Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Word versions: 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003. If you are using a later version (Word 2007 or later), this tip may not work for you. For a version of this tip written specifically for later versions of Word, click here: Deleting Tab Stops.

Deleting Tab Stops

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated July 13, 2013)

There may be times when you don't want to clear all the tab stops in your document—you only want to clear a few of them. To clear individual tab stops for a paragraph, follow these steps:

  1. Make sure the insertion point is in the paragraph whose tabs you wish to clear.
  2. Choose Tabs from the Format menu. Word displays the Tabs dialog box. (See Figure 1.)
  3. Figure 1. The Tabs dialog box.

  4. In the tab list below the Tab Stop Position box, select the tab stop you want to clear.
  5. Click on Clear.
  6. Repeat steps 3 and 4 for each tab stop you want to clear.
  7. Click on OK.

If you have the ruler displayed on-screen, then you can also delete tabs by following these steps:

  1. Make sure the insertion point is in the paragraph whose tabs you wish to clear.
  2. Use the horizontal scroll bar to scroll left or right until you can see the offending tab on the ruler.
  3. On the ruler, click on the tab indicator and drag it off the ruler. When you release the mouse button, the tab should disappear from the ruler.
  4. Repeat steps 2 and 3 for each tab stop you wish to clear.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (246) applies to Microsoft Word 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003. You can find a version of this tip for the ribbon interface of Word (Word 2007 and later) here: Deleting Tab Stops.

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. ...

MORE FROM ALLEN

Turning Off AutoFill for a Workbook

Don't want people using your workbook to be able to use AutoFill? You can add two quick macros that disable and enable the ...

Discover More

Hanging Indent Shortcut

You can use the menu commands to adjust the indent applied to a paragraph. If you want to format a hanging indent, Word ...

Discover More

Getting Rid of Leading Zeros in a Number Format

Excel, by default, displays numbers with a leading zero, if they are less than 1. Here's how you can get rid of those leading ...

Discover More

Learning Made Easy! Quickly teach yourself how to format, publish, and share your content using Word 2013. With Step by Step, you set the pace, building and practicing the skills you need, just when you need them! Check out Microsoft Word 2013 Step by Step today!

More WordTips (menu)

Searching for Tabs

Tabs don't normally show up in your printed document, but Word allows you to still search for them. All you need to do is use ...

Discover More

Changing Tabs Using the Ruler

Need to adjust the position of tab stops in a paragraph? One simple way to do it is to just drag them around on the ruler.

Discover More

Changing Default Tab Stops

If you don't explicitly set tab stops in a paragraph, Word relies upon a default tab stop distance. You can adjust that ...

Discover More
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in WordTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

View most recent newsletter.

Comments

If you would like to add an image to your comment (not an avatar, but an image to help in making the point of your comment), include the characters [{fig}] in your comment text. You’ll be prompted to upload your image when you submit the comment. Images larger than 600px wide or 1000px tall will be reduced. Up to three images may be included in a comment. All images are subject to review. Commenting privileges may be curtailed if inappropriate images are posted.

What is five less than 5?

There are currently no comments for this tip. (Be the first to leave your comment—just use the simple form above!)


This Site

Got a version of Word that uses the menu interface (Word 97, Word 2000, Word 2002, or Word 2003)? This site is for you! If you use a later version of Word, visit our WordTips site focusing on the ribbon interface.

Newest Tips
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in WordTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

(Your e-mail address is not shared with anyone, ever.)

View the most recent newsletter.