Disabling Apps and Clearing Cache and Data

My phone is a Moto X4 running Android 9.

There are numerous apps on my phone that I don’t use. I’ve read that one can “disable” an app. However, when I choose “disable,” this message comes up: “If you disable this app, Android and other apps may no longer function.as intended.” It seems that lots of apps are linked to other apps. How do I know (or find out) if I can safely disable certain apps without causing problems? I guess I could try trial and error, but that seems pretty risky.

In regards to clearing cache and data, if I clear the cache, will I delete passwords/texts/contacts/voicemails? If I delete data, what will I Iose? For example, if I delete cache and data from the Google Messages app, will I lose any/all of my texts and contacts? Same questions about the Google Phone app… as well as other apps.

I have 76 apps according to Settings>Apps & notifications. I use about half that number. The other half are surely eating up some RAM and slowing my phone down.

I’d like to know this so that I can free up some more RAM, more storage, and improve overall performance of the phone.

Thanks for any help.

I’m bumping up this question since no one has responded yet.

Clearing cache and data are only typically done when troubleshooting a misbehaving app. It’s not going to really gain you any permanent space, because the cache and data are going to repopulate in short order. There was a bug that caused the Republic Wireless app to grow rather unwieldy some time ago, so I suppose you might check to see whether that app is taking up gigabytes of space, and clear the app cache and data if it is.

As for disabling apps, that’s also really a last resort when you absolutely need space on an aging phone and you have no other option. You can safely uninstall updates and disable apps that Google or the phone manufacturer no longer support (Google Hangouts, Google+, and Motorola Migrate, for example).

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Thanks for the info. I read today that clearing data will delete user names and passwords… so I’ll just go through some of the apps and see how much space the cache is using.
Also, I’ll disable some of those old apps that aren’t supported any longer.

Thanks again for the info… much appreciated.

Although it was written for a much older phone, there is good guidance on apps that can be safely disabled in one of our #tips topics: