How to create a line in Microsoft Word and LibreOffice Writer

Updated: 04/02/2019 by Computer Hope
Lines in Microsoft Word and LibreOffice Writer

To create a horizontal line in Microsoft Word or LibreOffice Writer, use the AutoFormat feature. AutoFormat automatically adds formatting to your text when you type certain symbols more than once, and press Enter. For example, typing three consecutive hyphens ("---") and pressing Enter creates a solid horizontal line.

AutoFormat line examples

Below are symbols that create different types of lines. The image above shows how each type of formatting appears in Word (on the left) and Writer (on the right).

  • Single line - Type three hyphens (---) and press Enter.
  • Bold single line - Type three underscores (___) and press Enter.
  • Plain double lines - Type three equal signs (===) and press Enter.
  • Dotted line - Type three asterisks (***) and press Enter.
  • Wavy line - Type three tildes (~~~) and press Enter.
  • Tripple line - Type three pounds (###) and press Enter.

If it's not working, enable AutoFormat

If typing three characters and pressing Enter does not change into a line, AutoFormat is likely not enabled. To enable AutoFormat, follow the steps below.

In Microsoft Word

  1. Open ToolsAutoCorrect.
  2. In the AutoCorrect window, click the AutoFormat as you type tab.
  3. In AutoFormat, check the Borders box.

In LibreOffice Writer

  1. Open ToolsAutoCorrectAutoCorrect Options.
  2. In the Options tab, check the Apply Borders box.

If you prefer to disable AutoFormatting, uncheck the box.

Add a horizontal line from the Home tab

In addition to using the AutoFormat feature mentioned above, you can insert a line using the Horizontal Line tool in the Home tab (shown in the picture).

Horizontal Line tool in Microsoft Word

After adding a line using the Horizontal Line tool, you can double-click the line to change the lines appearance. For example, you could change the width, height, and color of the line.

Additional information