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You can combine Column, Line and/or Area Charts into a single chart by creating a Mixed Chart. Let's continue to use our Energy Saving Plan spreadsheet using the data that already appears in our Utility Costs by Month table. First, we need to select the data to be used in our Mixed Chart. We'll click and drag from the cell on the top left corner all the way across to the December column and down to the row for 2009. With our data selected, we can create our Mixed Chart either from the Insert menu or from the Charts button on the Toolbar. Click this button and the second from the bottom on the left is our Mixed Chart. When we select this option a default chart is created for us, but we can make modifications to this chart to our liking.
Let's first start by dragging this chart to the top of our screen. Eventually we'll reach the top where we can place it just above the table called Utility Costs by Month. Now, using the handles that appear around the outside, we can resize this. From the top right corner let's click and drag out to the right and down so it fits nicely at the top of our page. Notice the legend followed us when we moved the table, we can click that as a separate object and drag it towards the center, for example.
Now, let's focus on the various data series, you can see for the various years in our table, we have two columns and one line. Let's start with the series for 2007. First we'll click the chart to select it. Then click the Line to select that data series. In our Chart Inspector, which opens up by default, we see the Series Type set as Line but we can change this. Click this button and let's choose Area. There are three options Area, Line and Column. Now our Line turns into an Area type chart. For 2008, we see a green column, we'll leave that one as is.
For 2009, we'll click that Column to select that data series, any Column will do and where we see the Series Type set to Column. Let's change it to Line. So, here's another way to view our data. We are using three different chart types together as one, but all three of the data series are using the same scale over here on the left hand side on our Y-axis. Let's deselect our chart by clicking the canvas anywhere to see the end result better. A Mixed Chart is an excellent option for showing comparison between different data series.
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