If your Mac keyboard has stopped working, you’ve come to the right place. If you haven’t spilled drinks or liquids on your keyboard, there may still be a solution.
If it is your computer that has stopped working then you are interested in taking a look at this other article in which we explain how to fix a crashed Mac.
And if you finally give up and decide to buy a new keyboard, we recommend that you check out our selection of best keyboards for Mac by clicking on this link.
How to fix a broken keyboard depends on whether it is a wired keyboard (connected via USB) or a wireless keyboard (connected via bluetooth).
Your Mac laptop’s keyboard may also not be working – your MacBook, MacBook Air, or MacBook Pro may be unusable because the keyboard has stopped working.
It may also be that only one or two keys have stopped working rather than the entire keyboard; or that these have changed their configuration for some reason and a key has changed its symbol.
In this article, we’ll assume that you can still use the mouse or touchpad from your Mac, if this is not your case, our tips may not be very useful to you.
How to repair a wired keyboard
Here’s what to do if your wired keyboard isn’t working properly with your Mac.
1. Make sure it is properly connected
If none of the keys on your wired keyboard are working, the first thing to check is that they are properly connected to your Mac. Check the USB port on the back of your Mac and make sure the keyboard has not been started.
2. Change connection
It is advisable to try another USB port if you have one available. If the other USB port is working, it means the first port is not working.
If changing the USB port doesn’t work, you’ve at least ruled out the possibility that the problem is with the port.
3. Restart your Mac
When you restart the Mac, it might recognize the keyboard. This is very classic advice, but it often works.
Another thing you can try is to exit your user account and enter another one, if you have multiple accounts on your Mac. Click on the Apple logo at the top left and select “Sign Out”. Sign in to another account and see if that fixes the problem
How to repair a wireless keyboard
1. Check the power
If this is one of Apple’s wireless keyboards (or any other wireless keyboard), you need to verify that the batteries are charged and that the keyboard is turned on. For example, on the right side of the Apple Wireless Keyboard there is a power button. Press it to turn on the keyboard. A green light should appear.
If you need to change the batteries in an Apple wireless keyboard, you’ll need to use a coin to twist the slot on the left side of the keyboard so you can remove and change it.
In our experience, we’ve found that the batteries in wireless keyboards drain very frequently, so it pays to always have spare batteries (or an emergency wired keyboard) on hand.
2. Check the bluetooth connection
If you have a wireless keyboard, you need to check its Bluetooth connection with your Mac.
Make sure that Bluetooth is turned on on your Mac and that the Mac and keyboard are paired correctly. To check that Bluetooth is activated, go to: “System preferences> Bluetooth”. Check that it is turned on and if not, turn it on.
If the keyboard is paired with your Mac, you should see it in the “Devices” list. If the keyboard is not paired, choose “Configure Bluetooth Keyboard” and follow the steps.
3. Restart your Mac
As with wired keyboards, we recommend that you restart your computer to see if the issue is resolved.
And as in the previous case, you can try leaving your user account and signing in to another one, if you have multiple accounts on your Mac. Click on the Apple logo at the top left and select “Logout”
4. Disconnect the keyboard
If you’ve replaced the batteries and checked the power and the keys still don’t work, you need to disconnect and reconnect your keyboard to the Mac.
Open “System Preferences> Bluetooth”. If the keyboard appears in the “Devices” list, click “Control” and select “Remove”. Then choose “System Preferences> Keyboard> Configure Bluetooth Keyboard”.
How to repair a damaged keyboard
If you think it is possible that your keyboard is broken, how to fix it depends on the cause. Below we offer different solutions depending on the reason for the failure.
What to do with a water damaged keyboard
If you’ve spilled water or other liquid on a wired or wireless keyboard, you may still be able to wipe it off and turn it back on.
The most important thing in this case is to act quickly, as water can cause damage if it touches the keyboard components, or even worse if the keyboard is integrated.
Water spilled on a MacBook keyboard can quickly enter circuitry, so be sure to act quickly:
- Disconnect the keyboard
- Flip the keyboard
- Blow compressed air on the keyboard
- Let the keyboard dry for at least 12 hours.
- Make sure the keyboard is dry before reconnecting it.
- If you spill something stronger, or worse sticky, drying the keyboard may not be enough, especially if the residue is very sticky.
What to do with a dirty and sticky keyboard
It may not have been a liquid that prevented the keyboard from working properly. Every now and then it’s a good idea to clean the keyboard (apparently they collect more dirt than a toilet seat).
If you need to get under the keys, maybe because some keys stick together when pressed (maybe because you spilled something sticky on the keyboard), you’ll need to carefully remove the keys so you can clean up. below.
What to do with a damaged MacBook keyboard
If your Mac laptop keyboard has stopped working, the prognosis is not so good. You may need to visit the Apple Store or your local Apple Center to inquire about the cost of replacing the keyboard.
Alternatively, you can try to get a used keyboard and replace the one on your Mac, but we don’t recommend it because MacBook keyboards are fully integrated into the MacBook case and therefore not easy to change (Apple does pretty much everything. which is possible so that they cannot be modified).
A better solution is to connect a keyboard to the USB port on your MacBook or use a Bluetooth keyboard.
How to fix keys that mark another symbol on a Mac keyboard
This step applies if the keyboard issue is related to specific characters and if when you press a key it types something you don’t expect.
Go to “System Preferences> Keyboards”, check “Input Sources” and make sure the selected keyboard is your country one, as the settings may change completely.
Go to ‘System Preferences> Keyboard> Input Sources’ and verify that the correct language is displayed.
What to do if the number buttons do not work
If you’re having trouble with just the number keys on your keyboard, you’ve probably turned on the mouse keys by mistake.
Mouse Keys are an accessibility feature that allows users to use the number keys to control the cursor. You should verify that you have not accidentally activated the mouse keys and if so, deactivate them.
How to disable mouse keys:
- First, try pressing the “Option / Alt” key five times. This is a common shortcut for turning mouse keys on and off.
- Open ‘System Preferences> Accessibility’
- Choose ‘mouse & TrackPad’
- Uncheck “Enable mouse keys”
- Click on ‘Options’
- Uncheck ‘Press the option key five times to switch between mouse keys’
- Click OK ‘