How To Get Rid Of Ghost Emails On IPhone 13

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If you’re an iPhone 13 user experiencing the unnerving phenomenon of ghost emails, you’re not alone. Ghost emails are those elusive messages that appear to have been received on your device, but mysteriously vanish without a trace. These phantom notifications can be frustrating and puzzling, leaving you wondering what’s causing them and how to make them disappear for good. In this article, we’ll delve into the world of ghost emails on the iPhone 13 and provide you with actionable steps to get rid of them. Whether it’s a glitch in the system or a misconfiguration in your settings, we’ll guide you through the process of taming these spectral messages and ensuring a smoother and more enjoyable email experience. So, let’s jump in and banish those ghost emails once and for all!

Inside This Article

Checking email settings, clearing email cache, removing unused email accounts.

One of the first steps to troubleshoot ghost emails on your iPhone 13 is to check your email settings. Sometimes, incorrect or outdated settings can cause problems with receiving or displaying emails correctly.

To check your email settings, follow these steps:

  • Open the “Settings” app on your iPhone 13.
  • Scroll down and tap on “Mail.”
  • Select the email account that is experiencing ghost emails.
  • Make sure that the incoming and outgoing mail server settings are correct. You can usually find this information on your email provider’s support website .
  • Double-check the username and password associated with the email account. If they are incorrect, update them accordingly.
  • Ensure that the SSL (Secure Sockets Layer ) option is enabled if your email provider requires it.
  • Toggle the “Mail” switch off and on to refresh the email settings.

By verifying and adjusting your email settings, you can eliminate any potential issues that may be causing ghost emails to appear on your iPhone 13.

If you’re experiencing ghost emails on your iPhone 13, clearing the email cache can often resolve the issue. The email cache is a temporary storage area where your device saves data from your email accounts to improve performance. However, over time, this cache can become corrupted or filled with excessive data, leading to unexpected email behavior.

To clear the email cache on your iPhone 13, follow these steps:

  • Open the Settings app on your iPhone and scroll down to find “Mail”. Tap on it.
  • Under the “Accounts” section, tap on the email account that is experiencing the ghost emails.
  • Scroll down and tap on “Delete Account”. Confirm the deletion when prompted.
  • Once the account is deleted, go back to the “Mail” section in Settings and tap on “Add Account”.
  • Follow the prompts to re-add the email account to your device.

This process will clear the email cache associated with the problematic email account and create a fresh connection with the email server. It should effectively remove any ghost emails that were causing the issue.

Keep in mind that clearing the email cache will not delete your actual emails or any other data related to your email account. It simply removes the temporary cache files, allowing your device to start fresh with the email account’s data.

If clearing the email cache doesn’t resolve the issue, you may need to try other troubleshooting steps or contact the customer support of your email service provider for further assistance.

Remember, clearing the email cache is just one of the possible solutions to get rid of ghost emails on your iPhone 13. It’s always a good idea to keep your device and email apps updated, as software updates often include bug fixes and improvements that can address such issues.

One effective way to get rid of ghost emails on your iPhone 13 is by removing any unused email accounts. Over time, you may have accumulated multiple email accounts that you no longer use or need. These unused accounts can clutter your device and potentially contribute to the appearance of ghost emails.

To remove an unused email account, follow these steps:

  • Scroll down and tap on “Mail” or “Mail, Contacts, Calendars” depending on your iOS version.
  • Under the “Accounts” section, you will see a list of all the email accounts associated with your device. Look for the email account that you no longer use.
  • Tap on the email account to access its settings.
  • Scroll down and find the “Delete Account” option. Tap on it.
  • A confirmation prompt will appear. If you are certain that you want to remove the email account, tap “Delete from My iPhone.”

By removing unused email accounts, you are decluttering your iPhone 13 and reducing the likelihood of encountering ghost emails. This step can also help improve the overall performance and battery life of your device, as fewer email accounts means fewer background tasks and notifications.

It is important to note that removing an email account will permanently delete all associated emails, contacts, and calendar events stored locally on your iPhone. If you want to keep a backup of these items, make sure to back them up before deleting the account.

Once you have removed any unused email accounts, it is a good idea to restart your iPhone. This will ensure that all changes take effect and that any residual data from the deleted accounts is cleared from the device.

