How to Reset SMC on MacBook Pro

If your MacBook Pro’s battery isn’t charging, the fans are too loud, or it overheats quickly, Apple recommends you reset SMC (System Management Controller). To reset SMC, shut down your MacBook Pro and type in a keyboard shortcut (which varies based on the model and chip).

Hi, I’m Devansh. Whenever my MacBook Pro has an issue that a simple reboot doesn’t fix, I reset SMC. I do this for battery, thermals, or even keyboard backlighting issues. It doesn’t speed up my Mac, but it often resolves the error.

In this article, I’ll walk through the steps to reset SMC for both Intel- and Apple Silicon-based MacBook Pros and then answer some common questions.

Keep reading if your MacBook Pro displays errors, and a reboot isn’t fixing it!

Steps to Reset SMC on MacBook Pro

Before you reset SMC, let’s get you caught up on what it actually does. Some of its main functions are power, thermal, and peripheral management. Beyond this, it also handles various other low-level functions, everything from ambient light sensing to sleep mode.

Since it has so many aspects of performance, resetting it could iron out any errors you’re facing. This can include Wi-Fi and Bluetooth hardware missing, unresponsive USB-C ports, errorful sleep mode performance, and much more.

Keep in mind that you need to use the built-in keyboard for this process to work. Now, here are the steps to reset SMC.

Intel-based MacBook Pros

If your MacBook Pro has the Apple T2 security chip (introduced in 2018), follow these steps.

Step 1: Shut down your MacBook Pro, and hold the Control, Option, and Shift keys. Keep doing the same for 7 seconds, then hold the power button as well.

Step 2: Although your MacBook Pro will shut down, keep holding the keys for 7 more seconds before releasing them.

Step 3: Wait for 7 to 10 seconds and press the power button to switch on your MacBook Pro again.

Intel-based MacBook Pro Without Apple T2 Security Chip (Pre-2018)

If you have an older Macbook Pro, here is the process you need to follow.

Step 1: Shut down your MacBook Pro and hold the Shift, Control, and Option keys along with the power button.

Step 2: Release all the keys after around 10 seconds and press the power button to turn on your MacBook Pro again.

Apple Silicon-based MacBook Pros

If your MacBook Pro has the M1 or M2 chip, the process for resetting SMC is a piece of cake. First, ensure that the Mac is connected to an active power adaptor. From there, either just restart it or shut it down and then turn it on manually again.

What’s Next?

Hopefully, resetting SMC resolved the issue you were facing with your MacBook Pro. If it didn’t, you aren’t out of options. First, consider resetting NVRAM too. For instructions on how to do that, check out our guide here.

If resetting NVRAM doesn’t yield anything either, run an Apple Diagnostics test. With such persistent issues, there’s a chance that a hardware component might be faulty. So, running this test will let you know exactly what’s wrong.

Based on the results, I recommend you contact Apple Support and have a technician look at your MacBook Pro to diagnose the issue further.

FAQs

Here are some common questions surrounding SMC.

How to Reset SMC on iMac?

If you want to reset SMC on an iMac or other Mac computers, it’s a much simpler process. First, shut down your Mac and unplug the power cord. Wait around 15 seconds before plugging it back in, and then wait a further 5 seconds before pressing the power button to turn it back on again.

Is there an SMC Button for Manual Reset?

There is a manual reset button to do an SMC reset if you own a 2012 Mac Pro. First—you guessed it!—shut down your Mac and unplug the power cord. Carefully open the side access panel. Next door to the top PCI-e slot, you’ll see a white button. Hold this button for 10 seconds and then close the side access panel. Plug the power cord back and press the power button after 5 seconds.

Conclusion

99% of the time, when using your MacBook Pro, ‘it just works.’ But when you encounter an error, it can be annoying and break your workflow. Resetting SMC is an easy solution to most of these issues and takes under a minute. Remember to follow the instructions based on your chip and MacBook Pro model.

Did resetting SMC (System Management Controller) resolve the issue you were facing with your MacBook Pro? Please let me know in the comments!

About Devansh Kamdar
I'm an Apple fan who's been using an iMac and a MacBook Pro for work-related tasks since 2017. I also own an iPhone 13 and several other small Apple accessories. Although I'm preparing to build my own PC soon, I still spend most of the time on my Mac.

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