Not Enough iCloud Storage? Fix This Issue with This Full Guide

Brandon Wood
May 26, 2023

"My iCloud say not enough storage, but after I upgraded the iCloud storage it still says full. What happens to my iCloud? How much do I need to back up my iPhone? I really want to fix this bug."

- A Discussion from Apple Community

Imagine you decide to back up your data in iCloud, knowing very well you have lots of storage, but when you proceed, you get a "not enough iCloud storage" error. How annoying that moment could be! What to do if you ever find yourself in such a scenario? Of course, many people would be annoyed, but it is expected, so anticipate such a thing to happen once in a while.

Backing up iPhone data in iCloud is just one of the mundane tasks we do almost every day. Unfortunately, iCloud has its limits, and at some point, you may see a "not enough iCloud storage" error.

Apparently, this is an imminently disastrous situation. Fortunately, there is a great way you can get rid of this unpleasantness in your life. Therefore, don't fret when you see the popup error on your iPhone, as we've got you covered.

fix the issue of not enough icloud storage 

Part 1: Why is iCloud saying not enough storage?
Part 2: What to Do If iPhone Won't Back up to iCloud for "Not Enough Storage"?
Part 3: How to Back Up iPhone When Not Enough iCloud Storage?
Part 4: What to Do If Your iCloud Backup Couldn't Be Completed?

Part 1: Why is iCloud saying not enough storage?

Before we get into details, let us acknowledge why the error keeps showing in the first place. Maybe you could be backing up too many things, but your storage isn't huge. When you use iCloud storage plans of 5GB which is free or the paid 10GB, you won't be able to back up everything. This will then make the error message to show on your iPhone.

Part 2: What to Do If iPhone Won't Back up to iCloud for "Not Enough Storage"?

Typically, Apple provides 5GB of free iCloud storage. However, it can get full while syncing photos, documents, and videos. Those who always sync devices with iCloud have probably seen the message like "not enough storage: The iPhone can't be backed up due to not enough iCloud storage space. Manage the storage settings". Here are the things to do if your iPhone won't back up to iCloud.

2.1 Check how much storage do you need to backup your iPhone

To check the storage space in iCloud, go to Settings, click on Apple ID, then click on iCloud, Manage Storage, and lastly click on Backups. Wait for few seconds. At the top screen, you will see the Last Backups, the Backup Size, and the Next Backup size. You will then know if the storage is needed to back up your iPhone.

check icloud storage on the iphone

2.2 Turn off iCloud Photos syncing

Usually, iCloud stores your pictures in sync across all the devices. When iCloud photo syncing is turned on, every photo you take is synced in iCloud, which fills up the storage space. To create some storage space, consider turning off the photos syncing.

turn off icloud photos syncing to fix not enough icloud storage

2.3 Delete photos and videos from iCloud

One of the largest data hogs in iOS devices is videos and photos. By default, the iPhone is set to back up videos and photos to iCloud, taking up some storage space. Therefore, the smart move is to delete the photos and videos you have backed up in iCloud to create more space.

Guess you need: If you find your iPhone clicks icon on its own, you'd better repair it without delay.

2.4 Deleted useless app data

If your photos and videos are not the main culprits in taking up too much storage space in iCloud, then consider deleting useless app data.

Go to Settings, click on iCloud, then tap on Storage and Manage Storage.

After that, choose the app in Documents & Data, then click on the Edit icon found in the upper right corner. Choose the document you want to remove, or you can click the Delete All button to erase all the apps.

 delete app data on icloud

2.5 Delete unused iCloud backups

iCloud storage offers only 5GB of the backup storage space; however, it automatically backs up the files when connected with Wi-Fi. When there is no storage space left in your iCloud to contain the files, you will start to get a"not enough iCloud storage to backup" message. Consider deleting unused iCloud backups to create more storage space.

Go to General, Storage, iCloud storage, then to Manage storage. Lastly, select the backups you won't use, then click Delete Backup from the popup menu.

 delete useless backup data from icloud to fix not enough storage issue

Check it if you need:

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2.6 Upgrade iCloud storage plan

Of course, you can always upgrade your iCloud storage plan by buying more from Apple. Here is how to go about it:

Step 1: Find Settings and go to iCloud > Storage.

Step 2: Click Change Storage Plan .

Step 3: Choose the right plan for you.

 upgrade icloud storage plan on iphone

Remember, all the logged-in devices will share the upgraded storage in your iCloud account.

Tips: What to do if upgraded iCloud storage still saying full?

After upgrading your iCloud storage, but the message keeps on showing, there might be other issues that may require Apple Support's help.

2.7 Contact Apple Support

Even after upgrading the storage plan, but you still get a not enough icloud storage to backup error, consider contacting Apple Support about the issue in detail.


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Part 3: How to Back Up iPhone When Not Enough iCloud Storage

If you want an easy way to backup your iPhone data when there is not enough iCloud storage, Coolmuster iOS Assistant is the best software to use. The software enables you to manage the iPhone data on the computer quickly. Below are the steps to back up iPhone data when there is not enough storage space in your iCloud:

Step 1: Download and install the Coolmuster Assistant software, then launch it on the computer. Use a USB cable to connect the iPhone to your computer.

windows version of coolmuster ios assistantmac version of coolmuster ios assistant

Step 2: Click the Trust option on the iPhone, and tap the Continue icon on the computer. Wait for the software to detect your device, then tap the Super Toolkit button found on the top menu.

back up iphone when not enough icloud storage

After that, click the iTunes Backup & Restore, select Backup, and choose the iPhone to back from. After that, choose location on the computer to save the files and finally tap the OK icon to start the backup process.

back up iphone data if the icloud storage is not enough

Further reading:

How Can I Delete Photos from iPhone But Not iCloud? [Solved]

3 Simple Methods to Download iCloud Backup for Android in Minutes

Part 4: What to Do If Your iCloud Backup Couldn't Be Completed

If iCloud backup couldn't be completed, try doing this:

4.1 Make sure your iPhone is connected to Wi-Fi

iCloud backups work only over a Wi-Fi connection. Therefore, ensure that your iPhone is connected to Wi-Fi by following the below steps:

Step 1: On your iPhone, go to Settings, and click the Wi-Fi.

check wifi on iphone

Step 2: Click the Wi-Fi network you would like to connect to, and tap the "Join" icon at the upper right part of the screen.

Step 3: After connecting your iPhone, try iCloud back up again using these steps: Settings > your username > iCloud > iCloud Backup > Back Up Now.

check the wifi network if icloud backup cannot be completed

4.2 Ensure your iPhone is up to date

Also, make sure that your iPhone is up to date. Follow these steps to upgrade your iPhone:

On your iPhone, find Settings, click General, and then tap Software updates.

update ios on iphone

4.3 Try to back up with another Wi-Fi network

If you tried backing up, but still it doesn’t go through, you may use another Wi-Fi network. Connect to the Wi-Fi and try backing up again

4.4 Contact Apple Support

If all of the above ways on your iPhone do not help, there might be other problems that need you to contact Apple Support.


If you ever get a "not enough iCloud storage" message on your iPhone, know that it is expected. In fact, most iPhone users are faced with this issue. However, the above ways will help you solve the problem. Also, you can change another backup method to back up your iPhone data. For example, you can use Coolmuster iOS Assistant to transfer your iPhone files to your default iTunes folder on the computer at once. It also support you to transfer iOS data selectively. All in all, this software is a fantastic alternative to iCloud.

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