One of the most common things we say to clients is definitely:
“Please can you clear your cache…”
It must really annoy them!! But we really need to remind them to clear their browser cache, or they cannot see the latest changes that we’ve done to the website. However, we realised that many people still are not quite sure how to clear the cache on their browser and so we put together this guide to help you clear your cache on each of the leading browsers out there.
What is cache?
Every time you visit a website, your browser stores bits of information from that website so that this information can load quicker the next time you visit the same website. This information that is saved is called your browser cache and is generally a positive thing as it speeds up your browsing experience.
However, there are times when having your browser store cache may work against you. For example, having so much cache stored up in your browser may end up slowing it down rather than speeding it up! So, deleting it makes a lot of sense.
Also, if you store things like passwords or other sensitive data, it can be more vulnerable to breaches if this is not cleared from time to time.
And then of course, there’s the reason we mentioned above: clearing your cache forces your browser to fetch the all the elements of that webpage, rather than the old, stored ones. That means, it will display the latest version of the website, which is great if you are working on it and want to see the changes made by your developer.
But the method for clearing your cache differs on each browser, so we’ve put together some instructions on how to clear your cache specifically on different browsers.
How to clear your cache on Chrome
On Chrome, there are three dots in the top right-hand corner. If you click these three dots and then head to “More Tools” and you will see the option for Clear Browsing Data.
Shortcut: CTRL (CMD) + SHIFT + DEL
This will open up a new tab with a popup window that looks like below:
You will notice that there are three options here, which are automatically ticked, so just be careful here unless you’re happy to delete absolutely everything. So, untick the other boxes and just leave “Cached images and files” ticked. Otherwise, you will delete your passwords and browsing history too.
The last thing to do is to change the time range to what you think would be relevant. 4 weeks is more than fine, but 24 hours is also good enough if you’re only looking for really recent changes.
How to clear your cache on Safari
The method you choose here will depend on what level of clearance you want. If you’re happy to absolutely purge everything, then just go straight to the “History” tab and click “Clear History”.
You just need to select the time limit and everything will be cleared.
However, most people won’t want to do this, so they will need to be more selective of what elements they want to clear. Therefore, they need to access the “Empty Caches” option through the “Develop” tab.
If you are reading this looking at your menu items and cannot even see the “Develop” tab and are really confused, this is because it doesn’t show up on Safari by default. You will have to manually enable this menu in preferences.
Click “Safari” in the top menu, click “Preferences” and then the “Advanced” tab. Here, you will see a checkbox saying “Show Develop in Menu Bar”. You need to make sure this is checked and then you will see this hidden menu in your menu bar!
Shortcut: CTRL/CMD + OPTION + E (once you’ve enabled the menu)
How to clear your cache in Firefox
Clearing your cache in Firefox is very simple, as the option is right in the menu at the top. Just go to “History” and click “Clear Recent History”
Shortcut: CTRL/CMD + SHIFT + DEL
You will have a popup that comes up asking you what data you wish to clear and here you need to just select “Cache” if you want to avoid deleting all your other data.
Feel free to keep the other boxes checked if you want to get rid of everything. As we mentioned previously, this is probably sensible to do once in a while, but it can be very annoying if you want to access previous sites/data quickly.
How to clear your cache on Microsoft Edge
There are a couple of ways to access the same window from the menu in the top right-hand corner. If you click the three dots, you will see a dropdown menu and from here, you can click either Settings, or History.
Settings Shortcut: CTRL/CMD + ,
History Shortcut: CTRL/CMD + Y
From the Settings menu, you can see the tabs on the left-hand side. Select “Privacy, Search and Services” and then scroll down to where it says “Clear Browsing Data” and then select Choose What To Clear.
You can access this exact screen from the History menu too. If you select the three dots within this new window, it will show an item saying “Clear Browsing Data” and it will then bring up the screen shown above.
Once again, make sure only the “Cached Images and Files” checkbox unless you are happy to delete all your other data.
If you’re looking for the section on how to clear your cache on Internet Explorer, sorry; we haven’t included it in this article! That’s because it’s such an outdated browser and if you’re on a Windows computer and you want to use a Microsoft browser, you should be using Microsoft Edge anyway! Otherwise, download Chrome like everyone else 🙂
We hope this guide is helpful for how to clear your cache on popular Google Chrome, Safari, Firefox and Microsoft Edge.
If there’s anything we’ve missed out that you’d like us to include, please feel free to let us know!