MacBook Pro 13" Unibody Mid 2009 Front Display Glass Replacement

Use this guide to replace a broken front display glass panel. Removal of the front display glass is required to access the LCD.

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Edit Step 1 Lower Case  ¶ 

  • Remove the following 10 screws securing the lower case to the MacBook Pro 13" Unibody:

    • Seven 3 mm Phillips screws.

    • Three 13.5 mm Phillips screws.

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Edit Step 2  ¶ 

  • Slightly lift the lower case and push it toward the rear of the computer to free the mounting tabs.

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Edit Step 3 Battery  ¶ 

  • For precautionary purposes, we advise that you disconnect the battery connector from the logic board to avoid any electrical discharge. This step is optional and is not required.

  • Use the flat end of a spudger to lift the battery connector up out of its socket on the logic board.

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Edit Step 4 Display  ¶ 

  • Use the flat end of a spudger to pry the subwoofer/right speaker cable connector up off its socket on the logic board.

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Edit Step 5  ¶ 

  • Disconnect the camera cable by pulling the male end straight away from its socket.

    • There is a small piece of hard plastic stuck to the logic board that stops the camera cable from falling out of its socket. Be sure to peel this off first or you could damage the connectors.

  • Make sure to pull the connector parallel to the face of the logic board and toward the optical drive, not straight up from its socket.

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Edit Step 6  ¶ 

  • De-route the camera data cable from the channel in the optical drive.

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Edit Step 7  ¶ 

  • Remove the following screws securing the camera data cable and right speaker to the upper case:

    • Two 8 mm Phillips screws.

    • One 4mm Phillips screw.

  • One of the 8 mm Phillips screws will likely remain captive in the camera cable ground loop.

  • Slide the camera cable bracket out from under the subwoofer and remove it from the computer.

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Edit Step 8  ¶ 

  • Grab the plastic pull tab secured to the display data cable lock and rotate it toward the DC-in side of the computer.

  • Pull the display data cable connector straight away from its socket.

  • Make sure to pull the connector straight away and not straight up from its socket.

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Edit Step 9  ¶ 

  • Remove the following two screws securing the display data cable bracket to the upper case:

    • One 7 mm Phillips screw.

    • One 5 mm Phillips screw.

  • Lift the display data cable bracket out of the upper case.

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Edit Step 10  ¶ 

  • Remove the two outer 6.5 mm Torx screws securing each of the two display brackets to the upper case (4 screws total).

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Edit Step 11  ¶ 

  • Open your MacBook so the display is perpendicular to the upper case.

  • Place your opened MacBook on a table as pictured.

  • While holding the display and upper case together with your left hand, remove the remaining 6.5 mm Torx screw from the lower display bracket.

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Edit Step 12  ¶ 

  • Be sure to hold the display and upper case together with your left hand. Failure to do so may cause the freed display/upper case to fall, potentially damaging each component.

  • Remove the last remaining 6 mm T6 Torx screw securing the display to the upper case.

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Edit Step 13  ¶ 

  • Grab the upper case with your right hand and rotate it slightly toward the top of the display so the upper display bracket clears the edge of the upper case.

  • Rotate the display slightly away from the upper case.

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Edit Step 14  ¶ 

  • Lift the display up and away from the upper case, minding any brackets or cables that may get caught.

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Edit Step 15 Front Display Glass  ¶ 

  • In the following steps, you will use a heat gun to soften the adhesive securing the outer black border around the underside of the front glass panel to the display. The area the adhesive is applied to is shown in red in the second picture.

  • With the heat gun set to low, start by heating the outer black border near the upper right corner of the glass panel.

  • Always aim the heat gun away from the soft rubber strip around the display glass. Heating the rubber will cause it to melt slightly, turning its finish from matte to glossy. Touching overheated rubber can cause it to permanently deform.

  • Due to the heat applied, it is normal for a layer of condensation to develop on the inside of the glass panel and/or the outside of the LCD. It can be removed with glass cleaner once the glass is separated from the display.

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Edit Step 16  ¶ 

  • With the panel sufficiently heated, fasten a heavy-duty suction cup near the upper right corner of the display glass.

  • Don't fasten the suction cup on top of the rubber strip around the edge of the display glass.

  • To attach the suction cups we sell, first position the suction cup with the movable handle parallel to the face of the glass panel. While lightly holding the suction cup against the glass, raise the movable handle until it is parallel with the other handle.

  • Slowly and gently pull the corner of the display glass up off the display assembly.

  • If only the top edge of the glass lifts up (as seen in the third picture), repeat steps one and two until you can lift up the corner of the panel.

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Edit Step 17  ¶ 

  • Gently lift the corner of the display glass enough to insert a spudger between it and the display assembly.

