Mac OS is a responsive and reliable operating system with unique features and powerful functions. However, similar to other digital devices or operating systems, Mac computers start to work slower than usual over time. If you know the actual reason that is causing system slowdown, you can rectify it immediately, but if you are not able to identify the reason, you need to try multiple workaround methods to fix a Mac computer with minor issues.
In this article, we will discuss several troubleshooting suggestions that will allow you to resolve various hardware and software-related problems even if you do not know the accurate cause.
Please note that you do not have to go through all these steps to resolve a particular problem and that one or two methods are often enough. And in case the problems still persist despite your best efforts, you will need to rely on a technician or a service store.
Having said that, let’s dive in and discover some of the best and most efficient workarounds for common MacBook performance issues.
10 DIY Ways to Troubleshoot Common Mac Issues
If you have any common issues with your Mac then follow the 12 solutions mentioned below to fix a Mac Computer with minor Issues.
Solution 1: Reboot Mac
Whether you are dealing with a minor issue or a major technical breakdown, a reboot can be the quick resolution to any problem. As a rule of thumb, this particular method is the go-to option for not just MacBooks, but other computers and even mobile devices.
There may be software or an application clashing with the smooth functioning of the system, and rebooting the MacBook can help. Since MacBooks do not take much time to reboot, try this as the first workaround to solve any issue.
In case you are reluctant to restart the computer because it takes too long, notes that the lack of regular reboots could be one of the leading causes of poor performance. Declutter the desktop and remove redundant startup items so that you do not have to waste as much time waiting for your Mac to load.
A side note: Regular computer restarts stop memory leaks, a phenomenon that occurs because background applications have been running for too long. The MacBook’s memory distribution becomes frantic and inefficient, and restarting the device is the option to solve the problem.
Solution 2: Boot Into Safe Mode
When you reboot your Mac into safe mode, it uploads the required system files and settings that are vital for functioning.
It helps you to identify whether the problem you are facing is caused by an application that loads automatically when your system starts. To boot into Safe mode, restart your Mac while pressing down the Shift key.
Solution 3: Reset SMC
In Intel-based computers, the SMC (System Management Controller) is a chip that controls multiple physical parts of the computer such as a keyboard, cooling fan, power buttons, LED indicators, and more.
It also controls how your Mac acts in sleep mode along with the behavior of the hard drive. The steps to reset SMC depend on whether you are using a Mac desktop, M1 Mac, computers with removable or non-removable batteries.
Solution 4: Reset PRAM and NVRAM
In the Intel-based Macs, certain settings are stored in NVRAM, while in the PowerPC-based Macs, these settings can be found in PRAM. Resetting PRAM and NVRAM can be the solution if you are finding difficulty with volume, desktop, mouse, or other peripherals connected to the computer.
Press Command + Option + P + R keys while you turn on your Mac to reset PRAM and NVRAM.
Solution 5: Repair Disk Permissions
This resolution only works if your Mac is running over OS X Yosemite or older versions. With the launch of OS X El Capitan, repairing disk permission becomes an outdated process, as the operating system starts protecting file system permissions automatically.
You can do this from Disk Utility by navigating to the primary hard drive and then selecting the ‘Repair Disk Utility’ option.
Solution 6: Uninstall Unnecessary Apps
Deleting or uninstalling an app will make space on the hard drive for other important files, software, or other items. There are different ways to remove an app from the Mac computer.
You may locate the map in the Applications folder in Finder just Drag the application icon to the Trash can. Alternatively, open the app, click on File, and select Move to Trash. To remove the app permanently, navigate to Finder and select Empty Trash.
If you have been using a MacBook for a while, you likely downloaded plenty of applications that you no longer use. As such, do not hesitate and go ahead removing them. After all, you can download and install them later if you have to. The goal, for now, is to get rid of unnecessary junk to make extra drive space for better overall Mac performance.
Solution 7: Reinstall macOS
Operating system reinstallation can sometimes be the only feasible solution, particularly when no above-mentioned workarounds seem to solve the problem. Back up your data before you reinstall the macOS. Boot into Recovery Mode for quick macOS reinstall, erase the primary drive, and then select to reinstall from Recovery Console.
