QuickBooks Export To Excel Not Working Issues: Troubleshooting Tips

QuickBooks simplifies business management with just a click on your computer. It offers cloud-based accounting solutions, making data management a breeze. Some users encounter a common issue – QuickBooks does not export data to Excel. This problem typically arises when QuickBooks can’t recognize the Excel installation on your system, often after a QuickBooks update. 

To resolve this, a practical solution is to re-register all keys with Microsoft through reinstallation or repair of Microsoft Office. This action helps QuickBooks identify the presence of Excel on your computer.

However, this problem could also occur for various reasons, including compatibility issues, incorrect settings, or software glitches. You may need to troubleshoot QuickBooks export to Excel issues by checking for software updates, ensuring proper Excel settings, or seeking assistance from QuickBooks support if necessary.

Let’s take you through some of the tried and tested methods to resolve this error while understanding the issue behind each problem. 

Probable Reasons For QuickBooks Excel Export Problems

Here’s a list of potential causes for QuickBooks not exporting to Excel:

System Compatibility: QuickBooks may not export to Excel if your computer’s hardware and software specifications don’t align with QuickBooks’ requirements. This can result in sluggish performance or even crashes during the export process.

An Outdated QuickBooks Version: Older versions of QuickBooks may lack the latest updates and patches designed to ensure smooth compatibility with Excel. The updates often come with bug fixes and improvements to communicate with other programs.

Corrupted Microsoft Excel: Excel corruption typically occurs when the program files or settings are damaged. It can be due to various reasons, like hardware failures or software conflicts. When Excel is corrupted, it may not respond correctly to QuickBooks’ export requests.

Windows User Account Control (UAC) Settings: It is a security feature in Windows that regulates the execution of programs. If it’s set too high, it can block necessary actions between the two applications, causing export failures. 

Technical Issues: Technical problems such as low disk space, hard drive errors, or an underperforming processor can impact QuickBooks’ ability to export data. For instance, a lack of disk space can prevent temporary files from being created during export, leading to failures.

Incomplete Update Process: QuickBooks updates are often designed to ensure compatibility with other software and services, including Microsoft Excel. You may experience issues when exporting data or integrating QuickBooks with other tools without the latest updates.

Improper QuickBooks Installation: If QuickBooks Desktop is not installed correctly, it might not function as intended, leading to Excel export problems.

Unrecognized Excel Installation: QuickBooks may not recognize Excel if there are issues with permissions or security settings. For example, if Excel is installed under a different user account or has restrictions set for Excel’s use, QuickBooks may have trouble recognizing it.

What Are QuickBooks System Requirements to Avoid QB Export to Excel Problem?

To ensure a smooth experience with QuickBooks and avoid encountering these issues, your initial step should be verifying that your system meets the requirements.

Windows OS

  • Operating System: Windows 11, 10, 8.1, all 64-bit editions
  • Processor: Minimum 2.4 GHz 
  • RAM: 1 to 5 users; minimum 8 GB 
  • Disk space: 2.5GB of disk space and an additional 60MB for 1 to 5 users; minimum 8 GB 

It is always recommended to use SSD (Solid State Drive) for the best performance of QuickBooks Desktop. Before you proceed with the troubleshooting steps, update your QuickBooks Desktop!


  • Mac 2016 R5 or earlier Mac OS 10.10.2
  • Intel Core Duo or higher
  • 2-4 GB RAM
  • Minimum 250 MB disk space

To prevent problems with QuickBooks due to your computer’s setup, make sure your computer meets the requirements listed by QuickBooks. Keep your computer’s hardware updated, keep an eye out for software updates, and test things out before making big changes. 

Also, back up your data, and don’t hesitate to ask for help if you run into issues. This will help you use QuickBooks smoothly.

Which Excel Versions Are Compatible With QuickBooks? 

The right Excel version is crucial for a seamless QuickBooks export to Excel. Currently, QuickBooks works well with the following Excel versions:

  • Microsoft Excel 2010 SP2
  • Microsoft Excel 2013
  • Microsoft Excel 2016

If you’re using an older Excel version, consider upgrading it to the latest version. 

