How to edit a Zoom recording for free using YouTube

If you just need to make minor edits to a Zoom recording, you don’t need premium video editing software to do it. In fact, you can edit your Zoom recordings, for free, on YouTube. All you need is a YouTube account and your Zoom video file. Here’s how to edit a Zoom recording for free using YouTube.

Step 1: After recording your video, locate the file on your computer

Zoom recording file screenshot

To make editing your Zoom recording on YouTube easier, you’ll need to know where the videoconferencing software saved your video file. If it’s your first time recording a meeting on Zoom, then Zoom will just create a folder for you automatically on your computer to store your video. You’ll most likely find your file under a folder labeled Zoom and then within a sub-folder named after the meeting you recorded the video from. This sub-folder will contain three files. The one you want is the file labeled zoom_0. This is your video recording and the one you’ll upload to YouTube.

Step 2: Log in to your YouTube account and upload your video

Zoom YouTube video upload

Once you know where your video is saved, navigate to YouTube and log in to your account. Then click the Create icon in the top right corner of your screen (it looks like a video camera with a plus sign in the middle). Then, from the menu that pops up, select Upload video. On the next screen, click on the blue Select Files button and choose your Zoom video from your computer’s file explorer.

Step 3: Fill out the details of your video and add other elements if desired

YouTube video upload description

You’ll then be taken to a screen that will ask you to fill out some information about your video (title, description, etc.). Then click Next. Afterward, you’ll be given the option to add other elements to your video, like cards or an end screen. Click Next.

Step 4: Confirm your visibility settings and save your video

YouTube video visibility settings screenshot

On this screen, you’ll choose your video’s visibility from three choices: Public, Unlisted, or Private. Choose Private if you just want to edit your video without publishing it on the streaming site or making it available via a shareable link. Choosing Unlisted makes your video available to watch via a sharable link. You can also choose to schedule your video to go public at later date. Once you’ve confirmed your visibility settings, hit the blue Save button.

Step 5: Click on your video and then select Editor

YouTube Video editor button

At this point, you’ll be taken back to your channel’s dashboard where your newly uploaded video should be waiting for you. To edit your video with YouTube’s video editor, click on your video’s thumbnail and then select Editor from the left-hand side menu.

Step 6: Edit your video in YouTube’s video editor

Select the blue Get Started button in the lower half of the screen, and you’ll be taken to a video editing page for your newly uploaded Zoom recording. As YouTube’s video editor is a basic, bare-bones editor, there are really only two main things you can do with your Zoom recording: Trimming and adding a blur to your video.

Youtube video edit trim 1

Further reading


Step 1: Select Trim. In the lower half of the editor, a blue box will surround your video clips. In this box, select the start of the segment you want to remove and then select Split from the bottom of the screen.

Step 2: A thicker, vertical blue bar should appear. Select this bar and drag it until you reach the end of the segment you want to remove.

Step 3: Click Preview from the bottom of the screen. Tap on the video at the top of the screen to view your trimmed video.

If you’re happy with the trim you made, you can click the blue Save button in the top right corner to save your edits. Or you can click the More icon (three vertical dots) and choose Save as new to save your edits as a new video and keep your original video intact.
YouTube Video edit trim 2 screenshot

Trimming the start or end of your video

Step 1: Select Trim. When the blue box appears, drag the opposite sides of the box until it contains only the portion of the video you would like to keep.

Step 2: Click Preview. Tap on the video at the top of the screen to view your edited video.

If you like the changes, click the blue Save button or choose Save as new after clicking on the More icon (three vertical dots).

YouTube video edit blurring

Blurring faces and more

Click Add Blur at the bottom of the video editor page. You’ll then be taken to a another tab in which you’ll be given two blur options: Blur faces or Custom blurring. The Blur faces feature allows YouTube to zero in on all the distinct faces your videos has and then gives you the option of blurring them by having you select from a thumbnail menu of faces to choose which faces in your video get blurred.

The Custom blurring feature allows you to choose specific objects in your video to get blurred. To use either blurring option, select the Edit button next to the option listed on the Add Blur page, and then follow the on-screen prompts to blur your video. Once you’ve applied the blur, you’ll be shown a preview of your blurred video. If you’re happy with the changes, select Save as new video or the blue Save button. If you don’t like the changes, click Revert to original.

Step 7: Download your edited video

download edited YouTube video screenshot

Once YouTube has finished processing your newly edited video, you can then download it to your computer. To do so, go back to your channel’s dashboard and select Videos from the left-hand side menu. Then hover over your chosen video with your mouse. The three vertical dots icon should appear when you do so. Select this icon and then choose Download from the menu that pops up. Follow the on-screen prompts to finish saving your edited Zoom recording to your computer.

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