Changing an Existing PDF itself

I have heard multiple questions around changing an existing PDF. This article is meant to answer a few of those.

Question - How do I change parts of the existing PDF to show what I am actually seeing in the field?


  1. Cover up just parts of the PDF
  2. Digitize the PDF
  3. Start with an editable CAD or Revit format rather than using a PDF

#1 - Cover up parts of the PDF - Useful when there are just small parts of the PDF that need to be replaced

  1. Create a layer 
  2. Draw a line around/seal/connect, over the piece you want to “get rid of” 
  3. Select this newly created shape and select the fill icon -
  4. It will fill with the default color. This you can change to White or any other color by selecting it and accessing the display properties -
  5. Now you can create layers above this "white area"
  6. When you export back out to PDF, the hidden part of the PDF will be "gone"

#2 - Digitize the PDF

A pretty straight forward process here. ArcSite can help you quickly create a digital / editable copy of your existing PDF.

  1. Create a layer 
  2. Ensure that Setting > Snap Options > Snap to PDF content option is toggled on 
  3. Activate the Pen tool 
  4. Draw over each of the elements

#3 - Start with an editable CAD or Revit format rather than using a PDF

ArcSite has created plugins for both AutoDesk AutoCAD and AutoDesk Revit that allow users of those software to directly export from their desktop software and have the editable drawings available in ArcSite.

The ArcSite interface then has the ability to send them back into those packages. See the links below for more details.

With this workflow, there is no need to export to PDF from the designers or engineers side. Everyone can stay in an editable format.


Question - How do I rotate the PDFs orientation once it is in ArcSite?

Rotate PDF during upload / on website

Have more questions? Submit a request