Why aren’t zeros appearing in Excel?

It seems simple enough.  You type a number that starts with a zero, such as a cvv code, zip code or other identifier, and it just does not appear.  When we look it up online, the directions to correct it are confusing or do not work for you.

The solution has two answers.  First, you can set up the single cell to accept “hidden zero’s” by formatting it.  Place the cursor on the specific cell to format.  Press Ctrl +1 to open the formatting tools.  Click on Number and then Custom.  At the top of list look for and delete the word General.  Replace that term with the appropriate number of zeros.  For example, if you have a number to enter that is 022, enter three zeros.  Enter only the amount of zeros for that piece of data and no more.  If you enter four zeros where only three are needed then the extra zero will appear ahead of the number you want, (0022, in this instance).

If you are using a column for zip codes, then highlight the entire column, (click on the column header), and format the column for zip codes by selecting Special, just above where you clicked Custom.