Remember to regularly review your email accounts and remove any that you no longer use. This proactive approach will help keep your iPhone 13 organized and minimize the chances of encountering ghost emails in the future.

Getting rid of ghost emails on your iPhone 13 is crucial to maintaining a clutter-free and efficient email experience. By following the steps outlined in this article, including checking your email settings, deleting and re-adding your email accounts, and using third-party email management apps, you can effectively eliminate those pesky ghost emails that seem to haunt your inbox.

Remember, it’s important to regularly monitor and organize your emails to ensure optimal productivity. Don’t let ghost emails take up valuable space and distract you from what truly matters. Stay on top of your inbox and enjoy a streamlined email experience on your iPhone 13.

If you encounter any difficulties or have further questions, don’t hesitate to seek assistance from Apple Support or consult with fellow iPhone users on online forums. With persistence and the right approach, you can conquer those ghost emails and take control of your inbox once and for all.

1. How do I get rid of ghost emails on my iPhone 13?

2. What are ghost emails?

3. Why do I keep receiving ghost emails on my iPhone 13?

4. Can ghost emails pose a security risk?

5. Is there a way to prevent ghost emails on my iPhone 13 in the future?

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phantom or ghost email

On my new iPhone 13 pro, my email shows 1 unread no matter what I do. Please help!!

-its a gmail address and also my Apple ID

-I don’t have any unread emails when I sign in on any other device

-when I filter by unread, there are no emails there

-I’ve selected all and marked as read

-I’ve toggled the mail on and off about a million times

-I’ve turned my phone off and on

-I’ve signed out of the apple id

-i deleted the mail app and reinstalled

-I’ve signed out of the mail app

-also have done several combinations of the above

not sure what else to do??? But would love this to be fixed. Any advice?

iPhone 13 Pro, iOS 15

Posted on Sep 28, 2021 8:50 PM


Posted on Jan 2, 2022 5:40 PM

I had same issue with brand new iPhone 13. One ghost email. Neither Apple Mail nor Gmail would show me the 1 “unread” email when I asked both to filter on such.

Gmail was showing zero unread. Apple was showing 1 unread. However, I think Gmail was lying.

I went to Gmail > Settings > Inbox Type > Unread first

There was an email from 07/17/2020 unread. Even though Gmail wasn’t showing it as unread, Apple detected it.

I marked the 2020 email as read in Gmail, and Apple Mail is now happy and at zero notifications.

2022 off to a decent start :))

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Jan 2, 2022 5:40 PM in response to Ldc0903

Anna Dressler

Nov 20, 2021 8:05 AM in response to Ldc0903

Just activated my iPhone 13 and had this issue too. Tried turning off notifications, reinstalled Mail app, did multiple things in mail to get rid of it but nothing worked.

Finally I logged into on my desktop computer. It too said I had 1 unread message, so I filtered by unread AND THERE IT WAS! An email from 11 months ago said it was unread (!?!?!). I marked it as read on the desktop, and now the ghost notification is gone from my phone.

Hoping this can help others..


Mar 12, 2022 10:34 AM in response to Ldc0903

I was plagued by this bug for MONTHS.


Ask Siri to read your unread messages.

First, ensure Siri is active in System Preferences (MacOS) or in Settings (iOS/iPadOS)

Engage Siri (hold down power button on device, or say Hey Siri if this feature is enabled).

Simply tell Siri to "Show me all my unread messages", or "Read my unread messages". Depending on the device and the number of messages, it varies to get Siri to actually read them.

That's it. Once Siri works through all of them, the new unread count will reset to zero, and the badge will finally disappear.



Sep 29, 2021 3:00 PM in response to Ldc0903

Hello Ldc0903!

Based on your post you're having trouble clearing an unread notification in iOS Mail.

You've done a great job isolating the issue thus far. Do you know if the notification appears checking your web-based Gmail account using a browser or using the Gmail application?

Are there any other email accounts configured experiencing the same behavior?

If you navigate to Mail > All Inboxes and tap the unread filter (bottom left) on and off a few times does the issue continue?

Keep us updated.


Nov 3, 2021 3:48 PM in response to Ldc0903

Hello! I’m sure at this point you’ve already figured out a solution, but this was the only post I could find that fit my situation so I wanted to add my resolution for anyone in future who may be looking for answers.

