When your Mac’s trackpad is not working, it can be extremely frustrating and hinder your productivity. However, there are several simple solutions that can help you quickly resolve this issue. In this article, we will provide you with proven and effective tips to fix your Mac’s trackpad and get it back to working seamlessly. Whether your trackpad is unresponsive, not clicking, or experiencing other issues, we have you covered with our easy-to-follow troubleshooting methods. So, let’s dive in and get your trackpad working again!

Key Takeaways:

  • There are several quick fixes for Mac trackpad not working issues.
  • Understanding the potential causes of the problem can help you implement the most suitable solution.
  • Disabling Force Click, restarting your Mac, and running maintenance scripts are some of the initial troubleshooting steps you can take.
  • Checking for software updates, inspecting for physical damage and dirt, and disconnecting conflicting peripherals can also resolve trackpad issues.
  • Resetting SMC and NVRAM or PRAM, checking for malware, and resetting your trackpad settings are advanced troubleshooting methods.
  • If all else fails, running Apple Diagnostics can identify any hardware issues.

Understanding the Potential Causes of a Trackpad Not Working

If you’re experiencing issues with your Mac’s trackpad not working, it’s important to understand the potential causes behind this problem. By identifying the root cause, you can troubleshoot and resolve the issue more effectively. Here are some common reasons for trackpad malfunction:

  • Corrupted software: Software glitches or conflicts can cause the trackpad to stop working properly. This can be resolved by updating or reinstalling the trackpad drivers.
  • Dirty trackpad: Accumulated dirt, dust, or debris on the trackpad surface can interfere with its functionality. Regularly cleaning the trackpad with a microfiber cloth or a gentle cleaning solution can help resolve this issue.
  • Glitches with macOS: Sometimes, bugs or glitches in the macOS can impact the performance of the trackpad. Updating to the latest version of macOS or applying relevant patches can fix this problem.
  • Trackpad damage: Physical damage to the trackpad, such as cracks or water damage, can cause it to stop working. In such cases, professional repair or replacement may be necessary.
  • Hardware failure: In rare cases, a hardware failure can be the cause of the trackpad not working. This may require assistance from an authorized service provider to diagnose and fix.
  • Malware: Malicious software or malware can interfere with the trackpad’s functionality. Running regular malware scans and using reputable antivirus software can help detect and remove any malware affecting your Mac.

By understanding these potential causes, you can take appropriate steps to troubleshoot and resolve your trackpad issues. In the following sections, we will explore various troubleshooting methods to help you get your trackpad working seamlessly again.

Quick Fix: Disabling Force Click

If you’re experiencing an issue where your Mac’s trackpad is not clicking, a quick fix may be to disable force click. Force click and tap are two different touch gestures on a trackpad. Force click works like a right-click, while a tap allows you to select items. By customizing your trackpad settings, you can toggle the force click option and adjust the pressure required to use it. This simple adjustment may resolve your trackpad not clicking issue.

To disable force click, follow these steps:

  1. Go to the Apple menu and select “System Preferences”.
  2. Click on “Trackpad”.
  3. In the “Point & Click” tab, uncheck the “Force Click and haptic feedback” option.
  4. Adjust the “Click pressure” slider to your preferred pressure level.

Once you’ve disabled force click, test your trackpad to see if it’s working properly. If the issue persists, you can try other troubleshooting methods to fix your Mac’s trackpad. Let’s explore more solutions in the following sections.

Table: Steps to Disable Force Click

1Go to the Apple menu and select “System Preferences”.
2Click on “Trackpad”.
3In the “Point & Click” tab, uncheck the “Force Click and haptic feedback” option.
4Adjust the “Click pressure” slider to your preferred pressure level.

Restart Your Mac

If your Mac’s trackpad is still not working after trying the previous troubleshooting methods, restarting your Mac can often resolve the issue. Restarting your Mac gives it a fresh start and can clear any temporary glitches that may be affecting the trackpad’s functionality.

To restart your Mac, you can follow these steps:

  1. Click on the Apple menu located in the top-left corner of your screen.
  2. Select the “Restart” option from the dropdown menu.
  3. Wait for your Mac to shut down and start up again.

