Mac Charger Cord Turns Yellow: Causes and Super Easy Fixes

Ever wondered why your Mac charger cord turns yellow and what to do about it? In this blog, you’ll get all your answers and the great solutions to keep your cable in its former glory. Yep, you heard right. 

Here’s the thing.

Why Do Mac Charger Cord Turn Yellow?

why do mac charger cord turn yellow

You must be worried because you’re unsure whether a yellowish Mac charger cord is safe. Depending on the cause of the yellowish color, your charger cable is still usable. Here are some reasons the cable turns yellow.

Heat causes the charger cord to turn yellow

The charger cable case is made from a plastic known as Acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (AB). It becomes yellow when this material is exposed to too much heat through ultraviolet radiation or oxidation.

The process becomes rapid if you use your Macbook for heavy computing. Also, high temperatures quicken oxidation, leading to your charger cord changing into an orange color.

That’s why placing your charger cord in a room with good ventilation is vital. 

But if you replace your old charger and the cable becomes yellow within a short time, check for overheating. It’s another culprit that can mess up your cable.

Aging is another cause of the yellowish color

While Apple products are known for excellent quality, plastic products get older. So it’s not a surprise that your charger cable is becoming yellow. The more the cord is exposed to internal or external heat, the more it gets older. It’s normal, and there’s no need to panic. 

Dirt and oils on your skin speed up the oxidation process

Oil from your fingers and dirt could also make your cable yellow. And if the end is turning orange, it could mean that the cord conductors have begun to weaken due to constant handling or an accident. Also, the transmitted current going through the cable will worsen the situation. 

A short-circuit is another possible reason your charger cable is yellowish

The cord has several layers, including copper and a coded inner insulation cover. In most cases, the outer insulation is white. 

You can break the internal wire’s insulation if you bend the cable excessively. Because of this, the copper wires will touch each other. It’ll cause a short circuit and raise power usage. And this leads to your cable overheating.

In turn, excessive heat causes the white insulation to turn yellow. You can check if this is the case by plugging in the charger and leaving it for some minutes. If the cord becomes too hot, you must purchase another one.

Also, try a different outlet to see if you’ll get the same results. It would be a brilliant idea if you could check the wiring in your home before you try another charger cord.

The connector heat may also be another culprit

The heat due to the charging process could also change your charger cable to a yellowish color. If you see the insulation breaking or smell heat during charging, it shows your cable is faulty. The only option you have is to replace it. 

What Are the Effects of a Weak Charger Cord?

If your charger cable turns yellow due to aging or excessive heat, it can easily get damaged or torn. As a result, it can lead to electrical faults or failure to charge correctly.

Too much heat and yellowing indicate that the cord circuits are failing. In this case, you’ll need to replace it to avoid hurting yourself or damaging other devices. 

How Can You Clean and Protect Your Charger Cable From Ageing?

Here are some things you can do to extend the life of your charger cord and keep it sparkling clean.

Keep your charger cable away from the adapter while charging. Leave it loose

It’s normal to wrap the cable around the adapter while powering your device. But this can expose the cord to excessive heat. It can cause the white insulation to turn yellow over time.

Ensure the cable is lying loose away from the hot adapter during charging. It’ll minimize the risks and improve the lifespan of your accessory.

Clean your Mac charger cable

Want to maintain the glistering white color of your cable? Check out the following tricks. Note that this applies to an old cable because there’s no need to clean a brand new one.

  • You need some washing or plastic cleaner liquid and a dirt-free microfiber cloth.
  • Use two drops of warm water to wet the microfiber cloth.
  • Remove the charger cable from the power outlet. Clean the cord from one point to another without applying too much pressure. Otherwise, you can damage the internal wiring.
  • Next, ensure the cable is dry before you plug it in again.
  • It must be sparkling clean now and looking new.

Use cotton swabs and alcohol

Cotton swabs can get rid of residue, dirt, or foreign objects. You can also use alcohol to clean your charger cable. But it can leave some debris that you need to rinse off.

Try baking soda instead

Follow these steps. 

  • Mix the baking soda and water to make a paste.
  • Carefully spread the mixture over the wire, and then let it dry.
  • Wipe the cable down after soaking a towel or sponge in warm water.
  • Also, use a scrub or toothbrush for places that are difficult to reach.
  • Finally, use a dry cloth to clean the cord.

Try repairing the cord yourself

You may opt to throw your Mac charger cord away when it gets broken and buy another one. It’s a wise decision to avoid risks like electrical faults. 

But you can salvage your cable by fixing it with some glue that can change into rubber overnight. You can get one at the Amazon store. 

FAQs: Why do Mac charger cords turn yellow?

Why do white cords turn yellow?

Cables are made from a special plastic that provides insulation to internal wires. The material can become yellowish because of heat and aging. Over time, high temperatures speed up oxidation. As a result, the cords become yellow. 

why do mac charger cord turn yellow 1

Why is my charger bar yellow?

It’s because the Low Power Mode is turned on. Go to Settings -> Battery and hit the switch option next to the Low Power Mode to disable this feature. It shuts off automatically when your device’s battery gets to 80%.

Why do Apple chargers break so easily?

The modern cables from Apple are insulated with a slimmer plastic sleeve. That’s why they break easily. 

How do I get my Mac Charger white again?

Use a washing liquid, baking soda, or alcohol to clean your cable.

How do you whiten a charging cable?

Follow the above suggestions.

What does the yellow charging symbol mean?

It means that your phone’s battery status is lower than 20%. The icon turns yellow on its own until you charge your device to reach 80%. 

Does low power mode hurt your battery?

No, it doesn’t. You can set your phone to Low Power Mode. But it’ll turn off automatically when the battery is at 80% charging capacity. Also, this feature disables your other device’s services and functions. 

Can I clean my charging cable with alcohol?

Yes, you can use alcohol swabs to clean your cables. Wipe down the charging cords to restore them to their original state. The alcohol dissolves all of the grease and residue that has accumulated over time. Your cables will have a new look and feel.

How do I clean a charger cord?

Shut off your smartphone. Clear the charging port with a bulb syringe or a can of compressed air. Blast a few rapid blasts of energy and see if any debris falls. Keep the device upright to avoid getting water inside the port when you use compressed air. But be extra careful because you can break sensitive components.

Can MacBook chargers overheat?

Yes, they overheat. Typically, a laptop generates heat when its applications and hardware are running. Computers have in-built fans to help with cooling. But MacBook chargers can become dangerously hot.

How do I clean my Mac charging port?

Get a cotton swab or a toothbrush. Ensure your cleaning materials are clean to avoid spreading dirt and other foreign objects. Don’t use metal objects, such as paperclips. They can get inside the charging port. Also, avoid using spray chemicals because they can harm your device.

How do you clean a dirty USB cable?

Grab some cotton and alcohol. Damp the cotton swab with alcohol and use it to rub the cable until it’s shiny white. Keep your device upside-down to stop alcohol from getting inside of it. 

Dry everything off with another cotton head. Leave the remaining alcohol for at least 10 minutes to evaporate.

Brett Jones
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