For me, it turned out something had been added to my Gmail calendar. I don’t ever use that calendar and strictly use my iCal so I didn’t even think to check this calendar. But once I finally did check the gmail calendar, there was something on it for today. When I deleted it, the ghost mail notification instantly went away. Like there was somehow a communication breakdown between the gmail calendar alert and my iPhone email app.

Sep 29, 2021 3:22 PM in response to Dave_G1

Hi! Thank you for your reply.

There are no unread emails when I sign in to gmail using the gmail app, safari on my iPhone, or safari on my laptop.

the only other email account is my iCloud email which does not have any emails. I did what you suggested but when I do, it doesn’t show anything but still shows 1 unread.

Sep 29, 2021 4:34 PM in response to Ldc0903

We appreciate you giving those steps a try. In that case we would recommend reaching out to Apple Support directly to report the issue. You can do so using the support link below.

Get Support

Jan 7, 2022 5:53 AM in response to Anna Dressler

This was the ONLY thing that worked!!!! Thank you!!!!


Jan 18, 2022 6:09 AM in response to RyGuyFlyGuy

This worked! Thank you! Have been dealing with that niggling notification for months!

Jan 31, 2022 3:01 PM in response to RyGuyFlyGuy


Feb 8, 2022 8:09 PM in response to RyGuyFlyGuy

This guy hit the nail on the head. Most aggravating issue I’ve had!


Mar 16, 2022 11:53 AM in response to RyGuyFlyGuy

It actually works! It susprises me. Turns out gmail is the one having trouble here

Apr 7, 2022 2:04 PM in response to RyGuyFlyGuy

This worked for me! Thank you so much! I was going nuts with 9 ghost notifications!

Apr 22, 2022 6:46 PM in response to Ldc0903

You can also log in to your email on your desktop/laptop. Type is:unread in the search bar and all the “unread” emails will populate. Select all and click mark as read. Worked like a dream!

How To Fix Mail App Showing Unread Emails on iPhone When There Are None

Darryl Dsouza

  • The common issue of the Mail app on iPhones displaying unread email badge notifications even after all emails have been read is also known as the Phantom or Ghost email problem.
  • Some basic troubleshooting steps include checking for unread emails, force-quitting the Mail app, updating iOS and restarting the iPhone.
  • In case the basic steps don’t work, you can try deactivating/reactivating email accounts, deleting and re-adding email addresses, etc.

How To Fix Mail App Showing Unread Emails on iPhone When There Aren’t Any

Is the Mail app on your iPhone displaying a badge notification for unread emails even when you’ve read them all? This is a very old and common issue that many users encounter randomly. It is often referred to as the Phantom or Ghost email issue. With that said, read along to learn how to fix the Mail app showing unread emails on your iPhone even if you’ve read them all.

Why Does My iPhone Say I Have Unread Emails When I Don’t?

Unread, phantom, or ghost email notifications might be caused due to software bugs. Yes, software bugs seem to be the only reasonable explanation for this widespread problem. Because many users encounter this issue regardless of the email service they are using. And, it isn’t limited to the Apple Mail but also happens on other email apps.

How To Get Rid of Phantom Unread Mail on iPhone

Since the phantom or ghost email notifications are a software issue, we’ve devised some troubleshooting methods to help iron out the software bugs. The initial methods are quite basic and might fix the unread email icon on the Apple Mail issue instantly. However, if these basic methods do not fetch any results, then you can move to the advanced steps mentioned further in the guide.

1. Check for Unread Emails

This might sound obvious, but we suggest checking the Mail app for any unread emails. These emails have a blue dot beside them which signifies that the mail is unread. Apple Mail has a filter button at the bottom to view unread emails. Following the steps mentioned below, you can view all unread emails in Mail on your iPhone.

  • Open the Mail app on your iPhone.
  • Tap the Filter button at the bottom left corner.
  • Apple Mail will only display unread emails .

Check for Unread Emails in the Mail app

Open all the unread emails to get rid of the unread email badge notification from the Mail app on your iPhone.

