How to Fix Repeat Letters or Double Spacing Issue on MacBook

How to Fix Repeat Letters or Double Spacing Issue on MacBook

With the 12-inch MacBook in 2015, Apple abandoned the traditional scissor keyboard switches in favor of the new Butterfly mechanism. Apple aimed to develop a thinner key profile and more stability compared to the scissor key system. Due to the thinner profile of the butterfly keyboard and the limited space, many users have reported key crashes, typing crashes, repetitive words, double spacing, etc. Now, if you’re one of those people and your MacBook suffers from repeating letters or double spacing, you’ve landed on the right page.

Correction of the Macbook keyboard

The latest MacBook Pro and MacBook Air now use the Magic keyboard (based on scissor switches). Unfortunately, switching from the scissor-style to butterfly-style mechanism was not suitable for MacBook users. And now we’re back to Magic scissor-style keyboards.

This does not mean that every problem with keyboards with butterfly switches is necessarily a hardware problem. Some problems may arise due to software hiccups.

Many users with a butterfly keyboard report characters typing twice with one press. There are also double-spacing issues when you click the space bar once on some MacBooks. Before rushing to the Apple Service Center, we recommend that you try the fixes below to determine if they fix your problem.

Disable key repeat

If you are coming from traditional scissor switches, you may be used to pressing the keys more forcefully. If a user tries to apply the same pressure on the MacBook butterfly keyboard, they may end up with double characters or double spacing when typing.

With macOS, you can turn off the keyboard repeat behavior. Thus, it will not accidentally record the same word twice on one press. Follow the steps below to turn off key repeat.

Step 1: Tap the Apple logo in the upper left corner.

2nd step: Press System Preferences to make changes.

Open system preferences

Step 3: Select the Keyboard menu and here you will see a bunch of options to choose from.

Go to the keyboard

Step 4: In the Keyboard menu, you will see the Key Repeat option. By default, it is closer to the Quick option.

Step 5: Slide the down arrow to deactivate and close the menu.

Repetition of the keys

Now try to hold down any alphabetic key on the keyboard. He will not repeat the word. Write a few sentences to see if the problem of double spacing or repeating letters is solved or not.

Clean keyboard

Tiny particles of dust can seep through tiny slides around the keys of the MacBook keyboard. And that could lead to the key appearing pressed twice when you only had to touch it once.

Apple recommends that you use a can of compressed air to remove any dirt from the keyboard. Follow the steps below to clean the keyboard.

Step 1: Open the MacBook and hold it at a 75 degree angle.

Mac rotation

2nd step: Use compressed air to spray the keyboard or just the affected keys in a left-to-right movement.

Clean the macbook keyboard

Step 3: Rotate the MacBook to the other side and spray the keyboard again, from left to right.

Clean keyboard

Step 4: Continue repeating the action four to five times.

Besides double spacing and double typing, this method can also fix unresponsive butterfly keys on the MacBook.

Note: Use compressed air to switch to the keyboard and turn off your MacBook while you’re at it. Do not attempt to use it to clean the speakers or internal components of a MacBook. Using random compressed air could damage the internal components of the MacBook.

Use recovery mode

The recovery mode in macOS allows you to erase the MacBook drive, resolve common macOS problems, reinstall the operating system, restore Time Machine Backup data, etc. For our guide, we will use recovery mode to see if the double spacing issue is hardware related or a software issue. Follow the steps below.

Step 1: Tap the Apple logo in the upper left corner and select Restart.

2nd step: Immediately hold down the Command + R keys until you see an Apple logo or a spinning globe.

Step 3: Your Mac displays the Recovery Mode Utilities window with the following options.

Step 4: Select Get online help and it will open the Safari browser for you.

Mac OS recovery mode

Try typing a few sentences in the address bar or in any online notes application. If you are still facing problems with double typing or double spacing, this is the problem with the keyboard itself.

If typing in recovery mode works normally, this is a software problem. Since you understand this, you can update the application or install pending macOS updates.

Uninstall keyboard customization

If you’re using third-party keyboard customization or key remapping software, try uninstalling it. This may interfere with the normal function of the keyboard. Any text extension or key remapping application could be responsible for the problem. After removing them, restart your Mac and check if the problem persists.

If this is a hardware problem, you can visit the nearest Apple store and have the keyboard replaced. Apple is aware of the issues with butterfly keys. Therefore, it uses the keyboard service program for MacBook, MacBook Air and MacBook Pro.

Check the Apple website to check the supported MacBook models and other details. The company offers a four-year warranty from the date of purchase for keyboards.

Correction of repetition and double spaces

Before running to the Apple Center, you need to use these options to try to fix the keyboard problem on the MacBook, because the Apple guys are going to take their time to replace the keyboard. Have the options mentioned above solved the problem for you? If so, let us know which trick worked for you in the comments section below.


With the introduction of macOS 10.15.5, Apple added the battery health management option to improve the battery life of the MacBook. Read the post below to learn more about this and how to enable / disable the option.

Last updated on June 12, 2020

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