The iPhone Mail Is Not Deleting: Troubleshooting Tips

Deleting emails from your iPhone should be a breeze. Simply open the Mail app, swipe left on the email you want to delete, and tap the ‘Trash’ icon. If you’ve already opened the email, tap the ‘Trash’ icon at the bottom of the screen. Done and done. But what if it’s not that simple? What if your iPhone Mail is not deleting as it should? After completing the task, the email you selected should be gone from your inbox and moved to the Trash folder.


Have you ever tried to declutter your iPhone’s Mail app, only to find that some emails just won’t budge? It’s like they’re glued to your inbox, refusing to give up their spot. Frustrating, isn’t it? Well, you’re not alone. Many iPhone users have encountered this peculiar problem where their Mail app doesn’t delete emails as expected. This issue can clog up your inbox and make managing your emails a nightmare. It’s a problem that spans across individuals and businesses alike, as a cluttered inbox can lead to missed messages, decreased productivity, and increased stress.

So, why is this happening? Could it be a software glitch, or maybe there’s a particular setting that’s been overlooked? Regardless of the cause, it’s a significant inconvenience for anyone relying on their iPhone for email communication. Let’s troubleshoot this together and find out how to get those stubborn emails to finally take the hint and leave your inbox for good.

Step by Step Tutorial to Fix ‘iPhone Mail Is Not Deleting’

Before we dive into the steps, let’s clarify what we’re about to do. The following tutorial will guide you through various methods to resolve the issue with the Mail app on your iPhone. We’ll explore settings adjustments, account management, and other troubleshooting techniques to ensure those emails get deleted as they should.

Step 1: Check Your Network Connection

Make sure your iPhone is connected to the internet.

Without an active network connection, your Mail app might not be able to communicate with the email server to execute the delete command.

Step 2: Verify Mail Settings

Go to Settings > Mail, then check if the ‘Swipe Options’ are set correctly.

Sometimes, the issue may lie in the swipe settings. If they’re not configured to delete, swiping an email will not move it to the Trash.

Step 3: Try Deleting from Another Device

Access your email account on a different device or webmail and try deleting an email.

This step helps determine if the issue is with the Mail app on your iPhone or your email account in general.

Step 4: Remove and Re-add Email Account

Go to Settings > Mail > Accounts, select your email account, and tap ‘Delete Account.’ Then, re-add it.

Removing and re-adding your email account can often reset any glitches or syncing issues that may be causing the problem.

Step 5: Update iOS

Ensure your iPhone is running the latest version of iOS.

Outdated software can lead to various app issues, including problems with deleting emails.


Efficient Email ManagementStreamlining the deletion process helps keep your inbox organized and clutter-free.
Improved PerformanceA well-managed email app can function better and run more smoothly.
Reduced StressClearing out unnecessary emails can reduce the overwhelm of a cluttered inbox.

Efficient email management means less time spent sorting through old messages and more time for important tasks. Deleting emails when they’re no longer needed can prevent inbox overload, making it easier to find the emails that matter.

An iPhone that isn’t bogged down by a heap of unnecessary emails can perform better. This could mean faster load times and a more responsive Mail app, making your email experience more pleasant.

Dealing with a messy inbox can be stressful. By ensuring your iPhone Mail deletes as it should, you can maintain a tidy inbox, reducing the anxiety of wading through a sea of emails every time you open the Mail app.


Time ConsumptionTroubleshooting the issue can be a time-consuming process.
Potential Data LossImproper handling of the issue might lead to unintentional deletion of important emails.
Temporary FixThere’s no guarantee that the issue won’t recur in the future.

Troubleshooting any technical issue, including the Mail app not deleting emails, can take up valuable time that could be spent elsewhere. It can be particularly frustrating if the problem persists after multiple attempts to fix it.

If not cautious, you might end up deleting important emails in the process of resolving the issue. This mishap can occur if you’re trying to clear the app’s cache or if you delete and re-add your email account without backing up your emails.

Even after following all the steps and successfully deleting the emails, there’s always a possibility that the issue may come back. This uncertainty can be unsettling, especially for those who rely heavily on their email for daily communication.

Additional Information

When dealing with a stubborn iPhone Mail app that refuses to delete emails, it’s essential to remain patient and methodical in your approach. Remember that the cause could be as simple as a setting that needs tweaking or as complex as a software bug that requires an iOS update. One additional tip is to check if the issue is specific to one email account or all accounts on your Mail app. This insight can help narrow down the cause and tailor your troubleshooting process accordingly.

If all else fails, consider reaching out to Apple Support or your email service provider. They might have insight into the issue that you haven’t considered. And who knows? Maybe the iPhone Mail is not deleting issue is a known problem with an easy fix.


  1. Confirm your iPhone’s network connection.
  2. Check the ‘Swipe Options’ settings in the Mail app.
  3. Attempt to delete an email from another device or webmail.
  4. Remove and re-add the problematic email account on your iPhone.
  5. Make sure your iPhone is updated to the latest iOS version.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why won’t my iPhone Mail app delete emails?

It could be due to a network connection issue, incorrect settings, a syncing problem, or outdated iOS software.

Can I delete multiple emails at once on the iPhone Mail app?

Yes, you can. Tap ‘Edit’ in the top-right corner of your inbox, select the emails you want to delete, and then tap ‘Trash.’

What should I do if emails keep coming back after I delete them?

This issue could be related to your email server’s settings. Try logging into your email through a web browser and adjust the settings there, or contact your email provider for support.

Will removing and re-adding my email account delete my emails?

Not if they are stored on the server. However, it’s always a good idea to back up important emails before removing an account.

Could this issue be related to my email provider and not my iPhone?

Yes, the problem could be on the email provider’s end. If none of the steps work, consider reaching out to them for assistance.


The iPhone Mail is not deleting issue can throw a wrench in your digital communication. But with the steps and tips outlined in this article, you’re now equipped to tackle this problem head-on. Whether it’s a simple settings tweak or a more involved solution like updating your iOS, there’s always a way to get your Mail app back in line.

Remember, technology is meant to make our lives easier, not harder. So don’t let a glitchy Mail app get the better of you. With a little patience and persistence, you’ll have your inbox under control in no time. And if you’re ever in doubt, there’s always a community of fellow iPhone users and tech experts ready to lend a hand.

So go on, give these solutions a try. Your clutter-free inbox awaits!

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