How to Recall an Email in Gmail?

How to Recall an Email in Gmail?

- Published: - 10 minutes read

“If we can turn back time…” There are instances when we urgently wish we could turn back time and retrieve an email we just sent. Perhaps we noticed a glaring mistake, attached the wrong file, or accidentally hit “Send” before we were ready. In such moments of email remorse, the ability to unsend an email becomes a lifesaver.

Thankfully, Gmail understands the importance of second chances. With its intuitive interface and feature-rich platform, Gmail offers users the capability to quickly recall an email, providing a brief window of opportunity to rectify errors and prevent potential mishaps.

Here we’ll go over:

  1. The Undo Send function
  2. How to raise the undo send cancellation period
  3. How to recall an email you just sent in Gmail
  4. Can you recall an email in Gmail on an iPhone?
  5. Can you recall an email in Gmail on Android?
  6. Missed the “Undo” pop-up, what are my options?
  7. How to minimize email mistakes & regrets
  8. Minimize mistakes in bulk emails with Mailmeteor

So let’s get started…

The Undo Send function

Gmail refers to the ability to recall an email as “Undo Send.” This feature allows users to retract a sent email and make necessary adjustments before it reaches the recipient’s inbox. In Gmail, the Undo Send feature depends on a cancellation period, which is the time frame during which you can undo the email.

By default, this cancellation period is set to 5 seconds, but users have the flexibility to increase it up to 30 seconds, giving them a slightly longer window to reconsider and undo the sending of an email if needed.

How to raise the undo send cancellation period

If you find the default cancellation period of 5 seconds for the “Undo Send” feature in Gmail too short, you may want to raise the limit to allow yourself more time to recall a sent email.

  1. Click the gear icon located at the top right corner of your Gmail inbox. Go to Gmail settings

  2. This will open a side panel, click “See all settings”.
    Click on See all settings

  3. Find “Undo Send” in the settings and set it to a timer you are more comfortable with
    Set your cancellation period
  4. Do not forget to scroll to the bottom and click on “Save Changes”

After saving your settings, your cancellation period should now be higher, allowing you a more extended timeframe to recall an email you just sent in Gmail.

How to recall an email you just sent in Gmail

When you send an email in Gmail, a popup message appears at the bottom-left corner of your screen, displaying “Message Sent” along with an Undo button.

Gmail Undo Send

This handy feature provides a convenient option to quickly undo the sending of an email.

However, it is important to note that if you accidentally click the “X” button on the popup or close the popup without clicking “Undo,” you will lose the opportunity to recall the email. It is absolutely crucial to promptly click the Undo button within the available timeframe to successfully recall the email and make any necessary modifications before it reaches the recipient’s inbox.

Can you recall an email in Gmail on an iPhone?

If you’re sending emails from your iPhone using the Gmail app, you can recall an email with just a tap.

After pressing “Send”, a pop-up will appear at the bottom of your screen. Simply tap the “Undo” button to prevent Gmail from sending that email.

Can you recall an email in Gmail on Android?

If you’re sending emails from your phone using the Gmail app, you can follow a similar process to recall your emails.

After pressing “Send”, a pop-up will appear at the bottom of your screen. Simply tap the “Undo” button to prevent Gmail from sending that email.

Missed the “Undo” pop-up, what are my options?

Gmail implements the “Cancellation Period” by delaying your sent emails by a set time. Technically speaking, an email you send will not actually leave for the recipient until after the cancellation period.

This is because once the email has left your mailbox and is in transit, you no longer have control over its retrieval. It is generally impossible to recall it completely or retrieve it from the recipient’s inbox. This is primarily due to the nature of email systems, which deliver messages quickly and efficiently.

However, there are a few alternatives you can consider if you missed the “Undo” pop-up or need to rectify an email that you can no longer recall.

Send a follow-up email

Mistakes happen to the best of us. If you realize the mistake or need to provide additional information, you can send a follow-up email to clarify or correct any errors. Apologize for any confusion caused by the initial email.

