How to Stop the iPhone from Automatically Deleting Text Messages

Have you ever gone back to look for an old text message that contained important information, only to find that it was gone from your device? If so, then you might want to find out how to stop the iPhone from automatically deleting your older text messages.

There is a setting on your iPhone that specifies the amount of time that text, audio, and video messages will be kept before they are deleted. If you find that you often reference information stored in old messages, then you may prefer to keep your messages until you choose to delete them.

Fortunately this is something that you can adjust so that your iPhone stops auto deleting your messages. Continue reading below to find out where this setting can be found.

How to Stop Auto Deleting Text Messages on an iPhone

  1. Open Settings.
  2. Choose Messages.
  3. Select Keep Messages.
  4. Tap Forever.

Our guide continues below with additional information on how to stop auto deleting iPhone messages, including pictures for these steps.

How to Keep Text Messages Until Manually Deleted on an iPhone 6 (Guide with Pictures)

The steps in this article were written using an iPhone 6 Plus, in iOS 8. These steps may vary for previous versions of iOS.

Note that text messages can take up a surprising amount of space on your device, especially if you have a lot of picture, video, or audio messages. If you find that you are running out of space, our guide can show you a few items that you can delete to regain that space.

Step 1: Open the Settings menu.

open the settings menu

Step 2: Scroll down and select the Messages option.

open the messages menu

Step 3: Scroll down and tap the Keep Messages button under Message History.

tap the keep messages button

Step 4: Select the Forever option, then tap the blue Messages button at the top-left corner of the screen to return to the previous menu.

select the forever option

There are some additional settings related to this for audio and video messages that you may wish to adjust as well.

How to Stop Auto Deleting Audio or Video Messages on an iPhone

This is handled separately from standard text messages, so will need to be changed as well. Note that some newer versions of iOS no longer have video message settings.

Step 1: Tap the Expire button under Audio Messages.

tap the expire button

Step 2: Select the Never option, then tap the Messages button to return to the previous menu.

select the never option

Step 3: Tap the Expire button under Video Messages.

tap the expire button

Step 4: Select the Never option.

tap the never button

Is there someone that has been trying to send you text messages, but you never seem to get them? It’s possible that you may have blocked that contact accidentally. Click here and learn how to check if a contact is blocked on your iPhone.

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