Over time, web browsers accumulate website data from everyday browsing. Known as cache, this data collection helps browsers load web pages more quickly, so these files don’t have to be re-downloaded when you revisit the same websites in the future.
Unfortunately, cache is also the main suspect when diagnosing issues loading websites, and it can also eat up valuable storage space on your Mac. That’s why in this tutorial, we’ll show you how to delete cache and cookies in three of the most popular web browsers: Apple Safari, Google Chrome, and Mozilla Firefox.
How to clear cache and cookies
- Launch Safari on your Mac.
- Enable the Develop menu by following the steps in this tutorial.
- Go to Develop > Empty Caches in the menu bar.
Now you’ve cleared your browser cache for Safari. You’ll want to go ahead and quit Safari and re-launch it for the best results.
In Google Chrome
- Launch Google Chrome on your Mac and press together the Command + Y keys to see your browser history. Alternatively, click the three dots button from the top right > History > History.
- Click on the Clear Browsing Data button.
- Select the time range from the top drop-down menu. It can be the last hour, last 24 hours, last 7 days, last 4 weeks, or all time.
- Make sure there is a checkmark in the Cached Images and Files option, and uncheck everything else. If you also want to clear site data, passwords, clear recent history, etc., you can keep other options like Browsing history and Cookies and other site data checked.
- Finally, click the Clear data button.
Your browsing cache and temporary internet files for Google Chrome have been removed. You should now quit and re-launch Chrome for the best results.
- Launch Firefox on your Mac and go to Firefox > Preferences from the top menu bar.
- Select the Privacy & Security tab on the left side of the app.
- Scroll down and click the Clear History button.
- Select a time range to clear from the top.
- Un-check everything else except Cache and Offline website data.
- Finally, click OK.
You’ve successfully cleared the entire cache for Mozilla Firefox. You should now quit and re-launch Firefox for the best results.
Why web browsing caches sometimes become corrupt over time remains a mystery, but you can probably chalk it up to a hiccup in the internet connection or a glitch in the software you’re using to browse the web.
Fortunately, there are ways to solve problems with web browsing caches, and sometimes clearing it and starting fresh is the best way to go about it.
Even if you’re not having problems with loading pages, it’s good to clean out the caches from time to time just to help clean up the limited storage space in your machine.