Since reinstalling an operating system is a bit complicated, do not push yourself if you are not that experienced with it. There are step-by-step tutorials online, but you need to make sure not mess out. When in doubt, leave the task to someone who knows what they are doing.
Solution 8: Update Software to Latest Version
Unresponsive applications might be responsible for the slow functioning of the computer.
Make sure to update the applications and software to the latest versions to avoid slowdowns or system crashes in difficult situations.
Navigate to the Software Update section or visit the App Store to install the latest version of the applications installed on your computer.
Running the latest version means benefitting from performance upgrades, new features, and improved security. As such, it should be a no-brainer that you need to install updates as soon as they become available.
Solution 9: Delete Other Storage
Other storage on your Mac contains uncategorized files such as PSD, PDF, DOC, etc. It also contains temporary files, system files, browser cache, user cache, system cache, app plugins, browser extensions, and more.
Click on Finder, tap on Go available in the top menu, and type in ~/Library/Caches. Now pick and remove documents and other items as required.
Solution 10: Clean Dust Inside
Cleaning the dust inside a computer is not the most fun thing to do. Nevertheless, it is an important part of overall device maintenance. You want to remove the filth that accumulates over time, and so so regularly.
Overheating and loud noises coming from the inside are the best indicators that there is too much dust inside a computer. And do not try to solve the problem by simply getting a cooling pad. The accessory is valuable, but it is still not the solution.
The tricky thing with cleaning the dust inside a MacBook is that taking the device for thorough cleaning is difficult. You risk damaging parts.
Ideally, you should pay someone with experience to do the job for you. It is understandable if you are reluctant and do not wish to clean the dust inside your Mac. It will cost money, but at least there are fewer risks involved if you leave it to professionals.
Try to clean the dust at least a couple of times a year and do not let the amount of filth inside your MacBook to snowball out of control.
Solution 11: Clear Cache Files
If you experience slow browsing, the cache files can be the reason behind it. Cached files are temporary files that the computer stores to save time each time you revisit the same site. When you revisit the site, the browser loads relevant data from the cache instead of downloading it again. You need to delete cache files from the Finder to improve web browsing.
Solution 12: Upgrade Hardware
Upgrading computer hardware might seem like a bit of an extreme measure to solve its performance issues, but it is a common practice.
One thing that might prevent you from taking this approach is the fact that MacBooks are not the best when it comes to potential hardware upgrades. Because Apple manufactures its devices with integrated hardware pieces, few Mac models are eligible for hardware upgrades.
In case you have such an option because of your model, you can consider the budget and whether you can invest the money.
The most common hardware changes include:
- Getting an external graphics processing unit
- Adding extra RAM
- Replacing old hard drives with solid-state drives
Either of these three options makes a significant impact, and it is recommended for troubleshooting computer problems, which includes those you encounter as a MacBook user.
So these are the 12 solutions to fix a Mac computer with minor issues.
Frequently Asked Questions – FAQs
Are Macs hard to repair?
Yes compared to Windows, Mac seems hard to repair but if you know well about Mac settings and interface then you can easily repair the most common Mac problems by yourself.
How do I run a diagnostic on my Mac?
To run Diagnostic on your Mac device
- First of all Startup your Mac. Press and hold the power button until Mac turns on.
- Now, release the power button.
- And press Command-D to run the Diagnostics in your Mac.
- Now, Apple Diagnostics will appear on your screen.
- Once done, it will show a list of the problems encountered on your Mac.
So these are the steps to run diagnostic on your Mac.
How long does the Apple diagnostic test take?
Apple diagnostic time depends on the problem encountered in your Mac, probably 5-10 minutes to run and test the problems on your Mac.
All in all, Mac owners are still encountering various issues on their devices despite the fact that Apple offers one of the most reliable computers on the market.
Knowing how to troubleshoot potential issues and reacting to them in a timely manner is a must. Otherwise, various problems snowball out of control and cause further damages.
Take advantage of the information mentioned in this article and fix a Mac computer with minor issues. Apple the ideas for yourself the next time you feel like something is not right with your MacBook.