How to Pause and Clear YouTube History

It's time to reset your YouTube history.

Clear Youtube History

YouTube uses your viewing history, interactions with those videos, and searches to provide recommendations of videos you might enjoy. But what if you don’t want YouTube to do so or don’t want anyone else to see your YouTube history? Thankfully, you can clear YouTube history or even pause YouTube’s recording of it temporarily. Select which entries to delete or eliminate them all with one click!

Why Clear YouTube History?

If you have a child about to melt down while waiting in line for something, you don’t want to end up with a series of SpongeBob videos crowding your feed. Before handing them the phone, pause the history and search recording, and you’ll have no worries.

youtube-history-child
Image source: Pixabay

If you have a YouTube account for your business and want to keep the suggestions closely related to your niche, delete individual videos and searches that may affect your recommendations.

Perhaps you want to prevent Google from finding out too much about you. Many people worry about Google obtaining identifying information. If this disturbs you, you can clear your history after each session to keep that information to a minimum.

As time goes by, your interests may change, and the recommendations you receive are not as relevant as you would like. Deleting old videos and searches can remove those suggestions from your feed.

How to Delete YouTube History on Desktop

Deleting your YouTube history is quite easy. The platform allows you to delete individual search terms and watch history items and clear all watch history or custom history. Let’s check all the ways to delete YouTube watch and search history.

1. Delete Recent Search Item

  1. Click on the search bar on the YouTube webpage. You will find your recent search terms listed in a drop-down panel.
  2. Click on the “Remove” button next to the search item you want to delete.
Youtube Computer Clear Search History

2. Delete Recent Video From YouTube Watch History

  1. Open the YouTube website and click on the “History” tab from the sidebar.
Youtube Computer History
  1. Click on the “X” icon next to the video you want to delete from your search history.
Youtube Computer History Clear One

3. Delete Old or Custom Search and Watch History Items

If you want to delete selected items or items within a selected period only from your YouTube history, use Google’s YouTube History page.

  1. Open the YouTube History page in a browser and log in with your Google account. You will see both your YouTube search and watch history.
  2. Click on the Calendar icon to show history older than a particular date or hit the search icon to find any specific item in your search history.
Youtube Computer My Actitivity
  1. Once you find the desired search history item, click on the “X” icon next to it to delete it.
Youtube Computer My Actitivity Clear

4. Delete All Watch History

  1. Open the YouTube website in a browser.
  2. Click on the “History” tab from the sidebar to find many options.
Youtube Computer History
  1. To delete all your YouTube watch history, click on “Clear all watch history.”
Youtube Computer Clear All History
  1. A pop-up window will appear asking you to confirm that you want to wipe out your history. It also reminds you that it will reset your video recommendations. If you are sure, click “Clear watch history.”
Youtube Computer Clear All History Confirm

Alternatively, open myactivity.google.com/product/youtube in a browser and delete your history from a custom range: click on the “Delete” button and select “Delete custom range” or “Delete all time.”

Youtube Computer Clear All History My Activity

How to Delete YouTube History on Android and iPhone

1. Delete Recent Individual Searches

  1. Open the YouTube app on your Android phone or iPhone.
  2. Tap on the search icon at the top to see your recent searches.
Youtube Mobile Search Icon
  1. On Android, touch and hold the search item you want to delete and hit the “Remove” button on the pop-up screen.
Youtube Mobile Search Item Remove 1

On iPhone, swipe left on the item and hit the “Delete” button.

Youtube Mobile Search Item Remove Iphone

2. Delete Recent Video From Watch History

  1. In the YouTube app, tap on the “Library” tab at the bottom.
  2. Tap on the “History” button (if available) or hit the “View all” link next to the History items to view your recently-watched videos.
Youtube Mobile View All History
  1. Tap on the three-dot icon next to the recently-watched video that you want to delete from your YouTube history, then select “Remove from watch history.”
Youtube Mobile View Watchhistory

3. Delete All Watch History

  1. In the YouTube app, tap your avatar in the top-right corner and go to “Settings.”
Youtube Mobile Settings
  1. Select “History & privacy.”
  2. You will find two separate options to clear search and watch history. Select the appropriate option, then confirm your actions.
Youtube Mobile Clear All History

How to Pause YouTube History on Desktop

If you want YouTube to stop tracking your watch history temporarily, pause the watch history.

  1. Open YouTube in a browser.
  2. Click on the “History” tab from the sidebar.
Youtube Computer History
  1. Click on the “Pause watch history” button on the right side of the screen.
Youtube Computer Pause History
  1. Click on “Pause” within the confirmation window that opens.

How to Pause YouTube Search or Watch History on Android and iPhone

  1. Tap on the profile picture icon at the top of the YouTube app and go to “Settings.”
Youtube Mobile Settings
  1. Tap on “History & privacy.”
  2. Enable the toggle next to “Pause watch history” or “Pause search history,” depending on your need.
Youtube Mobile Pause History

Frequently Asked Questions

Can you auto-delete YouTube history?

Yes, you can allow YouTube to delete your history automatically after a certain period. Go to Google’s YouTube History page and click on “Auto-delete.” Select the desired time frame for your YouTube history to be deleted automatically.

Will deleting the search history on one device delete it on other devices?

Yes, deleting the search history from one device will remove it from all devices, provided you are logged in to your account.

How can I stop getting recommendations for specific YouTube channels?

Block YouTube channels you don’t like and prevent them from showing up on your feed.

Subscribe to our newsletter!

Our latest tutorials delivered straight to your inbox