7 Best Fixes for Display Brightness Not Working on Mac

The displays on Apple Macs get better and sharper with each generation. Today you get a Super Retina display on your Mac and can change its settings to optimize your viewing preferences. Brightness is one of the key features of Mac displays.

You may face screen brightness issues while using your Mac outdoors or in a restaurant. There are times when you cannot change the screen brightness. If you are facing the same problem; Here are the best ways to fix screen brightness not working on Mac.

1. Check the automatic screen brightness settings.

Your Mac can automatically manage brightness based on the lighting in your environment. If display brightness isn’t working on your Mac, here’s how you can check this setting to start troubleshooting.

Step 1: With Spotlight Search open, press Command + Spacebar; hit system preference; And press Return.

Step 2: Click Display in the bottom left corner.

Step 3: Check if the option of ‘Automatically Adjust Brightness’ is enabled. If not, Click the checkbox to enable it.

Try changing the screen brightness manually from the slider.

2. Check the Keyboard Function Key Settings.

The F1 and F2 function keys on your Mac keyboard are meant to manually change screen brightness. However, if they are meant to be used as Standard Function Keys, they cannot be used to change brightness levels. Here’s how to check together.

Step 1: With Spotlight Search open, press Command + Spacebar; hit system preference; And press Return.

Step 2: Click Keyboard.

Step 3: Under the Keyboard tab, Check whether ‘Use F1 and F2 keys as normal function keys’ is unchecked. Check no.

If not, Remove the option.

Step 4: Close the window and try changing the brightness using the F1 and F2 keys.

3. Turn off ‘slightly dim screen’

There are other ways to improve battery health on a Mac, though. Dimming the screen is something that many people like. Your Mac offers another option to slightly dim the screen while it’s on battery. Here’s how you can disable it and see if it fixes the problem.

Step 1: Click the Battery icon in the upper right corner of the Menu Bar.

Step 2: Click Battery Preferences from the menu that appears.

Step 3: If you select the option for ‘slightly dim screen while on battery’; Click the check box to deselect it.

Step 4: Can you close the window and change the screen brightness?

4. Restart your Mac.

After adjusting the basic settings mentioned above, We recommend restarting your Mac. Giving your device a regular restart can help you avoid many software and hardware problems.

Step 1: Click the Apple logo in the upper left corner.

Step 2: Click Restart.

After your Mac restarts, Verify that the problem is resolved.

5. Reset the SMC.

If you are still unable to solve the problem, now let’s talk about some advanced solutions. You can try SMC Reset for your Intel-based Mac or iMac. This solution does not work on Apple M-series chipset-based Macs.

SMC or System Management Controller is a chip that stores important information of all the different hardware functions. You can try resetting the SMC as we are talking about to fix the screen brightness issue.

Step 1: Press and hold the power button until your Mac shuts down.

Step 2: After shutting down your Mac, wait a few seconds and press Shift + Left Option + Left Control. Press and hold the Power Button.

Press and hold the four buttons for another 7 seconds. If your Mac is turned on, it will play the default startup sound again when you hold down those keys.

When you see the Apple logo; The screen will open normally. After that, Check if you can change the display brightness.

6. Reset the NVRAM.

If the SMC reset doesn’t work. You can now try resetting the NVRAM on your Mac. Volume in NVRAM or non-volatile random access memory; boot disk selection; Contains information like time zone and more. You can try this solution, which only works for Intel-based Macs.

Step 1: Press and hold the power button on your Mac.

Step 2: After your Mac shuts down, Press the power button again to restart it.

Step 3: While your Mac is running, Press Command + Option + P + R for 20 seconds.

Step 4: Release all four keys when the Apple logo appears a second time. It means that the NVRAM reset is complete. Then, Your Mac will restart.

Step 5: Can I change screen brightness levels?

For Mac models running on Apple’s M series processors; Note that the reboot option is similar to the NVRAM reset.

7. Update macOS.

If nothing has worked so far, your last resort is updating macOS to its latest version to remove any bugs or glitches that are causing this problem. Here’s how.

Step 1: Click the Apple logo in the upper left corner.

Step 2: Click About This Mac.

Step 3: Click Software Update.

Step 4: If an update is available, download and install it.

Step 5: Check if the issue is resolved.

Let it shine.

These solutions will help you fix brightness issues on your Mac. You can also refer to our post on best fixes for Mac display not working after waking from sleep.

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