Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Word versions: 2007, 2010, 2013, and 2016. If you are using an earlier version (Word 2003 or earlier), this tip may not work for you. For a version of this tip written specifically for earlier versions of Word, click here: Erasing Table Lines.

Erasing Table Lines

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated October 20, 2017)


One of the neat things you can do with Word is to draw tables using the tools provided by the program. With you table created, you can easily erase any of the lines that make up your table. The result is a table that looks just the way you want it. To erase table lines, follow these steps:

  1. Create your table as you normally would.
  2. Make sure the insertion point is somewhere within the table.
  3. Display the Design tab of the ribbon (Word 2007 and Word 2010) or the Layout tab of the ribbon (Word 2013 and Word 2016). These tabs are visible only when the insertion point is within the table.
  4. Click on the Eraser tool, in the Draw Borders group (Word 2007 and Word 2010) or the Draw group (Word 2013 and Word 2016).
  5. Click and drag to select the table lines you want to erase.
  6. Click on the Eraser tool again or press the Esc key. This turns off the Eraser tool.

You should note that when you erase a line that is a common border between two cells, the two cells are merged. If you try to erase an exterior line from a cell (one that does not border another cell), then the visible table border is removed, but the cell still remains.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (6114) applies to Microsoft Word 2007, 2010, 2013, and 2016. You can find a version of this tip for the older menu interface of Word here: Erasing Table Lines.

Author Bio

Allen Wyatt

With more than 50 non-fiction books and numerous magazine articles to his credit, Allen Wyatt is an internationally recognized author. He  is president of Sharon Parq Associates, a computer and publishing services company. ...


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What is five minus 4?

2017-07-21 23:17:09


So despite following the prompts, MS Word tells me I need to create a custom group to add the eraser to the toolbar. So I create the group, add the erase button and hit OK. I then go to ribbon, custom group has been created as prompted however no button is present for erasing lines.

Can anyone please help? I'm using MSWORD 2016 on a Surface Pro

2017-06-29 01:08:40


There is no such Eraser tool, in the Draw Borders group !! Please advise.

2015-08-25 12:48:49


Your question does not have anything to do with erasing boarder lines in tables, or even tables in general. So I wonder why would you post this question here? You will have better luck getting an answer if you post the question in an appropriate place. Better yet, try Googling your question. It is very likely that several other people have already asked any question that you can think of. Good luck.

2015-08-25 11:00:47

Ena Shaw

Microsoft in all their wisdom have removed the Advancey function from Word 2013. We used this in many of our templates to position data on a page. In particular, we used it in a "File line" to show the path and document name at the bottom of a page. Has anyone found an alternative to Advancey? And no I don't want to put it in the footer because that would mean it is on every page and the Advanced function doesn't suit our purposes as this measurement is from the last text with can be variable.
Any help would be greatly appreciated.

2015-05-15 07:07:32


Marj: The insertion point is the blinking cursor, where you type something. So when step 2 says "make sure the insertion point is somewhere within the table," it means that you should click within a table cell so that if you started typing, what you typed would be within that cell.


2015-05-15 07:00:28


I don't seem to be able to get the Design Tab of the ribbon - please tell me what the insertion point it! Thank you

2015-04-30 08:40:14


its so wonderfullllll!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

2012-11-26 22:11:27

mal beck

SOMETIMES erase doesn't work...if there's a line FRAGMENT within a cell

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