Tip: Before trying the different strategies to tackle QuickBooks Excel export problems, take some precautions. Always back up your data, ensure software updates, verify system compatibility, and seek help if needed.

HFE.com: Quick Fixes

Problem: System Compatibility

Solution: Ensure your computer meets the QuickBooks system requirements, including operating system, processor, RAM, and disk space. Consider using an SSD for optimal performance.

Problem: Outdated QuickBooks

Solution: Update the QuickBooks program to the latest version following the detailed process below. Once done, restart your system and try exporting a file from QuickBooks. 

Problem: Corrupted Microsoft Excel

Solution: Repair or reinstall Excel depending on whether you have a Click-to-run or MSI-based Office installation.

Problem: Windows User Account Control (UAC) Settings

Solution: Temporarily disable the UAC settings using MSCONFIG or simply by going to the UAC settings from the Start menu. 

Problem: Technical Issues

Solution: Check if your system has any disk space limitations, hardware errors, or processor performance and fix them to ensure QuickBooks can run smoothly on your device. 

Methods To Handle QuickBooks Export To Excel Failure

Let’s explore some handy methods for resolving QuickBooks export issues to Excel. 

Method 1:  Check And Update Your PC To Match The QuickBooks System Requirements

This method tackles the problem of QuickBooks Export to Excel not working properly due to compatibility issues. 

Here’s how to approach it: 

QuickBooks Desktop versions are designed to work with specific Microsoft Office versions. Check the system requirements for your QuickBooks edition: 2021, 2022, or 2023.

If your Microsoft Office version isn’t compatible, consider upgrading.

Method 2: Update QuickBooks To The Latest Version

Updating QuickBooks ensures that it runs at its best and doesn’t run into issues like QuickBooks not exporting to Excel. Outdated software can lead to problems with its performance and compatibility. 

To update the QuickBooks desktop, follow these steps:

  • Open QuickBooks, and under the File tab, select “Close Company/Logoff.”
  • Next, choose “Exit” from the File tab to close QuickBooks completely.
  • Now, right-click the QuickBooks icon on your Desktop and choose “Run as Administrator.”
  • Once QuickBooks displays “No Company Open,” go to the Help tab and select “Update QuickBooks.”
  • In the Update QuickBooks window, click “Mark All” under the Options menu and click “Save.”
  • Under the “Update Now” menu, check the box next to “Reset Update.”
  • Click “Get Updates,” and when QuickBooks shows “Update Now,” exit the application.
  • Reopen QuickBooks, and when prompted by the Install Updates pop-up, click “Yes.”
  • After all the updates are installed, restart your system to ensure the changes take effect.

Method 3: Repair Microsoft Excel On Your System

If Excel is corrupted, it can significantly affect how QuickBooks export feature works, leading to errors or failed exports of your financial data. 

You can repair the Microsoft Excel application by following the below steps:

  • The steps to access the repair tool depend on your operating system. 
  • For Windows 8 and Windows 10 users, right-click the Start button in the lower-left corner and click “Apps and Features” from the pop-up menu.
  • Next, select Microsoft Excel and click on “Modify.”
  • Remember that this repair will cover the entire Office suite, even if you only want to fix one application like Excel. 
  • Depending on whether you have a Click-to-run or MSI-based installation of Office, you’ll get different options to proceed with the repair. Follow the relevant steps based on your type of installation.

For Click-to-run installations:

In the window titled “How would you like to repair your Office Programs,” choose “Online Repair” and then select “Repair” to ensure a comprehensive fix. 

There’s also the “Quick Repair” option, but it only detects and replaces corrupted files.

For MSI-based installations:

In the “Change your installation” section, select “Repair” and then click “Continue.”

Follow the instructions to complete the repair process.

Now, go back to QuickBooks and try exporting a report. If you cannot do so, try the other listed methods. 

Method 4: Disable Windows User Account Control Settings Temporarily

User Account Control (UAC) serves as a security feature within Windows, safeguarding the operating system against unauthorized alterations. It notifies users when system alterations require administrator-level permissions, granting users the choice to approve or deny these changes.

