Hey there! Is your Android phone constantly popping up warnings about storage being full? Can‘t install any new apps or take more pictures? Don‘t worry, we‘ve all been there. The good news is that freeing up space on your device is easy – you just need to know the right steps. In this post, I‘ll walk you through how to clear your Android‘s internal storage in a few simple steps.
First though, let‘s quickly understand – why does your phone storage keep filling up?
Why Your Android‘s Internal Storage Keeps Filling Up
There are a few main culprits that gradually eat up your precious gigabytes:
Photos and videos – Let‘s be honest, most of us take tons of photos and videos with our phones these days. The average Android user has around 3,000 photos stored on their device according to a Zipwhip study. At around 3MB per photo, that‘s nearly 10GB used up just for pictures!
Apps – We all love downloading new apps, but most of us only regularly use a handful of apps. The average Android phone has around 95 apps installed according to Statista, but we likely use less than 20 on a daily basis. Unused apps just take up valuable storage space.
Documents and downloads – Whether it‘s ebooks, pdfs, random files you download, all those documents add up over time and eat into your free storage.
App cache data – The temporary files and data that apps store gets cluttered over time. This "cache" isn‘t useful but hogs space.
System data – Your Android OS and system files also take up a chunk of internal storage.
Knowing what‘s using up your storage is the first step to freeing it up! Now let‘s get to those solutions…
Step 1: Back Up Your Photos and Videos
Photos and videos tend to take up the bulk of storage space. Luckily, you don‘t have to lose any of them! Before you delete, make sure to back up your media to the cloud so you have a copy.
The easiest way to do this is using Google Photos – it gives you free unlimited storage for "high quality" photos and videos. Just download the Google Photos app, set it to sync your media, and it‘ll automatically back up any new photos/videos you take:
Once your photos are backed up, it‘s safe to delete them from your phone‘s internal storage.
Pro Tip: Only keep your most recent or important photos stored locally on your phone. Set Google Photos to save space by occasionally deleting locally stored items over 30 days old.
Step 2: Delete Large Files and Downloads You Don‘t Need
Apps like Files or My Files allow you to browse and manage all your internal storage contents easily. Open your device‘s file manager and check the Downloads folder and any other folders taking up a lot of space:
Sort by size – This lets you see the largest files at the top so you know what‘s taking up room.
Delete any big files you don‘t need – For example, maybe you have a 1GB video attachment in your email that you already viewed. No need to keep eating up valuable storage!
Clear temporary files – Your browser and other apps may store temporary download files that can build up. Deleting these can free up gigs of space.
Pro Tip: Always be sure to only delete items that you have backups of or no longer need. Once deleted, they are gone for good!
Step 3: Uninstall Unused Apps
We all download more apps than we actually use on a regular basis. Uninstalling apps you never/rarely open will free up a surprisingly large amount of storage space:
- Open Settings > Apps to view all your apps
- Sort by size to see which are taking up the most room
- Uninstall any apps you don‘t remember using recently or at all
Stick to uninstalling apps you know for sure you won‘t miss. For example, maybe you played that fun puzzle game for a bit but haven‘t opened it in months – time to delete it!
Pro Tip: You can always reinstall apps later on if you change your mind, so don‘t be afraid to remove ones you don‘t regularly use.
Step 4: Clear App Cache and Data
Beyond just removing apps entirely, clearing out the cache and data that apps store can free up a lot of space:
- App cache contains temporary files stored by apps for quicker loading and other purposes. These can get cluttered over time.
- App data is information the app saves, like login details, settings, and more.
Go to Settings > Apps > Select App > Storage to clear cache and/or data for each app:
This frees up space without losing anything important. Cache files are safe to delete, and deleting app data just resets settings/logins which you can set up again.
Pro Tip: Sort apps by size to target the biggest space hogs first when clearing cache/data.
Step 5: Check System Storage Usage
After tackling your user data like photos, videos, and apps, your Android‘s system data may also be taking up more space than needed. Unfortunately, you can‘t directly clear most system data, but a few things can help:
Check for any large crash/error logs – Sometimes these can build up and eat storage, clearing them helps.
Update Android OS – Newer OS versions include storage optimizations.
Restart device – Power cycling your device essentially gives the storage a fresh start.
Factory reset – As a last resort, a complete wipe resets everything including system data.
Start with less drastic measures like updating and restarting your device to see if it frees up stubborn system space. Back up data first if considering a factory reset.
Free Up Space and Keep It That Way
Whew, that covers the key steps to free up all the internal storage on your Android! To recap:
Back up and delete photos/videos, especially older ones
Remove large unused files and downloads
Uninstall apps you don‘t regularly use
Clear app cache and data
Check system storage usage
Following these tips, you‘ll get back gigabytes of free space! Just be sure to adopt smart ongoing habits:
Use cloud sync apps like Google Photos to limit local media storage
Regularly clear app cache/data
Only keep documents/files you truly need
Prune unused apps every few months
Monitor your storage breakdown so you can spot issues before your phone fills up again!
Let me know if you have any other questions! I hope this guide helps you finally conquer your Android‘s storage woes.