39

In Google Docs, when I insert a table, there seem to be always a blank line above the table. See the screenshot below.

How do I prevent that?

Google Docs screenshot

  • Are you typing a line before you put the table in? What steps did you take in putting the table in? Unable to replicate this – Eight Days of Malaise Feb 11 '11 at 16:30
  • 1
    Same behavior for me. At the top of the page, the extra line cannot be deleted, effectively increasing the margin. – kobejohn Oct 7 '13 at 1:21
  • 1
    @EightDaysofMalaise I believe you can replicate it by starting a new document, and inserting a table without doing anything else. There will be an empty line above the table. – Fang Jing May 21 '14 at 18:11
  • If it's nothing professional, you could add a new page and print from page 2 on. – bearacuda13 May 15 '18 at 2:14

12 Answers 12

15

This behaviour is by design and as far I am aware cannot be changed via preferences etc.

You can submit suggestions to Google Docs if you feel that you have a good case for it to be changed.

  • 5
    by design? but at least I should be able to remove the space after its added? – Jiew Meng Feb 8 '11 at 15:23
  • @jiewmeng - It appears so yes. I can't find any Google resource confirming it is a bug. You should be able to remove the space. I have just tested this myself. – codingbadger Feb 8 '11 at 15:51
  • 1
    @JiewMeng This discussion also classifies it as a design issue. – Fang Jing May 21 '14 at 18:05
  • I think this is designed this way so that you can always add text there. I use Thunderbird mail client. If I paste a table into it at the top of an email message, there is no way to get the cursor above the table. At least Google docs doesn't have that problem. – Stephen Ostermiller May 26 '17 at 16:20
  • Good case? Good case? – Michael Dec 23 '18 at 23:30
15

You can reduce the gap at the top of a table by placing the cursor above the table, and reducing the font size. I can't seem to reduce it below 6 points, and even this required me to type the number into the "Font size" box. However, it does at least move the table up a bit.

I had to do the same thing at the bottom of my table.

If anybody wants to log this with Google as a bug, then they could describe it as a serious bug in the conversion from docx to Google Docs format. It is serious because it does not seem to be possible to edit it out manually—at least not completely.

  • You can also reduce it further with line spacing. It defaults to "1.15", but you can reduce it to "Single" to make the blank lines a little shorter. – Stephen Ostermiller May 26 '17 at 16:18
  • It now seems possible to return the font size to 1 point, which is almost perfect. – Michael Apr 16 at 20:34
3

Here is the answer:

  1. Double Click on the space you wish to remove.
  2. Change the font to 6.
  3. Change the spacing to Single
  4. It will give you an option to "Remove space before paragraph" and "Remove space after paragraph"
  • 1
    when/how does it give you that option? – kraftydevil Sep 26 '17 at 17:49
  • @kraftydevil when you are in the Google Doc, to the right of the Font – Holliday Oct 5 '17 at 11:29
  • 2
    Doesn't work for me – Vic Seedoubleyew Dec 1 '17 at 10:58
  • It's under the line spacing option – cjsimon Dec 11 '17 at 3:53
  • It is now possible to change the font to 1. – Konard May 12 at 14:47
2

If you don't like the extra whitespace, just delete any extra carriage returns after the table of contents object.

For example, select some text within the first line after the table of contents, click Format → Line spacing and select Remove space before paragraph.

2

If your table is on the top of the page and every page contains a table you could reduce the margin of the complete document by the height of that first line.

  • 1
    Seems highly unlikely that "and every page contains a table". Not only would every page have to contain a table, but that table would have to be the first thing on every page. – zundi Mar 21 '18 at 20:09
2

Google is furtive about updates, so I'm not sure when this changed: I can now enter "1", although not zero, in the Google Docs Font Size box. That pretty much takes care of this issue.

Related:

The "Page Settings - Margins" and "View - Page View" settings may be germane, such as if you're coloring your page background for onscreen display.

Finally, if you're really obsessive, open "Format - Table - Table Properties" and set Cell Padding, which defaults to .069", to zero.

(Using Chrome version "75.0.3770.100 (Official Build) (64-bit)" on MacPro w/ High Sierra 10.13.6 and Calibri font)

1

I changed the font size of the empty line above the table to 6 (as suggested above), and changed the size of the page's top margin. Both reduced the white space at the top of the page.

  • 1
    Note that "above" has no context in answers, since they can be sorted a number of ways, and if sorted by the default, "votes", the sort will change has answers are voted on. To refer to a different answer, it's better to link to it. – ale Oct 8 '16 at 22:33
1

I don't see a way to remove it. My workaround is to add a caption above your table, which will replace the unused whitespace.

1

There is only one method I found that works. It's pretty hacky, and only works for tables at the top of a page (from pages 2 and on).

First to show that it doesn't work for a table at the top of a document:

enter image description here

Notice the empty line (text added to make it clear there is an extra line there).

Next to show that it doesn't work with a page break inserted right before it:

enter image description here

And finally to show that it does work when you let the text flow to the next page:

enter image description here

So really there is a new line before that table, it just exists on the page before it, so you don't see it.

I've seen documents that had this behavior, and wanted to figure out how they worked, so I tried it out and found the above.

It's a very limited use-case, but if you really need this functionality too, then just add newlines above the table, until it's at the very top of the next page.

1

Right now you can fully hide the line with font size 1 and custom line spacing .06, I visually verified that saving as PDF shows no whitespace at the top.

Also, in regards to not being able to insert text before the table, it is possible to get back to the invisible line using the left arrow key while inside the table.

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0

I am missing what the fuss is about. Seems to work (now?) as desired:

WA12153 example

  • 1
    This just indicates that you typed something in those lines created. For instance, if you put your table at the top of the page, can you remove the line you have above the table? – abalter Jul 12 '18 at 16:32
-3

It is just your cursor that is above the table. If you move it, it will not be there anymore.

  • 3
    But the empty line will still be there, right? – Vidar S. Ramdal Apr 10 '14 at 8:04
  • 2
    Did you actually try this? Backspace and delete won't remove it. I would downvote this answer if I could. – PJ Brunet Nov 29 '14 at 0:46

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