How to Disable the Microsoft Word Spell Checker: Step-by-Step Guide

Disabling the Microsoft Word spell checker is as simple as navigating to the ‘File’ tab, clicking on ‘Options,’ then ‘Proofing,’ and finally unchecking the boxes for ‘Check spelling as you type’ and ‘Mark grammar errors as you type.’ After completing these steps, both the spell checker and grammar checker will be turned off.

After you complete this action, Microsoft Word will no longer automatically underline misspelled words or grammatical errors with red or green squiggly lines. You will be able to type freely without the interruptions or suggestions from the spell checker.


Have you ever been in the flow of writing only to be constantly interrupted by those pesky red squiggly lines under words that Microsoft Word thinks are misspelled? Sometimes, you might be typing technical terms, names, or writing in a different language, and the last thing you want is a spell checker questioning your every word. Or maybe you’re a seasoned writer who trusts their own proofreading skills over an automated system. Whatever your reason may be, knowing how to disable the Microsoft Word spell checker can be a valuable skill.

This task is especially relevant to individuals who work in fields with specialized vocabulary or those who are using Word to draft content that will later be edited. It’s also crucial for non-native English speakers who might be typing in a mix of languages. By turning off the spell checker, you regain control over your document and can ensure that your writing is presented exactly as intended.

Step by Step Tutorial: Disabling the Microsoft Word Spell Checker

Before we jump into the steps, it’s important to note that by following these instructions, you’ll be turning off both the spell checker and the grammar checker within Microsoft Word.

Step 1: Open the ‘File’ tab

Click on the ‘File’ tab located at the top-left corner of the Microsoft Word window.

This is essentially the control center of Word, where you can access all the global settings for your document.

Step 2: Select ‘Options’

In the File menu, find and click ‘Options’ at the bottom.

This will open a new window with a myriad of settings that allow you to customize your Word experience.

Step 3: Click on ‘Proofing’

In the Options window, click on ‘Proofing’ from the list on the left side.

This section is dedicated to settings that control how Word handles spelling and grammar checks within your document.

Step 4: Uncheck ‘Check spelling as you type’

In the Proofing section, find and uncheck the box next to ‘Check spelling as you type.’

By unchecking this option, you prevent Word from automatically highlighting what it perceives as spelling mistakes.

Step 5: Uncheck ‘Mark grammar errors as you type’

Directly below the spelling option, uncheck the box next to ‘Mark grammar errors as you type.’

This turns off the automatic grammar check which often marks sentence structures it doesn’t recognize, even if they are correct.

Step 6: Click ‘OK’

After unchecking both boxes, click ‘OK’ at the bottom of the Options window to apply the changes.

Your settings will now be updated, and the spell checker will be disabled for all documents until you choose to re-enable it.


Increased FocusWith the spell checker disabled, you can type without being distracted by the red and green squiggly lines. This allows for better focus on the content of your writing.
Greater ControlYou have more control over your document’s content. This is particularly useful when using industry-specific jargon or writing in multiple languages.
FlexibilityYou can choose to proofread your work at a later stage, giving you the freedom to write uninhibitedly and then edit after your thoughts are fully formed.


Risk of ErrorsWithout the automated checks, there’s a higher risk of overlooking misspellings or grammatical errors in your work.
Time-ConsumingProofreading without the spell checker takes more time and effort, as you have to scrutinize every word yourself.
InconsistencyIf you’re working on a shared document, turning off the spell checker could lead to inconsistencies in the final product if others are relying on the tool.

Additional Information

While the spell checker is a useful tool, it’s not infallible. It can often flag words that are intentionally spelled a certain way or mark dialects and colloquialisms as errors. Therefore, knowing how to disable the Microsoft Word spell checker can empower you to write with authenticity and individuality. It’s an invaluable skill for writers who prefer a more hands-on approach to their work or for those who are confident in their command of language and grammar.

There may be times when you want to temporarily disable the spell checker for a specific section of text. In such cases, you can highlight the text, right-click, and select ‘Spelling and Grammar’ followed by ‘Set Proofing Language.’ Here, you can choose ‘Do not check spelling or grammar’ for the selected text only. Remember, this setting will only apply to the highlighted portion, so the rest of your document will still be subject to spell checking.


  1. Open the ‘File’ tab.
  2. Select ‘Options’.
  3. Click on ‘Proofing’.
  4. Uncheck ‘Check spelling as you type’.
  5. Uncheck ‘Mark grammar errors as you type’.
  6. Click ‘OK’.

Frequently Asked Questions

Will this affect all my Word documents?

Yes, disabling the spell checker will apply to all new and existing Microsoft Word documents until re-enabled.

Can I disable the spell checker for only one document?

Yes, to disable for a single document, follow the same steps but make sure to open the ‘Exceptions for’ dropdown in the Proofing section and select the current document only.

What if I only want to disable the grammar checker?

Simply uncheck the ‘Mark grammar errors as you type’ option, and the grammar checker will be disabled while the spell checker remains active.

Can I disable the spell checker for a specific section of text?

Yes, highlight the text, right-click, and navigate to ‘Spelling and Grammar’ > ‘Set Proofing Language,’ then select ‘Do not check spelling or grammar.’

How do I re-enable the spell checker?

Follow the same steps, but instead of unchecking, check the ‘Check spelling as you type’ and ‘Mark grammar errors as you type’ options, then click ‘OK.’


Disabling the Microsoft Word spell checker can be a liberating experience for writers who want to work without the constant oversight of automated proofreading. While it may come with a few risks, such as the potential for overlooked errors, the benefits of enhanced focus, control, and flexibility often outweigh the drawbacks.

Whether you’re a multilingual author, a technical writer, or simply someone who trusts their own proofreading abilities, turning off the spell checker gives you the freedom to craft your words in peace. Remember, it’s always an option to re-enable the spell checker when you’re ready to polish your document. Happy writing!

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