How to Set Up a Fax to Email

By Louise Balle

Set up a fax to email service.
i fax image by Ewe Degiampietro from

Fax-to-email (or efax), is a way to send a fax message to anyone in the country, and in some cases to the world. It's a convenient way to transmit printed information to another party who has a fax machine, even if you don't. It also saves you paper and ink---everything is done from your computer and email account.

Choose a fax-to-email service that fits your estimated fax volume each month (see "Resources" for examples). If you only need this for an occasional fax to handle personal affairs, choose the lowest plan offered by the service, but if you need to receive or send faxes frequently for business, consider a plan that offers unlimited fax messages each month.

Retrieve your new fax-to-email fax number from the service. This is a unique phone number automatically assigned to your account that other people can use to send faxes to your email address (just like getting a number from your phone provider when you use a regular fax machine and phone line). Distribute your new fax number to all of your contacts.

Check your email regularly to see if you've received a new fax message from one of your contacts. When you do, you'll see an email from the fax-to-email provider with an attachment (usually a PDF document).

Compose a new email message to send a fax using your fax-to-email account. Type in the fax number of your contact (all ten digits including the area code) then the email extension provided by the fax-to-email service in your "To" field. Attach your own fax document (including a fax cover letter if you want), type in a subject line, and send your email. You'll receive a confirmation message when the fax goes through successfully.