YouTube Videos Not Playing on Mac? Here’s the Fix!

Facing issues with YouTube videos not playing on your Mac?

It’s a common annoyance when you’re trying to relax, only to be met with errors, blank screens, or unexpected system restarts. Fortunately, these issues are often fixable.

If basic troubleshooting like browser refreshes or router restarts doesn’t help, our guide offers detailed solutions to get your YouTube videos running smoothly on your Mac.

Let’s explore the fixes.

1. Update Your macOS Version

Outdated software often leads to app crashes and feature malfunctions. Newer versions not only bring new features but also fix various bugs.

If your Mac hasn’t been updated in a while, it’s crucial to do so to potentially resolve issues like YouTube videos not playing.

Here’s how to update your Mac’s software:

  1. First, go to System Preferences from the Apple Menu.
  2. Then, click on Software Update
  3. Finally, Click on either Update Now or Upgrade Now.
mac software update

Selecting “Update Now” will install the latest update of your current macOS version. However, opting for “Upgrade Now” will install the most recent major version, such as macOS Sonoma, offering a complete upgrade.

2. Disable Safari Extensions

Safari extensions can sometimes block YouTube videos. If you suspect this is the case, disabling them might resolve the issue.

Follow these simple steps to do so:

  1. Go to the Safari application.
  2. Then, select Preferences and then go to Extensions.
  3. Next, disable the extension by unchecking the box next to it.
  4. Finally, refresh your YouTube page.
  5. If the problem still persists, repeat Step 1 to Step 4 for another extension. You can keep doing it for all the extensions until the problem is solved.

Note that once you find the problematic extension, it is better to uninstall it from your browser. Simply click on the Uninstall option in the extension.

uninstall extension

3. Disable Plug-Ins in Safari Browser

Plug-ins are the add-on features in a web browser. They provide additional functionality and are thus prominent. However, sometimes they are also the cause you are not able to access a few sites or videos online.

In case you are still not able to play YouTube videos, the next step is to try disabling the Plug-Ins. Here is how you can fix YouTube videos not playing on Mac issues: 

  1. Go to the Safari application.
  2. Select Preferences and then go to the Security tab.
  3. Then, you will see Internet Plug-Ins: Allow Plug-Ins written over there.
  4. Uncheck the box Allow Plug-Ins to disable plug-ins for all the sites.
  5. Finally, relaunch Safari.

4. Enable JavaScript in Safari

For video playback, JavaScript is essential. If it’s disabled, this could be why your videos aren’t playing.

Here’s how to enable JavaScript in Safari:

  1. Go to the Safari application.
  2. Then, select Preference and go to the Security tab.
  3. In the Security tab, you will see Web Content: Enable JavaScript there.
  4. Check the Enable JavaScript box.
enable javascript in safari mac
  1. Finally, relaunch Safari.

    5. Re-Sync Date and Time Setting

    If web browsers are malfunctioning, the issue might be an incorrectly set date and time on your system – a detail that’s easy to overlook.

    Here’s how to adjust it:

    1. Open System Preferences.
    2. Then, click on the Date and Time option present there.
    3. If you are connected to the Internet, simply tick the Set date and time automatically option.
    4. If your internet is switched off for the time being, click on the Lock option at the bottom of your screen.
    5. Then, log in using your username and password and de-select the Set date and time automatically.
    6. Now, use the calendar and clock available to you to enter the date and time manually. And it is done!

    6. Restart Your Mac

    If YouTube videos still won’t play after attempting other methods, consider restarting your Mac.

    Here’s how to do it:

    1. Click on the Apple icon at the top-left corner of your Mac.
    2. Then, select the Restart option from the drop-down menu.
    3. Finally, a pop-up window appears. Confirm it.

    Wait for your Mac to restart. Once it is done, check if the problem is resolved.

    7. Repair Disk Permissions

    This is a routine solution for various Mac issues, including problems playing YouTube videos.

    Disk permissions refer to the access rights for files and directories. Over time, software installations and updates can alter these permissions, potentially leading to playback issues.

    To ensure your files have the correct permissions on your Mac, follow these steps:

    1. First, choose Go and click on Utilities.
    2. Then, Double click on Disk Utility.
    3. Select the desired disk for which you want to repair permissions. You will be able to see the disks on the left pane of your window.
    4. Then, click on First Aid.
    5. Finally, in First Aid, click on Repair Permissions.

    8. Clean Your Mac Disk

    Your browser can deny access to videos when your Mac disk is full. So, it is important to clean it from time to time. 

    You can do it by regularly cleaning cache files, browser history, unnecessary photos and videos from your device, useless applications, and preventing Time Machine Backups. 

    Basically, get rid of anything unimportant so that you are able to watch all your YouTube videos.

    9. Try a Different Search Browser

    Sometimes, when you cannot watch videos on Safari, it is better to change the web browser. You can try using Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, and Microsoft Edge for watching your favorite videos without any interruptions.

    This brings us to the end of this post. We hope you were able to find the solution to your problem. In case you still have some doubts, you can contact Apple Support or chat here.


    • Mako Young

      Mako is a staff writer at Saint. He's been writing about tech for more than a decade. When he isn't reading about the latest news on Apple, he's busy studying cybersecurity, cryptocurrency, cloud computing, and other IT-related sectors. His exceptional work graces technology and Apple-related blogs like How-To Geek,, Macgasm, onMac, PhotoWorkout, GameRant, and many more. He also has a Bachelors in Computer Science and has been writing since 2018, with over 400 posts published. LinkedIn X (Twitter)

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