How to Empty the Trash on an iMac

By Elle Smith

Emptying the trash on an iMac is one of the easiest housekeeping tasks you can do. You’ll want to delete items you no longer want on your hard drive, and in turn, you’ll free up precious disk space. In the early days of Mac, an item dragged to the trash was gone forever. Now, you must also empty the trash to erase it from your hard drive.

Things You'll Need

  • OSX

Through the Finder

Step 1

Start up your iMac.

Step 2

Click on the trash can icon in the Mac finder to open it.

Step 3

Confirm that items in the trash are truly items you wish to erase from your drive.

Step 4

From the Apple Menu Bar, locate the “Finder” menu and click to open.

Step 5

Scroll down to the “Empty Trash” pane and click.

Step 6

Click “OK” to confirm that you wish to empty the trash.

Double-Clicking the Icon

Step 1

Double-click on the trash can icon to open the window.

Step 2

Locate the “Empty” button on the right of the window in the gray window bar.

Step 3

Click “OK” to verify that you want to permanently remove the items from the trash.

Tips & Warnings

  • If you are having difficulties emptying the trash, hold down the "Option" key while simultaneously clicking on the trash icon to empty it.

References & Resources