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Is your Mac giving you any trouble recently? The lights may stop working, the volume may vary without warning, the screen's resolution may shift, or your Mac may refuse to start for no apparent reason.

Some issues may be resolved by quitting all running programs and restarting the computer. But there are situations when you'll have to reset the SMC. As a final option, you might try resetting the System Management Controller.

It is the SMC's job to handle things like temperature and power control. While issues with the SMC are uncommon, when they arise, they may negatively impact performance and potentially lead to other defects, such as the fan running continually even when the CPU isn't being heavily used.

When all other troubleshooting measures have failed, resetting the SMC is the next step to do. Let's check out how to reset SMC on Mac.

What is SMC?

System management controller (SMC) chips are integrated circuits in Macs powered by Intel that oversee the computer's hardware. Unlike the PRAM, which primarily deals with operating system software, the SMC manages hardware components, including status lights, cooling fans, system performance, and the power supply.

If your Mac won't switch on or boot up due to a power problem, resetting the system management controller (SMC) can fix the problem.

How can I recognize when it is time to reset them?

Some warning indicators exist that suggest it's time to take action. What follows is a list of signs that indicate you need to go to work:

  • Even with little memory consumption, your computer's fan operates excessively loudly or often.
  • The battery is experiencing abnormally rapid power loss.
  • The speed of your machine is really slow.
  • There will be problems with using the trackpad on your laptop.
  • No wireless networks will connect to your device.
  • Your PC powers down gradually.

Most of these symptoms stand out immediately as they directly impact your time spent in front of the monitor.

Do you have a removable battery?

Older MacBooks with replaceable batteries handle resetting the SMC a little differently. Simply checking the base of your MacBook will tell you whether the battery can be removed or not.

For the sake of this guide, if you look at your battery and find just one solid piece of metal without a slider, your battery is not detachable. However, if there is a mechanism for opening anything close and a crack defining a rectangular portion, you have a replaceable battery.

Mac Laptops

SMC reset instructions for Apple laptops vary depending on whether or not the battery may be removed and replaced by the user.

Resetting SMC on Non-Removable Battery

To reset the SMC on a MacBook without a user-replaceable battery, you must turn the machine on while holding down a certain keyboard shortcut.

  • Turn off your Mac and remove the power cord.
  • To shut down your computer, press and hold the power button while simultaneously holding down the Shift, Control, and Option keys. You need to hold down all the four buttons for 10 seconds.
  • Reconnect the power cord and restart your Mac.

This action will reset the SMC.

Resetting SMC On Removable Batteries

Unfortunately, the aforementioned keyboard shortcut is only compatible with newer MacBooks that do not have a user-replaceable battery. Instead, you should do the following.

  • Turn off your Mac.
  • Take out the battery.
  • Keep the power button down for five seconds, reconnect the battery, and turn on the device again. In other words, boot up your Mac.

This action will reset the SMC.

Mac Notebooks with A T2 Chip

In addition to the preceding techniques, Macs equipped with Apple's proprietary T2 Security Chip also provide a "soft" method of resetting the SMC. The Apple team suggests starting with these solutions.

  • Pick "Shut Down" from the Apple menu to shut down your device.
  • Keep the power button down for 10 seconds after the computer has finished powering down.
  • Wait 5 seconds after letting off of the power button.
  • To restart your Mac, press the power button one more.

This action will reset the SMC.

Resetting SMC on the Mac Desktop

Resetting the SMC on an iMac, Mac Mini, or Mac Pro is a breeze:

  • Turn off your Mac and remove the power cord.
  • Please hold on for the next 15 seconds.
  • Reconnect the power cable and restart your Mac.

This action will reset the SMC.


There is no assurance that resetting the SMC will repair any problems, but it often does and restores normal operation to a Mac. Using Mac-specific cleaning software may help keep your computer operating smoothly and is another option for dealing with slow performance.

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Written & Updated by Justin Kenny

Justin Kenny is a writer & editor of DoYourData. He joined DoYourData in 2016 and focuses on writing articles about Windows data recovery, Mac data recovery, external device data recovery, hard drive clone, data erasure, Mac cleanup, computer issue fixes, etc. He is a super fan of Apple devices and is big on testing new digital device and system utility software.

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