Can You Cancel Unconfirmed Bitcoin Transactions? Yes, Here’s How

Every confirmed bitcoin transaction is irreversible. But is it possible to cancel unconfirmed bitcoin transactions?


Why Bitcoin Transactions Remain Unconfirmed

An unconfirmed bitcoin transaction occurs when a given transaction fails to receive a confirmation on the blockchain within 24 hours.

All bitcoin transactions must be confirmed by miners. They need a minimum of three confirmations to be considered fully confirmed.

There are two main reasons your bitcoin transaction may end up remaining unconfirmed.

  1. If the transaction is very recent, you may need to wait a little longer before receiving confirmation. Currently, even at its very quickest, it takes at least 10 minutes to confirm a BTC transaction.
  2. The fee for the transaction was not entirely included or was too low. One simple rule applies when it comes to bitcoin transactions: the smaller the amount, the lower its chances of a successful confirmation.

If you choose too minimal a transaction fee, it may not get confirmed by miners. If, after 24 hours, your transaction remains unconfirmed, here’s what you need to do.

Reversing Your Unconfirmed Bitcoin Transactions

Make absolutely sure that your transaction is unconfirmed before taking action. To start with, that means waiting for at least 24 hours. If there’s definitely no confirmation yet, use a block explorer like Blockchain.com to confirm that your TX is indeed unconfirmed.

As a public blockchain, it’s very easy to track your bitcoin transaction. Simply enter your transaction ID and track it through the block explorer.

Remember that transactions need a minimum of three confirmations before they are fully confirmed. If you see that your transaction has one or two confirmations, you will have no choice but to wait until it is validated by a third miner. The process has already begun.

If there are zero confirmations, you can go ahead and cancel the transaction. There are two ways of going about this:

  1. Use the Replace by Fee (RBF Protocol)
  2. Use the higher fee…

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