Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Word versions: 2007 and 2010. 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: Removing Tabs Used to Indent a Paragraph.
by Allen Wyatt
(last updated September 27, 2017)
If you frequently convert documents from a different word processor to Word, there is a good chance you must remove tabs inserted at the beginning of paragraphs. Some word processors require tabs in order to indent the first line of a paragraph; Word does not.
About the only way to remove the unnecessary tabs is to go to the beginning of each of the paragraphs and press the Del key. You could, however, use Find and Replace in order to search for tabs and remove them. (Actually, you would search for a paragraph mark followed by a tab; this would then be replaced with a paragraph mark, thereby deleting the tab.)
A quicker way to take care of this problem is to develop a macro to do it for you. The following macro, TabsOut, searches for any hard return/tab combinations in your document (or your selected text) and removes the tab.
Sub TabsOut() If Selection.Type <> wdNoSelection Then Selection.HomeKey Unit:=wdStory, Extend:=wdMove End If Selection.Find.ClearFormatting Selection.Find.Replacement.ClearFormatting With Selection.Find .Text = "^p^t" .Replacement.Text = "^p" .Forward = True .Wrap = wdFindContinue .Format = False End With Selection.Find.Execute Replace:=wdReplaceAll End Sub
WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (8958) applies to Microsoft Word 2007 and 2010. You can find a version of this tip for the older menu interface of Word here: Removing Tabs Used to Indent a Paragraph.
Create Custom Apps with VBA! Discover how to extend the capabilities of Office 2013 (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, and Access) with VBA programming, using it for writing macros, automating Office applications, and creating custom applications. Check out Mastering VBA for Office 2013 today!
Need to quickly put some text into a document, even if that text is essentially meaningless? Here's how to put this type ...Discover More
It is not unusual to need to insert foreign characters (often called diacritical marks) as part of your typing. Word ...Discover More
Word includes a little-known function that allows you to put "filler text" into your document. If you want this function ...Discover More
FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in WordTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."
Got a version of Word that uses the ribbon interface (Word 2007 or later)? This site is for you! If you use an earlier version of Word, visit our WordTips site focusing on the menu interface.