How To Clear The Cache On A Mac


We have all been there. The typical scenario where our Mac is running out of space. What do you do when this happens? Well, you can figure out what is filling up you Mac's hard drive for starters. Usually, the primary suspect is cache files. These files can take up from a few GBs to a few hundred GBs of space and deleting them can instantly free up space. Here's our guide to help you figure out what exactly cache files are and how to delete them.

What Are Cache Files?

Cache files are temporary data stored directly on your Mac. The cache contains data of your recently used programs and helps your Mac open up these programs quicker. An example of this is the data of websites that you have recently visited - like product images, logos, etc that are saved so that when you revisit the site, it opens up faster.

Problems With Cache Files

While cache files do help in speeding up system processes, this doesn't mean that they are without their flaws. We have created a short list of problems caused by cache files. These will probably convince you to clear them more frequently.

Cache Files Take Up A Lot Of Space

As mentioned before, caches can take from a few GBs to a few hundred GBs of space. This means once the cache files load up on your Mac, you can say farewell to any extra programs you might want to install to your device. Movies, music, documents - caches will leave no room for you to store these. This makes clearing them essential to making sure your Mac is usable longterm, and you are actually getting productivity out of your device.

Caches Cause Software Issues

This fact is widely accepted. It happens because the cache data conflicts with the browser data, which leads to system crashes. Clearing the cache files solves this problem. Once you remove the cache, all the browser stored data is deleted. When you visit a site, it loads all the data newly, preventing any software conflicts.

An example of this in practice can happen when you are logging into certain websites. The information in your cache conflicts with the live data on the website, causing errors.

How To Delete Cache Files

We recommend that you delete cache files frequently. If you don't know how though, don't worry. There are multiple ways to remove them, and we will walk you through all these methods.

Manual Method

This process requires you to go to your folders and delete the cache manually. You will need to be careful not to remove any critical data. Make sure to double-check what files you are removing and be warned, this can take up some time!

  1. Open up "Finder."
  2. Click on "Go" on the top left-hand side of the screen.
  3. Select the "Go to Folder" option.
  4. Type "~/Library/Caches" in the search bar.
  5. Press enter to continue.
  6. You will see multiple cache folders created by your applications.
  7. Go into each folder and delete the files.
  8. Make sure not to delete the folders themselves!

Browser Cache

The previous method was used to delete the system cache. Your browser also stores cache files. This can accumulate and take up a lot of space as well. Here is how to do it:

  1. Open your browser.
  2. Click on the three dots on the top right-hand corner of the screen.
  3. Select the "More Tools" option.
  4. Choose "Clear Browsing Data."

CleanMyMac X

The methods mentioned above can take up a few minutes. It also requires you to select everything manually. You also need to be careful, or you might delete an important file.

Fortunately, if you don't want to go through all that trouble, you can use CleanMyMac X. It is, without a doubt, the best application for freeing up storage on your Mac. The entire cleanup process only takes up a few seconds. More importantly, it's completely safe. No crucial data is deleted as it always asks you before deleting any file.

Furthermore, it has multiple other features such as a built-in antivirus, amongst many other things. With CleanMyMac X, your Mac is protected from malware, and you can rest assured that no malicious code will harm your Mac. Here is how to clean your caches using CleanMyMac X:

  1. Open CleanMyMac X.
  2. Click on "System Junk" on the left panel.
  3. Select "Scan."
  4. Once everything is scanned, click "Remove."
  5. This removes a few GBs worth of space.

Browsing Cache Using CleanMyMac X

Cleaning the browser cache on your Mac is very straightforward (as we've outlined above). However, CleanMyMac X has a few tools that are more effective than manually doing it. This will ensure that you delete the maximum possible amount of redundant data. Here is how you do it:

  1. Open CleanMyMac X.
  2. Click on the "Privacy" tab on the left hand.
  3. Select "Scan."
  4. Choose all the options.
  5. Click on "Remove."
Muaz Ashrafi

Hi! I am Muaz, a Mass Communication major. I like to think I am a free urban spirit. I write blogs with a focus on tech and gadgets. When I'm not writing, you can find me with my headphones on, relaxing to some good house EDM music. I'm also a hobbyist photographer, you can find me on Instagram @mzwithacamera.

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