How to Clean Up Gmail Storage: Best Practices and Tips

Gmail users can enjoy 15 GB of free storage space. That may seem like a lot, but only until you realize that this storage space is shared among all Google services, including Google Drive and Google Photos. In this article, we explain how to clean up Gmail storage so that you never run out of it.

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Top 3 Ways to Clean Gmail Storage

Let’s take a closer look at the top 3 ways to clean Gmail storage. But before you put the information provided in this article to practice, we recommend you open drive.google.com/settings/storage in your browser to see a detailed breakdown of how your storage is shared across all services.

If you take the time to clean not only Gmail but also Google Drive and Google Photos, then you should be able to free up a considerable amount of space and avoid upgrading to a Google One plan, which can include anywhere from 100 GB to 30 TB of extra space.

1. Use a Bulk Email Organizer

The average size of an email message that contains nothing but plain text is just 75 KB, but most emails sent these days are much larger because they contain high-resolution images and all kinds of attachments. If you’re like most people, then you probably have a lot of emails from retailers, marketers, coworkers, friends, and family members that are no longer useful and are just taking up valuable space.

While you could go through your Gmail inbox and manually delete messages one by one (learn how to delete all emails on Gmail), it’s far more efficient to use a Gmail cleanup tool like Clean Email to clean Gmail space in one go. Clean Email can scan your entire mail account and combine messages from inbox and other folders into groups, allowing you to quickly review hundreds or even thousands of messages with a few clicks.

Clean up groups of emails with Clean EmailClean up groups of emails with Clean Email

Here’s how to clean up Gmail storage space using Clean Email:

  1. Go to: https://app.clean.email
  2. Sign in with your mail account.
  3. Select Quick Clean from the left pane.
  4. Move to trash all email bundles that contain nothing but unwanted or useless messages.
Quick Clean your inbox with Clean EmailQuick Clean your inbox with Clean Email

If you would like to review a specific email bundle and perhaps deselect certain messages, then you need to click the View all button in the top-right corner.

Clean Email can group together emails from dead ends, emails older than six months, bounce and social notifications, online shopping emails, emails you replied to, unlabeled emails, and more. You can even tell this bulk email organizer to automatically delete future similar emails for you so that you never have to worry about cleaning up Gmail space again.

Smart Views email groups in Clean EmailSmart Views email groups in Clean Email

2. Clean Up Google Drive and Google Photos

As we’ve already explained, your storage is shared across several services. As such, you don’t necessarily have to clean Gmail space by deleting old emails. You can also delete files from Google Drive and Google Photos.

Go to the Google Account storage page for a detailed breakdown of how much space each of the three services occupies.

To delete photos and videos in Google Photos:

  1. Go to photos.google.com or open the Google Photos app on your Android or iOS device.
  2. Select any photo or video you want to delete.
  3. Click Delete → Move to bin.
  4. Open the Bin.
  5. Empty it to permanently delete your photos and videos.

To delete a file in Google Drive:

  1. Go to drive.google.com or open the Google Drive app on your Android or iOS device.
  2. Select any file you want to delete.
  3. Click Remove.
  4. Open the Bin.
  5. Empty it to permanently delete your files.

When you’re done cleaning up, go to the Google Account storage page again to see how much space you’ve managed to free up. If not enough, then continue reading this article for more tips on how to clean Gmail storage.

3. Use the Google One Storage Manager

Google is aware that many of its users are struggling with space management and not enjoying cleaning up Gmail space manually, which is why the tech giant created the Google One Storage Manager, a handy tool that lets you conveniently manage your account storage across all its services.

Using the Google One Storage Manager, you can quickly review and clear deleted emails and files, spam emails, emails with large attachments, large photos and videos, videos that Google Photos can’t process or play, and more.

Use the Google One Storage Manager on your computer:

  1. Open the Google Account storage page on your computer.
  2. Log in with your account.
  3. Click Review and clear under the category you want to manage.
  4. Select the files you want to remove.
  1. After you select your files, click the Delete button in the top-right corner.
  2. Confirm that you understand that deleted files can’t be recovered.
  3. Click Permanently delete.

Use the Google One Storage Manager on your mobile device:

  1. Open the Google One app.
  2. Tap Storage → Free up account storage.
  3. Select the category you want to manage
  4. Select the files you want to remove.
  5. Tap the Delete button in the top-right corner.

As useful as the Google One Storage Manager is, it doesn’t offer nearly the same granularity when it comes to cleaning up Gmail space as Clean Email, so we recommend you don’t rely on it exclusively.

Conclusion

In this article, we’ve explained three ways how to clean up Gmail storage to help you reclaim valuable space so that you can keep receiving email messages without purchasing a Google One plan to unlock extra space. We recommend you clean Gmail storage on a regular basis so that you always have at least 1 GB left and don’t have to hastily delete old emails, Google Drive files, or photos and videos stored in Google Photo.


How to Clean Up Gmail Storage - FAQs

Why is my Gmail out of storage?

Your Gmail may be out of storage for three different reasons:

1. You have too many emails in your inbox.
2. You have too many files in Google Drive.
3. You have too many photos and videos in Google Photos.

How can I free up Gmail space?

To clean Gmail space, you should first get rid of unwanted and unnecessary email messages using a bulk email organizer like Clean Email. Then, go through Google Drive and Google Photos and delete all files, photos, and videos that you don’t need.

What do I do when my Gmail storage is full?

The first thing you should do when you run out of storage is to learn how to clean up Gmail space by familiarizing yourself with the techniques described in this article. Unless you’re okay with wasting hours of your time, don’t clean Gmail storage space manually and use a bulk email organizer instead.

Will deleting emails free up storage?

Yes, deleting email will free up your Gmail storage. You can also delete files stored in Drive and photos and videos stored in Google Photos.

How much storage do I have in Gmail?

All users get to enjoy 15 GB of free space. Users can purchase additional storage by subscribing to one of several available Google One plans.

Clean Email Team Updated on Jan 17, 2022
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