Released June 2012, Model A1278. Intel processor with Turbo Boost, Up to 512 MB DDR5 Video RAM

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LED Backlight and charging issue

Small liquid spill. Came in from ventilation hole below the display - affected area in the corner of DC input and display connector.

Cleaned it up using iso propyl alc..

LED backlight no longer works - but LCD works (can see it with flash light). External display is also fine.

Charging no longer works. It worked initially after cleanup but not anymore (no green light - no charging - power supply to computer does work).


A) I expect logic board issue but could display also likely be damaged ? Way to verify it's ok?

B) Any recommended shops for repair ?

C) Any positive experience from Aliexpress suppliers?

Appreciate any inputs

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1 Answer

Chosen Solution

Jan -

The logic board has components on both sides which could have gotten wet. While this is not the same model as yours (still very similar) review the pictures in Step 15 MacBook Pro 13" Unibody Mid 2009 Teardown.

Also in your cleaning process did you dislodge something? You do need to be careful in the scrubbing as you can snag something.

If you're up to it I would pull the logic board out and check the other side. Follow this guide Replacing MacBook Pro 13" Unibody Mid 2012 Logic Board Replacement

Otherwise you'll need to bring your system into an Apple Store or a independent Apple authorized service center.

Sorry to say I don't know Aliexpress. Where are you located?

MacBook Pro 13" Unibody Mid 2009 Image


MacBook Pro 13" Unibody Mid 2009 Teardown



MacBook Pro 13" Unibody Mid 2012 Logic Board Image


MacBook Pro 13" Unibody Mid 2012 Logic Board Replacement



45 minutes - 1 hour

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Thanks. I had the board out recently and inspected / cleaned the other side. Yes very carefully. Still the same issues.

I am located in Denmark.

The Aliexpress Chinese suppliers quote around 200 USD for repair and 600-650 USD for a replacement board with the 2.9 GHz Core i7 processor (MD 102 board fits my machine).


What was spilled? Maybe you need to use a different method of cleaning. I use distilled water (not tap) to deal with soda and other stickily drinks. If it was orange juice or other acidity drink I use distilled water with some baking soda to cut the acid. If it was milk or other fatty drink I use isopropyl alcohol. Often I end up using more than one approach to fully clean things.


Here's a listing of Apple Authorized service centers in Denmark Apple supplied listing. I would recommend trying someone local first. Shipping your system to China wouldn't be wise. As to getting a replacement logic board try giving it another cleaning with a better cleaner as I outlined above.


Thanks will give it another try cleaning as you suggest. I believe it was coffee - but the problem was we didn't observe the issue until corrosion had taken place and so we do not know for sure what was spilled.

Anyway - I have given up on Apple authorized repair as they quoted horrendeous prices and replacement of board and display - without doing or testing anything (open the back plate - inspected - closed the back lid - quoted repair at 2.5 times the price of a new identical macbook pro).

I am considering a local un-authorized repair center that does board level repairs - but they quote a price of approximately the 600 USD in case they can fix it - and 100 USD for diagnosis. I am weighing this up against shipping to China for repair or ordering a refurbished board from there.

hanks for ur help


Look on eBay or just google it to see what the prices are for a new Vs used board. I'm sure you can find someone in the EU that has the board at a good price if it comes down to that. Yes, most outfits will quote a replacement board price Vs trying to repair with liquid damage as they often get it fixed but within the first couple of months it dies. Sorry to hear you didn't catch it sooner. Letting it stew only makes it worse as you have discovered.


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