How to remove temporary files on Windows 10

Are you running out of storage space? Windows 10 has a few ways to remove those temporary files wasting space on your computer.

Windows 10 remove temporary files

On Windows 10, temporary files are those app files stored on your computer to hold information for a short period. In addition, the system has many different temporary file types, including those leftover files after installing a new version, upgrade logs, error reporting, temporary Windows installation files, and more.

Typically, these files won’t cause any issues. However, they can grow quickly using valuable space on the hard drive, which can be the reason preventing you from installing a new version of the operating system, or they can be the reason you are running out of space on your computer. If you use Windows 10, you have a few ways to safely remove temporary files using the Settings app and the Disk Cleanup tool.

This guide will teach you how to quickly delete temporary files on Windows 10 to free up space or reclaim storage space after installing a feature update.

Delete temporary files on Windows 10 from Settings

To remove temporary files on Windows 10, use these steps:

  1. Open Settings on Windows 10.

  2. Click on System.

  3. Click on Storage.

  4. Under the “Local Disk” section, click the Temporary files option.

    Temporary files settings

  5. Select the temporary files you want to remove.

  6. Click the Remove files button.

    Remove temp files on Windows 10

Once you complete the steps, junk files will be removed from your computer, freeing up space for more important files.

Delete temporary files automatically

Alternatively, you can use “Storage sense” to automatically free up space by removing those temporary files and content from the recycle bin.

To delete files wasting space automatically using Storage Sense on Windows 10, use these steps:

  1. Open Settings.

  2. Click on System.

  3. Click on Storage.

  4. Under the “Storage” section, turn on the toggle switch.

    Storage Sense enabled

  5. (Optional) Click the “Configure Storage Sense or run it now” option to adjust the cleanup settings or run Storage Sense on-demand.

    Configure storage sense

After completing the steps, Storage sense will delete most temporary files and those that have been in the recycle bin for more than 30 days. 

Delete temporary files on Windows 10 from Disk Cleanup

If you are getting a message about your device running out of space, you can also use the Disk Cleanup tool to delete temporary files to free up space on your device.

To remove Windows 10 temporary files from Disk Cleanup, use these steps:

  1. Open File Explorer.

  2. Click on This PC from the left navigation pane.

  3. Right-click the drive with the Windows 10 installation and select the Properties option.

    Windows 10 drive properties

  4. Click the Disk Cleanup button.

    Disk Cleanup settings

  5. Click the “Clean up system files” button.

  6. Check the items you want to delete. For example, Temporary Windows Installation Files, Windows upgrade log files, Recycle Bin, Temporary Files, and System created Windows Error Reporting.

    Disk Cleanup delete temp files

  7. Click the OK button.

  8. Click the Delete Files button.

Once you complete the steps, temporary files will permanently be deleted from your computer, making room for new files.

Delete temporary files on Windows 10 from Temp folder

To clear the temporary files from the Temp folder to free up space, use these steps:

  1. Open File Explorer.

  2. Type the following path in the address bar and press Enter:

  3. Click the Select all button from the Home tab.

  4. Click the Delete button from the Home tab.

    Temp folder delete files

  5. Click the Yes button to confirm.

After you complete the steps, Windows 10 will delete the files from the Temp folder, freeing up storage space on your computer.

About the author

Mauro Huculak is a Windows How-To Expert who started Pureinfotech in 2010 as an independent online publication. He has also been a Windows Central contributor for nearly a decade. Mauro has over 14 years of experience writing comprehensive guides and creating professional videos about Windows and software, including Android and Linux. Before becoming a technology writer, he was an IT administrator for seven years. In total, Mauro has over 20 years of combined experience in technology. Throughout his career, he achieved different professional certifications from Microsoft (MSCA), Cisco (CCNP), VMware (VCP), and CompTIA (A+ and Network+), and he has been recognized as a Microsoft MVP for many years. You can follow him on X (Twitter), YouTube, LinkedIn and Email him at [email protected].