How to clean CPU on Mac?

Do you know what a Mac processor is? Chances are, you use your Mac every day without thinking about its internals. Most users are like you!

But the CPU in a Mac is critical to its performance, both long-term and short-term. Modern Macs have advanced processors that can speed up when needed and idle at lower processing speeds when performing simple tasks. However, it is possible to overload your CPU without realizing it.

In this article, we’ll show you how to check the CPU your Mac is using, how to clean up the CPU on your Mac, and why System Monitor might be the best app you can download for your Mac right now.

What is a processor?

The CPU is basically the brain of the computer. Processor stands for “central processing unit”, which could be a way to describe the human brain!

The processor is responsible for processing all the information your Mac needs to function normally while using applications. When your Mac is doing – well, anything – your CPU is active. Even when you’re doing something as simple as moving the cursor around the screen, your processor is “thinking” in the background.

Why is my Mac CPU running at full capacity?

There are several reasons why a processor can be overloaded. This can happen even when your Mac is idle or when you’re doing something as simple as browsing the Internet or checking email. Here are some common problems that can overload your CPU:

Too many applications open

When the application n is open, the application asks for the help of the processor in its work. Even in the background, apps perform tasks or predict your actions. Remember: Your processor, no matter how powerful, has a limited amount of resources you can give it.

When you have too many apps open, it looks like all those apps are taking up small portions of the pie chart that makes up your Mac’s CPU capacity. Having too many applications open simply limits your Mac’s computing power.

Using the application requires more processing power than when idle. Too many open apps means the app you want to use can’t get what it needs from your processor.

One of your applications requires the most processing power

Not all apps are created (or work) the same. Some applications – usually design and development applications – naturally need more computing power!

Even if you have these apps running in the background, they require a larger “chunk of processor” than other apps. While a calendar app may need a few resources to stay active in the background, larger, more complex apps just need more power.

This is especially important when you are using a resource-intensive application and have several others open in the background. Larger, more resource-intensive apps can also use up your Mac’s CPU when nothing else is open—they’re so power-hungry!

Some background processes are running

A background process is something an application does without notifying you in order to run efficiently and in sync. The calendar app can be updated or synced with the companion app via iCloud to make sure all your appointments are displayed on all your devices.

Apps can do a variety of things in the background, including clearing cache, organizing files, syncing files, and more. When this happens in several applications at once, the CPU can become overloaded.

You haven’t restarted your Mac in a while

Background processes and unclosed applications are often the main causes of an overloaded processor. Just like the human brain, your Mac’s brain also needs rest.

Restarting your Mac stops all processes. Even if it’s just a quick shutdown before restarting, occasionally shutting down your Mac helps the CPU get some much-needed sleep so it can recover and focus.

After restarting your Mac, keep in mind that you will be able to better monitor which processes are started at login and which are running in the background. Applications that start at login run background processes, and one (or more!)

Your Mac has malware

Although Mac malware is rare, it is possible to get malware on your Mac.

Malware is often designed to use your Mac’s CPU to perform tasks. Malware is also designed to be undetectable. You might not even know your Mac has malware because it’s hard to detect without special software designed to find it, and its tasks won’t be in any way related to the application you’re using.

How to clear CPU usage on Mac?

Do not worry! You can easily clean the CPU on your Mac natively, but CleanMyMac X simplifies all that and gives you a much more thorough Mac experience than anything Apple has built into its machines.

Use the CleanMyMac X dashboard to clean your CPU with one click

Want to speed up your Mac with one click? It really is that easy when you use CleanMyMac X!

The CleanMyMac X dashboard has a Smart Scan feature that scans your Mac for malware, unnecessary junk files, and additional performance enhancements. Press “Start” and CleanMyMac X will start working. You might be surprised how much it helps!

Check for malware with the CleanMyMac X malware removal module

Smart Scan checks for malware that might be active, but you can run a much deeper scan of your Mac with CleanMyMac X Malware Removal. Scans your entire system for malware!

Select the malware removal module in the CleanMyMac X dashboard, click “scan” and watch CleanMyMac X start working.

Check the processes in Activity Monitor

Activity Monitor comes pre-installed on every Mac sold by Apple. The app keeps track of everything running on your Mac, how much CPU each service or app is using, and lets you stop a process or get more information.

Open Activity Monitor on your Mac to see how everything is doing in real time and see how much CPU each app or service is using. Keep in mind that everything changes, so the CPU load of services one minute may not need as much CPU a few seconds later.

Activity Monitor is a great way to see exactly what your Mac is doing in real time.

Clear cache on macOS

The cache stores temporary files that can help your Mac stay fast. The Mac cache can also be cluttered with old files that are no longer needed, so clearing the cache is a smart thing for all Mac owners to do from time to time.

With CleanMyMac X it’s easy. All you have to do is open CleanMyMac X, select the Maintenance module, click “Clear DNS Cache” and press the Start button.

Restart your Mac

Remember that your Mac needs a reset from time to time, just like you! All you have to do is click the Apple logo in the upper right corner of the menu bar, choose “reboot” and let your Mac shut down and back up again.

Update all your apps

How many times have you read an app update log and seen “system performance and bug fixes” or something similar? Most app updates are for performance enhancements, so it’s important to keep all the apps on your Mac up to date.

Apps are bad at updating, so use CleanMyMac X to update them! Just open the update module, select the apps you want to update and click the “Update” button. CleanMyMac X will take care of the rest.

Uninstall apps you don’t need

Apps you no longer want or need are just taking up space and resources on your Mac. Many of these apps also have files uploaded to your Mac that can linger long after you delete the app itself. CleanMyMac X removes unwanted applications and the files they leave behind!

Open CleanMyMac X, select the Uninstaller module, select the applications you want to remove, and tap the Uninstall button. CleanMyMac X will get rid of every application.

Prevent programs from starting automatically

Many applications start automatically when you sign in without your knowledge. When you download an app, you’ve probably gone through all the permission pop-ups, including the one that asked if the app is allowed to open at login. Every time you start your Mac, apps start too.

However, this is easy to track down and fix in CleanMyMac X. Open CleanMyMac X, tap the Optimization module and select “Start Agents”. Here you can disable all launch agents or select the ones you want to manually disable. You can even remove services from your Mac if you want.

To disable the service, simply tap the “Enabled” button next to any app that launches when you sign in. This will turn it off. If you want to remove services completely, select each app and tap “Delete” at the bottom of the app window.

Update macOS

Just like apps, your Mac’s operating system also needs to be updated. To update macOS, tap the Apple logo in the upper-right corner of the menu bar and select “About this Mac.” If your system needs an update, your Mac will notify you here.


Apps can dramatically improve your workflow and life, but they can also cause headaches behind the scenes. All developers try to provide the best app experience and sometimes it requires more resources. And when you start downloading so many great apps, your Mac might feel the pinch.

With CleanMyMac X, you’ll be sure your Mac is running at its best. Your computer should last for years, and CleanMyMac X helps keep your Mac running smoothly for a long time. It’s almost as if CleanMyMac X knows your Mac better than it knows itself!

Keep your Mac clean, efficient, secure and perfectly optimized with CleanMyMac X and learn what many others already know: CleanMyMac X is a must-have application for every Mac.

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