How to Get Rid of Symbols in Word: A Step-by-Step Guide

Getting rid of unwanted symbols in Word can be a real headache, but don’t worry, I’ve got you covered! By following a few simple steps, you can clean up your document in no time. Whether it’s strange formatting marks, pesky page numbers, or any other symbol you didn’t intend to include, we’ll walk through how to delete them quickly and easily.

Step by Step Tutorial: Removing Symbols in Word

Before we dive into the steps, let’s understand what we’re about to do. We’ll be using Word’s built-in features to locate and eliminate unwanted symbols from your document. This will help you to present a clean, professional-looking document.

Step 1: Open the Find and Replace tool

Open the Find and Replace tool by pressing Ctrl + H on your keyboard.

The Find and Replace tool is a powerful feature in Word that allows you to search for specific text or symbols in your document. By opening this tool, you can quickly locate the symbols you want to remove.

Step 2: Enter the symbol you want to remove in the ‘Find what’ box

Type the symbol or formatting mark you want to get rid of in the ‘Find what’ box.

Be precise when typing the symbol you wish to remove. If you’re unsure of the exact symbol, you can copy and paste it from your document into the ‘Find what’ box. This will ensure that Word searches for the correct character.

Step 3: Leave the ‘Replace with’ box empty

Make sure the ‘Replace with’ box is empty to remove the symbol without replacing it with anything.

Leaving the ‘Replace with’ box empty is crucial because it tells Word that you want to delete the symbol, not substitute it with a different character or space.

Step 4: Click on ‘Replace All’

Click the ‘Replace All’ button to remove all instances of the symbol from your document.

By clicking ‘Replace All’, Word will automatically find and delete every occurrence of the specified symbol in your document. This saves you the time and effort of removing each symbol manually.

After completing these steps, the unwanted symbols in your Word document will be gone, leaving you with a clean and professional document. This simple fix can make a significant difference in the overall quality of your work.

Tips for Removing Symbols in Word

  • Always save a copy of your document before making any changes. This way, you have a backup in case something goes wrong.
  • Use the ‘Show/Hide ¶’ button to reveal all formatting marks and symbols in your document, making them easier to identify.
  • If you’re dealing with a lot of unwanted symbols, consider using the ‘Wildcards’ feature in the Find and Replace tool for more advanced searches.
  • Familiarize yourself with common formatting symbols, such as paragraph marks (¶) and tab characters (→), so you can quickly recognize and remove them if needed.
  • Remember to check for unwanted symbols in headers, footers, and footnotes, as these areas are often overlooked.

Frequently Asked Questions

What if the symbol I want to remove isn’t on my keyboard?

You can copy and paste the symbol from your document into the ‘Find what’ box, or use the ‘Special’ button in the Find and Replace tool to select from a list of special characters.

Can I remove symbols from only a specific section of my document?

Yes, you can select the text from the specific section you want to edit before opening the Find and Replace tool. This will limit the search to your selection.

How do I remove formatting symbols that appear at the end of every line?

These symbols are called paragraph marks. You can remove them by using the Find and Replace tool and searching for the paragraph mark symbol (¶).

Is there a way to remove all types of formatting at once?

Yes, you can select the text you want to clear formatting from and use the ‘Clear All Formatting’ button in the Home tab of the ribbon.

Will using the ‘Replace All’ feature also remove symbols from images or objects?

No, the ‘Replace All’ feature only affects text within the document. Symbols within images or objects will not be altered.


  1. Open the Find and Replace tool (Ctrl + H).
  2. Enter the unwanted symbol in the ‘Find what’ box.
  3. Leave the ‘Replace with’ box empty.
  4. Click ‘Replace All’.


There you have it! Getting rid of symbols in Word is as easy as pie when you know the right steps to follow. Remember, the key is in the details—knowing exactly what symbol you’re dealing with and how to instruct Word to remove it without leaving a trace. Whether you’re polishing up an important report, or simply tidying up your personal notes, cleaning up your document can make a world of difference in readability and professionalism. Don’t let those pesky symbols get in the way of your perfect document—take control and banish them for good. And if you ever find yourself stuck or unsure about a particular symbol, don’t hesitate to use the ‘Special’ button in the Find and Replace tool for a little extra help. Keep these tips and tricks in your back pocket, and you’ll be a Word wizard in no time. Happy editing!

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