Trackpad Not Working On MacBook? How to Fix It

Is the Trackpad is not working on your Mac? Below are different troubleshooting methods you should try. We’ll start with the simplest solution to get your trackpad back to work.

You usually use the trackpad on your Mac for navigation and selection. Many of you feel that using it is even more convenient than an external mouse. But, due to unknown reasons, Trackpad suddenly stops working on your Mac. If you are facing the same difficulty, this post will show you potential solutions to get rid of this annoying problem.

Solutions to Fix Trackpad Not Working

Check the latest updates

It seems obvious, but many mac users forget to update their Mac to the latest version as well as install the newest drivers. To check if there is any update available for the trackpad, simply double click on the App Store and select Updates tab at the top.

MacOS 10.14.6 update for Mac

You should install all the pending any updates. However, since we are focusing on fixing trackpad problems, you should take note Trackpad Firmware Update option. Simply click on the Update button and then follow the onscreen prompts.

Check Other Settings on Your Mac

If there is not any update available, the first way you should do is to check the Trackpad settings. You can make it unable to work because of tweaking a few options.

Double-click not Working

If all the functions of your trackpad still work fine, except for ‘double-click”  there is a chance that the time delay to recognize the gesture it too low. If you are a ner user to the Trackpad, it can be the cause.

To access the double-click settings, just click on the Apple icon on the menu bar and then select System> Accessibility. From there, scroll down the left sidebar until you see Mouse & Trackpad section.

There will be a list of options available, but you should only pay attention at Double-click speed. It’d better turn it down from the current position as low as possible.

Completely Unresponsive Trackpad

Even if the trackpad on your Mac is unresponsive, it could just be a problem with incorrect settings. In this case, try to disconnect a mouse from your Mac if you are using it. Does the trackpad work back now? When you plug a physical mouse into your Mac, the system could ignore trackpad input and detect the mouse.

Thus, you should change a few settings by heading to System > Accessibility > Mouse & Trackpad. From there, check on the box: “Ignore built-in trackpad when mouse trackpad is present.

Accessibility on Mac

You should also disconnect everything peripherals like keyboards, printers from your mac and check the difference.

Check Mac’s Hardware

If settings are not the main cause of the trackpad issues, they can be caused by hardware problems. They might be from itself, or the user error. If you see the pointer jump around the screen, it’s not a serious cause. All you need is to check the battery level. If the power is low, connect it to the charger and try it again. If you are using jewelry like bracelets, make sure they are not catching the trackpad since they could cause the pad to read multiple signals, which result in problems.

Also, ensure that your fingertips are dry. Trackpad cannot mix well with water and it can have inappropriate behavior.

Remove PLIST Files

If none of the above methods helped, the last trick you should do is to delete the Property List (PLIST) files on your Mac. macOS will use the PLIST files to store all the information of bundles and apps installed on your Mac. Removing them will make your Mac recreate the new ones.


To remove files related to your Mac trackpad, navigate to Finder and then click on Go > Go to Folder. After that, type in /Library/Preferences and press Go. On the next screen, note the plist files and remove them to refresh your Trackpad. Below are files you should find out and delete:

  • (for Trackpad)
  • (for Mouse)
  • (for USB mouse)

After you delete those files,  reboot your Mac and check if the Trackpad has got back to work.

MacBook Touchpad Workarounds

If all the mentioned solutions worked for you, you should bring your Mac to a Center Service for repair. There are lots of repair options available for you, but you should choose the exact route, depending on whether your Mac still have AppleCare or not

Even when it needs repair, there are still a few workarounds you can try in the meantime.

Also read: How to Fix a Slow MacBook Pro

Disable Your Mac Trackpad

The temporary solution is to disable your Trackpad and use a physical mouse. The process is pretty simple and it reverts to mentioned troubleshooting method.

On your Mac, go to System Preferences > Accessibility > Mouse & Trackpad. From there, check on the box next to “Ignore built-in trackpad when mouse or wireless trackpad is present option.

Use an External Trackpad

Alternatively, you can try an external trackpad like Apple Magic Trackpad 2. It can perform the same way as the trackpad on your Mac.

It’s a perfect solution if you are using the trackpad and find the physical mouse inconvenient. Unfortunately, a downside preventing you here from purchasing it is the price. However, it’s the only option if you are looking for an external touchpad that is compatible with your Mac.

Have you found other simple solutions to fix Trackpad issues on Mac? Let’s know in the comment below.

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