How to Limit YouTube Time on Mac on Chrome and Safari

Rosa Reyes
April 17, 2023 Preview 13.6K Preview 2
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If you find yourself spending too much time on YouTube on your Mac, it may be time to take some action. This article will show you how to limit YouTube time on Mac.

YouTube doesn’t offer an official app for Mac and Windows computers, unlike with smartphones. Generally, the only way to access YouTube videos on your Mac is through its website So, the article is basically about setting a time limit for access on Mac.


Method 1. How to limit YouTube time on Mac on Chrome (and Safari) with AppCrypt

AppCrypt, the best website blocker and app locker for Mac, can help you permanently block YouTube or set time limit on it on Google Chrome, Safari and more browsers.

This method has some benefits.

  • You can set a time limit for YouTube by blocking access to YouTube at certain times of the day. (This way, you can control not only the amount of time spent on YouTube but also when the access is allowed.)
  • You can set the same time limit for every day, or set different time limits for different days of the week. For example, you can allow more time on YouTube on weekends.
  • One can’t bypass the time limit because there is a password.
  • Can be used for children or yourself
  • Easy to use and set up
  • Compatible with macOS 10.12 or later, including macOS 13 Ventura

Below are the steps on how to limit YouTube time on Mac effortlessly.

1. Download and install AppCrypt.

Free Download

2. When you open it for the first time, set a password. It is recommended to select the Launch at System Startup checkbox.

set password

3. Click the lock icon in the menu bar and choose Open Main Window.

choose open main window

4. Enter the password, and you will see the main window.

a screen asking for password

5. Under the Web Block tab, enter in the URL field and click Add.


Select YouTube, and a clock icon will appear on the left. Click the clock icon.

In the dialog box that appears, turn on Custom Schedule in the bottom left corner. Click Add Schedule in the bottom right corner. Now, set a time limit for YouTube by blocking YouTube during times of the day and days of the week that you specify. You can create multiple time limits, and there is lots of flexibility.


Below are some examples.

Schedule Result
From 7:00 PM to 11:00 PM Everyday One can’t access YouTube between 7:00 PM and 11:00 PM everyday.
From 8:00 PM to 10:00 PM Weekend One can’t access YouTube between 8:00 PM to 10:00 PM on weekends.
From 8:30 AM to 11:00 AM Working day; From 2:00 PM to 6:00 PM Working day One can’t access YouTube during working hours.

To edit a schedule/time limit, click it and make changes. To delete it, click this icon the delete icon next to a schedule.

If you delete all schedules for YouTube, then the site will be blocked all the time. If you don’t want to block YouTube at any time anymore, go to the Web Block tab, select the site, and then press the Delete key.

The blocking, the schedule settings, the blocking settings, the running of AppCrypt, etc. are protected by the password set in step 2. Therefore, this time limit thing is hard to bypass. If you want to limit YouTube time for yourself, you can ask someone else to set the password for you.

Method 2. How to limit YouTube Time on Mac with Chrome extension

It’s also possible to put a time limit on YouTube on Chrome with an extension like YouTube Time.

Designed to set a time limit for daily YouTube usage, this extension has helped many improve their productivity.

1. Go to the Chrome Web Store.

2. Install YouTube Time.

3. Control-click its icon in Chrome toolbar and choose Options.

choose Options

4. There are two ways. You can enter the amount of time allowed per day.

Or, you can customize limit for individual days of the week.

time allowed per day

5. Click Save Limit.

To give more flexibility, it allows you to ignore limit. To prevent yourself from keeping ignoring limit, you can limit the number of overrides allowed per day.

ignore limit

To make the YouTube time limit harder to bypass, you can follow this tip. Click the extension’s icon in Chrome toolbar and choose Manage Extensions. Scroll down and enable Allow in incognito.

Now it’s set up. When you are on a YouTube page, a countdown timer timer will display the time left in the extension icon. When the time is up, YouTube will be blocked on the Chrome browser on your Mac.

Note: An Chrome extension can be easily removed by you or someone else. If the YouTube Time extension is removed, the time limit set up for YouTube will also be removed.

Method 3. How to limit YouTube time on Mac on Safari with Screen Time (Catalina or later only)

If your MacBook Air, MacBook Pro, iMac or Mac mini is running macOS 10.15 Catalina or later, then there is a built-in solution available: Screen Time.

Apple’s Screen Time is a set of tools for time management and parental controls. It first came to iOS 12. It’s a part of macOS since Catalina.

Screen Time can help you set time limits on YouTube on Mac’s Safari browser.

If you are using an earlier macOS that doesn’t come with Screen Time, then Method 1 can help.

1. On a Mac running Catalina or Big Sur, go to the Apple menu > System Preferences.

2. Choose Screen Time.

choose Screen Time

3. Click Options in the bottom left corner. Click Turn On to enable Screen Time on this Mac.

click Turn On

4. This step is optional. Select the box next to Use Screen Time Passcode. Select the preferred option. Click Next. Set a 4-digit passcode and confirm it.

5. In the sidebar, click App Limits.

click App Limits

6. Click the plus icon, and the Create a new app limit window will show up.

7. Scroll down to the end and expand Websites.

expand Websites

8. Click the green plus icon green plus icon that appears. Enter the domain name Hit the Return key.

9. Now you are presented with two ways to limit YouTube time on Mac.

Every Day: With this way, you can specify the amount of time per day during which is accessible, regardless of the day of the week.

Custom: You can also customize the amount of time for each day of the week. Click the Edit button and set the daily time limit. Click Done.

set daily time limit

10. Click Done.

Step 4 is recommended if you want to limit your children’s YouTube time.

When you finish setting time limits on websites on Mac using Screen Time, the limits will apply to Safari right away.

If you are looking for a solution for Google Chrome, see Method 1.

To change the time limit you have set on YouTube, in Screen Time, go to App Limits, and select from the list of limited websites. Click Edit Limit and make modifications. To remove a limit, select the website and click the minus icon.


Above are three methods on how to limit YouTube time on Mac on Chrome and Safari web browsers. Screen Time is included with macOS, but it’s only available on newer macOS versions and only works with Safari. AppCrypt is a third-party tool, which supports more macOS versions and browsers. If you are looking for an easy way to control YouTube watching time, I hope this article can help.

Rosa Reyes
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Rosa has worked in Mac software industry for more than eight years. She believes that the purpose of software is to make life better and work more productively. In addition to writing, Rosa is also an avid runner.

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Comments (2) Leave a Reply

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  • Henry Schmidt

    As someone who sits in front of a computer all day, it's easy to get lost in YouTube videos and lose track of time. These tips will definitely come in handy for me to stay focused and get things done. Appreciate it!

    0 months ago Reply

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  • Jennifer

    I really need to quit YouTube before it starts ruining my life. It's impractical to blocking YouTube entirely. Setting time limits is a better idea. I'll try the app you mention.

    2 years ago Reply

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