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Approaches to Repair Corrupt Pivot Table of Excel File

Pivot table is one of the best Excel features that helps users extract data from rows and columns, thus saving their time and effort. However, like all other excel features, it is also prone to errors. Sometimes, the pivot table gets corrupted and stops the users from reopening earlier saved workbooks, making the data inaccessible.

pivot table

But there is nothing to worry about it as we have got you covered. Here’s the comprehensive guide that will walk you through the real-time user experience, possible reasons for the error, and practical solutions to repair corrupt pivot table of excel file

User Experience

A pivot table is generally used to summarize a large amount of data. It analyzes numerical in detail while answering random questions about the same. However, this feature is also prone to glitches, leaving the users annoying and frustrated. Let’s understand the problem through a real-time user experience.

I generally save my client’s information, such as invoice, amount of work done, etc., in the MS Excel spreadsheet. I have used several pivot tables and summarized them in separate tabs from the main data table with slicers to get the data instantly.

Yesterday, when I tried to open the workbook to update the information, my spreadsheet no longer had a pivot table functionality, and all slicers were dead. I can even no longer refresh the pivot table.”

Part 1. How to Repair Corrupt Pivot Table of Excel File? (5 Ways)

Are you also facing the trouble in loading the pivot table or making changes in it? Continue reading the page to learn about effective approaches to repair corrupt pivot table of excel files.

Approach 1: Make sure that Data Source is set properly

Sometimes, the pivot table functionality stops working owing to data-related issues. Every time data is manually manipulated, there’s a chance for human error, leading to pivot table corruption.

In such cases, the users need to check and set the data source appropriately. Here’s how you can do it.

  • Visit the PivotTable report.

  • Under the “Data” section, click “Analyze” and then go to the “Change Data Source” tab.

open the change data source tab
  • The “Change PivotTable Data Source” dialog box will be displayed on the screen.

change pivot table data source values
  • There, you need to check if the Data Source is set appropriately.

  • If you find any trouble, try reselecting the data source to find out whether the refresh option works properly or not.

Approach 2: Use the Safe Mode to Open MS Excel

Yet another basic approach to repair corrupt pivot table of excel file is to open the application in safe mode. This mode starts the Windows in a primary state, using a specific set of files, and drivers.

Try to load the file again, and check if it resolves the error. If a pivot table problem doesn’t happen in safe mode, it means that the basic device drivers and default settings are not causing the trouble.

Approach 3: Try making changes to Pivot Table

Are you still facing the error and looking for a way out? Make changes to Pivot Table, and check if it resolves the error or not. Follow the instructions mentioned below to carry out the process.

  • Right-click the table in your excel file to access the PivotTable options.

open pivot table options
  • A pop-up menu will appear on the screen and offers six different tabs, including Alt Text, Layout & Formatting, ToTal & Filters, Printing, Display, and Data. Choose the required options and make necessary changes to them.

makes changes to the pivot table options
  • Open the file again and check if it resolves the problem.

Approach 4: Using Wondershare Repairit- File Repair

Sometimes the error appears owing to the pivot table corruption and for this, you have to opt for the third-party app that can repair corrupt pivot table of excel file. Wondershare Repairit is a leading software to fix all kinds of data corruption in just three simple steps.

  • Repair damaged Excel files with all levels of corruption, including blank files, files not opening, unrecognizable format, unreadable content, files layout changed, etc.

  • Quickly and safely repair multiple .xlsx files in a single process.

  • Perfectly repair corrupted files with a very high success rate, without modifying the original file.

  • Support Microsoft Excel 2019, 2016, 2013, 2010, 2007.

  • Support Windows 11/10/8/7/Vista, Windows Server 2003/2008/2012/2016/2019/2022, and macOS 10.10~macOS 14.

Follow the step-by-step guide to use the Wondershare Repairit for repairing the corrupt Pivot Table.

Step 1: Upload the corrupted file

  • First of all, download and install the tool on your PC. Follow the on-screen prompts to launch the software and go to the side dashboard "More Types Repair" to open the “File Repair” option.

  • There, you will locate the “+Add” button. Click on it, and the interface will take you to the location where the corrupted file is stored. Select the files and load them to the software.

  • The tool will display the progress of file uploading process on screen. Once they get added to the application, you can check their details and discard any of them if uploaded mistakenly.

Step 2: Repair the corrupted files

  • Once you are done with check the file information, click on the Repair button available at the bottom to initiate the repair process.

  • The tool may take a few minutes to complete the repairing process. Till then, you can check the progress from the on-screen indicator.

  • The users will be notified as soon as the process is completed.


Step 3: Preview and Save

  • A “Preview” button will be available next to the repaired file. Click on it to check the final results before saving the file.

  • Once you are satisfied with the outcome, you can export the files to the dedicated location by tapping the “Save” button. You can also click the “Save All” to export all repaired files at once.


Approach 5: Uncheck the Property Display checkbox

If the error still continues, you can uncheck the Show Properties tab and reload the file to see if it helps. Here’s mentioned the step-by-step procedure.

  • Open the Excel workbook containing the Pivot table.

  • Right-click the table and choose “PivotTable Options.”

open pivot table options
  • Go to the Display tab and locate the checkbox saying “Show properties in ToolTips.”

open the display tab
  • Uncheck the box and click OK to modify the changes.

  • Open the file again and see if PivotTable functionality is working or not.

Part 2. Reasons for Pivot Table Not Working

Users generally report the below-mentioned error messages while working on the PivotTable.

  • Error Message 1: “We found a problem with some content in abc.xlsx (filename). You will be prompted to choose either Yes or No to proceed. If you click on Yes, it leads to another error message.

  • Error Message 2: Removed Part: ?xl/pivotCache/pivotCacheDefinition1.xml part with XML error. This message indicates that the data still exists within the Pivot table, but the table isn’t functioning properly.

There are two major reasons that lead to the error.

  • The PivotTable gets corrupted, owing to malware attacks, sudden power loss, or inappropriate file transfer.

  • The error also occurs if you have created the Pivot Table in an outdated Excel version but trying to open, save, or refresh the file in a new and updated version.

Summing It Up

That’s it, folks!! We hope this guide has given you a detailed insight into how to repair corrupt pivot table of excel file. Bookmark the page right away to fix the pivot table corruption with ease. Pivot table is an in-built functionality that allows the users to access the exact details from a large number of rows and columns.

However, if you face any trouble while using the pivot table, use any of the solutions listed above and root out the error. The users can opt for the Wondershare Repairit if the error appears owing to the pivot table corruption.