How to Fix a Macbook Trackpad Not Working: A Comprehensive Guide
How to Fix a Macbook Trackpad Not Working: A Comprehensive Guide

How to Fix a Macbook Trackpad Not Working: A Comprehensive Guide

When your MacBook trackpad stops working, it can be a major inconvenience. After all, the trackpad is one of the most important ways to interact with your Mac. Fortunately, there are a few things you can do to troubleshoot the problem and get your trackpad working again.

Troubleshooting Basics

If your MacBook trackpad is not working, the first step is to try some basic troubleshooting steps.

Restart Your Mac

Restarting your Mac can often fix minor software glitches that may be causing the trackpad to malfunction.

Check for Physical Damage

If your MacBook has been dropped or damaged, the trackpad may have been physically damaged. Inspect the trackpad for any cracks or dents. If you find any damage, you will need to take your Mac to an Apple Store or authorized repair center for repair.

Common Software-Related Issues

If your trackpad is not physically damaged, the problem is likely due to a software issue. Here are a few common software-related issues that can cause the trackpad to stop working:

Misconfigured Trackpad Settings

The trackpad settings on your Mac may have been misconfigured. To check the trackpad settings, go to System Preferences > Trackpad. Make sure that the "Enable Trackpad" checkbox is selected and that the trackpad settings are configured to your liking.

Outdated Software

If your Mac’s software is out of date, this could also be causing the trackpad to malfunction. To update your Mac’s software, go to the Apple menu > About This Mac. Click on the "Software Update" button and follow the prompts to install any available updates.

Advanced Troubleshooting

If you have tried the basic troubleshooting steps and the trackpad is still not working, you may need to try some more advanced troubleshooting methods.

Reset the SMC

Resetting the SMC (System Management Controller) can often fix trackpad problems. To reset the SMC, follow these steps:

  1. Shut down your Mac.
  2. Press and hold the Shift + Control + Option keys.
  3. While holding down the Shift + Control + Option keys, press the power button.
  4. Hold down all four keys for 10 seconds.
  5. Release all four keys and press the power button to turn on your Mac.

Reinstall macOS

If all else fails, you may need to reinstall macOS. Reinstalling macOS will erase all of the data on your Mac, so be sure to back up your data before proceeding. To reinstall macOS, follow these steps:

  1. Shut down your Mac.
  2. Turn on your Mac and immediately press and hold the Command + R keys.
  3. Release the Command + R keys when you see the Apple logo or a spinning globe.
  4. From the macOS Utilities menu, select "Reinstall macOS."
  5. Click on the "Continue" button and follow the prompts to reinstall macOS.

Troubleshooting Table

The following table provides a summary of the troubleshooting steps discussed in this article:

Troubleshooting Step Description
Restart your Mac Restarts your Mac, which can often fix minor software glitches.
Check for physical damage Inspects your MacBook for any cracks or dents that may indicate physical damage.
Check trackpad settings Makes sure that your trackpad settings are configured correctly.
Update software Installs any available software updates, which can fix bugs that may be causing the trackpad to malfunction.
Reset the SMC Resets the SMC, which can often fix trackpad problems.
Reinstall macOS Erases all of the data on your Mac and reinstalls macOS, which can fix more serious software issues.


If you are experiencing problems with your MacBook trackpad, there are a number of troubleshooting steps you can take to fix the problem. By following the steps outlined in this article, you should be able to get your trackpad working again in no time.

FAQ about Macbook Trackpad Not Working

1. Why is my MacBook trackpad not working?

  • Ensure the trackpad is clean and free of debris.
  • Check if the trackpad settings are correct in System Preferences.
  • Restart your MacBook to refresh the system and resolve any temporary glitches.

2. How do I troubleshoot a faulty MacBook trackpad?

  • Check the connections: Ensure the trackpad cable is securely connected to the motherboard.
  • Reset the trackpad: Hold down the Shift + Control + Option keys simultaneously for 10 seconds.
  • Run Apple Diagnostics: Restart your MacBook while holding down the "D" key to detect hardware issues.

3. Can I replace the MacBook trackpad myself?

  • It is possible, but requires advanced technical skills. Refer to Apple’s repair manuals or consult a certified repair technician.

4. How do I disable the MacBook trackpad?

  • Go to System Preferences > Accessibility > Pointer Control.
  • Uncheck "Enable Trackpad."

5. Why does my MacBook trackpad only work sometimes?

  • Check for any physical damage or obstructions on the trackpad.
  • Run a software update to ensure the latest macOS is installed.
  • Contact Apple Support if the issue persists.

6. How do I clean my MacBook trackpad?

  • Use a soft, lint-free cloth slightly dampened with isopropyl alcohol.
  • Gently wipe the trackpad to remove dirt and debris, ensuring no liquid seeps inside.

7. Why is my MacBook trackpad not clicking?

  • Verify that the click function is enabled in System Preferences.
  • Check if the physical click button is damaged or stuck.
  • Adjust the trackpad haptic feedback settings.

8. How do I adjust the MacBook trackpad sensitivity?

  • Go to System Preferences > Mouse & Trackpad.
  • Adjust the "Tracking Speed" and "Pressure Sensitivity" sliders to your preference.

9. Why is my MacBook trackpad not moving smoothly?

  • Check if the pointer is obstructed by any dirt or debris.
  • Clean the trackpad and surrounding area.
  • Update your Mac’s software to the latest version.

10. How do I contact Apple Support for MacBook trackpad issues?

  • Visit Apple’s website:
  • Call Apple Support: 1-800-MY-APPLE (1-800-692-7753)
  • Visit an authorized Apple Store or Certified Repair Center.