How to Delete an Email Account on an iPhone

Remove an email address and all messages or just disable an account

iPhone screen showing option for deleting email account

iStock

Removing email accounts from the iPhone Mail app is a straightforward procedure, although you should consider alternatives to cut down on email noise before you decide to remove an account.

Instructions in this article apply to iOS 12. Directions are similar for recent versions of the Apple mobile operating system.

How to Remove an Email Account from an iPhone

Email accounts accessed through the Mail app are managed not from Mail, but from iOS. So to add or remove an account, you'll work through the Settings app, not the Mail app.

  1. ​Open Settings.

  2. Tap Passwords & Accounts. In earlier versions of iOS, tap ​Mail or Mail, Contacts, Calendars, then open Accounts.

  3. Select the email account you want to remove.

  4. Tap ​Delete Account.

    Passwords & Accounts, Gmail and Delete Account buttons in iOS Settings
  5. To confirm, tap Delete Account or, in some cases, tap ​Delete from My iPhone.

Considerations for Email Account Removal

Before you remove an email account, evaluate the implications.

Deleting an Email Account Removes All Emails From the iPhone

IMAP, POP, and Exchange, as well as accounts configured with automatic settings (such as Gmail, Outlook.com, and iCloud Mail), will have all content wiped from the iPhone — iOS Mail removes all emails and folders listed and created under the account. ​​In other words, you'll no longer see messages in the Mail app.

Deleting an Email Account From the iPhone Doesn't Delete the Account

When an email account is deleted from an iPhone, the email account and address remain unchanged. You can still receive and send emails on the web or in other email programs set up to use the email account.

Deleting an Email Account Doesn't Delete the Emails From the Server

For IMAP and Exchange accounts, nothing changes on the server or in any other email program set up to access the same account. iPhone Mail stops accessing the messages and folders, and you are no longer able to send email from the account using that app. Nothing changes for POP accounts either.

With POP, the iPhone may be the only place where emails are stored. This is the case if iOS Mail is set up to delete emails from the server after downloading them and the messages have not been saved anywhere else.

Deleting Calendars and Other Features of Your Account

Deleting an email account from an iPhone also removes calendars, notes, to-do items, and contacts that use this account. ​If you want access to those features, disable only email for the account.

Alternatives to Deleting an Account from Your iPhone

You don't need to delete an email account from the iPhone entirely to remove or hide emails.

Disable Email from Your Account

To turn off an email account on the iPhone but not disable access to the calendar, for example:

  1. ​In the Settings app, tap Passwords & Accounts. In older versions of iOS, tap Mail > Accounts.

  2. Choose an email account.

  3. For IMAP and Exchange accounts, turn off the Mail toggle switch. For POP email accounts, turn off ​Account​.

    Passwords & Accounts, Gmail, Mail toggle to OFF in iOS Settings

On older versions of iOS, tap Done. If you don't see the Done button, the changes are saved, and you can exit the settings.

Turn Off Notifications Only

You can also disable automatic mail checking or notifications for the account. Then you can receive and send messages from the account, but it remains hidden from sight and out of the way.

To turn off automatic mail checking for an account on an iPhone:

  1. From the Settings app, go to Passwords & Accounts. On older versions of iOS, tap Mail > Accounts.

  2. Tap Fetch New Data.

  3. Tap the email account.

  4. Select Manually. To find the Manual option on older versions of iOS, tap Select Schedule.

    Passwords & Accounts, Fetch New Data, Manually buttons in iOS Settings

Disable Notifications for New Messages

To disable only notifications for new messages you receive at an iPhone email account, while the messages are still downloaded automatically and ready once you open Mail:

  1. From the Settings app, open Notifications.

  2. Tap Mail.

  3. Select the account for which you want to disable new mail notifications.

  4. Turn off the Allow Notifications toggle switch.

    Notifications, Mail, and Allow Notifications toggle to OFF in iOS Settings

Some older versions of iOS have different settings. If you don't see the above, go to Alert style when unlocked and select None. Also, turn off ​Show in Notification Center and ​Show on Lock Screen. Optionally, disable the ​Badge App Icon.

Hide a Mailbox Within the Mail App

To hide an account's inbox from the top of the Mail Mailboxes screen:

  1. From the Mail app, swipe left to display to the Mailboxes screen.

  2. Tap Edit.

  3. Clear the checkmark next to the mail account.

    To move an inbox or account, drag the three-bar icon () next to the account to a different place in the list.

  4. Tap Done to save the changes.

    Edit, Checkbox, and Done button in iOS Mailboxes screen

To open an account's inbox, go to the Mailboxes screen, select the account, and tap Inbox.

You will receive notifications for emails from VIP senders. Notifications for these messages are handled separately; you receive them even if you have notifications turned off for an account. To change the VIP notification settings, go to ​Notifications​ > ​Mail​ > ​VIP​.

The same applies to thread notifications. If iOS Mail is set to alert you to replies you receive in a conversation, the settings for thread notifications apply instead of those for the account where you receive the email. To change alert settings, open the Settings app and go to Notifications > Mail > Thread Notifications.