If you are a mobile user working with a laptop, there’s a good chance you connect to many printers in different locations, which you may only use once or twice. After a while, you can end up with many printers installed on your computer without realizing it.
Of course, you can delete the devices you do not need using the Settings app. However, you may not know that deleting a printer doesn’t delete its driver from Windows 10. They will stay stored in a local inventory if you need them again. Although it’s a good approach for reinstalling printers quickly, if you won’t need the driver anymore, you can keep things organized, free up some space, and prevent (possible) printer driver problems by deleting the driver completely from Windows 10 or older versions.
In this guide, you will learn the steps to delete printer drivers on Windows 10 completely.
How to delete a printer completely from Windows 10
On Windows 10, removing a printer and driver from your computer is a two-step process. First, you must remove the printer from the system, and second, you must delete the driver files using the Printer Management app or PowerShell.
1. Remove printer from Settings
To remove a printer from Windows 10, use these steps:
Open Settings on Windows 10.
Click on Devices.
Click on Printers & scanners.
Under the “Printers & scanners” section, select the printer to remove.
Click the Remove device button.
Click the Yes button.
Once you complete the steps, you can delete the driver from your computer. Alternatively, you can uninstall the printer from Control Panel> Hardware and Sound> Devices and Printers, right-clicking the printer and selecting the Remove device option.
2. Delete printer driver from Print Management
To delete a printer driver, use these steps:
Search for Control Panel and click the top result to open the console.
Click on System and Security.
Click on Administrative Tools.
Double-click the Print Management option.
Expand the Custom Filters branch.
Click on All Drivers from the left navigation pane.
Right-click the printer driver on the right side, and select the Delete option.
Click the Yes button.
After you complete the steps, the driver will uninstall from the computer. If you have additional printers, you’ll need to repeat the steps to remove them from the device altogether.
3. Delete printer driver from PowerShell
On Windows 10 Home, the Print Management app is unavailable, but you can still use PowerShell to uninstall the driver quite easily. You can also use these instructions on Windows 10 Pro.
To remove a print driver with PowerShell, use these steps:
Search for PowerShell, right-click the top result, and select the Run as administrator option.
Type the following command to list all the print drivers installed on Windows 10 and press Enter:
Get-PrinterDriver | Format-List Name
Type the following command to remove the print driver and press Enter:
Remove-PrinterDriver -Name "Your-Printer-Name"
In the command, update the printer name with the name that appears in step 3. The quotation marks are required if the name includes spaces. For example, this command removes the “Microsoft Software Printer Driver” from Windows 10 Home:
Remove-PrinterDriver -Name "Microsoft Software Printer Driver"
Once you complete the steps, the printer driver will no longer be available on the system. You may need to repeat the steps to uninstall other printers as necessary on Windows 10.