Model A1237 or A1304 / 1.6, 1.8, 1.86, or 2.13 GHz Core 2 Duo processor

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No beep on startup; no video; fan runs, light comes on

I was given this MacBook Air by a friend after it started failing on her daughter (who was not very descriptive). The first time I turned it on it came up perfectly, but after that never got it to start again. Symptoms:

1) no audible beep on startup

2) no visible display - no apple logo, no backlight, no nothing.

3) plugging in external monitor during startup displays nothing.

4) SMC Reset DOES result in magsafe connector light change.

5) Fan comes on; goes off very briefly and then stays on

6) Front white LED comes on; goes off very briefly, and then stays on.

7) CPU/GPU area gets and stays warm.

8) battery charges (light eventually turns green).

I purchased another logic board (certified used); absolutely no change in behavior.

I purchased another SSD drive (brand new); no change (I know a new drive would need new OS Load but I'm not that far along yet).

I'm tempted to buy a new display assembly, but - friends have told me that due to '3' above (no activity on external monitor), this rules out my LCD - I should see 'something' on the external monitor if GPU is ok. But - I bought another logic board, so that should eliminate bad GPU.

Not sure what to try next! I wish I had a second working A1304 to swap parts with but my other MBA is a much newer model.

Suggestions? Thanks!

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When you replace the logic board did it look like it has gotten wet? Did you see any signs of liquid damage?

Have you tried shorting out the power pads to see if the system would boot up that way? You may want to disconnect the keyboard cable and plug in a USB keyboard & mouse.

Try starting up the system without the battery plugged in with just the power adapter only. Do you get further in the boot up process?

I would focus on the basics here.

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You are a genius :).

Starting up without the battery connected results in

1) sleep light comes on then goes off and ...

2) display comes on ('gray' screen)

3) 30 seconds later, I see the 'folder' icon with '?' overlaid. I presume this is expected as it is a new drive w/o OS (loading OS is future step).

With external monitor, I have to close the lid after hitting the power button for it to come on (assume normal).

1) 'sleep light' comes on and this time, stays on

2) external display comes on and proceeds as above.

So I guess the battery is bad. That's odd because it technically works (at least, it powers the device (fan spinning, etc), and accepts a charge (connecting magsafe results in amber light, and after a time, green light - suggesting it was charging and is now fully charged).

New battery ordered...

Are there diagnostics I can run to test CPU/GPU/etc now, or do I need to load OS for that?

Next step - OS load ...

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You'll need to prep up a USB thumb drive make it bootable using your working system. Make sure the Thumb drive is setup with with GUID and formatted as Mac OS Extended (Journaled). Test it out by using the Option key during the boot up process on your working system if it boots up you're good to go. Next copy over to the Thumb drive the OS installer and then using it on your other Mac reverse the process booting up with the Thumb drive and prep your internal drive.

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No need to do any testing you've nail the issue its a bad battery. You may want to test out the original logic board again to see if its OK. You maybe able to return it saving some bucks!

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Ugh. I created the USB drive, started installing OS. First stage ('preparing to install...') got to within 4 minutes of completion, then it hung (mouse froze, animation on progress bar froze, etc). After 30 mins of waiting, I restarted. Note - fan was going full-bore at this point. The second attempt got further, system restarted, then that process ('Install OS X') got to about 'time remaining' of 10 minutes, and the system froze again (no mouse movement, animation on bar stopped, fan full blast). (this is not the problem I've read where install 'hangs' at 1 second to go; in that case, mouse still moves, animation still visible, etc).

So I figured flaky logic board (this was my orig board, not the new one).

So I put in new logic board, but same original symptoms - sleep light on, sleep light off, sleep light on (at the point where screen should have come on).

So I swapped back in the original logic board, and STILL this 'no display' problem (back to original problem, but w/out battery).

Thoughts?

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(Comments are limited so have to add this separately). I should add that the machine was given to be because it was starting to lock up, fail to start, etc. First time I tested it, it worked beautifully, next time got some beep codes, and soon after failed to ever start (as described in first post).

I suspect multiple failed parts, but I'm surprised the new logic board is not doing well.

I've never rebuilt a macbook before but done dozens of PCs and the Macbook is a lovely piece of engineering so I don't think I'm messing up on the assembly step. I've swapped boards about 10 times now, can do it in my sleep!

I was so close but now I don't know where to go next.

Thanks for your help!

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Steerpike will be eternally grateful.
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