Empty Recycle Bin and Delete Temporary Files Automatically [Windows 10]

By | September 2, 2017
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Empty Recycle Bin and Delete Temporary Files Automatically [Windows 10]

Every time you delete a file, Windows puts it into the Recycle Bin. Those of you who have been using Windows as long as we have will remember that the Recycle Bin goes all the way back to Windows 95.  Unless you periodically do cleanups using Windows Disk Cleanup or some other clean up tool like CCleaner, etc., the number of files in the Recycle Bin can grow and use a lot of disk space.

Windows 10 Storage Sense Cleans Up Automatically

Windows 10 makes it easy and automatic to clear the Recycle Bin every 30 days. Plus Windows can also automatically clean up some other unnecessary temporary files too.

Just enable it!

All you have to do to enable this feature is to go to Settings > System and click on Storage:

Cloudeight InfoAve Windows Tips & Tricks

In the Storage section, look for “Storage Sense”. Turn the switch to “On”.

Next click on “Change how we free up space”…

Make sure that “Delete temporary files that my apps aren’t using” and “Delete files that have been in the recycle bin for over 30 days”, are both turned on.

If you want to clean up your recycle bin and temporary files immediately, just click on the “Clean now” button. When it’s done cleaning, it will show you how much space was cleaned up. As you can see above, over 2.5 GB of drive space was freed up in the last 30 days.

2 Bonus Tips!

#1. If you accidentally delete a file, just press CTRL + Z to bring it back!

#2. The fastest way to get to Window 10 Settings is:   Hold down the Windows Key and tap the i key.

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4 thoughts on “Empty Recycle Bin and Delete Temporary Files Automatically [Windows 10]

  1. robins

    Wish I knew which version people on here are using, I’m on ver 1607, and cannot find half of these settings.
    There is no ‘storage sense’ on my settings. like many other ideas, great if you have them and can find them.

    1. infoave Post author

      Current up-to-date version of Windows is version 1703 (Creators Update). This tip was written for that version. In the next version, Microsoft is going to improve upon Storage Sense by giving users more options.

  2. Margaret Crozier

    Thank you for this tip. I have enabled clean up and now won’t delete files permanently. So many time I have wanted to recover deleted files but was unable to do so. Ctrl + Z never worked for me with those deletions.

    1. infoave Post author

      Hi Margaret, CTRL+Z must be done as soon as you delete something – in other words, you can’t delete something and then something else and use CTRL+Z to bring the first item back. It only works right after you delete something.


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