If you’re someone who often works on PDF files, you probably already know how annoying it can be when the pages are embedded with watermarks. They not only disrupt the display of the document, but can also prevent users from reading its contents. Therefore, it is best to remove the PDF watermark for a better reading experience. Wondering how? This article lists the easiest online and offline methods to remove watermarks from PDF files on Windows and Mac for free. But before we get to the instruction part, let’s take a look at what a watermark is and why some PDF files have them.
What is a watermark?
A watermark is usually text, an image, or a pattern placed on a document, in front of or behind the existing content. For example, you may have come across official documents with a “CONFIDENTIAL” watermark on their pages that contain sensitive information.
It is similar to a stamp, except it is integrated into the document as a fixed element and cannot be moved, modified, or deleted by anyone reading the file. Now a PDF file can have multiple watermarks, but each must be added separately to a specific page or page range.
Why do PDF files have a watermark?
- Perhaps the most common reason users add watermark to their PDF documents is to prevent unauthorized use. Because watermarks make it difficult to read the document, it ultimately improves the security and privacy of the content.
- PDF watermarks are also widely used by people to claim ownership of the content. This can help prevent copyright infringement and theft and misuse of content.
- Another reason to use a PDF watermark may be to prove the authenticity of the document or to distinguish the original from the copy, especially in a professional setting.
How To Remove Watermark From PDF File For Free Online
Here are the two easiest ways to remove watermarks from PDF files online for free.
Using Google Docs
Step 1: Sign in to your Google Drive from your Windows or Mac device.
Step 2: Upload the watermarked PDF file to the disk.
Step 3: Right click on the uploaded file and select Open with > Google Docs.
Step 4: Once the file is opened in Google Docs, the watermark will be editable automatically. Remove the watermark manually.
Step 5: Save the document as PDF and you will have a new PDF file with no attached watermarks.
Remark: This method is not recommended if your PDF file is larger than 2 MB. It is also possible that using this method will break the original layout of your PDF file.
Using Online PDF Editor
There are several professional online editors available for PDF documents. One such online tool is pdfFiller, which offers a variety of functions for editing, creating and managing PDF documents online. Here is a step-by-step guide to remove PDF watermarks with this online tool.
- Go to the official website of pdfFiller†
- Import the watermarked PDF file from your computer or a cloud source.
- After the document has been added, a new screen will open for editing. Click the Edit Watermark button on the right.
- In the panel that opens, uncheck the box next to Watermark to remove it and select the Close button.
- On the next screen, tap Done to save the changes you made and download the PDF file to your Windows or Mac device.
Some other online editors you can use to remove watermarks from PDF files include:
How to remove watermark from PDF offline for free
If you don’t have internet access or don’t want to use online tools, here are the two most common offline methods for removing watermarks from PDF files on Windows and Mac.
Using Microsoft Word
- Right-click the PDF file you want to edit and choose Open With > Microsoft Word.
- A pop-up window will appear with the warning “the resulting Word document will be optimized so that you can edit the text, so it may not look exactly like the original PDF”† Tap OK to open your PDF document in an editable Word format.
- Now click the Design tab at the top of the Word file, then select Watermark > Remove Watermark to remove all watermarks on the document. You can also remove the watermarks manually, albeit one by one.
- When you’re done, go to Save As on the main menu and choose PDF to save the edited file in PDF format.
Using Professional PDF Software
Perhaps one of the best and most efficient ways to remove watermarks from a PDF file is to use special software such as Adobe Acrobat. This program has created the PDF format, so there is no doubt that it can be easily used to edit it as well. The only downside to such software is that they are paid; however, most, including Adobe Acrobat Pro, offer a free trial for a limited period of time. Here’s how to use the software to remove PDF watermarks.
- to install Adobe Acrobat Pro on your Windows or Mac device.
- Launch the application and import the watermarked PDF file to the workstation.
- From the main menu at the top of the screen, select Tools > Edit PDF.
- On the editing toolbar, click the Watermark option and then choose Delete.
- A pop-up message will appear to confirm whether you want to remove the watermark permanently. Click Yes and you have a watermark-free PDF document.
Remark: You can use Adobe Acrobat Pro to remove watermarks from multiple PDFs at once.
Some other offline alternatives to Adobe Acrobat to remove watermarks from a PDF file are:
Frequently Asked Questions
Can I remove watermarks from encrypted PDFs?
It completely depends on the type of encryption password used for the PDF. If the file is locked with an open password, you won’t be able to view the PDF, much less edit it. But if the file is protected with a permission password, you can open it by using third party software. In this case, you have the option to remove the watermark from an encrypted PDF.
Why can’t I remove the watermark from the PDF file?
- It is possible that the PDF document you are trying to edit is actually the scanned image of a PDF and was not created with Word or PDF software. In this case, the watermark embedded in the file cannot be removed.
- Another reason why you may not be able to remove the watermark from a PDF file is that it may be password protected from any kind of editing.