  • Use the flat end of a spudger to gently pry up the adhesive securing the front glass to the display.

  • Pry up the glass panel a few inches away from the upper right corner along the top and right edges of the display.

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Edit Step 18  ¶ 

  • Use a heat gun to soften the adhesive under the black strip along the right side of the front glass panel.

  • Attach a suction cup along the right side of the front glass panel.

  • Pull up on the glass panel while you use the flat end of a spudger to separate it from the rest of the display assembly.

  • Continue working along the right edge of the front display glass until it is separated from the display.

  • It may be helpful to use a guitar pick or another thin plastic object to keep the upper right corner of the front glass panel from sticking back down to the display assembly.

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Edit Step 19  ¶ 

  • Use your heat gun to soften the adhesive under the black strip along the top edge of the glass display panel.

  • Attach a suction cup near the top edge of the glass display panel and use it to pull the glass panel up off the display.

  • Work along the top edge of the glass panel, carefully using the flat end of a spudger to separate the adhesive if necessary.

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Edit Step 20  ¶ 

  • Use a heat gun to soften the adhesive under the black strip near the upper left corner of the glass display panel.

  • Attach a suction cup near the upper left corner of the glass display panel.

  • Pull up on the suction cup and use the flat end of a spudger to carefully pry the glass display panel out of the display assembly.

  • Once the upper left corner has been separated from the display, it may be helpful to use a guitar pick or another thin plastic object to keep the glass from sticking back down to the display assembly.

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Edit Step 21  ¶ 

  • Use a heat gun to soften the adhesive under the black strip along the left side of the front glass panel.

  • Attach a suction cup along the left side of the front glass panel.

  • Pull up on the glass panel while you use the flat end of a spudger to separate it from the rest of the display assembly.

  • Continue working along the left edge of the front display glass until it is separated from the display.

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Edit Step 22  ¶ 

  • Now that the top, left, and right edges of the glass are free from the display, slowly lift the top edge of the glass panel and gently rotate it out of the display.

  • If necessary, use the flat end of a spudger to free the bottom edge of the glass display panel from the display assembly.

  • Before reassembling, be sure to clean both the inside of the glass display panel and the LCD as any dust or fingerprints trapped inside will be annoyingly visible when the machine is on.

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Edit Step 23  ¶ 

  • Insert the edge of a plastic opening tool between the display glass and the camera bracket, and run it around the camera bracket to separate it from the display glass.

  • Do not forget to stick the camera bracket down to the new front display glass before reassembly.

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Edit Step 24  ¶ 

  • During the glass removal process, the camera cable may stick to the adhesive on the glass panel, disconnecting it from the camera board as the panel is lifted. If your camera cable is still connected to the camera board, skip this step.

  • To reconnect the cable, first use the tip of a spudger to remove the piece of foam tape over the camera cable ZIF socket.

  • Use the tip of a spudger to flip up the ZIF cable retainer on the camera cable socket.

  • Insert the camera cable into its socket on the camera board and use the tip of a spudger to snap down the ZIF cable retainer, locking the cable in place.

  • Reapply the piece of tape covering the camera cable socket.

To reassemble your device, follow these instructions in reverse order.

For more information, check out the MacBook Pro 13" Unibody Mid 2009 device page.

Required Tools

Spudger

$2.95 · 50+ In stock

T6 Torx Screwdriver

$5.95 · 50+ In stock

T6 Torx Screwdriver

$9.95 · 25 In stock

T6 Torx Screwdriver

$4.95 · 50+ In stock

Phillips #00 Screwdriver

$5.95 · 50+ In stock

Recommended Tools

Universal Drive Adapter

$29.95 · 50+ In stock

iFixit Lock Pick Set

$29.95 · 50+ In stock

Inspection Scope

$39.95 · 50+ In stock

Frictionless Ratchet

$24.95 · 50+ In stock

Portable Anti-Static Mat

$34.95 · 39 In stock

Comments Comments are onturn off

Will the suction cup still work on a heavily cracked screen?

alexf, · Reply

Mine was not all that cracked, but still the suction cups were useless because if you have one crack through the "suction area", it won't work.

namnamkha,

I just replace the glass on my 13" MacBook Pro with badly broken glass screen.

The suction cup did not work because a) my screen was cracked badly and the cup would not hold suction, and b) the glue is too tenacious (even with heating) and over a large surface area to simply pull it away from the frame, especially if the glass is cracked.

