How to change field delimiter when saving csv files from Excel?

If you have wondered how to change or modify the field delimiter when exporting to csv from Excel ?, here we will explain the basic concepts that you should keep in mind about csv files and how we can change the field delimiter or separator when exporting them.

When exporting files in csv format , we note that this separates the sections by means of a symbol, in our case, if we have the Spanish language on our PC, it will separate us with a comma ‘,’ which can cause problems when using Excel files.

What is CSV?

What the term csv refers to is to separate a set of values with a symbol, in order to effectively sort the information, without losing or confusing information in the process. Although it does not yet have a standard use, it is used in many areas, such as Excel, which has the ability to group and save a large amount of data.

The csv files can help us to save our personal data in a simple way and a little in code, since it can return a document to a csv file that has to be converted back to its original, as is the case of passing a file csv back to Excel.

On a more personal level, leaving the workplace, we can use csv files to save important data from our browser, such as the passwords of the websites that we frequently visit or those of our social networks.

In short, this technology is very useful and should be used in its maximum splendor, if we have a problem with the separation symbol, we can solve it quickly by following these simple steps.

How to change field delimiter when saving csv files from Excel?

When making documents in Excel we normally separate everything with the rows and columns, and there may be values ​​that carry commas, so when doing the export we realize that it is difficult to understand where a decimal number is, and what is the separation between cells.

For this reason we can choose to change this symbol for a more practical one, in this case we will teach you how to do it with the Pleca symbol ‘|’ but you can use the one that suits you best. Whether you are on Windows 7, Windows 10 or Mac , you have to change the regional settings, you can access it from the start menu by typing “region”, an icon with this name should appear where we can adjust these values.

Once we open the menu, on the right of the screen an option will appear to access a more advanced menu, we click and a new menu will appear with 3 categories, including the date, the language and the one that we care about in in this case, the region, in the small letters we must select  ‘change of format’ . With this, another menu will open and we will have to mark again in ‘additional’ that is located at the end of the menu.

Once we click, a box will open with a list of symbols, each one applied for a different purpose, the one that matters to us for our exported files in csv is the ‘list separator’ if we look at the right side, we can modify which symbol has been assigned, here we change it to ‘|’ and we click on accept.

How can changing the field delimiter help us?

Making the aforementioned change is a matter of order and good administration, since with this we will have our files well ordered and separated , and anyone can read them without problems.

With this we avoid possible inconveniences when reading or sending Excel files to other regions of the world, where the comma is changed by a semicolon to separate, but if all apply a neutral symbol such as Pleca , these inconveniences will disappear.

As we spoke before, csv files are very useful and you have to know how to use them because they can even serve as a backup for our documents, being a very low-weight file, being widely used even to store contacts to send them to our Gmail and keep them safe.


by Abdullah Sam
I’m a teacher, researcher and writer. I write about study subjects to improve the learning of college and university students. I write top Quality study notes Mostly, Tech, Games, Education, And Solutions/Tips and Tricks. I am a person who helps students to acquire knowledge, competence or virtue.

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