How to Replace All Occurrences of a Word in Word 2013

Last updated: December 14, 2016

Sometimes you will make a mistake when you are typing a document, but you won’t realize your mistake until long after it has already happened. Going back and manually fixing that mistake can be time consuming if it has happened a lot, and you may inadvertently miss something. Fortunately Word 2013 has a function that allows you to automatically replace every occurrence of a word in your document with a different word. So if you incorrectly used a term multiple times throughout a document, it is a simple matter to replace that word with a different one.


Replace a Word with a Different Word in Word 2013

We are going to cover the very basics of this feature first, then we are going to show you how to customize it a little bit to prevent Word from accidentally replacing parts of a Word that match your criteria.


Step 1: Open your document in Word 2013.


Step 2: Click the Home tab at the top of the window.

click the home tab



Step 3: Click the Replace button in the Editing section at the right side of the ribbon.

click the replace button



Step 4: Type the word that you want to replace into the Find what field, then type the word that you want to use to replace it into the Replace with field. Click the Replace All button at the bottom of the window.

how to replace word occurrences in word 2013


Summary  – How to find and replace in Word 2013

  1. Click the Home tab.
  2. Click the Replace button in the Editing section of the ribbon.
  3. Type the word to replace into the Find what field.
  4. Type the replacement word to use into the Replace with field, then click the Replace All button.


The problem you may run into with the feature is that it is replacing that text string, not just occurrences of the word. So if you are replacing “xxx” with “yyy”, but you have the word “xxxa” in your document, then it will also be changed to “yyya”. Fortunately there is a way to prevent this.


How to Use Find and Replace in Word 2013 to Only Replace Whole Words

The steps in this section are going to modify the previous section slightly to prevent Word from replacing text strings that appear within other words.


Step 1: Click the More button at the bottom of the Find and Replace window.

click the mroe button at the bottom of the find and replace window



Step 2: Click the box to the left of Find whole words only.

customize the replace action



You will notice that there are many other options on this menu that you can also use to customize the replace function. For example, using the Match case option would only replace words that were in the same case. This option allows you to replace instances of “John” while ignoring “JOHN”.

This tool becomes even more powerful when you include the Format and Special options at the bottom of the window, which allow you to find and replace information based on the type of formatting that has been applied to it. This is a very powerful, customizable tool that will let you find and replace in almost any way that you might need.


Did you know that there is a freehand drawing tool in Word 2013? Find out how to draw in Word 2013 if you need to add a shape to a drawing that you can’t replicate with one of the other options. newsletter

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