If you are unable to use the Apple menu to restart your Mac, you can force shut it down by pressing and holding the power button until it turns off. Then, press the power button again to turn it back on.

Restarting your Mac should be the first step you take when troubleshooting your trackpad, as it is a simple and effective solution that can often resolve the issue.

Advantages of Restarting Your MacDisadvantages of Restarting Your Mac
  • Resolves temporary glitches that may be affecting the trackpad
  • Refreshes the system, potentially fixing various issues
  • Does not require any advanced technical knowledge
  • Closes any unsaved work or open applications
  • May take a few minutes for the restart process to complete
  • Does not address underlying hardware issues

Run Maintenance Scripts to Fix Trackpad Issues

When your Mac’s trackpad is not working properly, running maintenance scripts can help resolve the problem. Maintenance scripts are designed to clean up and optimize your Mac’s performance by removing unnecessary files and logs. By using a tool like CleanMyMac X, you can easily run maintenance scripts and potentially fix any trackpad issues.

Running maintenance scripts with CleanMyMac X is a simple process. Just follow these steps:

  1. Launch CleanMyMac X from your Applications folder.
  2. Click on the “Maintenance” tab in the left sidebar.
  3. Select the checkboxes for the maintenance tasks you want to perform, such as running cleanup scripts, verifying startup disk, repairing disk permissions, and reindexing Spotlight.
  4. Click on the “Run” button to start the maintenance scripts.

Once the maintenance scripts are complete, restart your Mac and check if the trackpad is now functioning properly. Running maintenance scripts regularly can help keep your Mac running smoothly and prevent trackpad issues from occurring in the future.

Benefits of Running Maintenance Scripts

Running maintenance scripts on your Mac offers several benefits:

  • Improves overall system performance by removing unnecessary files and logs.
  • Fixes trackpad issues caused by broken or corrupted system components.
  • Optimizes disk space by cleaning up temporary files and caches.
  • Enhances the speed and responsiveness of your Mac’s trackpad.
  • Prevents potential software conflicts that may affect the trackpad’s functionality.

By regularly running maintenance scripts, you can ensure your Mac is in top condition and minimize any trackpad problems that may arise.

IssuePossible CauseSolution
Trackpad not respondingCorrupted softwareRun maintenance scripts to clean up system files and optimize performance
Trackpad not clickingGlitches with macOSPerform maintenance tasks to repair system components and improve trackpad functionality
Trackpad lagging or freezingTemporary files and cachesUse CleanMyMac X to remove unnecessary files and improve trackpad performance

Running maintenance scripts is a crucial step in troubleshooting and fixing trackpad issues on your Mac. By maintaining your system and optimizing its performance, you can ensure that your trackpad functions smoothly and efficiently.

Check for Software Updates

Keeping your Mac updated is crucial for resolving various software issues, including trackpad problems. Apple regularly releases macOS updates that address bugs, introduce improvements, and enhance system stability. By checking for software updates, you can ensure your operating system is up to date and includes any fixes that may address the trackpad not working issue.

To check for software updates on your Mac, follow these steps:

  1. Click on the Apple menu in the top-left corner of your screen.
  2. Select “System Preferences” from the drop-down menu.
  3. In the System Preferences window, click on “Software Update.”
  4. Your Mac will now check for available updates. If any updates are found, click on the “Update Now” button to begin the installation process.
  5. Follow the on-screen prompts to complete the update.

By regularly checking for software updates and keeping your Mac’s operating system up to date, you can ensure that your trackpad functions smoothly and efficiently.

Benefits of Checking for Software UpdatesHow to Check for Software Updates
Fixes bugs and glitches that may be affecting the trackpad1. Click on the Apple menu
Introduces improvements to trackpad functionality2. Select “System Preferences”
Enhances system stability3. Click on “Software Update”

“Keeping your Mac updated is crucial for resolving various software issues, including trackpad problems.”

