Finding out minutes later that your MacBook pro was not charging is not a pleasant experience. It gets more annoying if you planned on using your MacBook later at a position that isn’t close to a power outlet.
This issue is often deceptive. Most times, you see the lightning bolt sign on your battery icon, which generally indicates that your device has been plugged in, only to hover your mouse around it and get greeted with the “Battery is not charging” message.
Why is my MacBook not Charging when plugged in?
If you notice that your MacBook is not charging, you don’t have to panic yet. Sometimes, it isn’t due to a bad power cable, but an incorrect setting, hardware issue, overheating low power source, and much more.
Debris or dirt might have filled your charging port, making current flow impossible or inadequate. Using resource-intensive programs could be another cause; these programs often consume more power than your power source can provide; video editing software and high-end games are examples.
Another reason could be that you have used up your battery cycle. Apple says our Macbook battery can stay good for 1000 cycles; when these have been exhausted, our battery is considered to be consumed. It might not hold any charge at this juncture, and you can only use your system when it is plugged in until you replace the battery.
The Battery Health Management feature in the macOS Catalina 10.15.5 acts as a fuse of some sort; when you overcharge your device, it reduces the battery’s maximum charge to avoid overstressing the battery and won’t charge until your current battery power is at 90% or below. This feature helps extend your battery’s life-span.
And lastly, it could be due to a bad power cable. After trying every solution here, your MacBook Pro battery is still not charging when plugged in. You might need to visit an Apple repair shop or replace your power cable.
What should I do when my Macbook doesn’t charge?
When this annoying experience comes knocking, they are many things you can do to troubleshoot and maybe solve the problem.
1. Check your Mac’s battery status
The quickest troubleshoot will be to see if your battery is okay.
- Press and hold down the Option key and click on the battery icon in the menu bar to know your battery current condition.
- If it shows Normal or Service Recommended, then your battery isn’t responsible.
- Furthermore, click on the Apple icon in the menu bar, then select About this Mac.
- Click on System Report, then go down to Power, which is often at the sidebar. Locate the Health Information section, where Apple displays your battery’s count cycle.
2. Reboot your Mac
Rebooting your Mac has been known to repair so many errors, you should try rebooting your device. Go to the Apple Menu and click on Restart.
If your Mac freezes for any reason, you’ll need to force restart by pressing and holding down the Command button while simultaneously pressing the Power button.
When you force restart your device, all unsaved progress and documents will be lost. So make sure you save them before force restarting your mac. If have already forced restarted your mac and lost all your documents, check out the guide here to learn how to recover them.
3. Check your Mac charger
If your MacBook Air is not still charging, you should check if the charger is correctly plugged in both at the power source and your charging port.
- Try disconnecting and plugging in the charger again.
- Reconfirm you are using an original charger (adapter + cable + removable plug). Make sure you are using an original charger or a charger gotten from an Apple store or an authorized reseller.
- Unplug your charger from the power source and allow the little power left in it to drain off, then run your fingers through the charging cable, and carefully check the removable plug and adapter to be sure there is no damage like breakage, bends, exposed wire, and also check if your adapter isn’t burnt too.
4. Change your Power source
If it still seems your Macbook charger is not working, you could change the power source. They are some sources that can only power up your device but don’t have enough power to charge your device’s battery simultaneously.
Airline power adapters are one of the major culprits of this.
Electricity fluctuations in the power socket might not give a stable power to charge your Mac. A damaged power source is another primary reason your Macbook won’t charge. To confirm this isn’t the cause, move your charger to a different socket or power source.
5. Clean your power port
You should also check your power port to be sure nothing is blocking the current’s free flow. Dust, debris, and dirt are a few things that could hinder good electric flow. Power off your computer and unplug it from the source, then with a dry brush, clean till you are satisfied and test.
6. Close all high-performance apps
Like you saw above, running power-intensive apps and programs such as video games and video editing software could be the cause. These powerful apps drain much power leaving the charger with none to charge your battery.
Save your progress and temporarily quit these apps, then unplug and plug back your charger and check if the problem persists.
7. Check the MagSafe connector and port
This is almost similar to Checking your charger. Apple products are often top-notch; they ensured the MagSafe port is protected against any accidental yanks and trips over the cable.
You should still check for any stuck-down ground pins, discoloration, burns, or dents in the connector or charging port.
8. Reset the System Management Controller (SMC )
The System Management Controller (SMC) is an integral part of the system; it is part of the logic board and is responsible for how your Mac works with power.
If your MacBook Air is not charging, the SMC may have a hand in it. The SMC’s problems can result in your device not charging, not turning on, randomly powering off, or your device displaying other power-related issues.
Most Macbooks has a kind of custom silicon called the T2 security chip, and others don’t. The processes to reset the SMC varies for both types, so first, check if your device has one by following these steps.
Go to About this Mac > System Report, then click on Controller from the sidebar. You can find the Apple T2 chip at the top of your screen if your Mac has it. The T2 chip is often in newer versions of the MacBook.
To reset SMC in MacBooks with T2 chips
- Go to Apple, then Shut Down your system.
- Plug your charger into your Mac.
- Press and hold down the left Control + left Option + right Shift keys simultaneously for about 7 seconds, then also press and hold the Power button, hold down all four keys for another 7 seconds, then release them and wait for a while.
- Power on your Mac the usual way and check if your MacBook Pro is not charging when plugged in.
To reset SMC in MacBooks without T2 Chips
- Go to Apple, then Shut Down your Mac.
- Press and hold down the left Shift + left Control + left Option keys simultaneously.
- While holding those three keys, press and hold down the Power button.
- Hold down all four keys for about ten seconds, then release all.
- Allow Mac to rest for a while, then power it in the usual way.
9. Cool down your device
When you notice that your MacBook air is not charging, it could be due to something as simple as overheating. Apple added some thermal sensors in your device that block out all battery access when it senses a drastic temperature rise.
If you feel your device is overheating, turn it off and allow it to cool down. You can place it near a fan to further cool it down; if you work under direct sunlight, then head to a shade because direct sunlight could cause overheating too.
It is an annoying experience to discover that your MacBook pro was not charging. If you Check your Mac battery’s status and it appears to be okay, you should Reboot your Mac, Check your Mac charger, Change the power source or Check your power port.
In most cases, some high-power-intensive apps may be responsible; you should Close all high-performance apps temporarily, then check your MagSafe connector and USB port; if MacBook still won’t charge, you should Reset your SMC or Cool down your Mac.
If none of these solutions work for you, then check an Apple repair shop. Thank you for visiting and sharing with us what worked for you.