Clean Google Photos Trash on Cloud

Vikas Medhekar
Updated on

Remember back in 2015 when Google Photos was new, posting weird selfies was a big trend. Remember those theme parks, snow destinations, mountain forests you visited with college friends? Remember those group photos you snapped with random travellers with stupid, tired faces? We dumped everything to Google Photos just because it was free, YAY!

Much like any other social media, Google Photos keeps reminding you of your past, and the world can see, share or troll it. We were all crazy once. Now, as you’re mature, you don’t want your potential employer or new partner to see them, do you? It’s important to curate what pops up on your Google Photos timeline.

Don’t worry, we won’t ask you to nuke your entire Google Photos account. That would be insane. Instead, we’ll help you clean up the trash and preserve only beautiful memories. Let’s begin.

Deleting Google Photos from Cloud Only

You can delete the photos from cloud-only while keeping a copy on your device. As a result, you will be able to find the original photos in your camera roll. You can use the File Manager to access them on an Android device or Photo Gallery app if you own an iPhone. Remember, since you will be turning on the sync function again, all the photos on your device will appear on Google Photos as well. Follow the steps below:

  • Open the Google Photos app using your mobile device. Visit Settings and select Backup & Sync. Make sure that the Backup feature is disabled. Now visit the Google Photos Website and log-in using your Google account.
  • Then, select the photos you wish to delete and click the Bin icon located in the top right corner.

Deleting Google Photos Only From Device

Google Photos is designed to save two copies of your shot, one on your device while the other on the app. As a result, your device will end up sacrificing too much space. So if for instance, you are traveling and your device does not have enough space for more photos, and you wish to store some of them on the cloud only while removing them from the device at the same time. You can do the following.

  • Launch the Google Photos app
  • Click the Menu icon located on the top left corner.
  • Select Settings, followed by Backup & Sync.
  • If for some reason, your photos are not synced, turn on the Sync feature and allow the photos to be synced first.
  • Once the photos have been synced, switch the Backup & Sync feature off.
  • Now visit the Settings page again and select Free up device storage. Google Photos will delete any synced photo located in your photo gallery.

Deleting Google Photos From All Platforms

If you simply have had enough photos on your Google Photos app and mobile device and wish to delete them from all platforms, you might want to first consider saving the photos somewhere. If you happen to delete the synced photos from Google Photos app, they will automatically be deleted from your mobile device, Google Photos website, and even your File Manager app. To do this,

  • Visit the Google Photos app and launch it.
  • Select the photos or albums you wish to delete individually and click the Bin icon.

Deleting Photos Permanently

The good thing about Google Photos is that even if you delete all the photos, they are still not going to be deleted permanently. The reason being that Google Photos simply moves them around. This is helpful and a lifesaver if you accidentally end up deleting important photos. Therefore, Google Photos simply sends them to the Trash folder. The files remain there for 60 days unless you wish to clean it manually. Otherwise, Google Photos will automatically clean the Trash. To do this,

  • Open the Google Photos app and click on the Menu icon
  • Then, click on the Bin icon.
  • Now select the photos individually and click Delete or simply select and hit delete all.

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