Communicate via other channels

If the email is time-sensitive or critical, consider reaching out to the recipient through alternative communication channels, such as a call or through texts. This can help address the issue promptly. We still recommend sending a follow-up email just in case, give a reference to the phone call for bonus points.

Learn from this experience

Take this situation as an opportunity to review your email process and implement preventive measures. Double-check your emails before sending, use spelling and grammar tools, and take a moment to review recipients and attachments to minimize errors.

How to minimize email mistakes & regrets

It is not uncommon to realize, moments after hitting “Send,” that you should have double-checked the email for mistakes. It has happened to the best of us – let us focus on making sure that it does not happen again. Treat this as a short checklist.

Proofreading & editing

Before hitting the send button, carefully read your email and review it for any spelling, grammar, or formatting mistakes. There are plenty of tools to help you spell-check, and to correct your grammar. Utilize them.

Check the recipients

Emails can contain a lot of confidential information which is not meant to be shared without prior consent. The last thing you want to do is send an email to the wrong person. Double check the “To,” “CC,” and “BCC” fields before you hit that send button. And remember, “Reply-All” is different from “Reply”.

Email attachments

Accidentally dropping files into the message box can attach them to your email – forgetting about attachments is also a mistake that requires a follow-up. In both cases, double check if the everything is as it should be as far as attachments are concerned. Here’s how to write an email with attachments.

Names & titles

Double check that you entered the correct names & titles for any person mentioned in the email. Not only is this a mistake that people catch easily (everyone knows how to spell their own name), but it is also a mistake for which a follow-up email is the most embarrassing to send.

Minimize mistakes in bulk emails with Mailmeteor

Mailmeteor can help you minimize mistakes when sending emails with powerful features such as the ability to automatically personalize, preview, and schedule emails.

Automatically personalize emails

Writing emails manually can lead to mistakes. Addressing recipients by the wrong name or providing incorrect information is just the tip of the iceberg.

Mailmeteor automatically merges personalized data into your emails, ensuring that each recipient receives a customized message tailored specifically to them. This minimizes the risk of sending generic or inaccurate information, reduces mistakes, and enhances the effectiveness of your communication.

Preview emails before sending

Mistakes in emails can range from simple typos to formatting issues that can make your message appear unprofessional. MailMeteor’s preview feature allows you to review your emails before sending them.

This lets you carefully inspect your email’s content, layout, and formatting to catch and correct any mistakes. This helps you maintain a high level of quality in your emails, minimizing mistakes that could potentially undermine your message or create misunderstandings.

Schedule for later

Rushing to send an email can result in you missing important details or forgetting to include necessary attachments. MailMeteor’s scheduling feature helps you avoid these mistakes.

By scheduling emails in Gmail, you can review and double-check all aspects of your email before sending it. You can even cancel the scheduled emails if necessary!

Frequently Asked Questions

How to recall an email in Gmail after 1 hour?

Unfortunately, it is not possible to recall an email in Gmail after 1 hour. The only thing you can do is to use the “Undo Send” feature of your Gmail account within maximum 30 seconds of sending an email to recall it. If you miss that time frame, you won’t be able to cancel your email.

Can you delete an email already sent?

You can delete the emails you’ve sent from your Gmail inbox at any given time. To do that, simply select the email you want to delete and click on the Bin icon.

**Deleting an email in Gmail is not the same as recalling it**

However, this will not change the fact that your email has already been sent. Even after you’ve erased it, that email will remain visible in your recipients’ inbox.

How to unsend an email in Gmail after a day?

As explained earlier, if you sent your email 1 day or 1 week ago, you’re out of luck. Gmail’s recall feature only allows you to recall an email within 5 to 30 seconds of sending it, depending on your settings. if your email was sent longer ago, you can no longer recall it.

This guide was written by Guy Bou Samra, content editor at Mailmeteor. Mailmeteor is a simple & privacy-focused emailing software. Trusted by millions of users worldwide, it is often considered as the best tool to send newsletters with Gmail. Give us a try and let us know what you think!

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