A Step By Step Guide To Quickly Clear Google Drive Storage

Did you know that if you reach your account storage in Google Drive, you won’t be able to send or receive emails? AH! That’s because your storage is shared across Google Drive, Gmail, and Google Photos. In other words, Google Photos and Gmail all count towards your overall Google Drive storage. So if you’ve got a free Google account, you’re working with about 15GB of Google Drive storage, and you might be nearing capacity. So this is how to quickly clear Google Drive storage.

I’m going to show you how to free up Google Drive storage. There are lots of ways to do this and it’s easier than you think. So let’s go.

Step 1: Look At Storage Space Used Status

At first, let’s go over how to see what’s using up your Google Drive storage and how to clear files from Google Drive. From Google Drive, if you click on storage on the left, you’ll get a snapshot of the files using your Drive Storage. And that’s great and all because you can get a quick glimpse of the big stuff, and you can quickly select those files to delete right from here, but we want to get even more niche than that and see what’s using up the most space. So, you can click on ‘buy storage’ – Don’t worry, you won’t buy anything right away – And before I click off here, I want to point out, if you click on buy storage, you will be taken to a Drive storage page that might look something like this where you’ll get a snapshot of the overall storage used. But if you click on view details, here is where you’ll get a breakdown of what’s taking up the most space. But, if your account is not linked to a domain, your storage page may look a little different.

So if you click on ‘buy storage’ you’ll be taken to Google One. And this can be accessed by one.google.com, then click on storage. A perk about Google One is that they have a quick access link on the storage page, so you can click on ‘free up account storage’ and you’ll be taken right to a storage management page where you can quickly free up space from Gmail, Drive, and Photos.  So it’ll tell you discarded items and how much space that’s taking up. It will tell you large items and how much space you can free up. And then there’s an ‘other items’ section as well. So that’s a really quick way to free up Google Drive storage via Google One, but if you really want to dig around further, we can do this same thing manually, and luckily still quickly.

Step 2: Clearing Spaces

  • Let’s start with clearing Gmail space. Rather than spending hours and hours clicking through all your old emails, from oldest to newest, or even searching for specific senders, and deleting content that way, there are a few quicker ways to free up space. The first thing I like to do is take a quick peek at the other tabs – the social tab and the promotions tab. Typically these can be bulk deleted unless, of course, it’s something important like a shipping confirmation you need to keep. And bulk deleting is really easy, just click the select all toggle at the top and hit delete.
  • Next, check out your spam folder. Google does a really good job of flagging spam so you can bulk delete here as well if you like. But the real winner for gaining space in Gmail is found in your search bar. You really want to quickly find big files, the ones that are taking up all the space. So, in the search bar, simply type: has:attachment larger:25MB . Or whatever size you want. Gmail doesn’t let you send files larger than 25MB, so that’s a great place to start. You can of course narrow that down and search using, say, 10MB instead. This will easily allow you to find all the emails with large attachments. Once you’ve found the emails you can delete, select them with the toggle box to the left – or bulk delete using the main toggle above those. And remember, you have to empty your trash once you’re done deleting emails.
  • Gmail will hold deleted emails for 30 days in your trash before clearing, so if you need that space now, empty it out, using the empty trash now option. So now let’s talk about how to clear Google Photos storage, if you really just want to dive into photos and you don’t care about the other stuff. If you use Google Photos a lot, that can be taking up a ton of Google Drive storage too.
  • You can head to photos.google.com and again click on storage on the left. Here, you will get an estimate on how long it’ll take you to run out of storage, which is super helpful. But, you’ll also have a quick section here of items to review and delete. These include large files, blurry photos, screenshots and more. So if you want to quickly review your large photos and video, just click on that and then select which ones you’d like to delete. So this is similar to how you’d do it in one fell swoop in Google One, but here you can get more granular. And remember to delete your photos trash once you’ve cleared out the space. This is crucial because Google Photos actually keeps trashed photos for 60 days before deleting them forever. So, remember at the top we went into our Google drive storage and got a quick list of files using up drive storage space? Well, let’s head back there for just another quick tip or two.

From your Google Drive, so that’s drive.google.com, we’re in our little storage section here, but I just want to point out that you can also pop on over to the shared with me section. And from here, it may be helpful for you to organize the files based on the share date, in order to sort from oldest to newest. You just click this arrow to the right of the share date option to reverse the order. Now you’ll have the oldest ones first so you can shift select a whole whack of files from here that you don’t need anymore. And, just like everything else, remember to empty out your trash when you’re all done because any deleted files will be held for 30 days. Another thing to keep in mind, a lot of this can be done on mobile too. If you want a snapshot of your storage you can do that right from the Google Drive app. Tap on the hamburger menu then tap on storage. Here, you’ll get your snapshot and if you click on view details you can see what’s using up the most space.

Tips: Clear Your Space Using Mobile

if you want to clear Google Drive storage on mobile, just download the Google One app, then in the home tab select the option to clean up account storage and you’ll be able to follow those same steps we did from desktop at the beginning of the video. It’s really that easy! I know! So that’s how to quickly clear Google Drive storage. May you run free in all your available space! Now I want to hear from you. Have you run out of storage? Have you tried these tips? Let everyone know in the comments below.

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