Helping people with computers... one answer at a time.

Closing a Gmail account requires several steps. If there is a problem, the error messages will help sort out what's going on.

When I try to close my Google email account, Google will not let me. I'm sure that Yahoo mail would be the same. How do I go about closing my Google email account?

In this excerpt from Answercast #87, I look at steps that need to be taken to begin to sort out why various things, like failure in deleting an email account, might happen.

Closing a Gmail account

Well, I'll start you with "How do I delete my Gmail account?," an article that I have on the site.

Had you searched for this you would have found that - and that would have been a great way to get started.

What's the error?

Unfortunately, you've given me almost no information about the problem.

You say "Google" will not let you. How? What did it say? What error message did it give? What reason did it give for not letting you close your account?

That's information we need; that's information I need to be able to even have a chance at understanding what could possibly be going on.

Gmail and Yahoo

Now, you're sure that Yahoo mail would be the same. Why is that? What leads you to believe that Yahoo would act the same as Gmail? Have you tried to close your Yahoo account? What happened when you tried? Was there an error message or were you able to close your Yahoo account?

I think that making the assumption that Yahoo would be the same as Gmail is flat out wrong. It may be. Absolutely! It may be. But it's the assumption that it might be that is simply wrong.

Follow instructions to close the account

Go to Yahoo; look up their instructions for deleting an account and try it - if that's what you want to do. Chances are it will just work. And if it doesn't, well, then it will hopefully give you an error message that you, or people like me, can then use to diagnose the problem.

But without that kind of information, without the actual error messages and steps that you took to cause a problem to occur or a failure to happen, I really have no way of helping you any further - other than pointing you at the article that's already out on my site, "How do I delete my Gmail account?"

(Transcript lightly edited for readability.)

Article C6241 - January 13, 2013 « »

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Leo Leo A. Notenboom has been playing with computers since he was required to take a programming class in 1976. An 18 year career as a programmer at Microsoft soon followed. After "retiring" in 2001, Leo started Ask Leo! in 2003 as a place for answers to common computer and technical questions. More about Leo.

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1 Comment
Laurence Brevard
January 16, 2013 6:17 AM

It might be that if you have an Android smart phone using the Google account (and gmail) in question that Google will not let you (easily) delete the account. I may test this with an older phone that I no longer use.

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