How to Hide the Ruler in Word 2016: A Step-by-Step Guide

Hiding the ruler in Word 2016 is a simple task that can help you streamline your document view or give you a bit more screen space. You only need to know where to look to toggle this feature off or on. In just a few clicks within the program’s options, you’ll have that pesky ruler out of sight.

Step by Step Tutorial: How to Hide the Ruler in Word 2016

Before we dive into the steps, it’s important to know that hiding the ruler will not affect any other aspects of your document. It’s purely a visual change to your workspace. Here’s how to do it:

Step 1: Open your document in Word 2016.

Open the Word document where you want the ruler hidden.

This is pretty straightforward. Just open up Word 2016 and select the document you’re working on or start a new one if that’s what you need.

Step 2: Look for the ‘View’ tab.

Navigate to the ‘View’ tab at the top of the Word window.

The ‘View’ tab is where you’ll find various options to customize how your document is presented on the screen.

Step 3: Find the ‘Show’ group.

Within the ‘View’ tab, locate the ‘Show’ group with various checkboxes.

The ‘Show’ group contains checkboxes for several display options, including the ruler.

Step 4: Uncheck the ‘Ruler’ box.

Click the checkbox next to ‘Ruler’ to uncheck it.

Once you uncheck the ‘Ruler’ box, the ruler will disappear from the top and the side of your document.

After you complete these steps, the ruler will be hidden from view in your Word 2016 document. You’ll notice you have a bit more screen space, and your document view will be cleaner. If you ever need the ruler back, just repeat the steps and check the box again.

Tips: Making the Most of Your Workspace in Word 2016

  • If you’re working on a smaller screen, hiding the ruler can give you a bit more room to view your document.
  • Remember that hiding the ruler does not affect any formatting in your document—it’s purely visual.
  • You can also hide other elements like gridlines and the navigation pane from the ‘View’ tab for an even less cluttered workspace.
  • If you find yourself frequently toggling the ruler on and off, learning the keyboard shortcut can save you time.
  • Play around with different view modes like ‘Read Mode’ or ‘Web Layout’ from the ‘View’ tab to see which works best for your needs.

Frequently Asked Questions

Will hiding the ruler affect my document’s layout?

No, hiding the ruler is a visual change only and will not affect your document’s layout.

Can I hide the ruler in all documents by default?

Word 2016 does not have a setting to hide the ruler by default in all new documents, but you can create a template with the ruler turned off.

Is there a keyboard shortcut to hide the ruler?

Yes, you can use the keyboard shortcut Alt + W, R to toggle the ruler on and off.

Can I hide just the horizontal or vertical ruler?

No, when you uncheck the ‘Ruler’ box, both the horizontal and vertical rulers will be hidden.

What if I can’t find the ‘View’ tab?

If you’re in a different mode like ‘Read Mode,’ switch back to ‘Print Layout’ mode to access the ‘View’ tab and the ruler options.


  1. Open your document in Word 2016.
  2. Go to the ‘View’ tab.
  3. Find the ‘Show’ group.
  4. Uncheck the ‘Ruler’ box.


Congratulations! You now know how to hide the ruler in Word 2016. It’s a small change that can make a big difference in how you view and work with your documents. Whether you’re trying to declutter your workspace or you just prefer a more minimalist setup, hiding the ruler is a quick and easy way to customize Word to your liking. And remember, this change isn’t permanent—if you ever need those measurement guides back, they’re just a few clicks away. So go on, give it a try, and enjoy a more spacious, focused Word experience.

Join Our Free Newsletter

Featured guides and deals

You may opt out at any time. Read our Privacy Policy