How to Edit a Scanned PDF Documents

Business owners often find themselves scanning in a lot of PDF documents. While scanning documents to your computer can be easy, figuring out how to edit them can be difficult. Even for those who are scanning in their documents for personal reasons, editing the document can be very useful.

That is what we are going to discuss today. Whether you want to edit a document to show more accurate data or change some information that was mistyped, learning how to edit a scanned PDF document can be very helpful.

What is a PDF Document?

Before we dive into how to edit PDF documents, it’s important to understand exactly what a PDF document is. PDF is a file format created when any type of document is scanned into your computer. The document can fully capture any of the elements of your image or document.

The PDF file extension is created through Adobe Acrobat or PDF software. The PDF software used is also the same software that you will be using to edit the PDF documents.

Scanning in PDF Documents

If you want to know how to edit a scanned PDF documents then you should be familiar with how to scan in your PDF documents. Your scanner plays a big role in creating your PDF document, however.

Some scanners are easier to use than others. When choosing a scanner, you should really focus on the software and ease-of-use of the scanner.

Using the software that comes with your scanner allows for you to turn your image into a PDF document. If the software is at all confusing, it can slow you down when trying to figure out how to edit your PDF documents.

How to Edit a Scanned PDF Documents

Editing a scanned PDF document is not hard once you know how to do it. There are several different ways to edit scanned PDF documents.

We will go over the easy techniques as well as the more complicated ways of editing a scanned PDF document. Using supported software is the easiest way to edit a scanned PDF document. This software tends to have built in text recognition features converting what was an image into text that you can change.

The technology is fascinating and has many applications. If the document that you scanned in is clear enough for the recognition software, you should not run into any issues when using the techniques described below.

Editing a PDF Document Using Acrobat XI

  1. To start off, you’re going to want to locate the destination that you saved your PDF document at. When saving your scanned document, you should save it somewhere that you can access it easily. Once you find your file, open it using Acrobat XI.
  2. Now that you are inside of Acrobat XI, go to the right side of your screen and locate the “Text Recognition” panel and open it. Then click “in this file”.
    1. This feature does exactly what it sounds like. Since the PDF document is a scanned image, editing it while it is an image is difficult. That is why the data in the image must be converted to text. Once it is text, editing becomes much easier.
  3. After starting up the text recognition, click on edit in the next dialog box.
  4. Setting up the conversion settings is important. On this dialog box, click “ClearScan” and then click the “OK” button. Make sure the language is set to English if you plan to be editing a document with English text. Otherwise, set the language to whatever language the scanned document is in. It is also important that you select the correct resolution for the document that you scanned in. Choosing the highest DPI means that the image has the best quality so the converter does not have to work as hard.
  5. Next, you can head to the “content editing” panel on the right side of your screen. Now you can click “Edit text & images” to start editing your PDF document
  6. You will then see editing boxes around all the parts of the document that you can edit. You are also able to edit images and insert new logos if you see fit.

Editing a PDF Document Using Adobe Acrobat

Adobe Acrobat is one of the default programs for Windows PC Users that opens PDF files. That means editing documents with Adobe Acrobat is quite simple. You want to start by opening your scanned PDF document.

After the file is open, locate the “Edit PDF” tool on the right side of your screen. The software will then begin to scan your document and convert all the text it recognizes in your scanned PDF document to editable text.

Just like with Acrobat XI, you can then click on the parts of the document that you want to edit. After you edit the text, the new text will match the same look and feel of all the other text in the document.

It will look as if it was scanned with the changes already in place. You will want to save your edited document as a new PDF file once you are finished.


Editing a PDF document is not as hard at it sounds. The only issue is finding the information to do so. After reading over our guide, you should now have the necessary info to edit your PDF document.

Remember that the better your scanner, the better the quality of the document will be that you are scanning. Having high quality scanned documents is important because if the document is not of good quality, the conversion text recognition will have trouble identifying what parts of the document can be edited.

Your choice of scanner plays a big part into how easy or hard it will be to edit your document. Saving your scanned documents to PDF depends on the software that is included with your scanner.

If the software is complex or hard to understand, you may not be able to save your documents to the proper PDF file format.

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