If Microsoft Word consumes a lot of CPU power when idle

When idle Microsoft Word may report a CPU load much greater than when you actually work on a document!

Sometimes the problem is caused by background Word services, such as background printing or proof: disable whatever you don’t really need.

Note also that this CPU problem can be caused by a corrupt normal template, in which case you can rename normal.dotm to force Word create automatically a new one. Word’s normal template is usually located at C:\Users\YourAccountName\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Templates or in a custom location you have defined at Word > Options > Advanced > File Locations. In this case you need also to save / export any customizations you may have defined in your normal template.

If the solutions above won’t help, try this. Right click the Word shortcut in the Start menu, go to the shortcut’s location, right click to open the Properties dialogue and go to the Compatibility tab.

Run the Compatibility Troubleshooter and choose to “Try recommended settings”. Accept the option suggested by Windows, press the “Test” button to run Word, then close Word and finish the troubleshooting process saving your settings.

Note that you have to disable compatibility mode if you receive the alert that “Microsoft Office cannot verify the license for this product. You should repair the Office program by using Control Panel.”

If you happen to know some other possible fix for this MS Word CPU problem, just drop me a note.