How to Fix Page Breaks in Google Docs

241141 How to Fix Page Breaks in Google Docs

Page breaks in Google Docs allow you to control where one page ends and the next one starts. This helps you organize lengthy documents and ensure a consistent layout. However, sometimes page breaks can cause formatting issues that need fixing. Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to fix common page break problems in Google Docs.

Viewing Page Breaks

The first step to fixing page break issues is locating them. By default, Google Docs hides page breaks. To view them:

  1. Go to View > Print layout. This will display page break lines between pages.
  2. Alternatively, go to View > Show nonprinting characters. This shows page break symbols.

Once page breaks are visible, you can identify and fix any problems.

Deleting Unwanted Page Breaks

To delete a page break:

  1. Click your cursor right before the page break.
  2. Press Backspace (Windows) or Delete (Mac) to remove it.

Keep pressing Backspace/Delete until any extra spaces between pages are gone. The content from the next page will move up onto the previous page.

Fixing Incorrect Page Break Positions

If a page break causes awkward formatting, like splitting a heading between pages, move it to a better position:

  1. Click your cursor where you want the new page break.
  2. Go to Insert > Break > Page break to add it.
  3. Delete the old, problematic page break.

Experiment with different page break positions until you achieve the desired layout.

Troubleshooting Page Numbering Issues

Page breaks can sometimes cause page numbering problems. If numbers skip or repeat between pages:

  1. Go to Insert > Page numbers.
  2. Click Format page numbers.
  3. Under “Page numbering,” choose Start at and enter the correct number.

This resets the numbering. Delete and re-add page breaks as needed to fix any remaining issues.

Switching to Continuous Scrolling View

Too many page breaks cluttering up your document? Switch to single page view:

  1. Go to File > Page setup and select Pageless.
  2. This removes all breaks, creating one continuously scrolling page.

You can toggle pageless view on and off anytime.

Using Section Breaks Instead

For better layout control, use section breaks to divide content:

  1. Place cursor where you want the section break.
  2. Click Insert > Break > Section break (continuous).
  3. This starts a new section on the same page.
  4. Customize headers, footers, margins for each section separately.

Section breaks provide more flexibility than page breaks.

Disabling Automatic Page Break Insertion

Tired of Google Docs inserting random page breaks? Prevent this:

  1. Go to Tools > Preferences.
  2. Uncheck “Automatically place page breaks to avoid widows/orphans.”
  3. Docs will no longer add page breaks on its own.

However, you lose automatic orphan/widow control this way.

When to Use Page Breaks

Utilize page breaks at logical content separations, like:

  • Between document sections
  • Before a new chapter or heading
  • After a title page
  • Between references and appendix

Avoid using too many page breaks, as this reduces readability. Let content flow naturally between pages when possible.

Troubleshooting Other Common Issues

Here are some quick fixes for miscellaneous page break headaches:

  • Overlapping breaks: Delete excess breaks causing content overlap between pages.
  • Large gaps between pages: Delete unnecessary page breaks to close gaps.
  • Headers/footers not appearing: Check they are enabled for every section.
  • Pagination differences in views: View > Print layout shows true pagination.

And those are the top techniques for wrestling control back from unruly page breaks in Google Docs! Set them in strategic locations to keep your lengthy documents organized.

Hopefully this tutorial gave you the knowledge to fix any page break problems getting in the way of publishing professional, polished documents. Just remember to view the breaks first before making adjustments.

About The Author