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How to Fax a PDF to a Fax Machine

Faxing a PDF is easier than ever with the help of an online fax service. Here's how to do it using your computer or smartphone. No fax machine required!

Author: Richard Haase  Updated November 9, 2023

It's possible to fax a PDF from your computer, phone or tablet in just a few minutes, by taking advantage of online fax services.

If you want to fax a PDF in just a few minutes, the steps are easy to follow.

  1. Sign up for an account with an online fax service.
  2. Log into your fax service's dashboard.
  3. Enter the recipient's number and cover page if needed.
  4. Upload the PDF from your PC or cloud storage.
  5. Press Send and wait for the confirmation message to arrive to your inbox.

There are additional methods to fax a PDF, let's take a look at them in this article, so you can choose the best option for you.

how to fax a pdf

1. Fax a PDF Via Email

This is our preferred method to fax a PDF because it's easy and fast.  When you sign up with an online fax service, you are able to send faxes using nothing but your email.  This works as a common email, but there is one difference: the file you attach will be converted to a fax format. And all online fax services provide 100% compatibility with the PDF file format.

To fax a PDF via email follow these steps:

  1. Create an account with an online fax service of your choice.
  2. Compose a new email message.
  3. On the TO field enter the number followed by @provider.com (the actual domain name will be given to you on an email). For example in the case of eFax, a sample number would look like this: 4445556667@efaxsend.com
  4. Enter the cover message on the MESSAGE field or on the BODY field.  This page will precede the contents of your PDF.
  5. Attach a PDF document from your computer.
  6. Click on Send

Your PDF will arrive as a fax file, which means that is compatible with all computers and legacy fax machines out there. Once the transmission has been completed, you'll get an email with the confirmation.

Luckily, good online fax services like eFax let you create a free trial account in a couple of minutes to send your file securely. You can use this account to test how this method works, free of charge.

If you need a detailed step-by-step guide to fax a PDF with this method, read our guide on how to fax from Gmail.


2. Use a PDF-to-Fax Mobile App (iOS, Android)

Using a mobile fax app is a great solution if you need to fax a PDF on the go, or if you don't have access to your computer.  These apps basically put the power of a virtual fax machine in your hands.  Some of these apps work alongside an online fax service subscription, while others are stand-alone solutions where you need to pay per fax or per page.

Follow these steps to fax a PDF using a mobile fax app:

  1. Sign up with an online fax service that has an app (RingCentral, MyFax, eFax, for example)
  2. Download the app for Android or iOS
  3. Tap on "Send Fax"
  4. Upload the PDF file from your phone using the mobile app's prompt.
  5. Fill in the details of your fax, including the recipient's number. Make sure the information is correct.
  6. Tap on Send.

Like in the previous method, you'll receive a confirmation once your PDF file has been converted to fax and sent.

If you fax PDFs regularly, we recommend a subscription-based app.  Why? Because apps developed by online fax services tend to be more reliable and end up being more cost-effective than just paying per fax.

3. Use a Free Fax Website

If you want to fax a PDF from your computer without spending money, you can use a website that allows you to send faxes for free. These sites allow you to send up to two pages per day, and most of them support sending PDF files.  

But... well, we wouldn't recommend faxing a PDF online with these services if faxing is an important part of your business. Not only are you limited in the number of pages you can send, but each of your faxes may or may not come with a cover page of advertising.

On the other hand, if you never send faxes and need to send them now, they are a pretty good alternative. And it saves you from having to find the nearest office supply store.

If you plan on faxing on a regular basis, you will be better off with an online fax service, as these "free" sites will charge you a set amount per page, which can quickly become more expensive than a service that allows you to send 300 pages per month.

If you want to get started without spending any money, a better alternative is to sign up for a free trial with an online fax service that allows you to not only send PDFs as faxes, but also receive faxes for a full month.

Summary

In conclusion, faxing a PDF has never been more accessible, thanks to the convenience of online fax services. Whether you choose to fax a PDF through email, a mobile fax app, or a free fax website, the process is streamlined, eliminating the need for traditional fax machines.

The preferred method, sending a PDF using an online fax service via email, offers a quick and easy solution. With a simple process, your document transforms into a fax-compatible format.