How to Remove a Page Break in Microsoft Word: 2 Methods

A page break is an invisible marker that splits one page in Microsoft Word from the next. This formatting mark enables text to flow smoothly from one page to the next. Also, when you want to print the document, the printer uses the page break to know where the first page has ended and the second has begun.

In short, a page break controls the layout of your document and allows you to place your content on the right page. Let’s learn how to add a page break and then how to remove a page break in Word. The screenshots below are from Word for Microsoft 365.

There Are Two Types of Page Breaks

There are two types of page breaks and a few other document breaks in Word, like section breaks. Today, we will talk only about page breaks.

  • Automatic page breaks are added by Word when you move from one page to the next.
  • Manual page breaks can be added anywhere in the document by you to break the document and advance to the next page.

You can’t remove automatic page breaks but can adjust where they occur. You control the position of manual page breaks because you are adding them yourselves.

How to Add a Page Break

Once you start using page breaks, you will find that this almost hidden feature in Word makes it easier to format your document. For instance, you can use a page break to position a table or an picture on a new page instead of crowding it in the previous one.

Before we begin, click the Home > Paragraph Group > Show/Hide button to display your document’s hidden page break marker.

To add them manually in your document:

  1. Place your cursor where you want one page to end and the next to begin.
  2. Go to Ribbon > Insert > Page Break (in the Pages group).
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Keyboard Shortcut: Press Ctrl + Enter to quickly insert a page break with the keyboard.

Microsoft Word with the Page Break button

How to Remove a Page Break in Word

You can insert a manual page break anywhere in a Word document and force the text to begin at the top of the next page. But how do you delete a page break in Word?

Here are two quick ways to delete page breaks in Word.

Method 1: How to Remove Page Breaks in Word With Delete

  1. Open your Word document.
  2. Go to Home > Click the Show/Hide button to display all non-printable hidden marks like page breaks, spaces, and non-breaking spaces in the document.
  3. Double-click to select a page break and press Delete to remove it.
    Delete Page Break in Word

  4. You can now click the Show/Hide button again to hide the other formatting marks in the document.
  5. Alternatively, instead of double-clicking, place your cursor just before the page break marker and hit Delete.

How to undo a deleted page break? As explained above, press Ctrl + Z to undo the removal or add it again.

Method 2: How to Remove a Page Break in Word With Find and Replace

  1. Press Ctrl + H to open the Find and Replace box.
    Find and Replace dialog in Word

  2. Select the Replace tab. Click on the Find what text box and click the More button to open all the other options.
  3. Next, click Special and choose Manual Page Break on that menu.
    Delete page break in Word with Search and Replace dialog

  4. Leave the Replace box blank and click Replace All to eliminate every page break in the document in one go with an empty space.

Also: Turn Off Track Changes to Delete Manual Page Breaks

Sometimes, you may wonder why you can’t get rid of manual page breaks. You cannot remove manual page breaks when Track Changes is turned on. To turn off Track Changes:

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  1. Go to the Review tab in the Ribbon.
  2. Click Track Changes > Track Changes in the Tracking group.
  3. From the drop-down menu, select Track Changes to turn the tracking off.
  4. Alternatively, press Ctrl + Shift + E to turn off Track Changes.

How to Insert an Automatic Page Break at the Right Place

You can’t remove automatic page breaks. But you can control their position with the Pagination options in Word. This enables you to change the configurations for how Word treats paragraphs across page breaks and manage the space between paragraphs.

You can find the Pagination option by going to Ribbon > Home > Paragraph > Paragraph Settings (click on the tiny arrow) > Line and Page Breaks tab.

Paragraph Settings in Word

You can also right-click anywhere on the page and select Paragraph from the menu.

Select the paragraphs you want to apply the configurations to. Then, put a checkmark against one or all the options in the Line and Page Breaks configurations:

  • Widow/Orphan: “Widow” refers to the last line of a paragraph at the top of a page. “Orphan” is the first line at the bottom of a page. Place a checkmark on this option, and Word places at least two paragraph lines at the top or bottom of a page.
  • Keep with next: This option prevents breaks between paragraphs you want to stay together. For instance, you can keep a heading and paragraph below it together instead of the header on one page and the paragraph on another.
  • Keep lines together: This prevents page breaks in the middle of paragraphs and helps bind lines together.
  • Page break before: This option adds a page break before a specific paragraph and enables you to display it on a new page.

Troubleshooting Page Breaks in a Word Document

The above configurations are also crucial if you cannot understand the reasons for a layout, even with the Show/Hide button on. For instance, one of the common reasons for page break errors is the disabled Keep with next option, which breaks a paragraph or a table across consecutive pages.

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An enabled Keep lines together option stops Word from inserting a page break in a text block. This can leave a lot of whitespaces as Word pushes the block or paragraph to the next page.

The Importance of Page Breaks for Neat Documents

If you don’t use Page Breaks at every opportunity, you probably go to the Enter key to shift content down or the Backspace key to move things up and finetune your layout. This can solve the problem but create new ones when you have to add or delete more content as the new lines make everything shift again from their original position. And you have to readjust everything again (and again).

Use the page break options instead. Page breaks and the options you saw above help keep blocks of paragraphs together. For instance, a table header and the table can be together instead of getting separated across pages.

Page breaks aren’t the only rules you should follow for well-designed Word documents. You can use Column breaks, Section breaks, and Text wrapping to organize your content in Word. Find these options under Layouts > Breaks on the Ribbon.

Layout Menu in Word with all the Page Break options

Get Rid of Unwanted Page Breaks in Word

Page breaks can be annoying when you don’t understand how they work. Learn how to view them with the Show/Hide button and then go about getting rid of the wrong page break. You can always undo a deleted page break with the Undo button or a Ctrl + Z shortcut.

But use them immediately, and you won’t have a problem creating professional reports and documents in Word.

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