2. Force Quit the Mail App and Restart Your iPhone To Fix Mail App Showing Unread Emails

If you have no unread messages and yet the Mail app displays the unread email icon suggests that you’re encountering the phantom or ghost email issue. Another simple solution to fix this issue is to force quit the Mail app and restart your iPhone. This will help the system remove any temporary bug or glitch causing this issue.

  • Open the Mail app and swipe up from the bottom or press the Home button.
  • Once on the Home Screen, swipe up from the bottom and hold until you see the recent apps tray.
  • Now, navigate to the Mail app , swipe up to remove it from the recent apps tray to force quit.
  • Next, press and hold the Power button and either of the volume buttons until the Power Off screen appears.
  • Here, drag the “ Slide to power off ” slider and wait for a few minutes for the iPhone to completely shut down.
  • Press and hold the Power button to power on your iPhone.
  • After the iPhone restarts, open the Mail app, view unread emails (if any), and then check if the Mail app displays the unread email badge.

Force Quit the Mail App and Restart Your iPhone

Hopefully, force quitting the Mail app and restarting the iPhone should fix the phantom email issue. If it doesn’t, read along as we move towards some advanced (a little more time-consuming) troubleshooting methods.

3. Update the iPhone to the Latest iOS Version

Considering the phantom or ghost email notification issue is a software bug, we suggest updating your iPhone to the latest iOS version. Because, if the software bug isn’t temporary or isn’t being caused due to corrupt files, most of these below-listed methods won’t be able to resolve the issue. Here’s how to update iOS to the latest version.

  • Open the Settings app on your iPhone.
  • Head to the General option.
  • Tap the Software Update option on the next page.
  • Now, tap the Install Now or Update Now button.

Update iPhone to the latest iOS version

4. Deactivate and Reactivate the Email Account

Deactivating any email address from Mail settings will remove it from the Mail app. However, it won’t delete the email address, rather just temporarily remove it from the Mail app. You can reactivate the Mail toggle to add the email address to the Mail app without issues. We suggest this to help resolve the Mail app showing unread email issues on your iPhone.

Time needed:  4 minutes

Steps to Deactivate and Reactive email account in Apple Mail

Deactivate the Email Account in Mail Settings

5. Delete and Add Back Email Address To Fix Mail App Showing Unread Emails

Do you remember the password of your email address? In that case, we suggest you delete the email address from Mail and add it again. Following this method can help fix the Mail app showing unread emails on iPhone.

  • Head to the Mail option.
  • Tap the Account option.
  • Now select the Mail account that you want to delete from Mail.
  • Tap the Delete Account button.
  • Tap the Delete Account option in the pop-up to confirm your selection.
  • Restart your iPhone.
  • Open the Mail app, select the email service , and follow the on-screen instructions to add the email address.

Delete and Add Back Email Address

6. Reinstall the Mail App To Fix Mail App Showing Unread Emails

If Apple Mail has software bugs or corrupt files that are causing this issue, the best option is to uninstall the Mail app and then reinstall the latest version of the app. Updating is another option, but a fresh reinstall will resolve the Mail app showing unread emails issue more effectively.

  • Unlock your iPhone and navigate to Apple Mail .
  • Now, tap and hold on it until you see a pop-up menu.
  • Select the Remove App option.

Uninstall the Mail App

  • Now, restart your iPhone.
  • Once your device restarts, head to the App Store , search for Mail , and install the app.

Reinstall the Mail app

Reinstalling the Mail app should fix the phantom or ghost email notification issue.

7. Contact Apple Support

If you’ve had no luck with the steps above, the last option is to contact Apple Support . If it is a widespread error, they might be able to resolve it or at least forward the issue to the software team. Who in turn will ensure fix this bug in the upcoming software update.

You can also visit any official Apple Store and get your iPhone inspected by the employees at the Genius Bar. They’re well-trained professionals who must be able to help fix the Mail showing unread email notification issues.

The Mail app showing unread email notifications might not seem like a big deal to many, but some of us like to maintain a clean Home Screen. Moreover, if you get used to the ghost mail notification and ignore it, you may miss out on some time-sensitive emails. Therefore, so many people want to resolve this issue as soon as possible.

We hope you were able to get rid of the Mail app showing the unread email notification issue on your iPhone. Please let us know in the comments below if you have any other doubts.

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