Portability and power packed in such a small form factor have always been the recipe for MacBook’s success. Just think of when MacBook Air was first introduced — it has immediately become the gold standard of ultraportable computers. Apple’s recent update of the MacBook Pro lineup goes on to continue legacy and features an even smaller footprint. The beauty of these engineering masterpieces, however, can only be fully appreciated if these laptops actually hold the charge. Otherwise, the portability factor is simply out of the equation.
Running into charging issues is a thing of nightmares, especially, if you are using your Mac on the daily. This article will walk you through the steps of determining the cause of the problem and how to solve it.
How to Troubleshoot a MacBook Charging Problem
There are 3 signs either of which can indicate the reasons behind your MacBook charging issues.
Inspect Charging Hardware
First things firsts, you need to inspect the basics. Start by verifying the charging cable. Go over every inch making sure there are no damaged areas or broken points. A damaged cable can be the reason your laptop isn’t charging. Try replacing the cable or borrowing from a friend and see whether it changes the situation.
After inspecting the cable, make sure your wall adapter is properly plugged into the socket. It does sound like an obvious step, yet it never hurts to double-check.
Lastly, verify that the ports on your MacBook don’t have any debris or damage. Excessive dust can also block the connection and prevent your battery from charging.
Restart Your MacBook
Any software can be prone to freezing or error. The same applies to the software in control of the charging hardware. Fortunately, fixing this type of issue can easily be resolved with a restart.
• Click on Apple logo in the menu bar
• Choose Restart
• Let your Mac reboot and try plugging in the charger again
Easy as 1-2-3! Even a simple reboot can sometimes help the case.
Verify Battery Health
Under intensive use, MacBook batter may start wearing out faster. This shouldn’t stop you from using your laptop of course, yet it’s still something to keep in mind. Checking your battery status can provide helpful insight and relevant information that can explain why your MacBook isn’t charging or holding the charge.
There are two ways you can check your battery status on a Mac. Here is a quick one:
- Hold Option key
- Click on the Battery indicator in the menu bar
- Click on the Condition to find out more information about the results
Another option takes a few extra steps but provides more information:
- Click on Apple logo in the menu bar
- Click on About this Mac
- Choose System Report in the Overview tab
- Select Power in the Hardware section
- Find battery condition info in the Heath Information section.
The importance of keeping your battery healthy should not be overlooked. Last thing you want is your battery needing immediate service.
How to Fix MacBook Not Charging
Unfortunately, there is no universal fix to all of possible MacBook charging issues. The solution greatly depends on what is causing the issue in the first place. As mentioned before, it can be as simple as needing to give your Mac a Reboot. At other times, you may need to replace your charger, clean or repair ports, or even service your battery. Here are a few other things you could do that can potentially solve charging problems.
Cool Down Your MacBook
Heat is usually not an issue for Mac, nevertheless, MacBooks can overheat under certain conditions. Under heat, thermal sensors inside your laptop block out the access to the battery for the sake of safety.
If your MacBook is overheating — you are going to feel it. Simply touch the chassis to see it’s hot. You can turn off your Mac and give it time to cool off before plugging in the charger and giving it another shot.
Reset System Management Controller (SMC)
The System Management Controller (aka SMC), among other things, is responsible for the battery indicator and management. Resetting SMC may help Mac to detect the charger or display accurate battery charge.
Reset SMC on MacBooks with non-removable battery (2009 and above):
- Shut down your Mac
- Press and hold Shift-Ctrl-Option + Power button for 10 seconds
- Release the keys and turn your Mac back on.
Reset SMC on MacBooks with removable battery:
- Shut down your Mac
- Remove the battery
- Press and hold Power button for 5 seconds
- Release and install the battery
- Power on your Mac.
Tips on How to Charge Your MacBook
When you get your battery charging back online, try following a few of these simple tips for optimal Mac battery performance.
Avoid extreme temperatures: at above 95 F you are pushing the boundaries and exiting MacBook comfort zone.
Avoid charging in cases: some cases block exhaust and may lead to excess heat.
Keep battery half-charger for long-term storage.
Following these tips should help maximize the longevity of your battery. If following this guide was not able solve your MacBook’s quirks, you should consider letting Apple certified professionals do the repairing.