Mac Problems New Users Must Know

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Apple products are high achievers, but they are not flawless. If you are a new Mac user, prepare yourself for these issues you may encounter in the future.

Misbehaving Apps

Sometimes, apps misbehave. They stop responding, and you cannot remove the beach ball cursor.

The problem is easily fixed by force quitting the frozen or misbehaving apps. Press Command + Option + Escape to force quit the apps, or you can click the Apple menu > choose Force Quit > choose the application and click Force Quit.

Reopen the apps to see if the issue persists.

Can’t Empty Trash

Discarding files is an essential part of the daily routine. When files are deleted, they are sent to the Trash. Unless you empty the Trash, the files are not permanently deleted, and you can recover them if needed.

Files in the Trash take up essential storage space. Typically, Trash can be emptied by control+clicking the file > selecting Delete Immediately. But there are times when Mac Trash won’t empty.

The primary reason you cannot clear Trash is because some program is using the files you are trying to delete or you don’t have permission to delete them.

You can fix the issue by restarting your Mac or updating it to the latest operating system.

Startup Shows a Blank, Gray, or Different Colored Screen

If the MacBook startup fails, it may show different colored screens.

Are you seeing a blue or black screen? It is a sign that your system is frozen because it tried to load a problematic login function or application. Fix the problem by restarting your Mac. Press the power button for six seconds to restart. If this doesn’t work, boot in Safe mode. You can also try and remove troublesome login items or applications that might be incompatible.

If you see a gray screen, it is a sign that critical software is not working correctly. You can fix the issue by manually restarting and booting in Safe mode.

You can also update the OS to fix the problem.

Mac Keeps Shutting Down

Check if the battery is charging. If it is not, you may need to replace the battery or the charging cable.

If your Mac is randomly shutting off even with a healthy battery percentage, you are looking at a different kind of problem.

You can fix the problem by restarting your Mac by pressing the power button and waiting for the system to power back on and load macOS. Then, restart your system again once macOS loads. This will allow your system to perform a full shutdown.

Then, reset the SMC or system management controller. The process for resetting the SMC depends on your specific Mac model. You must check the Apple support page to find out the exact steps for your device.

Since SMC controls important hardware processes like sleep modes, battery charging, and more, resetting it can quickly fix the random shut off problem.

If the issue persists, you may have to pay a visit to the Apple store.

The Screen Keeps Flickering

A flickering screen is annoying. It can also cause eye problems. These flicker issues may appear to be intermittent dimming or a complete loss of resolution.

Before doing anything, check the screen for physical damage. If the screen is not damaged, reset the PRAM/NVRAM (this too, depends on your Mac model and you can find the steps on the Apple support page).

Next, check for pending macOS updates, and if you find any, install and apply them. If you are using Firefox or Chromium, they might be the reason behind the flickering issues. These web browsers are known to cause such problems in Macs. Remove or disable these apps to see if the issue gets fixed.

Finally, boot in Safe mode to isolate other apps that might be causing this problem.

Not Shutting Down

It is not uncommon for MacBooks to fail to shut down because they have become unresponsive during the process. If your Mac is frozen and cannot complete the shutdown process, check if your system has any apps open that might cause the freeze.

Open applications that are not closing may inhibit your system from shutting down. Therefore, you must force quit those applications.

If you face this problem regularly, update all the apps and see if this does the trick.

If these steps don’t work, reset the SMC and NVRAM/PRAM. Additionally, you can run Apple Diagnostics to determine the problem and find recommendations by Apple. You can also switch to Safe mode to solve the issue.

The Bottom Line

These are some common yet highly annoying problems Mac users face. You must be mentally prepared to face these sometime in the future after you have used your Mac extensively for a while. Keep the troubleshooting tips in mind to quickly get out of this mess.