How to Remove a Watermark in Acrobat

Updated April 17, 2017

A document watermark is a commonly used tool in documentation management control. As access to Adobe Acrobat continues to increase in the modern office, the regular use of watermarks to indicate draft copies and publication dates increases in popularity. These watermarked PDF documents circulate and eventually reach approval for final release, public release and/or archival. If no changes or only minor changes are required, you may want to simply remove the watermark in Acrobat for the final copy.

Open the watermarked PDF file in Adobe Acrobat.

Under the Document menu, scroll down to Watermark and select the "Remove..." option.

A prompt will ask "Are you sure you want to permanently remove the watermark?" Click "Yes" to confirm.

Save the PDF to retain the settings with the watermark removed. Click the "Save" icon on the Toolbar to save the document under the same file name and overwrite the watermarked copy. If you prefer to save the PDF under a new file name or indicate a revision number, select "Save As...". under the File menu.


The PDF must be opened in Adobe Acrobat, not Acrobat Reader. The reader application does not have the capability to remove watermarks. If the option to remove a watermark is dimmed out or unavailable, the document may be password protected to prevent changes. To continue, you'll have to use the Security options under the Advanced menu to "Remove Security...". To remove security from the document, you will need to enter the password for making changes to the document.

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About the Author

Sherry Snider is a technical writer/editor specializing in instructional/educational material, hardware and software manuals and multimedia learning. Most of her work is published in government/training, corporate, and manufacturing industry materials. In addition to technical documentation, She contributes to online and print publications related to travel, technology, crafts and hobbies.