How To Rotate PDF

Reorient single pages to entire files

What To Know

  • Open the file using an online service, then use arrows to rotate the pages before saving. 
  • Rotate pages using Adobe, Smallpdf, or Rotatepdf for free.
  • The methods below won't work on a read-only PDF, or any PDFs that are password protected. 

This article teaches you how to rotate pages within a PDF. It includes instructions on how to rotate PDF single pages, range of pages, and how to rotate entire PDF files. 

How To Rotate PDF Single Pages

If you're learning how to rotate pages in PDF documents, the number of different methods can feel intimidating. We're focusing on the most general options with tools that are easily available so that you can do so with minimal hassle, regardless of the device you're using. Here's what to do if you simply want to change just one PDF document.  

All these methods involve using free web-based services so you'll require an active internet connection to complete the steps. Alternatively, there are many free PDF editors available, or Mac users can use the Preview app to rotate individual pages.

  1. Go to Adobe's rotate PDF page.

  2. Click Select a file.

    Adobe site with Rotate PDF pages and Select a file highlighted
  3. Find the file on your PC or Mac and click Open.

    Open File dialog box on web browser
  4. Wait for the file to upload.

  5. Log in via an Adobe or Google account.

    Adobe site with Log in boxes highlighted

    If this is your first time using the site or any Adobe services, you'll need to sign up. Free accounts typically only allow you to rotate one PDF document.

  6. Hover over the page you wish to rotate.

  7. Click the arrows to rotate either left or right.

    Adobe site for rotating PDF documents with the directional arrows highlighted
  8. Click Save.

    Adobe rotating PDF site with Save dialog box highlighted after manipulating PDF
  9. Click Download PDF to download the file.

    Adobe rotating PDF site with the Download File dialog box highlighted

How To Rotate a Range of Pages in a PDF

If you need to rotate a range of pages within one PDF or you want to rotate multiple PDF documents, there are other free solutions out there. Here's how to do so.

  1. Go to Smallpdf's rotate page.

    You're only allowed to use the site for free with two documents per day.

  2. Click Choose Files.

    Smallpdf site with Choose Files highlighted
  3. Find the file you need on your PC or Mac and click Open.

    Web browser open file dialog box
  4. Hover over each page you wish to rotate and click on the directional arrows to rotate them.

    Smallpdf website with directional arrows for rotating PDF pages highlighted

    You can also rotate all by clicking the left or right arrow next to Rotate all.

  5. Click Apply Changes when you've finished.

    Smallpdf site with Apply Changes highlighted after manipulating PDF document
  6. Click Download

    Smallpdf site with PDF document edited and download button highlighted

How To Rotate an Entire PDF Document

If you'd prefer to rotate PDF files en masse without any limitations, there are other options. Here's how to do it.

  1. Go to Rotate PDF's page.

    The site is entirely free and doesn't restrict how often you can use it per day. It only works with rotating whole documents though.

  2. Click Select the PDF document.

    Select the PDF document highlighted on RotatePDF site
  3. Find the file on your PC or Mac and click Open.

    RotatePDF website with Open File dialog box displayed
  4. Scroll down and choose the rotation angle you desire for the document.

    Choice of rotation angles on RotatePDF website
  5. Click Rotate PDF.

    RotatePDF website with Rotate PDF button highlighted
  6. Click Download the rotated PDF.

    RotatePDF website with Download the rotated PDF button highlighted
  7. The file is now saved to your PC or Mac and fully rotated to the desired angle. 

Limitations To Rotating PDF Documents

There are some limitations to rotating PDF files. Here's what you need to know.

  • These methods won't work on a read-only PDF. If a PDF file is set to Read-Only, you can't edit it in any way. That means you can't rotate the document in any way. You'll need to change the Read-Only properties first to be able to do so.
  • Rotating a PDF doesn't circumvent password protection. If a PDF has password protection, you'll still need to know the password to be able to edit the file and rotate it.
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