SharePoint 2013 Recycle Bin Tricks

To get to the recycle bin:

Open any site

Click on “Settings” icon in the top right side of the site

Select “Site Contents”

Select Recycle Bin on the right

It will take you to this page.


This is the 1st Stage “Recycle Bin”

When you delete from the 1st stage recycle bin, items are transferred to the 2nd Stage recycle bin.

You cannot remove items from 2nd stage Recycle Bin, unless you are a site collection administrator.

2nd Stage “Recycle Bin”

How to access 2nd Stage “Recycle Bin”.

Click on “Settings” icon in the top right side of the site.

Select “Site Settings”

If you’re in a sub site, you may need to navigate to the root of the site collection by clicking “Go to top level site settings” in the “Site Collection Administration” section.

From the “Site Collection Administration” section click “Recycle Bin”.


if you remove items from here, then you cannot restore..

Default Settings for “Recycle Bin”

Settings for the recycle bin are controlled at the web application level. This means the any changes to the default configuration need to be carried out via “Central Administration”.

To access the settings, from “Central Administration” click “Application Management” > “Manage Web Applications”, highlight the desired web application and from the Ribbon click “General Settings”

The recycle bin is enabled by default with an automatic deletion from after 30 days and an allocated storage amount for the 2nd stage is 50% of live site quota for second stage deleted items.

The “Delete items in the Recycle Bin” figure is a set number of days for both stages, if an item is deleted from the 1st stage after 15 days it will only be available in the 2nd stage for a further 15.


This means that with a site quota of set of 500MB,  250MB is allocated as storage for the 2nd stage recycle bin making a total space requirement of 750MB. The percentage range for the “live site quota” needs to be a figure between “1-500%“. Obviously this content lives in the same content database as the site collection so you need to consider this when estimating your capacity requirements.


If the 2nd stage recycle bin reaches its quota limit, older items will be overwritten to accommodate items moved from the 1st stage.

If a site is deleted, it will skip the 1st stage recycle bin and go straight to the 2nd.

A user will only see items they have deleted in the recycle bin.

There are no PowerShell cmdlets to configure the recycle bin.

If the recycle bin functionality is turned off, items are permanently deleted and can only be retrieved from a backup.

If you have not enabled site quotas, the 2nd stage recycle bin will have no space limitations