How to find Trash in Google Docs (Complete Guide)

Deleting a Google Docs file is one of the simplest tasks. But How to find trash in Google Docs?

All you need to do is right-click on the document and click on the “Remove” option, or simply click on the “Move to trash” option from the File menu.

Additionally, if you want to recover a doc file in the future, then you can easily do it by accessing the “Trash” option.

Don’t know where to find trash in Google Docs? Well, don’t worry, and follow this article

How to find trash in Google Docs?

When it comes down to selecting a perfect cloud workspace for work, most of the crowd will blindly go for Google Workspace, as it has most of the tools for all their needs.

And one of the most used tools from Google Workspace is Google Docs, which from top to bottom looks and functions like Microsoft Word. So, you can easily use it for all your professional and personal use.

Additionally, there is also a trash folder that contains all of your deleted Google files, which can also be accessed to restore or permanently delete a file from the Workspace. 

However, this option is not easily visible on the home page and needs some navigation to get a hold of. 

For instance, if you are on a PC, then you will need to access your Google Drive homepage to access the “Trash” option.

Whereas on mobile, you can easily access it via Google Docs as well as Google Drive.

Need proper step-by-step instructions for the same?

Well then, follow the next segment.

Finding trash in Google Docs via PC:

As mentioned earlier, the “Trash” option can only be accessed via your Google Drive, if you are on your PC. So, all you need to do is;

  • Open Google Drive on your PC.
  • Then, login into your Google account.
  • You will now have access to your own Google Drive page.
  • Now, you will see a menu visible on the left-hand side of the screen.
Google Drive menu how to find trash in Google Docs
  • Lastly, click the “Trash” option to access the “Trash folder” in Google Drive.
Trash option in Google Drive menu how to find trash in Google Docs

You will be able to see all the files that you have recently deleted.

Finding trash in Google Docs via mobile phone (Android & iOS):

This is one of the greatest USPs of Google, that it makes everything available for its users on both mobile phones as well PC. 

So, if you are accessing Google Docs on a mobile phone, even then you can access the “Trash” option easily. You just simply have to open your Google Docs or Google Drive app and tap on the Hamburger menu. There you will see the “Trash” option.

Below is a step-by-step tutorial to make it easier for you to understand. 

  • Open Google Docs, or Google Drive app on your mobile phone.
  • Now, tap on the “Hamburger” menu to open up a new list of options.
Hamburger menu in Google drive how to find trash in Google Docs
  • Lastly, tap on the “Trash” option to open it up.
Trash option in hamburger menu of Google docs
  • That’s it, you have gained access to the trash folder of your Google Docs or Google Drive app on your mobile phone.

All your recently deleted files will be accessible from here. 

Now, what if you want to restore a deleted Google Docs document from the trash folder? 

Is it possible?

Yes, certainly it is, and to guide you with the same, we have jotted down a simple instruction manual below.

How to restore deleted files on Google Docs?

Sometimes it happens that you need to access a Google Docs file that you had deleted previously from your Google Drive. 

Now, this is a no-problem area because Google Drive easily allows its users to restore a file from the trash folder.

So, are you ready for some file restoration process?

Well then, just follow these instructions carefully.

Restoring doc files on PC:

  • Open Google Drive on your PC.
  • Now, you will see a menu visible on the left-hand side of the screen.
  • Next, click on the “Trash” option.
  • Then, select the files that you want to restore.
  • Now, you can either right-click on the selected documents and then click on “Restore.”
Restore and delete forever option in Trash folder
  • Or directly click on the “Restore from trash” option (clock icon) visible in the top right-hand corner of the screen.
Restore sign at top right hand corner of folder
  • And that’s it, your deleted Google Docs document has been successfully restored to your Google Drive.

