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How to fix my MacBook Pro Booting to a Black Screen


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So you are trying to wake your Mac from sleep and it just wouldn’t. All you see is black screen on your MacBook Pro no matter what keys you are pressing. Below you’ll find a couple of solutions (mostly based on users’ cases) to bring you Mac back to the light.

Reasons your Mac screen goes black:

  • 3rd party apps that expand the screen
  • Recently upgraded operating system
  • Corrupted display and energy settings
  • Cables not connected

Easy fixes for Macbook black screen

1. Adjust your display’s brightness

It’s possible you had accidentally pressed the brightness keys on the keyboard so your screen dimmed down. Could it be your cat stepping on keys? Use F1 and F2 buttons to light black screen on your Mac.

2. Check if the Power is on

Examine your charger cable is intact and if your Mac is charging. Is the green light on? To rule out the power issues, check if your Mac produces any noise — from the hard drive or fans. If you still see black screen on Mac, read on.

3. Disconnect all peripherals

Remove all external devices like printers or external drives. These devices may start their own dialogues which could interfere with your display settings.

Mac won't wake up Black screen

More solutions if your MacBook Pro won’t turn on


Force restart your Mac

In most cases forcing your Mac to restart helps to fix it if your Mac won’t boot. The variance of this issue is your Mac not waking up after sleep. Try to open and close MacBook lid and press a few keys on a keyboard. It might help, but if it doesn’t in no way you should panic — first let’s perform a quick force restart.

1. Hold down the Power key for about 6 seconds.
2. Wait for your Mac to shut down and press the Power key again.

Reset your Mac’s NVRAM settings

NVRAM stands for non-volatile RAM and is basically a functionality that stores in memory settings for display, speakers, primary startup disk etc. Everything even remotely connected with boot process (like your MacBook won’t turning on) can be set back to factory settings during the NVRAM reset.

To flush NVRAM settings:

  1. Shut your Mac down.
  2. ress the Power key.
  3. Wait for your Mac to start loading.
  4. When you hear a startup sound, hold down Cmd + Option + P + R.
  5. Keep pressing the keys until you hear a second startup sound

Do basic Mac maintenance: disk permissions and Login Items

Did resetting NVRAM make the trick? Now, that your display is back to the light, you should be able to do a bit of maintenance under the hood of your Mac. In many reported cases, removing old cache files and broken login items helped to prevent the “black screen” problem. Oftentimes, the reason for your Macbook black screen problem is broken disk permissions not allowing your Mac to boot normally. A good solution for this is to use the app called CleanMyMac on your machine and run Repair Disk Permissions command.

  1. Download the app (it’s free to download)
  2. Install it and go to Maintenance module
  3. Tick Repair Disk Permissions and click Run

Macbook screen goes black

From my experience, it’s the easiest way to optimize hardly-accessible parts of your Mac. 

Another possible culprit — the corrupted Login Items. Truth is, some apps like antiviruses would inadvertently sneak into the list of your startup programs; if something goes wrong with the app, it will then affect your Mac’s booting. So, it makes sense that you check your Login Items list and uninstall the unwanted app — both too can be done with CleanMyMac’s free version.

Zap your Mac’s SMC settings

SMC is System Management Controller. What it controls is temperature, lights, keyboard, fans, and many other side-processes. According to Mac support forums, resetting SMC helps in 90% of the cases when your Mac’s screen goes black. To perform this trick follow the tips below.

For a MacBook with a non-removable battery:

  1. Shut your Mac down. 
  2. Connect your Mac to a power outlet. 
  3. While your Mac is still shut, Press Shift + Option + Control and Power key at the same time. 
  4. Let go of the keys and boot your Mac again.

Reset SMC to fix MacBook black screen

For a Desktop Mac: iMac, iMac Pro:

  1. Unplug the power cable.
  2. Wait for about 15 seconds.
  3. Plug your Mac back in and leave it for about 5 seconds.
  4. Start your Mac in a normal fashion.

Enter your password — a surprising trick that works

Though it looks counter-intuitive you may try this solution when your Mac screen goes black. Still with your Mac’s black screen on startup, enter the password — as if you would do normally. Now press the Return key. Lots of users have reported that this option helped to bring their Macs to life.

A variance of this trick has too been found on many Mac forums. Once again it implies that you press the keys on your Mac in a “blind” mode, hoping that it will light up.

  1. Press the Power key — just once to summon the restart dialogue.
  2. Press S key to send your Mac to sleep.
  3. Press and hold the Power key to perform a forced shut down.
  4. Wait for about 15 secs and start your Mac as usual

The last-ditch solution to MacBook black screen


Re-install the macOS

The lion’s share of issues we deal with on our computers are software-related. MacBook display not working is not an exception. So it makes sense that you update all your apps to their latest versions including the macOS.

Here is the guide on how to quickly re-install the macOS:

For macOS Sierra
 
For macOS High Sierra

If all of the above didn’t work, let go of it and take your Mac over to the service — you’ve done all you could. We hope this article was fun and helpful — feel free to share.


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