How to Fix Corrupted Recycle Bin Windows 10/11?

Learn to fix corrupted Recycle Bin Windows 10/11 via five feasible fixes on this page. Besides, you can recover the emptied Recycle Bin and get relevant tips about Recycle Bin.


By Penny / Updated on October 30, 2023

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Why does my Recycle Bin keep getting corrupted?

Usually, the Recycle Bin is like a safe place for your accidentally/recently deleted files. When you change your mind, you can easily get them back. But surprisingly, even the Recycle Bin itself can cause problems if it gets messed up due to corruption. But please don’t be concerned because the corrupted Recycle Bin can be fixed.


In this passage, let’s figure out the possible reasons for the corrupted Recycle Bin before fixing it.

🔋 Sudden power failure: The sudden shutting down of your PC could cause the Recycle Bin to become corrupted. And greyed desktop Recycle Bin icon is one of the corrupted Recycle Bin messages.

❗ User errors: Mistakes in high-level tasks and complex software use can lead to serious consequences.

This is especially true for administrator-level tasks and advanced partitioning software.

💻 Failing storage devices: If data corruption becomes a frequent occurrence, it is a clear signal that your storage device is approaching the end of its operational lifespan.

🎡Software bugs: Sometimes, the bugs or errors that come with Windows OS could cause a damaged Recycle Bin.

🎇 Malware infection: Dangerous malware or infected files also can lead to your Recycle Bin being damaged.

Part 1. How to fix corrupted Recycle Bin?

No matter why your Recycle Bin gets corrupted, please try the following ways to repair it. Follow the steps in the order given in this article for the best results.

Fix 1. Use the elevated command prompt to reset the Recycle Bin

How to fix a corrupted Recycle Bin in Windows 10? You can use the elevated command prompt to reset Recycle Bin. This fix also applies to your Recycle Bin shows empty but it’s not.

Step 1. Open an elevated command prompt by typing “cmd” in the search bar and select the “Run as administrator” option.


Step 2. Type “rd /s /q C:\$Recycle.bin” in the window and hit “Enter” to begin the process. You can replace the letter C with your selected drive letter.


Fix 2. Use SFC to repair missing or corrupted system files

If things go wrong with Windows functions or it crashes, you could use the System File Checker to find and fix problems with your computer’s files.

Windows 8, Windows 8.1, and Windows 10 users need to enter the inbox Deployment Image Servicing and Management (DISM) before running the System File Checker.
Please do not close the command prompt window before the verification process.

Step 1. Type “cmd” in the search bar and click “Run as administrator” to open the command prompt window.


Step 2. Type DISM.exe /Online /Cleanup-image /Restorehealth in the window.

When you see The operation completely successfully, type sfc /scannow in the window.

After seeing Verification 100% complete, type “exit” and hit “Enter” to close the window.


Fix 3. Remove and reinstall the Recycle Bin

If the Recycle Bin on C is corrupted, how to fix it? You can remove your Recycle Bin from desktop and all its permissions. Then reinstall this temporary storage folder.

But this solution needs to empty all the accidentally and recently deleted files stored in the desktop Recycle Bin. If needed, please continue reading to recover emptied Recycle Bin.

Step 1. Please press Win + E to open File Explorer > click View > Options.


You can also open the Control Panel using the Windows search bar > click Appearance and Personalization > Show hidden files and folders to enter the interface of Folder Options.


Step 2. After opening Folder Options, click View > tick Hide protected operating systems files > click Apply > OK to save your modifications.


Step 3. Press Win + E to open File Explorer > click the C drive > type $Recycle.Bin the search bar to delete it.


Step 4. Press Win + I to open Windows Settings > click Personalization > Themes.


Step 5. Click “Desktop icon settings” on the right.


Step 6. Tick the Recycle Bin icon > click Apply > OK to reinstall the Recycle Bin on your C drive. Similarly, this setting also can remove shortcuts from desktop if needed.


Fix 4. Scan your computer for malware via Virus & threat protection

Given that viruses or malware is also one of the possible factors, let’s run Virus & threat protection to remove detected malicious files because Windows Settings automatically and continuously scans your system for malware, viruses, and security vulnerabilities.

On top of this ongoing protection, your Windows operating system remains safeguarded against threats through automatic downloads of updates, ensuring its safety and security. After deleting viruses or malware, your damaged Recycle Bin might be fixed.

If you intend to fix folders turned into shortcuts, perhaps this method is also applicable.

Step 1. Press Win + I to open Windows Settings > click Update & Security > Windows Security > Virus & threat protection.


Step 2. Click the “Scan options” button.


