How to add indicators and edit charts in MetaTrader 4?
Once you know the basic functions of the charts in MetaTrader 4, you are ready to explore their customization options and create charts that fully meet your particular needs.
As a refresher of the basics on how to open and arrange charts in MetaTrader 4, please read EightCap’s “How to manage charts in MetaTrader 4?” tutorial.
Learning how to change the colour of candlesticks and other chart elements in MT4 and how to add various indicators will make trading more efficient and charts will be easier to interpret. If you are using MetaTrader 5, please read our MT5 article.
This MetaTrader 4 step-by-step tutorial will help you to:
- Customize charts and change colours;
- Use Chart templates and profiles;
- Add and remove indicators;
- Configure indicators in MT4;
- Download indicators from the market;
How to edit and customize charts
To customize a chart, open the context menu and then go to “Properties” where you are able to change the colors of the different chart elements.
In our case, we can see that the background is black and the foreground is white by default. The foreground includes the numbers and the dates on the chart. To make the price movement clearer you can modify the settings for the candles, making “Bar Up” and “Bar Down” different colors. You can also completely change the background colour and get a very different look.
You can also add custom colors. For example, you can fine-tune the color of the grid to look best with your new color scheme. When you select the color, click “Add to Custom Colors” and “OK”.
The new chart you have created can be saved as a template that can be quickly applied to other charts and trading accounts. Just open the context menu from the chart, go to “Templates” and select “Save Template”.
Choose a name for your template and click “Save”.
You can also load a template from the context menu. The same actions can be executed via the “Template” button in the toolbar.
Similarly to Templates, the Profiles option enables you to save and load entire chart groups and their settings. Profiles can be managed from the “File” menu or the “Profiles button” in the toolbar.
How to add indicators in MetaTrader 4 charts
You can add indicators from the “Insert” main menu, from the “Navigator” menu by dragging and dropping to the chart or from the “Indicators list” button in the toolbar.
Configure indicators in MT4
Indicators can be configured similarly to charts when they are applied. Most indicators have configurable parameters for styling of the lines, including color, line thickness, as well as periods and options for “Fixed minimum” and “Fixed maximum” where applicable. Some indicators have additional parameters that can be configured. If you are not happy with your settings, you can always reset them.
All indicators can be set to different timeframes from the “Visualization” tab in the configuration window. The default setting is “All timeframes” that ensures the indicators are always visible on the chart when you switch timeframes.
The configuration window can be opened after you have activated the indicator from the context menu. To delete indicators select “Delete Indicator” from the same menu.
If you have a lot of indicators added you can right-click on the chart and select “Indicators list” from the menu. A window will appear where you can select as many indicators as you need from all activated ones and delete them at once.
For your chart analysis, you can also use graphical objects that can be added from the “Insert” menu or the Line Studies toolbar.
Download indicators from the Market
To install additional indicators, go to the official MetaTrader website for documentation, indicators, and EAs at https://www.mql5.com/
Select the “Market” menu and filter your results for MetaTrader 4 and indicators. Here you can buy or download free indicators that are not available on your platform.
Open the page of the indicator you chose and download it.
Upon download, the indicator will be automatically installed and visible in the “Terminal” window, in the “Market” tab.
The indicator will be also visible in the “Navigator” window. From the context menu, you can activate and modify it.
Alternatively, to find new indicators you can open the context menu of “Indicators” in the “Navigator” window and select “Online library”. A list of available indicators will open in the “Terminal” window. Clicking on them will redirect you to their page on the website. From there, the steps are the same.
Setting up custom indicators
Advanced traders and coders can configure their own indicators for MetaTrader 4. To do this, open the context menu again and select “Create in MetaEditor”.
The MetaEditor application will automatically open. It enables the creation of custom indicators, Expert Advisors and scripts of any size and complexity.