How to remove section breaks in Word Documents

Word allows you to separate your styles in a document with section breaks. However, after many viewers have edited a document, the section breaks may no longer exhibit proper formatting. You may have to delete section breaks to fix the problem.

There are two ways you can do this in a Word document:

  • Delete section breaks individually
  • Delete all section breaks using Find and Replace

We will explain both the methods in easy, step-by-step procedures.


Method #1: Delete section breaks individually

Step #1: Open Word document

Open the Word document containing section breaks. Normally, section breaks are not visible. Click on the Home tab on the menu bar on top to change the ribbon. Click on the Show/Hide icon to show all hidden characters. Now all section breaks in the document will be visible.

Step #2: Delete a section break

Position the cursor immediately before the section break you want to delete. Press the Delete key on your keyboard. Word will delete the section break.


Method #2: Delete all section breaks using Find and Replace 

Step #1: Open Word document

Open the Word document containing section breaks. Normally, section breaks are not visible. Click on the Home tab on the menu bar on top to change the ribbon. Click on the Show/Hide icon to show all hidden characters. Now all section breaks in the document will be visible.

Step #2: Open the Find and Replace dialog

Go to the Editing section under the Home tab and click on Replace to open the Find and Replace dialog. You can also open the Find and Replace dialog by pressing Ctrl and H together on your keyboard (Ctrl+H).

Step #3: Expand the Find and Replace dialog

Within the Find and Replace dialog, click on the Replace tab on top. Click on More to expand the dialog.

Step #4: Select the section break option

Click on the Special tab to see more choices. 

Step #5: Delete all section breaks

Click on Section Break to select it. Word closes the choices and places a ^b in the Find what box. Leave the Replace with box empty.

Step #6: Close the dialog

Click on Replace all. Word offers feedback on how many replacements it has made. Close the feedback by clicking on Ok and return to the Find and Replace dialog.

Step #7: Return to document

Click on the Close tab to close the Find and Replace dialog and return to the document. 

Notice that Word has removed all section breaks.


Conclusion

Although section breaks help to provide a visible improvement to your Word document, they can mess up the document with a problematic formatting. Follow our simple step-by-step approach to remove section breaks while rectifying the problem.

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