Step 3. Select Full scan > click Scan now to start the scanning process. Please wait patiently.


Fix 5. Restore from a System Restore point

As the name suggests, System Restore has the ability to revert PCs to a normal working state (system files, installed applications, Windows Registry, and system settings).

If you’ve enabled System Restore and made backups via System Restore, you can refer to the steps below. Otherwise, this way is useless for you to fix corrupted Recycle Bin.

Step 1. Type Create a restore point in the search bar > Open it.


Step 2. Click System Restore > Next.


Step 3. Choose your needed restore point from the list > click Scan for affected programs to re-confirm all the deleted drives and programs > close this window.


Step 4. Click Next > confirm your selected restore point again > click Finish.


Step 5. Click “Yes to restore your PC from your desired restore point. After rebooting, its OS will be restored to your selected restore point after the process.

Part 2. How to recover deleted files from Recycle Bin after emptying/repairing it?

If you’ve emptied the Recycle Bin during the repair process, these accidentally/recently deleted files will become permanently deleted files.

So can you recover deleted files from Recycle Bin after emptying them? In this scenario, leading data recovery software, MyRecover can address your concerns.

Supported by its advanced scanning method and high data recovery rate, MyRecover is good at recovering deleted and missing files from Windows PCs and other local drives.

  • Please stop loading new files to your Windows to prevent data coverage. After data erasure, it can decrease its Windows data recovery rate.
  • After Recycle Bin data recovery, please save your recovered missing files in another drive instead of the original C drive.
  • Upgrading MyRecover is a more cost-effective choice for those users who prefer to recover plenty of deleted or missing files.
★Key features of MyRecover:
Recover 200+ types of files: images, audio, videos, MS Office files, WPS files, folders, compressed files, websites, etc.
Combined scanning method: MyRecover can automatically run Quick Scan and Deep Scan to detect all the recoverable files on your selected local drive.
Easy-to-find: After recovery, MyRecover can keep the original format, filename, path, and size for the deleted files.
Excellent compatibility: Support Windows 11, 10, 8, 7, or Server PC and 4 file systems (NTFS, FAT32, exFAT, and ReFS).
Download Software Windows 11/10/8/7/Server
Secure Download

Step 1. Install and run MyRecover on your Windows > select the C drive > click Start Scan.


Step 2. After clicking Start Scan, MyRecover can automatically run Quick Scan and Deep Scan to detect all the recoverable permanently deleted files from the Recycle Bin.

During scanning, you can filter/preview your desired files according to Filename, Document Type, Path, Size, Date, etc.

  • Name: Enter the filename of your wanted USB files to narrow the search area.
  • Date modified: Set the date (today, yesterday, last 7/30 days, etc.)
  • Size: Filter file size (<128KB, 128KB~1MB, 1MB~512MB, etc.)


Step 3. Under the Recycle Bin folder, select the files you plan to recover > click Recover x files.


Related Q&A about Recycle Bin data recovery

How to fix corrupted Recycle Bin Windows 10 or 11? This post lists five feasible fixes for you to solve this issue. When it comes to problems regarding how to recover deleted files from Recycle Bin after emptying/repairing it, MyRecover might be your top choice. Meanwhile, there are some relevant tips about the Recycle Bin for your reference.


Why is my Recycle Bin not responding?

Because your Recycle Bin becomes corrupted and causes issues. For example, it cannot automatically cycle your deleted files.

How do I restore the Recycle Bin in Windows 10?

You can use desktop icon settings to restore, add, or remove desktop icons.

Please press Win + I to open Windows Settings > click Personalization > Themes > Desktop icon settings > tick the desktop icon > click Apply > OK to restore the Recycle Bin.

Can you permanently delete the Recycle Bin?

Yes, you can. If there’s no option to empty Recycle Bin, you can empty the Recycle Bin via the following ways.

Option 1. Empty the Recycle Bin via Desktop icon settings.

Option 2. Empty the Recycle Bin from Temporary files.


Option 3. Perform a Clean Boot in Windows to empty the Recycle Bin.

Option 4. Use the elevated command prompt to reset Recycle Bin.

What is the best way to prevent data loss?

The most effective safeguard against data loss is consistently creating regular backups. So it’s time for you to cultivate a good habit of making backups with this free Windows backup software, AOMEI Backupper Standard because it offers richer backup features and simpler operating steps.

Penny · Editor
Penny works as an editor at AOMEI Technology, while she's a tester and editor for AOMEI Data Recovery Tools. She enjoys helping users with data recovery issues on Windows and iPhones using simple and practical solutions. Outside of work, she has a strong affection for pets, particularly giant pandas.