Steps to fix Bluetooth problems on Mac

Universal solutions if what is failing is the software

Although the Bluetooth failure in the Mac may seem very specific, the truth is that it could be due to a software problem and that both the accessory you are connecting and the computer components are in perfect condition. To make sure that this is the case, we propose below three solutions that could end these failures.

Verify that the Bluetooth connection is ok

Although this we cannot say that it is a universal solution to all Mac software problems, it is for this one in particular. And yes, it may seem like evidence, but many times we take some things for granted and in the end the origin of the failure can be very simple. Therefore we recommend that you open System Preferences> Bluetooth.

Once you are in this panel, check that Bluetooth is turned on. If the accessory you want to connect appears in this section, try clicking “Connect”. If it does not work or the accessory itself is not detected in this section, do not worry because it may still have a solution. Keep reading because in the following sections we will continue to explore what may be the origin of your problem.

Have the latest version of software

Something fundamental always to avoid having problems in a device of this type, is that its software is in the latest version available. In the case of Macs, it is especially noteworthy, since Apple itself will ask you to be in that version so that the technical service can review it, since it is understood that any failure of this type could be related to a bug in the version in the what are you.

So if you want to make sure you have the ‌Last version of macOS installed, you must go to System Preferences> Software Update. If this option does not appear, it is possible that your Mac is in an old version, in which this was verified from the App Store, in the “Updates” tab. If there is a pending update you must have internet to download it.

mac update

Close everything on the Mac and / or restart

These recommendations that we are going to give now seem very obvious, but the truth is that they are usually more effective than one thinks and in the face of problems of all kinds. First of all, it is convenient that close all applications that you have open, but totally, do not minimize them. To do this, you may have to go to the Apple menu at the top and enter the “Force Quit” option to completely close all of them. Once you do, check if you can already connect the Bluetooth accessory.

If after that it has not been solved perhaps you could try restart the Mac. Either with the option that does so or manually, that is, by turning off the equipment and waiting a few seconds later to turn it on again. This will close all open processes, including those in the background. It is possible that after restarting the problem has been solved.

turn off mac

Restoring, an ideal solution?

We assume that a complete format of the computer, including reinstallation of the operating system, is always the most effective solution to eliminate software problems. Now this may be a solution too drastic and that we do not recommend carrying out without first having tried other possible solutions such as those that we will discuss in the following sections.

For this reason, we entrust you to return to this point if you finally cannot solve the problem with the rest of the proposals that we will make to you. If so, it should be a full format without uploading backup of any kind. Of course, try to check previously that you have the apps synchronized with iCloud so that data such as photos, videos, notes, calendars and others can continue to be saved even if you configure the Mac as new.

Restore Mac to update

Steps to follow to solve the problem

If none of the above worked, don’t throw in the towel yet. It is still possible that you find the solution and can fix it easily, quickly and by yourself. For this reason, below we will expose you which are the aspects that you must take into account to continue in the investigation and solution of the failure.

Measure distances well

You don’t need to pull out a meter, a ruler, or any other distance-measuring gadget. You just have to remember a basic aspect of Bluetooth technology and that is that it allows two devices to communicate with each other without the need for cables and without necessarily having to be physically linked. However, the distance that should exist between one and the other should not be so little excessive.

If you are trying to connect a device that is in another room to the Mac, try connecting them by reducing the distance between them. If you have a MacBook you can take the laptop to the room where the other one is, since it does not necessarily have to be the accessory that moves. If you are in the same room, although there may be elements that interfere in the middle, the truth is that this should not be the cause of the failure, so we continue to recommend that you read this post to see if you can find the definitive solution.

mac bluetooth

Check the device you are connecting

Following the thread of the above, it is possible that it is not the Mac that is failing, but the accessory itself. For this reason, we propose a series of checks that will help you to know if this is the one that is causing the problem:

  • Connect another accessory: If you try pairing another Bluetooth accessory to your Mac and it works, the chances of the other device failing greatly increase. If that does not connect either, everything indicates that the failure is in the Mac.
  • Check that it is on: And it is that, although it seems obvious too, you must bear in mind that it must be activated so that the Bluetooth technology that it incorporates is also activated.
  • Do you have any way of linking? There are some accessories that it is not enough to be turned on, but some pairing mode has to be activated. Consult the instructions of this to know if this is the case and, in that case, how to proceed to link it.
  • Is it a new product? If you recently bought that accessory, you can request a return for malfunction or enforce the legal guarantee and have them repaired or delivered a completely new and functional one.

Unlink and relink the accessory

If you managed to pair the Mac with the accessory and yet it does not work normally, we still have two options: either the Mac that fails or the accessory itself. However, there is the possibility that they are both in a way, since the connection has not been well established. Therefore, it is recommended that you proceed to unlink and re-link them.

To do this you must go to System Preferences> Bluetooth on the Mac, choose the accessory in question and click on the “Disconnect” button. To reconnect them, all you have to do is follow the same procedure, although beforehand we advise you to have turned off the accessory for a few seconds so that when you turn it on, its connections will be reestablished.

disconnect bluetooth mac

Delete these files from the system

There are some files stored on the Mac in relation to Bluetooth connections and that in some cases can generate problems like the one you are suffering from. Delete them can be the last solution at your fingertips to try to fix the problem. To do this, you must follow these steps:

  1. Open Finder.
  2. Click on “Go”, located in the upper menu bar.
  3. In the search box type (without quotes) «/ Library / Preferences»And click on« Go ».
  4. Locate a file called «»And delete it.
  5. Restart the Mac. It is advisable that you do it manually, turning off the computer and keeping it like that for at least 30 seconds until turning it on again.

plist files bluetooth mac

If you suspect that your computer’s hardware is failing

If absolutely nothing of what we have discussed in this post has helped you to fix your problem, unfortunately you will not have much option. It is likely that your Mac has a defect on the board and / or in the component itself that allows the Bluetooth connection to be established. The best option in these cases is to go to technical service, either Apple or a SAT (Authorized Technical Service).

The repair price It will vary depending on exactly what the problem is, as well as the model of your Mac. It may even be free if the equipment is under warranty and it is detected that it is not a problem due to misuse but a factory defect. In any case, the specialists will give you all the information in advance so that you can make a decision.

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