Mac Keyboard Not Working? How to Fix It

Even though the Mac lineup comes with powerful specs, it doesn’t mean that they will always work perfectly. In fact, it is not rare to see the Mac keyboard give up on its own. It is very frustrating if you face this issue when you are working. Don’t worry, here are our tips on how to fix Mac keyboard not working.

Try Another Keyboard

If you are using a wired keyboard, the first thing you should try is to use another keyboard on your Mac. This doesn’t help resolve your issue, but it can help you check if anything goes wrong with your Mac. If you plug in another keyboard and it doesn’t work either, the USB port might be problematic. In this case, you should take your Mac to the nearest Apple center for warranty and replacement.

If you are using a wireless keyboard on the iMac or MacBook series, you need to make sure that the keyboard is turned ON and paired with your devices. In addition, you need to keep Bluetooth enabled on your device as well. If the issue still happens, you can try to re-pair them or pair your device with another keyboard to see if it works.

Apple Magic Keyboard

However, there can also be a software conflict that makes your Mac keyboard stop working which can be solved by the next methods.

Update Your Mac

Sometimes outdated firmware, drivers, or even the operating system itself can affect your Mac keyboard. Therefore, it is very important to keep your system up to date. You can check for updates by heading over to App Store> Updates. If any update is available, you can easily install them on your Mac. You can also go to System Preferences>Software Update on your Mac to update its operating system. 


In fact, it is possible to let your Mac automatically check for updates.  Just go to System Preferences> AppStore and then check the “Automatically check for updates” box.

Reset SMC

Resetting the Mac’s SMC ( System Management Controller)  is one of the most common ways to fix hardware and power-related issues. Luckily, it is quite simple to do but the method may vary depending on which kind of Mac you are using. We have made a detailed guide to reset SMC on any kind of Mac, you can check it out here

Uninstall Recent Applications

The “Mac keyboard does not work” issue can also be caused by a conflict between apps. In fact, some of your new applications are not compatible with the old ones or the operating system itself. It may result in different issues, including the keyboard not working.

You should try to uninstall the app in order to see whether the problem is fixed. If you don’t remember what apps you got recently, open Finder, then select Applications from the menu on the left. Or, using the sorting options at the top, sort by “Date Added”. This will show you what you have installed most recently.

Clean Your Mac Keyboard

One of Apple’s recommendations for keyboard problems is to just try cleaning it up. If you own an old MacBook or MacBook Pro, this is well worth a try. In case only a few keys don’t work, this can solve your problem and take only a few minutes to do it. Here are suggested steps:

  • Hold your Mac at a 75-degree angle. 
  • Use an air spray to spray air through the keys from left to right.
  • Rotate your MacBook onto its right side and spray the keyboard again, from left-to-right.
  • Repeat on both sides
clean your Mac Keyboard
Clean your Mac keyboard

While the fixes above will work for many common problems, they may not fix your problem. If you’ve tried all of them and the keyboard still doesn’t work, you may have to contact Apple support.

That’s our guide on how to fix Mac keyboard not working. If the problem persists, let us know in the comments.

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