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How to Delete Your YouTube History

Last edited: October 26, 2020
Reading time: 5 minutes, 43 seconds
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Summary: How to Delete Your YouTube History

To delete your YouTube history, simply follow these steps:

  1. Go to youtube.com and log in to your account
  2. Click the History option on the left-handed menu
  3. Select “Clear all watch history” from the list
  4. Confirm the deletion on your watch history through the pop-up

Want to know more about why you might want to delete your YouTube history? Check out our full article below.

YouTube LogoYouTube tracks and stores your viewing history through your Google account. While this is useful if you want recommendations based on what you’ve seen in the past, there are some people who would prefer their YouTube history not be tracked.

If you want to keep your recently viewed videos off YouTube, or want to remove your viewing history from the service, you’ll need to login to your account on your device. As long as you’re logged in, you can edit your viewing history on both desktop and through your mobile devices.

In this walkthrough we’re going to explain how you can delete your YouTube history on your desktop, as well as on your phone. The process is straightforward and only takes a couple minutes to complete.

How to Delete Your Entire YouTube Watch History on Desktop

If you want to delete all of your YouTube history on your desktop, you need to follow these steps:

  1. Head over to youtube.com and log in to your account
  2. Click the History option on the menu to the left of your screen
  3. Select “Clear all watch history” from the options in the list
  4. Confirm the deletion on your watch history through the pop-up that appears on your screen

You can also clear other history types through these steps such as your search history, your comments history and your live chat history.

Another useful feature if you don’t want your watch history to be tracked is to turn off “Pause watch history”. When you click this option a pop-up appears telling you that YouTube will have a harder time finding videos to recommend for you. Pausing your watch history may also mean it’ll be more difficult for you to find past videos you’ve watched on YouTube.

How to Delete Specific YouTube Video History on Desktop

If you only want to remove some videos from your watch history on YouTube, just follow the steps below:

  1. Visit youtube.com and log in to your account
  2. Click the History option on the menu to the left of your screen
  3. Hover over the video you want to remove
  4. Click the X button to the right of the video title

By picking and choosing the videos you remove from your history you’re refining the recommendations YouTube gives you based on the remaining videos. This is a good step to take if you have other people using your YouTube account but don’t want those videos impacting your YouTube homepage.

How to Set Up Auto-Delete On YouTube

If you want to set up auto-delete on your YouTube account, just complete the following:

  1. Go to youtube.com and log in to your account
  2. Click the History option on the menu to the left of your screen
  3. Now select “Manage all activity”
  4. Choose “Auto-delete” from the middle of the new page
  5. On the pop-up select either “Auto-delete activity older than 3 months” or Auto-delete activity older than 18 months”

This is a useful feature if you want your history to be tracked for short-term recommendations but would rather not have that information stored for longer than specific periods of time. If you decide you want to have your history tracked through YouTube again you can edit these settings by following the steps above.

How to Delete Your YouTube History on the Mobile App

If you want to delete your YouTube history on the mobile app, just follow these steps:

  1. Open the YouTube app on your device
  2. Select the “Library” button on the bottom right corner of the screen
  3. On the Library screen, press the “History” option
  4. Now press the three lines or circles in the upper right corner of the screen
  5. Choose “History Controls” and select “Clear Watch History”
  6. On the pop-up, confirm the deleting of your watch history

On the YouTube app, you can also clear your search history, pause your watch history, pause your search history, and manage other YouTube activities such as turning on auto-delete.

How to Delete Specific YouTube Video History on the Mobile App

If you use YouTube on a mobile app, you can follow these steps to delete specific YouTube videos from your history:

  1. Open the YouTube app on your device
  2. Select the “Library” button on the bottom right corner of the screen
  3. On the Library screen, press the “History” option
  4. Tap on the three circles next to the video you want to remove
  5. Select “Remove from watch history”

You can follow the steps above for any mobile device using YouTube such as iOS and Android.

How to Influence YouTube Video Recommendations

YouTube Video RecommendationsIf you want to influence the videos YouTube recommends to you there are a few actions you can take. If you want to go back to a blank slate with YouTube you need to reset your search history and your watch history. You may need to give it some time to reset completely so you can start from scratch.

Another option is to press the three dots on the video and select either “Not Interested” or “Don’t Recommend Channel”. By choosing “Not Interested” the video will be removed from your YouTube homepage. If you choose “Don’t Recommend Channel”, YouTube won’t recommend any videos by the channel again on your profile.

While some people might want to simply edit their homepage by deleting videos from their history, others do so to protect their privacy. Deleting your history can help with that, but you might also want to look into some security features like a VPN.

Why You Should Use a VPN with YouTube

There are a lot of reasons you might want to protect your viewing history when it comes to using Google services like YouTube. The company has a history of collecting personal information and using it strategically based on its needs and YouTube is no different. Protecting your personal information by using a VPN or not storing your viewing history is a good way to avoid your data from ending up in the hands of third-party trackers and other interested parties.

Another reason you might want to use a VPN on YouTube is to unblock videos that are restricted in your country. By accessing a server in the country where the video is allowed through a VPN, you’ll be able to watch the video that was previously blocked.

Conclusion

YouTube is a great place to spend hours watching videos geared towards your interest. You might need to edit your viewing history if you share your account through different family devices or no longer want certain recommendations.

By following the steps above, you’ll be able to edit your every aspect of your YouTube history to suit your needs. You can also use the tips in this article to get more relevant recommendations based on your current interests and not due to searches you did years ago.

Tech writer
Brad is a digital marketing specialist with years of hands-on experience working in the industry. When he's not working, Brad spends his time with his young daughter and wife. Some of his hobbies include video games, reading, writing, and travelling.

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