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November 12, 2012

Settings to Adjust on your iPhone for Deleting Mail

If you are having issues deleting messages off your iphone, it might be an issue with the way the network sees the Trash folder on your phone. It’s not common, but it happens.  They say it is not a problem, it’s easily fixed. Here’s what you need to do…

1. Click on “Settings”

2. Click on your account in the Accounts list, and click on your address to get into the Account main screen.

3. Scroll to the very bottom of the Account window to the “Advanced” tab. Click on the “Advanced” button.

Here’s the Advanced settings in your iPhone’s Mail settings. This is where your iPhone keeps track of the Mail folders on the email server – just like the folders in your MacMail or Outlook application on your computer. Basically,  we just need to toggle the Trash folder off, save the settings, and then toggle it back on again. If your iphone is broke or is malfunctioning then visit this iphone repair san diego to help you. To do that, we…

4. Click on “Deleted Mailbox”.

5. You’ll see the Trash can checked as “Active”. Simply select a different folder – doesn’t matter which one (for this example, you could just select “Suppliers”.

6. Once you’ve selected a folder other than the Trash folder, save your settings by backing out of these windows until you get back to the main “Account” window. Click “Done” in the top right of the screen (refer to the first photo on this page) and back completely out of your Settings.

7. Now, click back into your Settings, and get back to your Mail settings – we’re going to re-select our Trash folder.

8. Go back thru the exact same steps we went thru above and get back to the Advanced folder listing (refer to the second photo on this page).

9. Re-select your “Trash” folder.

10. Save your settings once again by backing out until you can click “Done”.

That’s it, if you need more help then read this article – you should now be able to delete mail out of your account from your phone.


  1. graha.

    I have been trying to fix thia issue for my mom. I can not for the life of me find ‘advanced’ under the mail settings.

    Im pretty tech savvy if not familiar with mac. And there is no advanced under the email settings. What am i doing wrong?

    • No problem 🙂 Just go to Settings » Mail, Contacts, Calendars » (choose the email account listed) » Account » then scroll to the bottom of the window & select “Advanced.”

  2. Dean C

    I was having problems receiving my normal emails … kept getting the standard apple error message ‘ unable to access server ‘ … so i deleted the email account from the phone and re added it … that solved the receiving email problem, but somewhere in the process it changed my settings to delete the email once i read it … i had to click on ‘other’ , than wait for the pop up screen at the bottom of the screen, click on ‘move’ , and then click on the trash icon once it showed up … a very long complicated method for deleting email … i followed the above information and was able to bring back the ‘delete’ function with a simple side swipe … thank you for posting this tip

  3. Thanks Heaps! you made it sooo simple

  4. bo rich

    any incoming email on my home pc is also routed to my iphone6. The problem is after a few minutes the email is deleted from my phone. It is not just sent to trash, it is completely gone forever from my phone. How can I stop my phone from deleting email ? The idea is to be able to read my email when I am away from home.

    • Make sure you are using IMAP protocol to check your email on all devices – sounds to me like you are using POP on one of these devices and it is throwing off the synchronization between them.

  5. LG265

    Thank you SO much, this has been bugging me for months and is now fixed 🙂

  6. Dawn

    THANK YOU! I have a newer iOS, but I found it eventually (just an extra click or two). I would not have figured it out without this page (and I know my way around an iPhone, lol).

  7. Dawn

    WOW! Your post from 4 freakin years ago solved what no other post I could find would. Thank you!! I was so frustrated with this and now it’s fixed. 🙂

    • Glad to hear it! Now if iOS 10 weren’t so buggy in other areas, that would be nice 🙂

  8. Allan

    After reading several other “solutions” to the “Can’t move the message to trash” message, this WORKED!

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