I found a hairdryer on hottest setting, but lowest speed works best. It softens the glue enough to pry the glass away from the frame. I had to work around the perimeter using the Spudger tool and a small, flat-blade screw driver. I started prying at a cracked opening in my glass (it was really badly cracked - someone stepped on the computer when my daughter left it on the floor!). Need to be very carefull with using the screw driver - only pry along and parallel to the edge of the frame like using an ice scraper on a sidewalk. Don't pry on the rubber seal on the edge and stay away from the LCD.

I left the cracked glass in place until I cleared all of the glass along the perimeter- this allowed me to rest my hand on the screen without damaging/scratching the LCD underneath.

Be aware that the camera cable runs in a channel from the lens on top to the right corner, then down the right edge of the screen. The channel is in the center of the border, so it is ok to pry under the glass as close as you can get to the rubber seal on the edge, and also on the inside edge of the border, but take care not to pry into the LCD. The camera cable is wider and has connectors within 2 inches of the lens, so you really need to be careful with prying in this area. I saved the lens area for last. Started to the left of the lens and worked counterclockwise around the perimeter.

If you take your time, heat a small area, pry the glass away and continue around the perimeter, it will come out. Need to be patient and not get in a hurry.

When the glass is removed, take care to clean out the glass fragments, especially down between the edge of the LCD and the frame. I used a business card to slide in the gap and pull out pieces of glass. Then used small piece of packaging tape, tacky side out, to dab out the small pieces (don't put the tape on the LCD, just the frame border area). Overall, the instructions on this site are excellent - I had no trouble removing the screen from the base of the computer, and re-assembling with the pictures and the instructions.

One improvement would be to show better detail how to remove the screen power cable - the locking mechanism has to be rotated from flat position to about 90 degrees before pulling the connector. It was not obvious how to do this in the instructions - it is a U-shaped bar that connects on each side of the connector and runs around the stationary part of the socket. Simply lift it up before pulling the connector out. I pulled the connector without lifting this U-shaped arm first, and it fell off when I pulled the plug. I was able to put it back on to the connector without much trouble.

The connecters all went back in to place very well. The machine worked when I started it up after re-assembly. It works and looks great.

Thanks for the instructions!

Joe, · Reply

It looks like you need a Phillips #000 screwdriver for the 10 bottom screws. I tried the #00 and it's too big. Good thing I bought a 23 piece precision screwdriver set or else I would have been screwed.

scott523, · Reply

The 10 screws that hold tha bottom case take a #00 Phillips driver, if yours doesnt fit it's probably because it's cheaply made & not precise enough. The only thing that I needed a #000 driver for was the keyboard screws. They're so small they look like specks of dirt or sand. I stripped out 4 of them & now will need to grind the heads off with a Dremel/rotary tool. The other thing that sucks is iFixit doesn't have a tutorial for keyboard replacement!

iphonetechtips,

Perfect man!Many thanks!:)

wertaerte, · Reply

Compare the short screws carefully before reinstalling them. The shouldered screws go in the holes on the front edge.

twisk, · Reply

thanks twisk, I wish i would have read your tip before I finished putting the bottom of my laptop back together. I managed to get all screws in somehow, but one was in fact too-tight.

BTW, big big thanks to the Author: Andrew Bookholt. Just used this guide and my trackpad now works again.

xitxit2,

i too need a #000 for the bottom of the case -- i got the recommended screwdriver (#00) and unfortunately it's too big

plins718, · Reply

Before I started removing any screws I took a piece of paper and drew the bottom of the laptop and put a piece of double-sided tape in the spot where each screw goes. That way when I took out the screws, I could put them on the tape so I knew exactly which screw went in which spot. I did the same thing for dismantling the inside on another sheet of paper, then a third sheet for the screen after getting the front glass off.

mastover, · Reply

I use a similar technique: I print out the iFixit manual for the job, and Scotch-tape down the screws/brackets/cables I remove at each step next to the component descriptions. That way, when I'm reassembling, the bits are taped right next to the photo of where they came from.

adlerpe,

The colours you used for these circles are indistinguishable for colour-blind people. Please consider using something like the palette suggested by visibone: http://www.visibone.com/colorblind/

Eric Sorenson, · Reply

I'd use a Phillips #000 screwdriver also. The #00 can work, but if the screws are in really tight, it doesn't get far enough down into the screws to get purchase, so it will start to strip (and I agree that the screws are pretty soft). On mine, the screws for the fan were really tight, started to strip with #00, needed a #000 and quite a bit of pressure to get them to move.

jonathanmorgan, · Reply

why is step 3 necessary?

gansodesoya, · Reply

Quote from gansodesoya:

why is step 3 necessary?

Just to disconnect any power source to avoid damages by short-circuits.

MrKane, · Reply

Quote from gansodesoya:

why is step 3 necessary?

