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Why you should empty your deleted items in Outlook



Take a look at your Deleted Items folder - how many deleted emails are in there?

In a recent survey of business email customers about 30 percent stored more than 1,000 items in their Deleted Items folder.  Leaving so many undeleted emails can impact on the performance of your email account - slowing down access and using up mailbox storage space.

Standard POP emails in Outlook are stored in a PST file.  This single file is very important as it contains all your emails, all email folders, including the Deleted Items folder, Contacts, Calendar and Tasks.  If this file corrupts you can literally lose everything!.  There is debate how big a PST file can get before it stops working but the trick to keeping your Outlook running smoothly is to keep it as small as possible.

Even our Xmail customers using our cloud hosted fully synchronised service will experience much slower performance with a full bin. A lot of people leave email in their Deleted Items in case they need it later. However this is not the best way of keeping emails safe for future use.  Would you use your office bin as a filing cabinet?

Set up your Outlook to stay fit and slim

You can spend lots of time individually rifling through your Deleted Items permanently deleting emails.  Or if you are confident that all the items in your Deleted Items are never needed again you can right click on the Deleted Items icon and select Empty Folder.  However you can set Outlook to do this task for you.

How to get Outlook to automatically empty your Deleted Items

1. Open Outlook and click the File tab (top left)

2. Select Options and then Advanced

3. Tick the box entitled Empty Deleted Items folders when exiting Outlook (looks like this...)

Empty Deleted Items

4. Click the OK button

That's it, your bin will be emptied every time you close Outlook.

Tip: If you don't want Outlook to keep warning you every time you close you can do this:

1. Open Outlook and click the File tab (top left)

2. Select Options and then Advanced

3. Untick the box entitled Prompt for confirmation before permanently deleting items (looks like this...)

uncheck prompt

4. Click the OK button

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