ll just have to do what I described previously.

It will update it, but the insert has to be within the already defined area: not a new first row or last row. It’s a pain. You’ll have to re-specify the chart area.

It’s easier to just manually change the row number in the formula.

You don’t have to have the chart and values in the same page. I just did the following in Excel (Office 15). The details will change depending on the version of Excel: you used to be able to choose whether to add a sheet of data, a sheet with a chart for the data in your current sheet or a pivot table, when you clicked on “add page”.

  1. Input data
  2. Add page
  3. Add the kind of graph I want
  4. Right click on the blank graph, choose “select data”
  5. There is a field where I can indicate the area containing the data, and an arrow to the right of this field. Click on the arrow, go to the page with my data, select the area with the mouse, enter.


And if you convert your data into a table first Creating an Excel Table and create your chart from that it will be dynamic and update as you add rows.