Due to its security measures, UAC may restrict QuickBooks from accessing and exporting data to Excel. By temporarily turning off UAC, you can test if it is the cause of the issue and allow QuickBooks to export data to Excel without interference. 

To temporarily disable User Account Control (UAC) in Windows, follow these steps:

  • Open the Start menu and search for “UAC.”
  • Click “Change User Account Control settings.”
  • Go to “User Accounts”.
  • Then, click the link “Turn User Account Control on or off.”
  • Uncheck the option “Use User Account Control (UAC) to help protect your computer.”
  • Move the slider down to “Never Notify.”
  • Click OK to apply the change.
  • Confirm the change when prompted with a Yes.
  • Restart your computer.

You can also disable UAC using MSCONFIG. Here’s how:

  • Hold down the Windows Key and “R” to open the “Run” dialog.
  • Type “msconfig” and hit Enter.
  • Select the “Tools” tab.
  • Look for “Change UAC Settings” and click on it.
  • Click the “Launch” button.
  • Choose one of the four levels. The bottom option completely disables UAC.

Method 5: Follow The Right Way To Export

Fixing QuickBooks Excel export errors may be just about following the right process. To avoid errors, stick to the standard method when exporting Excel files from QuickBooks, as mentioned below. 

For QuickBooks Desktop on Windows:

  • Navigate to Reports, then Reports Center.
  • Locate and double-click the report you wish to export.
  • Click the Excel dropdown, then choose “Create New Worksheet” or “Update Existing Worksheet.”
  • If you encounter a message indicating too many columns, click “Advanced,” then uncheck the “Space between columns” option and click OK.
  • When you’re ready to export, click OK.

For QuickBooks Desktop on Mac:

  • You can open Excel with Microsoft Excel 2016 or later, Apple Numbers v3.5, including Mac Office 365.
  • Find the report you want to export under Reports.
  • Select “Export.”
  • Once the file opens, click “File” and then save the file.

QuickBooks will open Excel workbooks with the application you’ve configured. If you need to change this setting:

  • Right-click on the file and click on “Get Info.”
  • From the “Open With” menu, select either “Microsoft Excel” or “Apple Numbers.”
  • Click “Change All” to apply this change to all similar files.

Troubleshooting QuickBooks Freezing During Excel Export After Windows Update

If you encounter problems exporting data from QuickBooks to Excel following a Windows update, consider the following troubleshooting steps:

  • Ensure QuickBooks Desktop is up to date. Navigate to “Help” and choose “Update QuickBooks Desktop.”
  • Temporarily disable Windows User Account Control (UAC) Settings. Access this by clicking the Windows Start button, searching for UAC, and setting it to “Never Notify.”
  • Verify the stability of your internet connection.
  • Repair your Microsoft Office installation.
  • If issues persist, consider reinstalling QuickBooks.

If these measures do not resolve the problem, it may be related to compatibility issues between QuickBooks and Excel. In such cases, using the correct export method mentioned above may help.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I export a CSV file from QuickBooks to Excel?

To export a CSV file from QuickBooks and open it in Excel, follow these steps:

  • Go to the Reports menu.
  • Select the desired report.
  • Click the Export icon.
  • Choose “CSV (comma delimited) (*.csv)” as the file type.
  • Click “Save As” and select your preferred save location.
  • Click “Save.”

How can I export invoices from QuickBooks Desktop to Excel?

Follow the below steps to export any invoices from QuickBooks Desktop to Excel:

  • Navigate to the Reports section.
  • Add the invoice list.
  • Customize the report as needed.
  • Click “Run Report.”
  • On the reports page, select the “Export” option.
  • Choose “Export to Excel.”

What version of Excel does QuickBooks support?

QuickBooks supports Microsoft Excel versions 2019, 2016, and 2013, or Microsoft 365, including the 64-bit versions. Microsoft 365 or Microsoft Word 2019, 2016, 2013, is required for tasks like exporting reports.