Many Mac users worldwide have reported, “Safari is crashing while watching a YouTube video”, “Why YouTube is not working on Mac” and “Videos won’t play on Mac”. It is extremely annoying to see a Mac not playing a video on a simple YoutTube platform. To fix this situation you need to know why your Mac is failing to play video. Fortunately, you can easily fix them with a few simple steps which are mentioned below.
Note: This page is not just limited to YouTube; you can also use these methods to fix the playback errors on Netflix, Prime Video, Hulu, HBO Max, and Facebook Watch streaming platforms on Mac.
Why is YouTube not working on Safari?
Over time YouTube progressed a lot, now you can stream 4K videos on YouTube. This means, even a simple YouTube streaming platform demands substantial resources such as
- Updated Browser
- Better Internet connection
- Free RAM space
- Updated Adobe Plugins
Note: All the methods mentioned in this article can only fix errors confined to online streaming platforms. If you are looking to fix damaged MP4 videos on Mac or to fix corrupted AVI video files on Mac, this is not the right page.
If your Mac falls short in the above-mentioned resources, you can’t play any video on Mac. If all the above mentioned are sorted out and still, the error is not fixed, it might be due to incompatible extensions.
Video Not Playing on Mac – How to Fix (MacBook, MacBook Air, MacBook Pro)
Check Your Internet Connection
First and foremost, check whether your internet connection is stable. Recently, almost all streaming platforms are providing UHD and 4K videos at 60 FPS which requires a stable internet connection at better data rates. If the internet connection is not stable it's better to have it fixed.
Restart your Mac
When you are unable to play any video on Mac, restart it. It might seem basic, but restarting Mac will clear the cache, disable faulty extensions and relaunch the browser flash player. So, restarting the Mac will help you big time.
Update Browser and Flash Player
As mentioned previously, updated browser and flash players are prominent to play high-quality videos on Mac. If the browser and flash players are not updated safari will crash while playing the video. Since the Safari browser is automatically updated when you are installing Mac OS updates there is no requirement to manually install Safari updates. However, you have to manually install Adobe flash player updates.
How to Update Adobe Flash Player?
- Go to the Adobe flash player home page and download the Adobe flash player installer
- The installer will be saved to the Downloads folder on your Mac
- Open Downloads folder and install the Adobe flash player
- While installing, mark the “Allow Adobe to install update” option
- Complete the installation, quit and restart the Safari and check whether the video is playing on safari
Enable Internet Plugins – Unknown Tip
Many users update their adobe flash plugins but forget to allow them. Due to recent security updates, by default all the internet plugins are not enabled, you have to permit them manually. The following are the instructions on how to enable adobe flash player plugins on safari.
- Open Safar, and select Safari from the Menu bar
- Select “preference” > in preference dialogue box navigate to “Security Tab”
Clear Browser Cache
The browser saves cache and cookie files on your browser, so when the browser is launched along with the browser even cache files will run in the background. When these cache files start running in the background they will occupy the RAM space and compromise Safari Browser performance.
The best solution to fix this is to clear the cache files from your Safari Browser.
- Go to the Safari menu and select the preferences option.
- Now mark “Show Develop Menu in the Menu bar”
- Exit the preference. Select Develop menu from the Menu bar and select the empty Caches option
Shortcut clear the cache files is by holding
“CMD+Alt+E” while the safari browser is open.
Again restart the Safari browser and check whether the video is playing on safari.
Till now we comprehensively discussed the few maintenance steps that will clear any kind of error that will restrict video playback on the Mac Safari browser.
However, the YouTube playback error on Macbook is not just because of outdated Safari, it might also be due to incompatible Safari extensions. You might have installed an extension that might create errors on Mac.
Check and Disable Extensions on Mac Safari
Finally, faulty extensions on your Browser. Just like Chrome and Firefox even Safari has a lot of extensions, for example, AdBlock for Safari or Grammarly, etc. so, when any of these extensions are not compatible with the streaming platforms the video will not play on Mac.
That said, you don’t really have to uninstall them, just disabling them while using any streaming platform can get the job done but you need to try hit and trial before you can confirm which extension is causing the error. Here are the steps on how to disable the extensions on Mac Safari.
- Open preferences from the Mac Safari and click on Extensions Tab
- In the extensions, tab unmark the extensions to disable them
- Restart the Safari
- This is the last method to fix any kind of playback errors on Mac Safari
However, this page only fixes the issues related to online streaming platforms. If you are unable to play offline videos such as MP4, MOV videos, it might be due to damaged video files. The best way to fix it is with the help of the Remo video repair tool for Mac.
Senior Editor, Content Analyst and a fan of exceptional customer service. John develops and publishes instructional and informational content regarding partition management, Windows hot-fixes, data management and computer troubleshooting.
As a tenured data recovery specialist, John shares exceptional insights and blog posts about data loss and data recovery across any storage device. With 8+ years’ experience in writing for Data Recovery for both Mac OS and Windows OS computers, he is an avid learner who always wants to polish and simplify the data recovery process. John passes his free time playing Chess and reading Science Fiction novels.