6 Ways to Fix Mac Bluetooth Not Working

What to Know

  • Try restarting your Mac and installing any updates available on your device.
  • You can also try forgetting and resetting a Bluetooth device or deleting the .plist files.
  • If none of these options work, you should contact Apple Support.

Being able to connect to Bluetooth on your Mac is a crucial function to allow you to connect to speakers, smart TVs, and other devices. Sometimes, however, Bluetooth is not available on Mac for a variety of reasons. Luckily, there are a few methods you can try to figure out why Bluetooth is not working on your Mac.

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6 Ways to Fix Bluetooth Not Available on Mac

If you find that the Bluetooth is not working on your Mac, there are a few different ways you might be able to fix it. If you like tips about using your Apple devices, be sure to sign up for our free Tip of the Day!

Reset Bluetooth Not Working by Restarting Your Mac

The first and best option for when your Bluetooth won't connect to your Mac is to restart your computer. If you cannot restart your Mac from the Apple menu, check out our article on other ways to restart your Mac.

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  1. To shut down your Mac, click the Apple icon in the top left corner.

    how to turn on bluetooth on mac
  2. From the menu that appears, select Shut Down.

    how to turn on bluetooth on mac
  3. Click Shut Down to confirm you want to turn your Mac off. 

    how to turn on bluetooth on a mac

To turn your Mac on again, press the power button.

Install Latest macOS to Fix Bluetooth Not Working on Mac

Here's how to get the latest Mac software update download, but before you do, be sure to back up your device to iCloud or iTunes, connect your device to power, and make sure you're connected to Wi-Fi. 

  1. Open System Settings on your Mac.

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  2. Tap General.​

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  3. Select Software Update.

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  4. If there is a software update available, tap Download and Install.​ This process will take a few minutes, and you'll see a "Verifying update" notification like the one in the image below.​ Then, make sure to follow any more on-screen directions.

    bluetooth won't turn on mac

Once you agree to the Terms and Conditions, your phone will power down. Then it will automatically power back up and install. Once your Lock Screen comes back up, unlock your iPhone. Follow any on-screen directions to complete the update.

Pro tip:

You should always keep your compatible Apple devices updated to the latest software. This helps protect them with things like privacy updates, bug fixes, and new features. If you have an iPhone that's been around for a while, it's a good idea to learn about how to update your older iPhone safely, and what to expect when you do so.

Fix Bluetooth Not Working by Forgetting Device

If the Bluetooth is still not connecting to your Mac, you can try deleting the device from your Mac's memory and then reconnecting it. This option is how I solved my Bluetooth issue between my iPhone and my car.

  1. Open System Settings.

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  2. Click Bluetooth.

    how to turn bluetooth on mac
  3. Click the "i" icon next to the device you are trying to connect to.

    how to reset bluetooth on mac
  4. Click Forget This Device.

    how to reset bluetooth on mac
  5. Click Forget This Device again to confirm. 

    how to reset bluetooth on mac

Now, try reconnecting the Bluetooth device to your Mac as a new device. 

Delete .plist Files to Reset Mac Bluetooth

While this is one of the more advanced routes to fix Bluetooth not working on a Mac, it may be your best bet if you find the other solutions are not working. Sometimes, the Mac's Bluetooth .plist files become corrupted and cause connectivity issues.

Note: You may not find one or even both of these files in your Library. If not, there's nothing wrong with your computer, but unfortunately, you might not be able to try this method. If you find one, you can delete it and try anyway, but if you don't find either, and no other methods listed here have worked for you, you may need to move on to contacting Apple Support.

  1. Cick Finder.

    why won't my bluetooth turn on mac
  2. At the top navigation, click Go.

    why won't my bluetooth turn on mac
  3. Select Go to Folder.

    bluetooth not working on mac
  4. Type in "/Library/Preferences" and press enter.

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  5. Locate and "com.apple.BluetoothAudio" and "com.apple.bluetoothuserd". 

    bluetooth wont turn on mac
  6. Right-click them and click Move to Trash, then restart your computer.

    bluetooth wont turn on mac

When you turn your computer back on, it will automatically generate a new .plist file that should be uncorrupted.

Mac Bluetooth Still Not Working? Contact Apple Support

If you've tried all these options and nothing seems to be working, your best bet to is to contact Apple Support to see if they can help you fix the problem. To reach Apple Support, follow this link.

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Author Details

Rachel Needell's picture

Author Details

Rachel Needell

Rachel Needell is a Feature Writer at iPhone Life, and a poet and author. With 10-plus years of experience working with Apple devices, she specializes in all-things iPad and is a Notes App expert, having worked on both the 2023 iPad Guide and the Notes App Guide. You can usually find her writing in the Daily Tip newsletter as one of our senior Tip writers. Rachel received her Master’s degree in English Literature in 2021 and her most recent work appears in the Winter ’21 edition of New Note Poetry. When she’s not obsessing about Apple products, you can find her voraciously reading fantasy books with her cat in Asheville, North Carolina.