How to Fix USB Accessories Disabled Error on Mac

Check USB ports and cables on Mac

Is your trusty Mac throwing tantrums? Well, you are not alone. Disabling USB accessories is a very common error that occurs when a Mac is connected to multiple accessories. You must fix this error in order to continue using the USB port on the Mac. Read on to learn how to fix USB accessories disabled error on Mac.

Why am I getting USB Accessories Disabled error on Mac?

USB ports on Macs allow you to connect peripherals. The interface lets you plug in gaming accessories, keyboards, extra storage, and more. USB ports require a specific amount of power to function. When the power supplied to the USB port is insufficient, macOS generates a “USB Accessories Disabled” error.

The underlying problem could be a faulty USB port, ports, obsolete firmware, and more. Follow the steps below to fix USB accessories disabled issue on Mac.

8 Simple Fixes for Enabling USB Accessories on Mac

  1. Disconnect and reconnect the USB port
  2. Check USB Ports and Cables
  3. try using a different port
  4. Use a Powered Thunderbolt 3 or USB-C Hub
  5. Reboot and Update Your Mac
  6. reset smc
  7. Reset PRAM and NVRAM (for Intel based PCs)
  8. Contact Apple Support

1. Disconnect and reconnect the USB port

Sometimes faulty accessories can be the cause. Remove and reconnect all USB accessories. If you are still facing the problem, remove the accessories separately. Single out the device(s) causing the problem. Disconnect the faulty device and check for errors.

Each device connected via USB consumes a specific amount of power. However, some accessories require more power than others. Disconnect such devices and check for errors.

2. Check USB Ports and Cables

Check USB ports and cables on Mac

Over time, lint and other debris tends to accumulate in the USB port. When this happens, the devices connected to the port will malfunction or will not be detected. Thankfully, the ports are easy to clean. Take a cotton earbud. Dip it in isopropyl alcohol or hand sanitizer. Clean the inner side of the ports with a gentle swipe. Be careful not to damage the connectors.

Faulty cables can also be the culprit. Check cables for damage, especially at the ends. If the cable has reached the end of its life, consider swapping it out for a new one.

3. Try Using a Different Port

Getting USB Accessories Disabled Error Even After Cleaning Ports? In all likelihood, the port may be damaged. Try connecting the device to a different USB port. If it works fine, get the port checked.

I have encountered a problem using USB 3.0 specification devices with a USB 2.0 port. This is mainly caused by improper power supply. Always check the USB specifications of the device and match it to your Mac. Most USB 3.0 devices are backward compatible. However, they may also face issues of power.

4. Use a Powered Thunderbolt 3 or USB-C Hub

Use a powered Thunderbolt 3 or USB-C hub on Mac

A USB hub is a great way to increase the number of ports on your Mac. Typically, USB-hubs reduce power. It is always best to buy a USB hub with an external power source. You can fix USB accessories disabled issue by using a USB hub with an external power source.

Confused which one to buy? Check out our compilation of the best USB-C hubs for MacBook Pro.

5. Reboot and Update Your Mac

It’s always good to reboot your Mac from time to time. A reboot clears temporary memory and fixes minor software glitches. Sometimes improper operating-system-level power management can disable USB accessories. A reboot will quickly fix this problem.

Now, we have to rule out the possibility of a software bug. Update macOS to the latest version. Here’s how to update:

tap Apple Logo → system Preferences software upgrade upgrade Now,

6. Reset SMC

The System Management Controller is a physical unit that manages important parts of the Mac. It is responsible for the normal functioning of the battery, USB accessories, power and thermal management. There is a good chance that resetting the SMC will fix the USB Accessories Disabled issue.

7. Reset PRAM and NVRAM (for Intel based PCs)

PRAM stands for Parameter Random Access Memory, and NVRAM stands for Non-Volatile Random Access Memory. Modules store information/data about startup disk, screen resolution, time zone, etc. If you have a Mac with Apple Silicon, this step isn’t for you.

Follow the steps detailed in this guide to reset the PRAM or NVRAM on your Mac.

8. Contact Apple Support

The error can be caused by faulty hardware. Perhaps the power supply of the USB port is broken. The worst case scenario is when a USB port on the motherboard fails. If nothing works, contact Apple Support. Consider taking your Mac to the nearest Apple or Apple-certified service center. Repairs will be covered under warranty.

I hope you were able to fix USB Accessories Disabled error. USB failures are often caused by heavy equipment or improperly connected devices. Make sure the connected device isn’t just hanging around. This puts unnecessary strain on the USB connectors and increases the chance of failure.

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