We use portable Document Format (PDF) files on a daily basis. It is easy to share and access these files from any system and is highly convenient to store documents with images and related stuff.
But it often happens that a PDF file may get corrupted or damaged due to some reasons, which are discussed below. Under such circumstances, it is essential to troubleshoot the corruption and repair damaged PDF.
In this guide, we’ll inform you about five methods that you can use to repair PDF files by yourself.
Reasons for PDF file Corruption
- Virus Attack: A potential malware on your system may damage your data. Always check your computer for threats using an anti-virus scanner and eliminate them if found.
- Disrupted File Transfer: A file may get corrupted if not appropriately downloaded due to an unstable network for force closing the downloader. Or, if an item transfer from any storage device is interrupted, the item may get damaged. Make use of file transfer software to avoid this problem.
- Unsupported File Launcher: Opening a PDF file using an improper viewer, like a photo viewer or media player, may corrupt it. Even a corrupted PDF viewer or a corrupted storage device may damage data.
- System Shutdown: Unexpected or forced shutdown of your computer while using a file may corrupt it.
Common Ways to Repair Corrupted PDF Files
If any of the above situations have occurred and now there is any damaged PDF in your system, you need not worry. There are many ways by which you can repair damaged PDFs by some simple methods. But before applying any procedure, make a separate copy of the item in a different location.
- Re-Downloading the PDF
This should be the first method if you have the link from which you downloaded the PDF or a backup copy of the same before it got damaged. Or, if you transferred it from external storage and still have the source file, re-transfer it to see if it works.
- Using Check Disk Tool
The check disk (chkdsk) tool can check and repair a corrupted hard disk. It also points out the damaged parts on a hard disk and can recover data from it.
Steps to use chkdsk on your system:
- Launch Command Prompt as Administrator.
- Write the command “chkdsk c: /scan /forceofflinefix” and hit ‘Enter’ (the volume name can be changed in the command for a different disk).
This will run a disk check on the selected volume (C: in the above example). It will scan and fix errors on the disk when it is not in use.
The Windows Disk Error Checking tool can also be used to check a disk. To use it:
- Launch “This PC” on Windows 10/11.
- Right-Click on the drive to be scanned.
- Select “Properties” and click on the “Tools” tab from the options at the top.
- Press “Check” followed by “Scan Drive.”
After the damaged disk fix is complete, verify whether the corrupted PDFs are usable or not. If they aren’t, then go on to the next step.
- Using another PDF Reader
Another method to perform before going for the repair corrupted PDF step is to check your PDF reader application or try out a better one. There are numerous PDF readers available on the internet which can be downloaded on your system or used online as a browser extension.
The most widely used PDF reader is the Adobe PDF reader. You can download it from the official source and try opening the inaccessible PDF from it. If it works, your older PDF reader is probably corrupted, or the file is unsupported on it.
If the PDF is still unusable, then there is a high chance that the PDF file is corrupted. In that case, you need to repair damaged PDF using a file repair tool.
Now, there are two types of PDF repair tools available, one is an online tool that can repair minor damages, and the second one is an offline tool that can repair minor to significant damages.
Repair PDF using Wondershare Repairit
Wondershare Repairit File Repair Tool is one of the best offline file repair software available on the web. It is a powerful application that can repair any damaged file.
It can repair corrupted PDF, Docs, Excel, Image, Video and many more types of corrupted items. It is available on both Mac and Windows OS.
With Repairit, a corrupted PDF can be repaired using three easy steps. You need to download and install the Repairit Tool from the official website of Wondershare beforehand.
Steps to repair corrupted PDF file using Wondershare Repairit
1. Launch Wondershare Repairit Software on your computer and select ‘File Repair’ from the left column. Now, click on the ‘+Add’ option to open a file browser window. Select the corrupted PDFs (or multiple corrupted files) by navigating to their location. The batch processing system of Repairit can repair multiple files simultaneously.
2. After adding the items, they will be displayed on the screen. The added items’ location, size, and names will be shown. Here, you can upload more items by pressing the ‘Add’ button or remove already added items by clicking the trash icon beside the item detail.
3. Once you have finalized your selection, press the ‘Repair’ button at the bottom-right to start the Repair process. The real-time progress of the process will be displayed on the screen.
A ‘Completed’ sign will appear below each file name after being repaired. You can even cancel the process at any time.
Now, you can preview any repaired item and save it on your computer by pressing the ‘Save’ button adjacent to the item’s detail.
You can also press the ‘Save All’ button at the bottom to save all the items. After you click Save (or save all), select the location for saving the item and click save.
Once you have saved the files, you can navigate to the save location and access them.
NOTE: Any item which has been severely corrupted may not be repaired by the tool, and you’ll be notified of the same. In that case, you can contact our experts and upload your item, and they’ll be happy to help you repair corrupted PDF files.
With Wondershare Repairit, you can repair all your corrupted stuff easy and quick. Just download ‘Repairit for Desktop’, or use the online repair tool that provides 200 MB of free repairing.
Repairit offline tool is free to use and can repair all popular file types, like pdf, Docx, pptx, png, mp4, etc. In just 3 simple steps, it can fix photos, videos, documents and much more.
It can also fix damaged data on smartphones, memory cards, portable drives, cameras, drones, and any other device you might think of.
Also, by paying for a subscription, you can unlock file repairing of over 20 different file formats and the Advanced Repair feature to repair severely corrupt videos and photos.
File corruption is nothing new and can happen to anyone at any time. The methods mentioned above are the most effective ways to repair PDF. The first 4 methods might not be able to repair severely damaged data. We recommend using Wondershare Repairit in such cases to fix your corrupted data quickly.