Export to CSV add-in: export ranges from Excel to CSV with any delimiter

Widespread popularity of plain text CSV files is easily explained – this format is supported by majority of applications. So saving Excel spreadsheets as comma-delimited CSV files is a familiar operation. But what if you need to export not an entire worksheet, but only a selected range, or apply a different delimiter? Besides, saving as CSV automatically closes Excel workbook – and it becomes tiresome when you have to export data repeatedly.

Export to CSV add-in simplifies this routine operation:

  • Convert selected ranges from XLSX (XLS) to CSV
  • Choose a delimiter: comma, semicolon, tab or vertical pipe bar
  • Choose to export to CSV values or formatted values
  • Save as CSV without closing the original Excel file
  • Export merged cells accurately

(Note: the video may not reflect the latest upgrades. Please use the guide below.) 


Add "Export to CSV" to Excel 2019, 2016, 2013, 2010

Works in: Microsoft Excel 2019 – 2010, desktop Office 365 (both 32 bit and 64 bit).

Download XLTools Add-in

Export from Excel to CSV ribbon button


Learn your way around:

XLTools Export to CSV Features Overview


How to export a selected range from Excel to CSV

  1. Select a table or a range of cells.
  2. Click the ‘Export to CSV’ button on the XLTools tab > A window will open.
  3. Set CSV file options and choose a delimiter.
  4. Click OK > Save the CSV file to your computer > Done.

Export a selected range from Excel to CSV


How to export values vs formatted values from Excel to CSV

You can define, how to display data in the resulting CSV file, without modifying the source Excel data.

  1. Select the range > Click the ‘Export to CSV’ button.
  2. Set the options of how you want the values in CSV to display:
    •     Select ‘Save the formatted value’ > The exported values will match your Excel formatting, e.g. 10%, 12-MAR-2016, $40.
    •     Select ‘Save the value’ > The values will export in default format, e.g. 0.1, 3/12/2016, 40.00.

Choose to export values or formatted values to CSV


How to change standard comma to a semicolon, tab or pipe delimiter

  1. Select the range > Click the ‘Export to CSV’ button.
  2. Choose a suitable separator between values in the output CSV file:
    •     Comma
    •     Semicolon
    •     Tab
    •     Vertical line (pipe)

How to change delimiter in CSV from comma to pipe, semicolon, or tab


How to export to CSV a range with merged cells

  1. Select the range with merged cells > Click ‘Export to CSV’.
  2. Check the box 'Duplicate values when exporting merged range' > The add-in will duplicate values from merged cells into the corresponding places of the CSV text string.

How to export a merged range from Excel to CSV


How to save Excel data as CSV without closing Excel file

When you convert Excel files using 'Save As…CSV', a message appears: "Some features in your workbook might be lost". Next, it seems that your source XLSX file is replaced by the CSV file. What actually happens, is that your original Excel file gets automatically closed. Instead, a newly generated CSV file opens in Excel interface. So after each conversion you have to reopen the source Excel document again and again. It is time consuming and brings risk of losing unsaved changes to source data.

The Export to CSV add-in streamlines the XLSX-to-CSV routine:

  1. Select the range > Click ‘Export to CSV’ > Set CSV file options.
  2. Click OK > Name and save the file on your computer.
  3. Done. Note that the original Excel file remains open. Its extenstion did not change.
  4. If necessary, make changes and proceed – uninterrupted – exporting other ranges.

You can also 'Open CSV file after export' to preview the result immidiately. The file will open in a new Excel window.

How to export Excel data to CSV without closing Excel file

Any questions or suggestions? Please leave your comment below.

7 Responses to Export to CSV add-in: export ranges from Excel to CSV with any delimiter

  1. Tracy Barber says:

    Hi –

    It seems that the underscore (underline) formatting doesn’t get saved when exporting to .CSV. I have tried so many different ways to get this done and none were successful.

    I want to import the .csv file into MySQL. All are set up to use UTF-8 but it doesn’t seem to matter.

    Any ideas?

    • Tracy Barber says:

      BTW, I am trying to export underlined r, o, t and a few others that would take days to try to do a markup process and use css to underline the letters. The letters are parts of words. I have seen MySQL import such situations, it’s just that middle step that is causing grief.

      Am I to understand that there is no >File Save As for .csv, Unicode, UTF-8 although many people claim that this works in posts found on Google.

      Clues, hints, HELP! would be appreciated. Thanks…

      • Maria Balobanova says:

        Hi Tracy, exporting formatted values should be no problem. Let us investigate why the format is not saved. We will need some more details from you (I’ve sent you an email).
        You are right, there is no native Excel functionality to quickly “Save file as…” csv with another encoding. There are workarounds for sure, but we wanted to develop something more intuitive. We use the Export to CSV feature ourselves quite often, that’s actually how the add-in appeared.

  2. Robert Schone says:

    This is a great tool. 🙂

    But there is one more question left:
    I would like to export just specific rows to csv. In my first colum is specified which rows.
    I learned that I can do that with “Split Table”.
    But that is not exactely what I am looking for.

    Isn’t it possible to export just the rows which I can see (after filtering) and which are not empty?

    • Maria Balobanova says:

      Thank you for the kind feedback!
      Regarding the possibility to export only specific rows – this functionality is not yet supported. But that is a great idea for a future release. Thank you!
      In the meanwhile, here is what I can suggest: filter the table by your first column > copy the visible rows into a new sheet > export to CSV.

  3. Scott Hardwick says:

    Is it possible to set the qualifier?


    instead appears as

    • Maria Balobanova says:

      Hi Scott, thank you for the question!
      Qualifier will be automatically applied 1) only to the data in cells that contain commas, 2) if you choose comma as a delimiter:

      E.g. cells in Excel (pipes represent cells):
      |100|900.83||Hello|Doe, John|

      When you use Export to CSV with a comma delimiter, you’ll get:
      100,900.83,,Hello,”Doe, John”

      Do you have a use case when a special option to set qualifiers to all data would be useful? If so, we can pin to our development pipeline.

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