5 Reasons Your Mac Screen Has Stopped Working

Mac monitor screen

Apple has always stood out for its completely uncompromising approach to development. Even the display of a MacBook shows got a lot of attention to quality and balance. Despite this attention to detail, the MacBook still has a few weak points, and while there may be many causes of malfunctions and breakdowns in most cases, there is one symptom – the screen does not work.

The screen on the MacBook does not work. Is my computer doomed?

Problems with the display module's performance can be associated with purely mechanical breakdowns (for example, a cable break). Also, the screen may “go out” due to a software failure, but the most common issues are malfunctions due to a physical defect.

So pay attention to any signs of damage to the Macbook display. These range from obvious cracks, impact damage, spillage, or liquid flooding, to a factory defect or cable malfunction.

 Let's list the main signs of a breakdown:

  • The screen does not turn on, there is no image, and it remains dark
  • The display crashed due to a fall, impact, or crushing
  • The image is there, but there is no backlight
  • Flickering screen on Mac
  • Glass cracks, chips, and spots on the matrix
  • Streaks and dark areas from liquid
  • Stripes, artifacts, image distortions

What are the most common reasons for Mac display failure?

Battery discharge

Lack of battery power is one of the most likely causes of your Mac screen not working correctly. Even when connected, a malfunctioning charger or cable might prevent your computer from recharging, causing your Mac to close down after a time. So, the initial step you should take is to inspect the battery cords on your device.

Invalid login items or disk permissions

Damaged disk permission problems or login items might sometimes be the cause of your Mac's black display. The permissions regulate which users and system programs may access data and what they can do with them. It might cause your Mac to go dark or fail to boot up if it is inaccurate or faulty.

Issues after the macOS upgrade

The updated operating system may cause compatibility difficulties, which result in your Mac's screen going completely dark at times. Following a new upgrade, a black screen may appear as an occasional booting bug, which has perplexed numerous Mac users. 

Contact with water

Any moisture in the system will slow it down: oxides form on a motherboard’s circuits upon contact with liquid, which tends to expand gradually. Contact with water can disable the north bridge (no picture on the screen, but the MacBook itself works) or the south bridge. In the latter case, only a few drops in the device's connectors will cause a malfunction; if the south bridge fails, problems with the external monitor may occur.

In this case, the malfunction can only be eliminated by cleaning and component repair of the motherboard. In some cases, you might need to replace it completely. It is also important to note that such malfunctions can occur due to voltage fluctuations in the power supply network.

Device drop or overheating

If the screen does not work on your MacBook due to a fall (or other variants of severe impact), the localization of the problem is somewhat simplified. Nevertheless, defects of this nature may require expensive board repairs, although it is possible to do cheaply in many cases. One of the most common causes of failure may be a breakage in the data transmission loop. Сable connectors are relatively inexpensive, and if the necessary tools are available, they can be replaced independently, but the user always takes risks when performing such work at home.

Another cause of the malfunction may be a breakdown of the display decoder. This part cannot be replaced separately from the display; eliminating this malfunction requires a complete matrix replacement. In addition, when a laptop falls, the graphics adapter chip may disconnect – this can happen often. Especially important for older MacBooks because the chip can fail without any physical impact as the cooling system cannot always cope with overheating under prolonged load, leading to graphics malfunction. In this case, the repair will require a complete replacement of the graphics adapter.

Answers to your display issues

Whatever is causing your screen trouble, there are several solutions available to you. Experiment with every possible configuration to see which works for your MacBook.

Force reboot your Mac.

In most cases, rebooting your Mac will do the trick. First, just try opening and closing the MacBook lid. Next, test whether you need to force reboot by pressing a few keys on the keyboard. If there is no response, it is time to force reboot! To do so, hold down the Command + Control + Power buttons. Wait for the screen to go blank and the computer to reload.

Restart the system management controller

The Mac's SMC is in charge of several power-related functions. Restarting it will reset multiple various power options. Before proceeding, ensure that your Mac is connected to a power supply.

Enter Safe Mode

Your Mac's display may have ceased operating due to faulty info on the starting disk. Launching into safe mode forces your Mac to conduct disk diagnostics. This may be done using the following steps:

  1. Launch your Mac in Safe Mode by powering it on or restarting it while holding down the Shift button until the Apple logo displays.
  2. Then release the Shift button and wait for the machine to boot up. This will take longer than normal as diagnostics are being done throughout the boot phase.

An inactive or dark display is an annoyance, and it is simple to mistake it for a technical issue. Nevertheless, usually, this issue is caused by a software problem. As a result, do not be too concerned! Try all of the options listed above to make your screen work again.

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