How to Clear Cache in Chrome on Mac

Free up space and speed up your browser

What to Know

  • In Chrome, click the menu icon (three vertical dots) > More Tools > Clear Browsing Data.
  • To clear your entire cache, select All time for the range, check the Cached images and files box, then click Clear data.
  • You can also clear browsing history, cookies, autofill data, and more if you select the Advanced tab.

This article explains how to clear the cache in Chrome on a Mac.

How Do I Clear My Chrome Browser Cache on a Mac?

When you visit a website on your Mac using a web browser like Chrome, it automatically stores images and other data to speed things up in the future. This cache of data takes up space on your hard drive, so Chrome allows you to clear it out any time you want.

Here’s how to clear your Chrome browser cache on a Mac:

  1. Open the Chrome browser, and click the menu icon (three vertical dots) in the upper right corner of the window.

    The three vertical dots icon highlighted in Chrome on Mac.
  2. Select More Tools > Clear Browsing Data.

    Clear Browsing Data highlighted in Chrome on Mac
  3. Click the Time range drop-down menu.

    Time range: Last hour highlighted in Chrome on Mac
  4. Click All time.

    All Time highlighted in the Chrome clear browsing data menu

    This selection will clear the entire cache. Some cached files will remain on your system if you select any other option.

  5. Remove the check marks from Browsing History and Cookies and other sites, and click Clear Data.

    Browsing History, Cookies and other site data, and Clear Data highlighted in Chrome on Mac

    By default, all three of these boxes are checked. To clear your cache, you only want the Cached images and files box to be checked. To clear more things, click Advanced.

What Are the Advanced Options for Clearing Chrome Data on a Mac?

When you clear the cache in Chrome on a Mac, you have the option also to delete other things like your browsing history, download history, and more. Some of these things take up space on your hard drive, just like the cache, and others don’t.

Advanced options for clearing browsing data in Chrome on Mac.

Here's what each advanced option means in the clear browsing data menu in Chrome:

  • Time range: This drop-down menu controls how much data you clear. If you select the last hour option, it will only delete things stored within the last hour. If you choose all time, it will clear everything stored since you first installed Chrome.
  • Browsing history: Chrome retains the history of every website you visit. You can check this list at any time to find a webpage you've been to before if you forgot the address. Chrome also uses the list to provide automatic suggestions when you type a website address into the URL bar.
  • Download history: Chrome keeps a record of every file that you download, including the file's name and where it is stored.
  • Cookies and other site data: Websites use cookies to track your browsing activity and customize your experience while on the website. When you clear cookies and other site data, any website customization that relies on cookies will disappear; you can opt to let the site store cookies on your Mac again.
  • Cached images and files: Chrome stores images and other files in a cache to speed up web browsing. Clearing the cache can free up space on your hard drive.
  • Passwords and other sign-in data: Chrome can store your passwords, allowing you to sign in to websites faster. If you clear passwords and sign-in data, you'll need to log in manually when you visit sites that require you to sign in.
  • Autofill form data: When you fill in information like your name and address, Chrome can remember it for later. If Chrome is suggesting incorrect information, you can clear the autofill data.
  • Site Settings: Some websites need specific permissions, like access to your location or to store data on your computer. If you grant permission, Chrome will keep that for the next time you visit the site. To reset these settings, you can clear site settings in Chrome.
  • Hosted app data: If you add Chrome apps to your browser from the Chrome Web Store and want to clear that data, this option lets you do that.

What Is Google Chrome Cache on Mac?

When you visit a website using a browser like Chrome, it downloads images and other data to a temporary cache. The next time you visit that website, Chrome checks the cache and uses the stored files instead of downloading them again. This process allows Chrome to load the website more quickly, and it also helps you save bandwidth since you aren’t downloading the same images and other data repeatedly.

While the Chrome cache usually speeds things up and improves your browsing experience, there are a couple of reasons to clear it from time to time. If the cache is too big, it can slow things down. Clearing a large cache is also an easy way to free up some space on your Mac if you’re trying to download a large file or install an app and don’t have enough room on your hard drive.

  • How do I remove Google Chrome on my Mac?

    To delete Chrome on Mac, go to your Applications folder, right-click Google Chrome, and select Move to Trash. You should then remove all app data by deleting everything in the Library/Application Support/Google/Chrome folder.

  • How do I update Chrome on my Mac?

    Google Chrome should update automatically, but you can manually check for Chrome updates. Select the three dots > Help > About Google Chrome, and if there is a new update available, select Relaunch to install it.

  • How do I make Chrome my default browser on Mac?

    To change the default browser for macOS, go to the Apple menu > System Preferences > General. Choose Google Chrome from the Default Web Browser drop-down.

  • How do I turn off Google Chrome pop-up blocker on Mac?

    To disable the pop-up blocker in Chrome, select the three-dot menu > Settings > Site Settings > Pop-ups and redirects and move the toggle from Blocked to Allowed. If you have another pop-up blocker installed, you must disable it as well.

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