How To Empty Trash on iPad (2023 Step-by-Step iOS Guide)

At some point you may start seeing your Goodnotes lagging.

I know it can be a real pain so here’s how to empty the trash on iPad to free up storage space and keeps your device running smoothly. In this guide, I will walk you through the simple steps on how to empty trash on iPad using the Files, Photos, Mail, iOS Notes, and Goodnotes 5 apps.

How to Empty Trash on iPad in 2023

Empty Trash Files on iPad

1| Launch the File App

  • Locate the “File” app on your iPad’s home screen and tap to open it. The File app is represented by a blue folder icon and is typically pre-installed on all iPads.

2| Access the “Recently Deleted” Folder

  • Once you’re in the File app open the fly-out navigation menu on the left side of the screen. 
  • Scroll down and find the “Recently Deleted” folder. Tap on it to access the contents of the folder.

3| Select and Delete Files

  • Inside the “Recently Deleted” folder, you will find all the files and folders that are currently in your iPad’s trash. You can review the files to ensure you don’t accidentally delete anything important.
  • To delete all the files at once, tap the “Select” button located at the top of the screen. If you want to select all files at once, tap the “Select All” button. Alternatively, you can choose individual files by tapping on them.
  • After selecting the desired files, tap the “Delete” button at the bottom of the screen. Depending on the number and size of the files, the process may take a few moments.

Empty Photo Trash Folder on iPad

Similar to deleting the imaged from the File app, you’ll need to open the Photos app, look for the fly-out navigation and locate the “Recent Deleted” folder. When opening that folder you may be asked to add the iPad password, and delete the recently deleted images.

Empty Junk Mail on iPad

Deleting trash in your email accounts can help.

So open the Mail app, look for the fly-out navigation and locate the email account installed on the iPad. Under your email account name you should have a few folders (“Inbox”, “Drafts”, “Sent” etc) including the “Junk” and “Bin” folders. Go through these last 2 folders one by one and select and delete all trash emails.


If you have more email addresses repeat this process for each.

Empty Trash on Your iPad Notes

If you’re using Goodnotes app chances are you don’t use the Notes app too. However, if you do, and have deleted many Notes, then empty the trash in that app too. You’ll find the “Recently Deleted” folder in the app’s fly-out menu.

Delete Trash Bin in Goodnotes 5

Now, since you’re cleaning up your iPad from trash, don’t forget to also empty the app you need for digital planning. In Goodnotes app you can find the bin under Settings > Trash Bin.


iPad still lagging after deleting files?

If deleting your trash files did not improve your digital planning experience, you may want to upgrade to a newer iPad version instead. With all the iOS and apps updates, your iPad may need to handle all the involved processes.

Credit: Amazon | Apple iPad Pro 11 inch 4th Generation

Delete files: better iPad workspace

Emptying the trash on your iPad is a simple yet effective way to free storage space and optimize your device’s performance. By following the steps outlined in this guide, you can easily delete unwanted files and keep your iPad workspace clean.

Make it a habit to regularly empty your iPad’s trash to maintain a clutter-free and efficient device.

And now, you can enjoy a smooth digital planning experience, using your favorite digital planner templates for Goodnotes.

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