Check for Damage and Dirt

In some cases, a trackpad not working on your Mac may be due to physical damage or the presence of dirt and debris. Regular use of your trackpad can lead to the accumulation of dirt, dust, and greasy fingerprints, which can affect its responsiveness. Additionally, accidental spills or drops can cause physical damage to the trackpad, rendering it unusable.

To determine if your trackpad is damaged, visually inspect it for any cracks, scratches, or signs of liquid exposure. If you notice any physical damage, it may be necessary to visit an official Apple repair center for professional assistance.

If there is no visible damage, cleaning your trackpad can often resolve unresponsiveness issues. Start by shutting down your Mac and disconnecting any external peripherals. Then, dampen a lint-free cloth with water and gently wipe the trackpad in a circular motion. Be careful not to apply excessive pressure or use harsh chemicals that could further damage the trackpad.

After cleaning the trackpad, allow it to dry completely before powering on your Mac. This simple maintenance step can often restore the functionality of your trackpad and eliminate any dirt-related issues.

Table: Comparison of Trackpad Cleaning Methods

Cleaning MethodEffectivenessDifficultyCost
Water and Lint-Free ClothEffective for removing dirt and fingerprintsEasyLow cost, using materials readily available at home
Isopropyl Alcohol and Cotton SwabsMore effective for stubborn stains and residueModerateLow cost, but requires isopropyl alcohol and cotton swabs
Compressed AirEffective for removing dust and debrisEasyLow cost, but requires a can of compressed air

Disconnect Conflicting Peripherals

If your Mac’s trackpad is not working, it could be due to conflicts with other connected devices. Sometimes, devices like a Bluetooth mouse or a USB keyboard can interfere with the trackpad’s functionality, causing it to become unresponsive. In order to troubleshoot this issue, it’s recommended to disconnect any conflicting peripherals and restart your Mac.

By disconnecting these devices and giving your Mac a fresh start, you can determine if they are the source of the problem. If your trackpad starts working after disconnecting the conflicting peripherals, it’s important to further troubleshoot the devices or consult their respective support documentation.

When dealing with trackpad interference, it’s crucial to ensure that your Mac’s trackpad is the primary input device and doesn’t face any conflicting signals from other connected peripherals. By properly managing these external devices, you can resolve the trackpad not working issue and regain seamless navigation on your Mac.

Reset SMC, NVRAM, and PRAM to Fix Trackpad Issues

If you’ve tried other troubleshooting methods and your Mac’s trackpad is still not working properly, resetting the System Management Controller (SMC), Non-Volatile Random-Access Memory (NVRAM), or Parameter RAM (PRAM) could be the next step to resolve the issue. Resetting these components can help restore your trackpad to its default settings and potentially fix any underlying problems.

Resetting the SMC, NVRAM, or PRAM may vary depending on the model of your Mac. To reset the SMC, you need to shut down your Mac and disconnect the power adapter. Then, press and hold the power button for 10 seconds before releasing it and reconnecting the power adapter. For resetting the NVRAM or PRAM, you need to restart your Mac and hold down the Option, Command, P, and R keys simultaneously until you hear the startup sound for the second time.

By performing these resets, you can address issues related to power management, hardware settings, and system preferences that might be affecting your trackpad’s functionality. It’s important to note that resetting the SMC, NVRAM, or PRAM should be done with caution and as a troubleshooting measure only. If the trackpad problem persists after resetting these components, it’s advisable to seek assistance from an authorized Apple service provider or visit the official Apple support website for further guidance.

Table: Comparison of Resetting SMC, NVRAM, and PRAM

Resets power-related settingsResets hardware and system preference settings
Helpful for trackpad issues caused by power management problemsHelpful for trackpad issues related to hardware and system preferences
Requires disconnecting power adapter and holding power buttonRequires restarting Mac and holding Option, Command, P, and R keys

Resetting the SMC, NVRAM, or PRAM can be an effective troubleshooting step to fix trackpad issues on your Mac. However, it’s recommended to try other solutions mentioned in this article before attempting these advanced resets. By following the appropriate steps for your Mac model, you can reset these components and potentially restore your trackpad’s functionality to normal.

