How to Recover Deleted Emails in Yahoo Mail

Visit the trash folder or request a backup from Yahoo

When you accidentally delete a single message or log on to your Yahoo Mail account and find all your email folders empty, all is not lost. You can retrieve deleted email from the Trash folder or request that Yahoo restore your email account to a previous state to recover missing emails—even messages deleted from the trash—but you have to be prompt about it.

Act Quickly to Retrieve Deleted Junk Mail Yahoo Mail

If you act quickly, there is a chance Yahoo can restore your mailbox to a previous state from a backup copy (junk or otherwise), recovering your lost messages whether you accidentally emptied the Trash folder containing an important email or a Yahoo Mail glitch made mail disappear.

Undelete Mail

You'll have the most success undeleting mail if you realize you deleted an important email right away. When you delete an email, it is moved to the Trash folder, where it sits until you empty that folder. You can undelete a message quickly as long as it is still in your Yahoo Mail Trash folder. To undelete a message in Yahoo Mail:

  1. Click the Trash folder in Yahoo Mail. You'll see it in the navigation pane at the left of your Yahoo email screen.

    Trash icon in Yahoo Mail screenshot
  2. Select the email(s) you want to move to undelete.

  3. Click the Move icon above the mail list, then select Inbox. You can also hit the D, then 0 key.

In older versions of Yahoo Mail, click the Restore to Inbox button to transfer them out of Trash and into Inbox.

screenshot - Move icon and Inbox submenu in Yahoo Mail

Recover Lost or Deleted Emails

To rescue messages that have disappeared from your Yahoo Mail account during the past 24 hours or to undelete messages after you have emptied the Trash folder:

  1. Download all the messages received yesterday and today at your Yahoo Mail account or forward them to a different email address automatically or manually. These messages will otherwise be lost forever.

  2. Go to the Yahoo Mail Restore Help Form. Click Send a Restore Request.

    screenshot - Send a Restore Request in Yahoo Mail help pages
  3. Use the drop-down menu to describe the problem. In this case, select Mail: Accidentally deleted messages on webMail. There is also a selection if you use a mobile device.

  4. Select a time range from the drop-down menu under When did you last see the missing messages? The maximum amount of time is 16 hours.

  5. Enter your Yahoo ID or email address in the field provided. 

  6. Enter an email address that you have access to in the field provided.

    screenshot - Email a specialist page on Yahoo Help
  7. Complete the CAPTCHA field and click Create Request.

While you wait for Yahoo to return your Yahoo Mail account to the state it was in at the specified time from a backup copy, continue to forward or download any newly arriving messages. The backup will replace your existing email boxes and folders.