How to Delete Tabs in Word 2016

By Dan Gookin

In Word 2016, tabs are used to make lists or indent text. Sometimes you’ll have tabs that you need to delete or clear. To unset or clear a tab stop in Word 2016, follow these steps:

  1. Select the paragraph(s) with the offending tab stop.

  2. Drag the tab stop from the ruler.

    Drag downward. The tab stop is removed from the paragraph(s).

Even though you’ve removed the tab stop, the tab character may still lurk in the paragraph. Remember that Word places automatic tab stops on every line of text.

For complex tab stop removal, such as when tab stops are close to each other or to the paragraph indent controls on the ruler, use the Tabs dialog box: Click to select the tab in the Tab Stop Position list, and then click the Clear button. Click OK to exit the Tabs dialog box.

  • Clicking the Clear All button in the Tabs dialog box removes all tab stops from the current paragraph or selected paragraphs in one drastic sweep.

  • To delete a tab character, use the Backspace key.