Trackpad partly stopped functioning after tea spill?
A few days ago I spilled tea over my MBP, and quite a lot. It was all over the trackpad, bottom right part of the keyboard and right speaker. I immediately held my MacBook upside down, turned it off and gravity helped out a lot: almost everything still works.
Afterwards I opened the back cover to remove any moisture inside the case. There was some but not too much. All crucial parts in that area (harddisk, battery, optical drive) luckily still work, I've removed the keys that got wet and removed the moisture under them, so I'm pretty sure most of it is dry now :-)
I do have one big problem now: the button functionality of the trackpad is gone. The first day after turning it on again, it still worked, but if I clicked the 'click' sound you normally hear was really soft. Probably due to water under the glass trackpad. Now, the sound is exactly as it should be, but I cannot 'click' the pad anymore (no left or right mouse click). (multi-touch) taps and swipes still work.
Does anybody have any ideas? I've seen this thread:
But it's related to an older model trackpad, the one without the button integrated in the glass, so the part number mentioned there is not for me.
Would it help to open up the case again and remove the battery? Would I be able to clean the trackpad from inside then, or is there another layer in between?
Thanks a lot for any help!
Cleaning may help
The tea that was left behind has crystalized or turned sticky and that's what's causing the problem. However, using the machine while there was still moisture under the glass you could have shorted out that contact
Depending upon the model of your MBP you may be able to remove/replace the track pad only, otherwise its the entire topcase.
If this answer is acceptable please return and mark it.
I had a problem with my trackpad not clicking properly as well. Thinking that something had spilled on the trackpad, I removed the battery to check the bottom of the trackpad. With the battery removed, I noticed the trackpad was now clicking properly. It turned out the battery had gone bad and had swelled in the middle of it. This swelling was putting pressure on the bottom of the trackpad and causing it to not click properly. Once the battery was replaced, the trackpad worked just fine.
I just did a near-complete teardown of the 2010 MBP thanks to tea. If you follow the upper case replacement guide you can get to the point where you can see the trackpad right away just by removing the battery.
Fortunately for me (but unfortunately for you), there didn't appear to be any tea around the trackpad area. However, from my experience inside the case, there's a *chance* you may be able to partially dissassemble the trackpad and do some cleaning that may remedy or mediate the issue.
In any case I would suggest pulling it apart for cleaning just to make sure there is no other damage that can become a bigger problem later on down the road. Take a look at the attached pictures and you can see that the trackpad has screws that you may be able to remove to do some deeper cleaning. You may also benefit from the info provided in the question and answers from my own tea spill :)
I've had the same problem. Someone dropped a whole lot of water over my MBP. It was fixed and worked perfectly again. But half a year later the trackpad suddenly felt very strange. The click was "soft" and i had to press the trackpad hard to make it work (at the mid-bottom it seemed fine though). A couple of weeks later, as suddenly as it came, the trackpad worked just fine (i'm talking hours where i wasn't looking)... Magic?!