6 Best Ways to Fix Mac Display Not Working After Waking From Sleep
Whenever you are not working on your Mac, it will automatically turn off the display to save power. The same goes for MacBook users with an external monitor for using macOS on a larger screen. However, some users face the issue of the Mac display not turning on after coming out of Sleep Mode. Refer to our guide when Mac is not detecting an external display. In this post, we will discuss the best fixes for the Mac display not working after sleep.
1. Check the Screen Brightness Levels
The basic solution to fix this problem is to check the screen brightness levels of your Mac. If your Mac’s display doesn’t work properly after going into sleep mode, press the Function Keys on your Mac to increase the screen brightness levels. The brightness levels may have gone to the lowest even when your Mac is not in Sleep Mode.
For MacBook Air or iMac with Magic Keyboard, press the F2 key to increase screen brightness.
For MacBook Pro with Touch Bar, tap the Brightness icon on the Touch Bar.
If your MacBook’s display hasn’t turned on despite increasing the brightness levels, try plugging in your charger and waiting a few minutes to see if it turns back on. For MacBook Air users who have experienced charging issues, we have a post with suggestions on how to fix MacBook Air not charging.
If your Mac’s display remains off, you can force restart it by long pressing the Power Button or Touch ID button on your Mac keyboard. Keep pressing these buttons until the screen goes blank and your Mac restarts. Force restart can resolve many hardware and software-related issues on your Mac.
4. Reset SMC
SMC, or System Management Controller, is a chip on Intel-based Macs and iMacs that controls and stores critical hardware functions. To fix the screen brightness issue, you can try resetting the SMC of your Mac or iMac.
Note that the SMC reset doesn’t apply to Mac models with M1, M2, M1 Pro, or M1 Max chips. Restarting these Macs performs a similar function to an SMC reset.
Here’s how to reset the SMC:
1. Press and hold the Power Button until your Mac shuts down.
2. After your Mac shuts down, wait a few seconds and press Shift + Left Option + Left Control key while also holding down the Power Button.
Keep pressing the four keys for another 7 seconds. If your Mac turns on, it will play the default start up chime again while you hold down the keys. When you see the Apple logo, the display will turn on normally. But if it doesn’t boot after the Apple logo, check the next solution.
Another solution for Intel-based Macs is performing an NVRAM reset. NVRAM holds information like sound volume, startup disk selection, time zone, and more. If you can’t get the display to turn on after sleep on your Mac, you can try to reset the NVRAM. Note that after the NVRAM reset, you will have to adjust these settings again on your Mac.
Step 1: Long-press the Power Button on your Mac.
Step 2: After your Mac shuts down, press the Power Button again to boot your Mac.
Step 3: While your Mac is turning on, press Option + Command + P + R for 20 seconds.
Step 4: Release all four keys when the Apple logo appears for the second time. This means that the NVRAM reset is complete. After that, your Mac will restart.
Step 5: Check if the display is turning back on.
The NVRAM reset is only applicable for Intel-based Macs. Restarting a Mac with an M1, M2, M1 Pro, or M1 Max chip is equivalent to performing an NVRAM reset.
If none of the solutions work, there may be a backlight issue with your Mac’s screen. We suggest visiting an Apple Store to get your Mac display repaired. Check if your Mac model is covered under Apple Care.
Rise and Shine
While these solutions will help wake up your Mac display, you can also check out our post on preventing MacBook from sleeping when the lid is closed.
As Fred Humiston, the author behind Twothirds.us, I focus on providing practical and easy-to-follow guides and solutions for a variety of technical issues that people commonly face.
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