How to Turn Off Comments in WordPress (Quickly & Easily)

Wondering how to turn off comments in WordPress? Check out this post to learn how to disable comments on WordPress posts and pages in the easiest ways possible.

While it’s true that comments are a valuable part of any blog or publishing site, but sometimes the scenario can be different. You may want to disable WordPress comments on your site for many possible reasons. 

Maybe you want to treat your posts like static pages. Or perhaps, you just want to make WordPress turn off comments for one or more specific posts.

It’s also possible that you want to get rid of comment spam and don’t want to spend time in moderation.

In any case, if you want to know how to disable WordPress comments on a single post or how to disable WordPress comments globally you’re at the right place. WordPress has a bunch of built-in options to do these. We’ll see some additional methods as well. Let’s start!

Disable WordPress comments using built-in settings options

WordPress provides a handful of built-in options to control comments. You can use them to disable the comments globally or for single posts. 

How to disable WordPress comments globally for all posts

It’s easy to turn off WordPress comments globally using the native options. You’ll need to tweak a few settings to close comments on articles as a whole. 

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First, sign in to your WordPress dashboard. Go to SettingsDiscussion

how to turn off comments in WordPress - discussion settings

In the Default post settings section, you’ll get this option: “Allow people to submit comments on new posts”. If you uncheck that and save changes, future posts will not allow anyone to comment. That means comments on new articles will be disabled. But the already published posts will still allow comments.

To turn off comments for the already published/old posts, there’s a separate option. 

Scroll down to “Other comment settings”. You’ll find a setting called “Automatically close comments on posts older than __ days”. You can use this to disable post comments after a predefined number of days.

Discussion Settings Days

If you set its value as “0”, that will disable comments for all published posts. 

How to disable WordPress comments on a single post

You can control the comment policy at the post level. There’s a comment switch in the post-editing interface to control comments on individual posts. This settings section is available in both the block editor (Gutenberg) and the classic editor.

The Gutenberg way: On the Gutenberg block editor interface, you can turn on/off comments for a blog post or WordPress page easily. It’s a matter of just checking a box.

While you’re in the editing screen of a post, open the right-side settings column. Scroll down to the Discussion widget. Expand it. 

disable comment on individual post gutenberg

You’ll find two checkboxes. One to “allow comments”, and another to display trackbacks and pingbacks. Uncheck both of them. Save changes. Comments will be turned off for this post.

Using the classic editor: If you use the classic editor, you will get the Discussion widget below the text editing box for your target post. To disallow comments, uncheck the “allow comments” and “trackbacks”. Update the post.

disable comment on individual post classic editor

The system will not allow people to post comments on this specific article anymore.

Please note, the posts that have existing comments, will continue displaying them. To know how to deal with this, or how to get rid of these comments, please read this entire post. We’ll discuss it later in this article.

Learn More: PostX Review: Best Post Grid WordPress Plugin

How to turn off comments in WordPress using a plugin

In WordPress, there’s a plugin for everything, they say. For more controls and flexibility in disabling WordPress comments, you can use a plugin. Disable Comments is such a plugin that you may use for this purpose.

disable comments plugin

This plugin lets you turn off comments and hide comment-related dashboard links to offer a better experience. Also, you can remove the old comments faster with Disable Comments bulk actions.

So this is how to completely turn off comments in WordPress. Please note, after you turn off the comments, the already available comments will still be visible. No WordPress disable comments trick would remove them automatically. 

The posts with existing comments will continue to display them by default. You can take down these comments in 2 ways.

  1. Delete the comments from your WordPress dashboard.
  2. Modify your theme’s PHP file to remove the comment section from the front-end.

Deleting the comments: From WordPress DashboardComments, you can delete the comments so that they won’t be visible under your posts anymore. But the message “comments are closed” may still appear. Check the following trick to remove that message.

Removing the comment section from the theme: Even if you disable WordPress comments using the default settings, a message like “comments are closed” might be shown below your posts. To remove that message along with the entire comment section, you need to edit the theme’s PHP file(s). Check out the following tip to learn more about this.

Disable WordPress comments using custom code

Due to your theme, even after disabling the comments, there might be some comment-related messages on your site’s front-end. For example, “comments are closed” might appear below the post content. Editing the theme’s PHP file(s) can remove these messages. You should contact your theme developer to properly remove these comment messages.

If you can remove the comment section from your theme’s single post PHP template, then anything related to comments will not be displayed below your posts. You just need to remove the relevant code from the single.php file. 

Please note, editing the theme PHP files wrongly can break your site. It’s suggested that you use a child theme to do such edits. And yes, you should take a full website backup beforehand.

So find the following code in the single.php file:

<?php comments_template(); ?>

Then replace the above code with the following one:

<!-- Begin Comment
<?php comments_template(); ?>
End Comment -->

We’ve just “deactivated” the comment section. It won’t appear below your posts any longer! If you’ve been wondering how to disable WordPress comments on posts through PHP, the above trick will help. Now you know multiple methods on how to turn off blog comments in WordPress.

Wrapping up

So we’ve just seen three major ways regarding how to disable comments on WordPress sites. You can apply these techniques on all WordPress pages and posts including custom post types. It’s suggested that you start with the default controls. If you need more options, you can explore the other methods.

Why would you turn off comments in WordPress? Share your thoughts with the community via comments!


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