How to Clear and Delete WhatsApp Chats
You may occasionally want to clear your device of old WhatsApp chats. Whether it’s the start of a new year, a new season, or you just want to start afresh, wiping your WhatsApp clean is a good starting point.
If you’ve never done that before or it’s been a while, we’ll show you how. Keep reading to learn how to clear and delete your WhatsApp chats on your device.
Why Clear or Delete WhatsApp Chats?
You can end up with a lot of old, irrelevant, and unwanted chats on WhatsApp. The app can end up taking up too much storage space on your phone.
There are ways to save data while using WhatsApp, and you can enable disappearing messages on WhatsApp. However, those solutions don’t quite do the trick. The aim is to rid your WhatsApp of your chats like you would delete messages on your iPhone.
This will make your WhatsApp feel lighter and give you peace of mind. It also allows you to start from scratch, which makes it easier to control the chats you keep going forward. After all, it’s easier to delete chats when you only have a few to get through rather than going through dozens.
Before you move forward, let’s ensure you’re clear about what you’re about to do. Clearing a WhatsApp chat removes all the messages in a chat but keeps the chat open. That means you can find the chat in WhatsApp’s Chat tab. Deleting a chat, on the other hand, clears your conversations with a contact and deletes your chat with them. You won’t be able to find the chat in the Chat tab. If you want to talk to a contact whose chat you’ve deleted, you’ll have to start a new conversation with them.
How to Clear Individual and Group Chats on WhatsApp
Fortunately, the process of clearing WhatsApp chats is the same for individual and group chats. If you’ve kept the same WhatsApp chats for years, you might want to clear those chats of all those old, cringe-worthy messages.
Given the number of people you can add to a WhatsApp group chat, and how out-of-control it can get, it’s understandable why you’d need to clear it too.
Follow the steps below to clear a WhatsApp chat on iOS:
- Open the WhatsApp app on your iPhone.
- Open a chat and tap the information at the top of the screen.
- Scroll down and tap Clear Chat (you can also swipe left from the Chat tab and select More > Clear Chat.)
- Tap Delete All Messages to confirm your decision.
The chat should now be empty.
To clear chats on Android, follow these steps: in the Chats tab, open the individual or group chat you want to clear. Tap More options > More > Clear chat. Decide if you want to delete starred messages and select Delete media in this chat. Tap Clear.
If you like to use WhatsApp on mobile and PC at the same time, consider clearing chats on the desktop app too. Here’s how:
- Open the WhatsApp app and go to the chat you want to clear.
- Click on the downward-facing arrow in the top-right corner and select Clear messages.
- Click Confirm on the pop-up window.
How to Clear All WhatsApp Chats
If you want to start all your chats afresh, consider clearing all of them at once.
Follow the steps below to clear all the WhatsApp chats on your iPhone:
- Tap the Settings tab and select Chats > Clear All Chats at the bottom of the screen.
- Enter your mobile phone number and tap Clear All Chats.
The process is slightly different on Android. In the Chats tab, tap the three-dot menu icon and choose Settings > Chats > Chat history. Tap Clear all chats. Select Delete starred messages and Delete media in chats. Finally, tap Clear Messages.
How to Delete Individual and Group Chats on WhatsApp
Maybe you’ve cleared the chats you didn’t need and realized you’re better off deleting the conversations altogether. Whether you won’t talk to those people anymore or don’t text them much, this would improve your WhatsApp experience.
That’s because you’ll have fewer empty chats to scroll past when getting to important ones. Whatever the reason, deleting individual chats on WhatsApp is just as easy as clearing them.
Here’s how to delete individual WhatsApp chats on iOS:
- Swipe left on the chat you want to delete in the Chat tab on WhatsApp and tap More > Delete Chat.
- Tap Delete Chat again to confirm your selection.
The process of deleting a group chat on your iPhone is similar, but the menu options are a bit different.
- Swipe left on the group chat you want to delete and tap More.
- Tap Delete Group > Delete Group.
If you never want to hear from a group again, start by exiting it within the chat. Just note that if you do exit the group and delete it, you won’t be able to participate in it again unless you’re added in the future.
On Android, tap and hold the chat you want to get rid of and tap Delete twice. To delete a group chat on Android, tap and hold the group chat, select More, and tap Delete Group twice. (If you’re asked to exit the group, tap that option first.)
On desktop, follow these steps:
- Open the group chat you want to delete.
- Click the downward-facing arrow in the top-right corner of the window.
- Click Delete group > Continue.
How to Delete All WhatsApp Chats
You can quickly bulk-delete all your WhatsApp conversations if deleting a few chats doesn’t quite do it. Here’s how:
On iOS, use these steps:
- Tap the Settings tab and select Chats.
- Go to the bottom of the screen and tap Delete All Chats.
- Enter your mobile phone number and tap Delete All Chats.
On Android, tap More options in the Chats tab and select Settings. Choose the Chats and Chat history options. Finally, tap Delete all chats. Please note that your group chats will still be visible. You must exit the groups you’re a part of and delete them to stop seeing them.
As with individual chats, you, unfortunately, can’t bulk-delete group chats on WhatsApp’s desktop app.
Wipe Your WhatsApp Clean
If your WhatsApp account could speak, it would have a lot of stories to tell—especially if you’ve kept the same chats for years. Give yourself a fresh start by clearing and deleting old chats. You might be surprised to learn what chats you’re still holding on to.
Clearing and deleting old conversations will free up space on your device and give you breathing room. After your first cleanup, repeat the process every few months to keep your WhatsApp light and airy.