5 Best Free PDF Editors


If you’ve struggled to modify a PDF document then you’re having one of these challenges:

  1. You have no idea how to edit a PDF
  2. You converted your PDF to an editable format and ended up with a distorted document
  3. You spend hours fixing graphics, editing text, reformatting content, and correcting errors you made

Not exactly what you want to do with your time, right?

If you work on PDFs every day, then your frustration would only grow, not to mention the time loss.

That’s where PDF editors come in.

If text or image changes are the primary things you do on PDFs, explore the free version. But, if you need to do more with your editors, the premium features carry a price tag. Let’s explore the available options.

1. PDF Candy

PDF Candy

Price: Free. Paid plan starts from $6/mo.

PDF Candy positions itself as a high-quality toolset for processing PDF files. The tool offers over 30 features, most of which are free. It avails its tools offline and online.

Editing PDFs using PDF Candy is easy. Simply add a document to the preview page and choose from the list of editing tools that appears. Tweak your PDF document as you deem fit. 

PDF Candy Features

Let’s look at features that stand out:

  • Extensive toolset: PDF Candy provides you with 47 PDF processing tools. It lets users convert, merge, or compress PDFs with ease. It has an extensive toolset that lets you perform different types of operations on your document.
  • OCR capacity: Have trouble converting an image to text? PDF Candy is equipped with the Optic Character Recognition (OCR) feature. OCR scans Image files automatically and extracts text into editable formats.
  • PDF protection: PDF Candy allows you to password a document. This feature lets you protected your new PDF from external alteration or theft.
  • Windows version: PDF Candy has a desktop version. And it’s available for free download on Windows.
  • Offline functionality: You don’t need an active internet connection to access PDF Candy features. Simply work on the go.

All PDF Candy features are free but you must endure the painful hourly limitation. If you have lots of PDFs to edit, then this limit would reduce your productivity.

PDF Candy Pricing

Upgrade to premium packages for as low as $6 per month to enjoy unhindered access, increased file size, and other benefits. A lifetime subscription of $99 saves you more money and allows you to use both PDF Candy web and desktop versions. 

2.  CocoDoc

CocoDoc

Price: Free. Paid plan starts from $9/mo.

CocoDoc dons a 5-star rating. And, it offers users 14 days free trial to enjoy amazing features.

So you can edit or manage your PDFs online with CocoDoc for a few days to see if you like it. You can commit to paying only if you see the need.

CocoDoc Features

Here are some of the features to take note of:

  • Loads of templates: CocoDoc offers over 500 templates you can use to create professional, personal, or academic documents.
  • URL editing feature: Users can edit a PDF document directly on their browser. No need to drag or add the document to the preview pane.
  • Branding tool: CocoDoc gives room for your creativity to shine through. Apply your unique brand identity to your PDF creation and editing freely. 

Unfortunately, you’d need to upgrade to a paid version of CocoDoc after the 14 days free trial elapses. 

CocoDoc Pricing

CocoDoc provides four subscription plans. The basic $9 per month package offers 10Gb worth of space and 100 e-signature documents apart from the PDF editing features. If you opt for the $25 Business plan, you can create personalized forms and cover up to five team members. 

3.  Sejda

Sejda

Price: Free. Paid plan starts from $7.50/mo.

Sejda is an easy-to-use free PDF editor. You can edit, fill and sign PDFs without creating an account. All files are saved in the cloud for a limited time.

Sejda Features

Its unique features include:

  • High Security: Sejda stands out for its high confidentiality rate. Documents uploaded are deleted automatically after two hours. 
  • Available Offline: You can fill out, edit, and create PDFs offline using the desktop version of Sejda.
  • Direct Links to PDFs: The newest feature on Sejda is the option of creating direct links to PDFs. This saves you from the stress of downloading a file and uploading it on their website before editing. 

With Sejda, you never have to worry about your sensitive document being exposed to third parties.

Sejda Pricing

Sejda’s free PDF editing service covers only files below 50MB or 200 pages. To access more features, Sejda offers three subscription plans you can choose from.

The weekly plan goes for only $5. And for a discounted price of $63, you and your team can access all benefits on Sejda for a year. 

4.  Smallpdf 

Smallpdf

Price: Free. Paid plan starts from $9/mo.

Smallpdf is a cloud-based free PDF editor with an easy-to-navigate user interface. This PDF editor offers its basic editing features for free but you can edit only two documents daily.

Smallpdf Features

Here are its stand-out features:

  • Multiple Devices Compatibility: Smallpdf works across all devices including mobiles. 
  • E-sign PDF: You and others can sign your PDFs easily. 
  • Freehand Annotations: Add diagrams, text, or drawings to PDFs.
  • PDF Scanner: You can scan documents directly to PDFs using your mobile device. Boycott the stress of converting Jpegs to PDF before editing. 

If you want to enjoy more functions, you’d have to upgrade to paid options.

Smallpdf Pricing

A free 7 days trial grants you access to Smallpdf’s premium offerings. Pay $7 per team member per month to access Smallpdf for teams. 

A $9 monthly subscription unlocks the pro plan for one person and shuts out adverts. The pro version also allows you unlimited document processing, and much more. 

5. PDF24 Creator

PDF24

Price: Free!

PDF24 Creator is 100% free. And it offers a wide range of features like PDF annotation and image or text insertion. 

PDF24Creator Features

The free and easy-to-use PDF editor comes with the following features:

  • System compatibility: PDF24 Creator supports all operating systems and browsers. You don’t need to install any software installation to access the features of PDF24 Creator.
  • Speed: PDF24 Creator processes document conversions and management fast. It allows you to create or edit PDFs without friction. 
  • Compare PDFs: You can compare two PDFs to check for differences. 

4 Things to Consider Before Using a Free PDF Editor

Deciding on the best PDF editor to use depends on a number of factors. Let’s explore them.

File Size to be edited

Some free PDF editors limit the file size you can process. You might want to check out the supported file size before using a PDF editor.

User experience

Each PDF editor offers a unique user experience. The simpler the user interface, the better your experience with the tool. Choose a free PDF editor you find easy to understand and use. 

Cost of upgrade

Some awesome features on most free PDF editors cost money to enjoy. Consider the cost of the upgrade before settling for any PDF editor. You might find editors with comparable features but significantly different pricing.

Purpose or type of file to be edited

What type of file do you wish to process? Not all free PDF editors support every file format. Ensure you can create, modify and convert files to your preference.

Start Using Free PDF Editors

Except you process PDFs regularly, any of the Free PDF editors above can cater to all your elementary PDF editing needs.

You can alter, compress, convert and even enjoy exciting features like OCR and e-signature capabilities using the free versions of some PDF editors. 

But, if you wish to do more consider a paid version.

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