Removes the possibility of any current flow. This is especially important if you are trying to mitigate the damage to the circuitry due to a spill on a keyboard.

amiller770, · Reply

I'm thinking of ordering the spudger. I was thinking of order the heavy duty spudger... or should I just order the normal. Will either of the spudgers work for this DIY?

shockaaa, · Reply

Once you have a set of spudgers, you will wonder how you ever went without them. :-)

Brian,

$@$@. Don't use an non-isolated screwdriver for this. I just shorted-out my battery :(

Lukas Besch, · Reply

You are absolutely right, never use a screwdriver on the logic board or any connector! Delicate use of fingernails or a credit card will get you through most situations if you lack a spudger.

Logan Bean,

How do you get that battery connector back on? Do you just press it in back in place after you're done?

Horace Chung, · Reply

yes. I usually plug it in before I screw it down so I can lift the battery a bit and have enough slack to be able to go straight down on the connector, otherwise it comes in on a bit of an angle, which can't be good (though not necessarily bad).

maccentric,

You must first separate the little foam pad to see better how to pry the cable

connector up. You must be

careful not to root up also its socket

stuck on the logic board

ramonananos, · Reply

My subwoofer/right speaker connection seemed to be soldered on the main board. Of course, I pried this off..realizing right after that there was no reconnecting it (&^$%^@!). There's really no reason to even disconnect this wire on the MacBook pro 13 mid-2009

Glad this is my "project" Mac

srlincoln, · Reply

Please Be Carefully With This Step, Because I Had To Resolder It Back To The Logic Board. But There Is A Black Foam Piece Over The Cable You Have To Pry Up, Lift The Foam Piece And Then Try To CAREFULLY Pry Cable Connector

BWilliams842, · Reply

A better description would have been worth a lot....

I accidently pried off the socket aswell... gonna have to go to the computer/robotics lab at my college to resolder it -.-

Juliane Aschenbrenner, · Reply

Be careful to the piece of plastic that prevents camera cable failing out its socket! Do not force connector! Look at plastic before attempting to remove connector Plastic is partially covered by cdrom flat connector at right of camera cable connector

Silvio, · Reply

Re-assembly hint: Laying the base, keyboard down, on a table top with the hinge side over the edge about 1/2" toward you is a more stable position for re-assembly than trying to do this up on its edge. This has the added benefit of being able to reinsert the torn screws vertically.

boxav8r, · Reply

Heating rubber strip it becomes glossy You can turn it to matte using ultrafine sandpaper (very ultrafine!!!) P2500

Silvio, · Reply

Great piece of advice. Thank you!

Brian,

With a lot of heating, for me, it was very hard to get the glass to separate from the case. I had better luck starting from the bottom right as I could grip better onto the case. Three mistakes I made:

1. Once I got the glass separated, I probably didn't heat sufficiently as I was going around and the glass broke. That made the rest of the procedure miserable. Lesson: pull very gently.

2. I must have touched one of the tiny bits of glass that fell on the LCD and it scratched the actual screen. :-(. Lesson: vacuum the pieces as you go and be very careful when touching the LCD.

3. I somehow overheated the LCD screen at the top left and right corners and now the display is all wonky and faded at the corners. Not sure what the lesson is here.

Athanassios Diacakis, · Reply

First, if using a hair dryer, what setting should that be operated at? It would be much cooler than the heat gun, right?

Second, the iFixit basic set comes with a small, clear suction cup. Would that be sufficient for this project, or does it require the stronger pull of the other cups?

Finally, must I reapply adhesive to the case when replacing the glass? Does the original remain tacky and re-bond on assembly?

contact, · Reply

It's been a while since you asked, but since no one answered and someone else may have the same questions:

Hair dryers vary a lot, depending on wattage. I would start on low or med, and work my way up to high if necessary. I'd keep the fan on the lowest setting.

The little suction cup is for removing screens like the iMac, which just uses magnets, and possibly an iPad or iPhone. I would not want to use that for this project, get something about 2" wide with a decent handle.

The screen should have the double sided glue tape already applied, just remove the backing. I wouldn't get glass that doesn't have the tape on it, big waste of time with little savings in cost.

Jeff Kamis

maccentric,

I ended up breaking my glass panel due to using the spudger. I think if you use something more like a small putty knife you will do better. The spudger puts a lot of pressure in a small spot while the putty knife would put a little pressure over a larger area. Also, if you do break the glass, be sure to get ALL of the broken bits off before putting the new one on. Also, watch out for those broken bits as they tend to penetrate skin quite easily, and stay there for days!

mastover, · Reply

I had issues getting the panel back on till I got rid of the little camera bracket. I just made sure the glass aligned properly then removed the bracket. The bracket didn't stick worth beans anyway.

mastover, · Reply

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