When I pull down the Notification center on either my iPad or iPhone, it displays 5 emails (I have it set to that), but they are not the unread emails at the top of my inbox. They all appear to be drafts! When I click on them they take me to that particular draft, and I can't seem to find a way to locate and delete that draft. I have looked through all of my accounts and mostly cleared out all the drafts that are listed, but none of them have been the five that show up in my Notification center. It has me stumped as to how that is happening on both of my iDevices. Note that it isn't the same drafts, but only the ones that were created on those devices. Also, when new email comes in, it does display on top of the others.

This is a somewhat recent problem, and both devices have worked as expected before.

So my questions are:

  1. How do I access a list (and delete) of drafts that have been created on the iPhone, or iPad itself?
  2. How do I fix the notification center? I suppose if I can delete the drafts, that the problem might go away.

3 Answers 3


Apple does hide the settings for the drafts folder pretty well, but in general you have a choice of saving drafts on the device or on your mail server. It seems you have set them to be on the device. I suggest moving them to the server.

Here's how I get to the setting for my account. Your path might be slightly different as I think it is different for different kinds of servers:

  • Settings
  • Mail, Contacts, Calendars
  • Under "Accounts", click on the mail account to bring up a popup with settings for that account
  • Select "Account" again
  • Select "Advanced"
  • Under "Mailbox Behaviors" select "Drafts Mailbox"
  • Under "On the Server" select the "Drafts" mailbox

I like having them on the server as then they are synced everywhere.

  • Thanks for the reply. For some reason I had never (or it has been a long time) been in there, and it was very helpful to find that. They are set to be on the server. I still never found the drafts that are in the notification center, but found the way to clear them out. (Gulp - should have seen this sooner) I just tapped the X button above the emails and was able to clear them out. No idea how they got there or where they went but it's fixed and that's all I care about. :) Commented Jun 2, 2012 at 13:30
  • 1
    @bass, so what really happened is the drafts were gone a long time ago, you just never cleared the notifications.
    – Old Pro
    Commented Jun 2, 2012 at 13:40
  • Well, interesting. I guess I didn't know I needed to. Thanks for the helpful advice. Commented Jun 2, 2012 at 18:22

Delete the drafts by going to the Mail app, then tapping on Mailboxes in the left hand corner, then tapping Drafts. Then you will see a list of all your drafts. (will post screenshots)

  • Maybe that's part of the problem. I don't have the Drafts mailbox in that list. All there is is Inboxes (and a list of those), then accounts. I just tried creating a test draft and it doesn't show up then either. Commented Jun 2, 2012 at 2:24
  • At least since iOS 6, you access a list of all your drafts by tapping and holding the Compose button. Commented Jan 24, 2013 at 17:25

You've already cleared the notifications by tapping the (ridiculously tiny) X button, but I just wanted to add more information about drafts for future readers.

iOS Mail does not display a unified Drafts mailbox in the Mailboxes list. You can access each account's Drafts folder (whether it's stored locally or on the server) by tapping on that account. If there's a Drafts folder, and there should be, you'll see it there.

Just because the unified list of Drafts isn't in the Mailboxes list, doesn't mean it isn't there. At any time, you can tap and hold on the Compose button to access a list of all your unsent drafts in every account. You can swipe drafts to delete them, just like a normal mailbox.

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