How to Recover Deleted Google Drive Files: A Step-by-Step Guide

Accidentally deleting important files from Google Drive can be a nightmare, right? But worry not, recovering those files is easier than you might think. Whether you’ve lost a document, photo, or another type of file, Google Drive offers built-in options to restore them. Let’s dive into the steps you can take to get your files back.

Step by Step Tutorial on How to Recover Deleted Google Drive Files

Before we dive into the steps, let’s clarify what we’re aiming to achieve. When you delete a file from Google Drive, it’s moved to the Trash folder, where it stays for 30 days before being permanently deleted. Our goal is to recover these files from Trash before the 30-day deadline.

Step 1: Access Google Drive Trash

Navigate to your Google Drive Trash folder.

Google Drive Trash is like a safety net; it catches your files before they’re gone for good. To find it, go to Google Drive, look to the left sidebar, and click on ‘Trash’ or ‘Bin’ (depending on your region).

Step 2: Locate the Deleted File

Search or scroll to find the file you want to recover.

The Trash folder can be packed with files, so take advantage of the search bar. If you remember the name of your file, simply type it in, and voila! It should appear.

Step 3: Right-click and Choose ‘Restore’

Right-click on the file and select ‘Restore’ to move the file back to its original location.

By restoring the file, you’re essentially reversing the delete action. The file will pop back into the folder where it once lived, ready for you to use again.

After completing these steps, the file you thought was lost should now be back in its rightful place within your Google Drive.

Tips for Recovering Deleted Google Drive Files

  • Always check the Trash folder first; it’s the easiest place to recover deleted files.
  • If you’re unable to find your file in Trash, try using Google Drive’s search feature with keywords or the file name.
  • Remember that files in Trash will be permanently deleted after 30 days, so act fast!
  • If you’ve shared the file with someone, ask them to check their Google Drive in case they have a copy.
  • For important files, always keep a backup in another location, be it another cloud service or a physical drive.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I recover files that were permanently deleted from Google Drive?

Once a file is permanently deleted, it cannot be recovered through the Google Drive interface. However, you may contact Google Support within a short window to see if they can assist.

Is it possible to restore a Google Drive file on mobile?

Yes, the Google Drive app for Android and iOS has a Trash section where you can recover deleted files in the same way as on desktop.

What happens if I delete a file shared with me?

If you delete a file that was shared with you, it will only be removed from your Drive. The owner and others with whom the file is shared will still have access.

Can I set up automatic backups for Google Drive?

Google Drive doesn’t offer a built-in backup feature, but you can use third-party apps or manual methods to back up your files.

What should I do if the restored file doesn’t appear in its original location?

Sometimes there’s a delay in the sync process. Try refreshing your Google Drive or check the file’s details to see its location.


  1. Access Google Drive Trash
  2. Locate the Deleted File
  3. Right-click and Choose ‘Restore’


Losing files can be stressful, but as we’ve explored, Google Drive has systems in place to help you recover deleted files with ease. By following the straightforward steps outlined above, you can quickly restore documents, photos, and more from Google Drive’s Trash. It’s a good practice to regularly check what’s in your Trash and clear out anything you don’t need while making sure not to accidentally delete important files.

Aside from recovery, it’s crucial to take proactive steps to protect your data. Regularly backing up files to another cloud service or a physical drive can save you a lot of trouble in case of accidental deletion or other data loss scenarios. Additionally, familiarizing yourself with Google Drive’s features and settings can help you manage your files more effectively and avoid potential issues.

Remember, the key is to act swiftly; the 30-day window for recovery in Google Drive’s Trash can fly by before you know it. So, if you ever find yourself in a situation where you need to recover deleted google drive files, keep calm, follow these steps, and you’ll likely get your data back in no time.