Troubleshoot tables

ShowMy table column resizes as I type.

Table columns in Microsoft Word automatically resize to fit text or graphics. If you type a word that is longer than the width of the column, the column adjusts to accommodate the text. If you don't want your columns to resize when you type, click in the table, click Table Properties on the Table menu, and then click the Table tab. Click Options, and then clear the Automatically resize to fit contents check box.

ShowMy table doesn't change size with my window.

ShowI inserted a table and now my line count is inaccurate.

If a single table row splits at a page break, Microsoft Word sometimes shows an inaccurate line count on the status bar for those lines on the new page that fall outside the row. If you must have an accurate line count, you can prevent table rows from breaking across pages.

ShowPart of the text is hidden inside a table cell.

If you clear the Specify height check box, Microsoft Word will automatically adjust the height to the contents.

ShowMy table shows gray borders that do not print.

By default, when you create a table, it has a black ½-pt border that prints. If you remove this border, gray gridlines (gridlines: Thin lines that indicate the cell boundaries in a table. Gridlines do not print when you print a document.) still appear. These gridlines do not print. If you want to print the lines in your table, you must add a border. If you do not want the gridlines to show in your document, click Hide Gridlines on the Table menu.

ShowMy table is cut off at the end of a page.

You might have text wrapping applied to the table. If you want the table to span more than one page, you must remove text wrapping. Click the table. On the Table menu, click Table Properties, and then click the Table tab. Under Text wrapping, click None.

ShowMy table snaps to the left or right when I try to move it.

ShowI can't insert a tab stop inside a table cell.

  • Press CTRL+TAB.

ShowI modified a table style and all the tables in my document changed.

If you modify an existing table style, all the tables in a document based on that style will change. To avoid changing other tables in your document, create a new style rather than modify an existing style. To create a new style, click New Style in the Styles and Formatting task pane (task pane: A window within an Office program that provides commonly used commands. Its location and small size allow you to use these commands while still working on your files.).

Applies to:
Word 2003