Water Damage, Cleaned with Alcohol Doesn't Start. What Else Can I Try?

I had a Water Damage Double Whammy (WDDW) when I was doing some yard work a couple of weeks ago. It started to rain about an hour into what I was doing. I forgot about my electronics and long story short, my iPhone and MacBook Pro suffered water damage. I powered off the iPhone. The MBP was off (shorted out?) when I set it up on the counter to dry. There was quite a bit of water that came out of the MBP when I tilted it. I opened up the case, dried it off as best as I could and let it dry for a couple of days. It wouldn't start so I started searching the forums here for solutions. The iPhone started up two days later but had sporadic sound issues. I replaced the dock connector after reading the forums, and successfully fixed the iPhone!!

I cleaned the logic board per instructions on this site for water damaged electronics with 91% isopropyl alcohol, let it dry, reassembled, adding thermal paste, etc. It did not start up.

Prior to my attempt to fix the MBP I took it to Apple store. They wanted $800 to fix with no guarantee of saving data. They said there was some corrosion. $200 more will get me a new MBP.

I double checked all my connections. I don't have the expertise or equipment to diagnose individual components, i.e., capacitors, chips, etc with a multimeter or whatever is needed. Is there anything else I can try? Thanks in advance!

Answered! View the answer I have this problem too

Is this a good question?

Score 0
Add a comment

2 Answers

Chosen Solution


While we all think rain is clean it's not anymore, it is often loaded with acids and other chemicals we have polluted the air as well as small bits of stuff (pollen & insect parts). The PH of the rain can be enough to allow the system to short-out (FYI - Pure water is in fact not very conductive).

Did you completely remove the logic board out? If not I think you'll need to go back and do that. I would also use distilled water (not tap water) to wash down the logic board and use a soft brush to scrub any stained areas. Then go over the board again this time with 85% or better isopropyl alcohol.

The other issue you may face here is the keyboard is likely still soaked. For now lets just not connect the keyboard or trackpad in, instead try using a bluetooth keyboard and mouse. You'll still need to turn the system on by jumping the pads on the logic board.

How is the battery? Does it appear to be taking a charge? If you can try swapping it out on a second like system to see if its still good and can be charged. The logic board may have burn't FET in the charging circuit.

Was this answer helpful?

Score 3


Dan, I did pull out the board and used 91% alcohol. I used a soft toothbrush to gently scrub. Twice. On both sides. The battery light shows all green when I push the button. The dc-in charger was orange when I first plugged it in, but then turned green.


OK thats sounds good for the battery and the charging logic. How about the keyboard did you disconnect it and jump the pads to start it up? Don't forget you'll need a bluetooth mouse & keyboard.


Dan, I have not tried that. I've been searching the forums to kind of get an idea of what you're talking about and exactly how to jump the pads. Will the Bluetooth mouse and keyboard be required permanently to operate the MBP, or is it just a one-time thing to get it started? Thanks for the comments so far.


The Mouse & Keyboard are to bypass the systems for now (as they are likely damaged). Review Step 12 & 13 on disconnecting the keyboard & its backlight


Here's a link to the thread on jumping the power pads MacBook Pro Power Button Fix


Show 4 more comments

Add a comment

The data could probably be retrieved by putting your HD in an external case and accessing it from a working Mac.

Look for corrosion and burn marks with a Magnifier corrosion you can try to clean off with soft bristled brush -carefully so not to tear off any connectors. A non-ionized water rinse, a dip in 90% or better alcohol.

Could you try the RAM chips in a working Mac?

Try to force (jump) start the machine?

If this answer is acceptable please remember to return and mark it.

Was this answer helpful?

Score 1


Mached3, What is force (jump) start, and how do I do it?


Last 4 S/N KATM....


Add a comment

Add your answer

DSCantu will be eternally grateful.
View Statistics:

Past 24 Hours: 0

Past 7 Days: 2

Past 30 Days: 23

All Time: 1,858