How to Troubleshoot a Macbook Not Charging

MacBook are a line of notebook computers from Apple Inc. known for using high end pieces of hardware in their products. They are known to be reliable but at the end of the day it is an electronic device susceptible to mechanical and hardware issues

Beauty of MacBook or any notebook is its portability, so one can imagine a nightmare faced when MacBook stops charging hence killing the portability factor. The reason can be as small as an electric charge residing on your MacBook or a faulty adapter/battery.

In this guide we will walk you through a step by step process to troubleshoot charging issues. BUT before you go through all the methods, it is best to try a different charger (only if you can) to rule out the possibility of a faulty charger. If the charger is found to be faulty, then you may simply get a new one.

Method 1: Physically Inspect Hardware

Make sure the adapter is plugged into the socket and the power socket has current. Try connecting the adapter to a different power socket.

Look for foreign particles like dust and debris in all the connectors and ports. Re-connect all the connections firmly. Dust can build up in the MacBook charging port, so if you find it, use a wooden object to remove it such as “toothpick”. Don’t use metal objects.


Check for any anomaly in the cables and adapter.

Method 2: Perform a System Management Controller (SMC) Reset

System Management Controller (SMC) controls many critical processes in Macs such as power management, thermal, battery charging, sleep and wake procedures and LED light indicators. So resetting SMC can resolve many issues related to this processes.

First, let the battery run out completely.

Resetting SMC on older MacBook whose batteries can be removed can be done by the following method:

Shut down your MacBook and remove its battery. Disconnect power adapter any other peripheral device attached.

Hold down the power button for 10 seconds.

Now release the button and attach the power adapter back to your MacBook, and not the battery. Power on your MacBook as usual. When it is on, shut it down.

Now connect the battery to it. Wait for a few seconds and power on your MacBook.

Resetting SMC on modern MacBooks with non-detachable batteries is done through the following method:

Shut down your MacBook.

Connect the power adapter to your MacBook.

On your MacBook’s keyboard, press and Hold Down Shift + Control + Option keys on the left of your keyboard and also Hold down the Power button too at the same time for about 15 seconds.


Release all the 4 keys at the same time. Now Power on your MacBook as usual.

Method 3: Let Power Adapter Reset

Power fluctuations can cause the magsafe adapters to go into protective mode. In this case,  keep the adapter disconnected from any power socket for a minimum of 5 minutes so that it can revert to it’s operational state.

Method 4: Pin Stuck In MagSafe adapter

The central pin on the output of a MagSafe adapter can get stuck inside which cause the adapter to not take the charge.

Observe the adapter’s cable’s output to see if a pin is stuck. If so, turn off your MacBook and remove the MagSafe adapter from the power outlet.

Get a pair of tweezers and very carefully and slowly pull out the stuck pin and it will pop out by itself.

Method 5: Heat the Power Adapter Brick

Even a little amount of cold temperature is known to cause power adapters to malfunction. So what we are going to do is apply a little heat to the adapter. Disconnect your power adapter and use a blow dryer to apply heat to your power adapter for a few minutes. Then connect the adapter back and try charging your MacBook. 

Method 6: Check System Preferences

If your MacBook is configured to go to sleep mode too soon, it can cause charging issues.

Click on the Apple Icon on the top left corner and click System Preferences.

Click on Energy Saver. Set the timer for Computer Sleep to a minimum 3 minutes. 

Method 7: Reset Parameter RAM (PRAM)

Resetting PRAM is a commonly used method when a MacBook is causing issues like this one.

To reset it, reboot your MacBook.

Press and Hold Down Option + Command + R + P Keys before the grey screen appears. Once you get the timing right, you will hear a chime and the MacBook will reboot. You may have to repeat the step until you get the timing right. Once you do, check if the MacBook started charging. If not, move on to the next solution.

Method 8: Check your battery Health

If your battery needs to be replaced, then that can be the cause the adapter is not charging it anymore. To check that, click on the Applications icon.

Go to Utilities. Click on System Profiler.

Select Power under Hardware in the left pane.

In the right pane, if under Health information, if the condition is “Need to be replaced” then you know exactly what to do. Replace the battery.

Kevin Arrows
Kevin is a dynamic and self-motivated information technology professional, with a Thorough knowledge of all facets pertaining to network infrastructure design, implementation and administration. Superior record of delivering simultaneous large-scale mission critical projects on time and under budget.
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How to Troubleshoot a Macbook Not Charging

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