Check for Malware

If your Mac’s trackpad is still not working after trying the previous solutions, it’s important to consider the possibility of malware infecting your system. Malware can cause various issues, including trackpad malfunctions. To ensure the security of your Mac and fix any malware-related problems, it’s crucial to perform a thorough check for malware. Manually inspecting your Applications folder, using Activity Monitor, and reviewing browser settings can help identify any suspicious apps or possible malware.

However, it’s highly recommended to use a reliable and specialized tool like CleanMyMac X’s Malware Removal tool. This tool is designed to detect and remove even the most advanced and newest threats, ensuring your Mac is free from malware. CleanMyMac X’s Malware Removal tool constantly updates its database to provide real-time protection against emerging threats, giving you peace of mind when it comes to your Mac’s security.

By performing a comprehensive check for malware and effectively removing any threats, you can potentially resolve trackpad issues caused by malware infections. Let’s explore how you can check for malware on your Mac and take the necessary steps to remove any malicious software that may be affecting your trackpad’s functionality.

How to Check for Malware and Remove Mac Viruses

To effectively check for malware and remove Mac viruses, follow these steps:

  1. Manually inspect your Applications folder for any unfamiliar or suspicious apps. If you find any, move them to the Trash and empty it.
  2. Use Activity Monitor to check for any processes or applications consuming unusually high amounts of system resources. If you identify any suspicious processes, quit them.
  3. Check your browser settings for any unknown or unwanted extensions or plug-ins. Remove any suspicious browser extensions.
  4. For a more thorough and comprehensive malware check, use CleanMyMac X’s Malware Removal tool. Launch CleanMyMac X and navigate to the Malware module. Click on the Scan button to start the scan process. CleanMyMac X will detect and remove any identified malware or viruses.

By following these steps, you can effectively check for malware on your Mac and remove any viruses that may be causing trackpad issues. Keeping your Mac free from malware is essential for ensuring optimal performance and functionality. Take proactive measures to protect your Mac against potential security threats, and your trackpad should function smoothly.

Reset Your Trackpad

If the previous solutions haven’t resolved your trackpad issues, resetting your trackpad settings may be necessary. The exact method for resetting your trackpad depends on the type of Mac you have.

For Intel-based Macs, you can delete specific property list files to help restore your trackpad to its default settings. Follow the steps below:

  1. Go to the Finder and press Shift + Command + G.
  2. Type ~/Library/Preferences/ and click Go.
  3. Locate and delete the following files:
    • com.apple.driver.AppleBluetoothMultitouch.trackpad.plist
    • com.apple.driver.AppleBluetoothMultitouch.mouse.plist
  4. Restart your Mac.

For Macs with Apple silicon, you can adjust the trackpad settings in System Preferences to achieve the same result. Here’s how:

  1. Click on the Apple menu and select System Preferences.
  2. Choose Trackpad from the preferences window.
  3. Adjust the settings according to your preferences or click the Restore Defaults button to reset the trackpad to its default settings.

By resetting your trackpad, you can potentially fix issues like the MacBook Pro trackpad not clicking and restore its functionality to normal. If the problem persists, there may be underlying hardware issues, and it’s recommended to run Apple Diagnostics to further diagnose the problem.

Run Apple Diagnostics to Resolve Trackpad Hardware Issues

If you’ve tried all the previous troubleshooting methods and your trackpad is still not working, it’s time to run Apple Diagnostics to identify any underlying hardware issues. This diagnostic tool is designed to test your Mac’s hardware components and pinpoint any failures or malfunctions.

Running Apple Diagnostics is straightforward, but the specific steps vary depending on the type of Mac you have. By following the appropriate instructions provided by Apple, you can conduct a comprehensive diagnostic test that will provide valuable information about your trackpad’s hardware status.

Once the diagnostics are complete, you will be presented with a report that highlights any hardware issues that may be affecting your trackpad’s functionality. Armed with this knowledge, you can then seek assistance from an authorized Apple service provider to address and fix the identified hardware problems, ensuring your trackpad works properly again.