How Do You Insert Special Symbols in AutoCAD?

Are you an AutoCAD user looking to add special symbols to your drawings? In this tutorial, we will explore various methods to insert those symbols effortlessly. Whether you need to include mathematical notations, electrical symbols, or special characters, AutoCAD provides several options to make your design work more efficient and visually appealing.

Using the Character Map

If you want to add a specific symbol that is not readily available on your keyboard, the Character Map tool in Windows can come in handy. Here’s how you can use it:

  • Step 1: Open the Character Map by pressing the Windows key and typing “Character Map” in the search bar. Click on the application when it appears.
  • Step 2: In the Character Map window, select the desired font from the dropdown menu.
  • Step 3: Scroll through the available characters or use the search bar at the bottom to find your desired symbol.
  • Step 4: Once you have found the symbol, click on it to select it, and then click on the “Copy” button.
  • Step 5: Switch back to AutoCAD and paste the symbol using Ctrl+V or right-clicking and selecting “Paste”.

This method allows you to choose from a wide range of symbols available in different fonts. However, keep in mind that using non-standard fonts may cause compatibility issues when sharing files with others who do not have those fonts installed.

Using AutoCAD’s Symbol Library

If you frequently use specific symbols such as electrical components or architectural symbols, AutoCAD provides an extensive built-in library just for that. Here’s how you can access it:

  • Step 1: In the AutoCAD menu, go to the “Insert” tab.
  • Step 2: Click on the “Symbol” button in the “Block” panel.
  • Step 3: A new window will open with a list of available symbol libraries. Select the library that matches your requirements.
  • Step 4: Browse through the symbols in the selected library and click on the one you want to insert.
  • Step 5: Click on the “Insert” button to add the symbol to your drawing.

This method is especially useful when you need to add specialized symbols related to specific industries or disciplines. The symbols in AutoCAD’s library are designed to be compatible and easily recognized by other AutoCAD users, ensuring smooth collaboration.

Creating Your Own Symbol Blocks

If you frequently use custom symbols or need to create unique symbols for your drawings, AutoCAD allows you to create your own symbol blocks. Follow these steps:

  • Step 1: Draw the desired symbol using AutoCAD’s drawing tools and commands.
  • Step 2: Select all the elements that make up the symbol by clicking and dragging over them or using a selection window.
  • Step 3: Right-click on the selected elements and choose “Create Block” from the context menu.
  • Step 4: In the Block Definition dialog box, specify a name for your block and adjust any other settings as needed.
  • Step 5: Click on “OK” to create the block.

Once you have created your own symbol block, you can easily insert it into your drawings by accessing it through the “Insert” tab and selecting your custom block from the library. This method allows you to have full control over the appearance and functionality of your symbols.


In conclusion, AutoCAD provides several methods for inserting special symbols into your drawings. Whether you choose to use the Character Map, AutoCAD’s built-in symbol library, or create your own custom blocks, these techniques will help you enhance your designs and communicate effectively using symbols that go beyond the standard keyboard characters. Experiment with different methods and symbols to find what works best for your specific needs!