Restoring doc files on mobile (Android & iOS):

  • Open Google Docs or Google Drive app on your mobile phone.
  • Then, tap on the “Hamburger” menu that is visible in the left-hand side corner of the screen.
  • A list of options will open up.
  • Next, tap on the “Trash” option.
  • All your deleted Google docs files will appear on the screen.
  • Now, if you want to restore a single file back to your Google Drive, then all you need to do is tap on the three-dotted vertical menu, and then tap on “Restore.”
Three dotted vertical menu having Restore option
  • But, if you want to restore multiple files back to Google Drive, then all you need to do is select the respective files, tap on the three-dotted vertical menu visible at the top right-hand corner of the screen, and then tap on “Restore.”
Three dotted menu at Top right hand corner of trash folder of google docs
  • And that’s it, the deleted files have been restored back to your Google Drive.

Now, you can normally edit or share the file with others without any problem.

Note 1: You are only liable to restore files from the “Trash” folder for up to 30 days. After that, Drive will delete those folders permanently.

Note 2: Google only allows you to restore files that were created by you. So, if you are trying to restore a file that was shared with you, then probably it is not possible to restore those files back to your Google Drive.

However, you can either tell the creator to share it with you before deleting the file, so that you can make a copy on your drive. Or you can request them to pass on the authority to you.

How to permanently delete files on Google Docs?

Similar to the restoration process, you can also decide to permanently delete the files from the “Trash” folder if you no longer need them.

But remember, once you permanently delete a file from your Google “Trash” folder, you won’t be able to access it in the future.

So, if you are confident that you want to permanently delete files from the “Trash” folder, then follow this tutorial that is mentioned below.

Permanently deleting files in Google Docs via PC:

  • Open Google Drive on your PC.
  • Then, click on the “Trash” option visible at the left-hand side corner of the screen.
  • You will get a list of files that were deleted from your main Google Drive page.
  • Next, select the files that you wish to delete permanently.
  • Now, all you need to do is either right-click on the files and then select “Delete forever.”
Delete forever option in trash folder of Google docs
  • Or, click on the “Bin” icon that is visible at the top right corner of the screen.
Bin icon at top right hand corner of trash folder of Google docs
  • And that’s it. The files that were selected are now no longer a part of your Google Drive account.

You can also empty the trash all at once by clicking on the “Empty trash” option.

Empty trash option at top right corner of trash folder of Google docs

Permanently deleting files in Google Docs via mobile:

  • Open Google Docs or Google Drive app on your mobile phone.
  • Then, click on the “Hamburger” menu visible at the top left corner of the screen.
  • Now, tap on the “Trash” option from the list.
  • You will get a list of documents that were deleted from your main Google Drive page.
  • Lastly, all you need to do is, tap on the three-dotted vertical menu followed by the “Delete Forever” option.
Three dotted menu with Delete forever option in Google Docs

However, if you want to delete multiple files permanently, then it is only possible through the Google Drive app. All you need to do is select the files > tap on the three-dotted vertical menu > and then tap on the “Delete Forever” option

You can also tap on the “Delete” icon after selecting the files.

Delete Icon at top right corner of trash folder of Google docs

What to do if you are not able to find your Doc file in the trash?

If you are not able to find your Doc file inside the trash folder of your Google Drive, then there are basically two possibilities;

  • The file was automatically deleted by Google after the 30 days recovery period ended.

OR

  • Maybe your file was never deleted but went missing in the crowd of files.

Now, in the first scenario, you can’t do anything to undo the deletion. Maybe you can contact the Google help center but probably they won’t be able to help either.

But, if you know that your file was never deleted, then there is still a ray of hope to find your file by following these two methods.

The first is to click on the “(i) button at the top right corner to open the details pane. It will show you all the details of recent activities including, moving, deleting, or renaming. So, just go through the details and find your doc.

i Button at top right corner of Google drive

The second one is to use the search bar that is visible at the top center of the Google Drive page. You can also click on the “Settings” option to filter out files based on words, location, words, shared with, follow-up, and date of modification.

Filer icon at top right corner of Google drive

Conclusion:

Google Docs is a great tool that can be used to edit as well as create documents on the go. It also allows a user to delete a file if he/she is not willing to keep it on their Drive, which is a better choice if you wish to free up some space on your cloud storage.

However, if you feel that you have mistakenly deleted a file and want to restore it back from the “Trash” folder, then all you need to do is access the trash folder using above mentioned methods, and then restore it back in just a few clicks.

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