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Spellcheck not working in Word: 6 Fixes

Microsoft Word is arguably one of the most popular word processors on the planet right now. The software has been developed by Microsoft extensively since its inception and provides an amazing user experience.

However, just like everything tech, it also has some issues of its own. In this article, we’re going over a few fixes you can try out if spellcheck isn’t working for you. 


Verify language and spelling options

If spellcheck is not working in only one Word document, try checking the document’s language and spelling options. 

Step 1: Open the document and select everything inside using Ctrl + A.

Spellcheck not working in Word: 6 Fixes | Candid.Technology

Step 2: Head over to the Review tab and click on Language followed by Set Proofing Language…

Spellcheck not working in Word: 6 Fixes | Candid.Technology

Step 3: Make sure that the correct language is selected and that the Do not check spellling or grammar checkbox is unchecked. 

Spellcheck not working in Word: 6 Fixes | Candid.Technology

Also read: How to remove a page break in Word?


Check your proofing exceptions

Check your proofing exception options to ensure that spellcheck isn’t skipping out text in your document.

Step 1: Click on File.

Spellcheck not working in Word: 6 Fixes | Candid.Technology

Step 2: Click on Options.

Spellcheck not working in Word: 6 Fixes | Candid.Technology

Step 3: Head over to the Proofing tab, scroll to the bottom and ensure that both the checkboxes in the Exceptions for section are unchecked. 

Spellcheck not working in Word: 6 Fixes | Candid.Technology

Also read: How to add line numbers in Word?


Open Word in safe mode

At times, external add-ons can interfere with Word’s spellcheck utility. Try launching Word in safe mode to disable any add-ons, open a document and press spellcheck manually by pressing F7.

To launch Word in safe mode, hold down the Ctrl key as you press the Word icon or menu option. 


Rename your Word template

Renaming your Word template can force the program into making a new one, solving your problem. Here’s how.

Step 1: Press Windows Key + R to open the Run prompt. Type %appdata%\Microsoft\Templates and hit enter.

Spellcheck not working in Word: 6 Fixes | Candid.Technology

Step 2: Change the normal.dot (or normal.dotm if you’re on Word 2007) to anything else. 

Spellcheck not working in Word: 6 Fixes | Candid.Technology

Now restart Word and spellcheck should work just fine. 

Also read: How to fix ‘Word could not create the work file’ error?


Rename the registry

Renaming the proofing tools folder in the Windows Registry can force Word to make a new file for the proofing tools, resetting them to the default settings in the process. 

Step 1: Press Windows Key + R to open the Run prompt. Type regedit and hit enter. 

Step 2: Navigate to the following directory.

HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Shared Tools\Proofing Tools
Spellcheck not working in Word: 6 Fixes | Candid.Technology

Step 3: Right-click the 1.0 directory and click Rename. Rename the directory to anything you want. 

Spellcheck not working in Word: 6 Fixes | Candid.Technology

Now restart your PC and launch Word again. Your issue should’ve been resolved by now.


Repair Word

The repair tool works for the entire Office suite and can fix most if not all problems you’re facing. 

Step 1: Press Windows Key + X to open the Quick Access menu. Click on Apps and Features. 

Spellcheck not working in Word: 6 Fixes | Candid.Technology

Step 2: Find Microsoft Office in the list and click Modify.

Spellcheck not working in Word: 6 Fixes | Candid.Technology

The installer will now launch with further instructions on how you can repair your Office suite installation. 

Also read: How to make Periods bigger on Word?

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