How to Scan & Email a Document

By Jackie Lohrey

Scanning and sending a personal or business document as an email attachment is can save time and money since you don't have to worry about printing or postage fees. Although choosing the right file format is important, the process is not difficult, and scanning procedures are generally the same whether you use a stand-alone scanner or a multifunction printer. The same is true for attaching a scanned document to an email, as attachment procedures are generally the same in most email programs.

Choose a File Type

Most scanners allow you to select between a PDF and JPEG file. The PDF file is the best choice for scanning documents that include text or vector graphics that include points, lines, shapes and curves. Using this format also lets you combine documents with more than one page into a single file. The JPEG file format is a good choice for photographs, as it lets you compress image data and reduce the size of a large file.

Scan the Document

Clean the scanner glass with a clean soft cloth. Place the document face down on the scanner glass. Align it using guideline markers along the perimeter of the glass and then lower the cover. Select “scan” on the printer menu, choose the computer you want to scan the document to, select the file type and start the scan. As an alternate method, open the software you installed during setup and scan the document from your computer.

Save and Rename the Scanned File

When the scan is complete, either Windows Explorer or My Documents will open automatically. The scan you just completed will be the last one on the list. Open and review the document to make sure it scanned correctly and then click the “Save” button. Rename the file from its current name, such as Scan0001.jpg, to something more descriptive, such as "Company Phone List," and save the file to a convenient location.

Attach the Document to an Email

There are two ways to attach a document to an email. In the first method, right-click the file name from its current location. From the pop-up menu that appears, select “send to” and then “mail recipient.” A new message window will open with the document already attached. A second method is to open your email program and compose a new message. When you finish, select the “attach file” button along the top of the message window. Navigate to the location where you save the document file, select it and click “insert.” The file will attach without any further action on your part, and you can then send the email.