Formatting is often an issue in Microsoft Word, especially when working with large documents. Making edits, adding and removing graphics and even general changes can create large amounts of blank space. Small sections are easy to manage and the process to remove empty paragraphs in Word is a matter of using the backspace button on a keyboard.
Benefits of Condensed Documents
The primary benefit of documents without excessive spacing is readability for the user. The document flows nicely and does not have large breaks of blank space. In some cases, a line break or small space will indicate the end of one thought or section before another begins, but a large blank space in a Word document is unnecessary.
A large space increases the time required to read through a document and it also adds to the overall number of pages required for printers. Condensing documents and even printing double-sided versions is ideal to save resources and reduce paper and ink usage. Documents with fewer spaces are simply more environmentally friendly when printed.
If the document is used primarily in digital format, the spacing is less of an issue. Concentrating on fewer spaces for easier reading, however, remains relevant and important to maintain a nice flow of text.
Remove Blank Lines in Word
Basic blank lines are very easy to remove. The size of the document will, however, influence the ability to locate the blank lines. In large documents where numerous blank lines are present, the process is more time-intensive. Scrolling through a few pages is not difficult but working through documents with hundreds of pages is best done with a more streamlined process.
Start at the top of each document and scan slowly through each paragraph until you find the blank lines that are not synced with the formatting. Position the cursor at the start of the line below the space. Make sure the cursor is placed ahead of any text. Hit the backspace on the keyboard to remove the single space. If multiple unwanted spaces are present, continue pressing the backspace key until everything unwanted is removed.
Keep in mind that each space removed will influence the formatting down the document. If sections are intentionally headed on new pages, removing the spaces will pull those headings upwards to a previous page. Correcting the formatting is easy, however, on short documents. Simply pay attention to any headings that require adjustments while scrolling through the document.
Find and Replace Function
Large documents are more easily formatted with the find and replace function. This feature makes it easy to remove all undesired spaces through a single function. It also offers some custom controls like removing all spaces while still leaving a break between paragraphs only.
To get started, click the Home tab in the primary toolbar. Locate the Editing group of options and click on Replace. This will open a new dialogue box where the bulk removal of spacing is easy to execute.
In the new dialogue box, click Replace then select More in the lower left-hand corner of the box. Choose the Paragraph Mark option and a paragraph symbol will appear in the Find What section. Leave the Replace With section blank and click Replace All. This will remove blank lines in Word in bulk after clicking the button.