Make iPhone Mail Check for New Mail Less Often or Never

Use your iPhone Settings app to customize email collection intervals

One way to extend your iPhone's battery life is to limit how often your phone checks for new email. By default, the iOS mail app is set to "Push," which means it downloads new messages as soon as they arrive on the email server

You can prevent iPhone Mail from checking for new mail automatically, or you can schedule your email accounts (or even just specific folders) to check at certain specified intervals. Another option is like Push but will download emails automatically only when your phone is plugged in.

This information applies to iOS 12, although the procedures are substantially similar for all currently supported versions of iOS.

How to Make iPhone Mail Check for Mail Less Often (or Never)

The Fetch New Data email settings can be changed to set how often iPhone Mail checks your accounts for new messages.

  1. Open the Settings app.

  2. Go to Passwords & Accounts.

  3. Tap Fetch New Data from the bottom of the screen.

  4. Deselect Push at the top of the screen.

    Passwords & Accounts, Push, Push toggle OFF in iOS settings

    Push directs the Mail app to update as often as possible, which you don't want if you are trying to reduce how often your iPhone checks for email. 

  5. Tap each email account that's using push (they'll say Push instead of Fetch.

  6. Select Fetch from the next screen so that the fetch settings will be applied to that account.

  7. Tap the arrow at the top to return to the previous screen.

  8. Scroll to the bottom and pick a fetch schedule.

    Push, Fetch checkmark, and Every 30 Minutes checkmark in iOS

    Your options include Automatically, Manually, Hourly, Every 30 Minutes, and Every 15 Minutes.

    Choosing Automatically will have Mail download emails automatically in the background, but only when your phone is connected to Wi-Fi and power. It's much like Push in that emails arrive as they reach the email server, but you don't have to worry about it using up all the battery power or data usage.

    If you select Manually, your iPhone will not check for email at all; you'll have to do that yourself by opening the Mail app and refreshing the page by pulling the messages down from the top of the screen.

  9. You can now press the home button to save and exit to the home screen.