The March 2015 update of Apple's 13" MacBook Pro Retina Display, model A1502, features fifth-generation Intel Core i5 and i7 processors and introduces the Force Touch trackpad.

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Water damage/corrosion on keyboard cable and cable connector.

Hi,

I have a 13" MacBook Pro Retina Display, early 2015, model A1502, 2.7Ghz

Short version: spilled water on MBP, upon opening it up a few days later discovered corrosion on the keyboard cable connector and the keyboard cable itself (album here: http://imgur.com/a/KmG8J).

Basically I'm trying to understand the best approach to minimize further damange and increase the likelihood of getting my MBP back and running:

  • Can the keyboard cable be cleaned safely/effectively like most components, with isopropyl alcohol?
  • Do I need to do an alcohol bath (this terrifies me) of the whole logic board to effectively clean the keyboard connector or can it be cleaned safely/effectively using qtips etc?
  • What has already likely been killed (keyboard?), and what further damage do I risk testing those components after cleaning versus replacing them up front (if that's even possible)
  • Is it a stupid idea to test/power on the system after cleaning the keyboard cable/connector without first removing the entire logic board and inspecting the other side for corrosion?

In case more information could be helpful, here's a detailed timeline of events and actions I took, some bad, some worse:

  • With MBP open and powered on, spilled water across keyboard.
  • In a panic, lifted up MBP, turned upside down (keyboard facing down) while mashing the power button.
  • After about a second, I heard the fan kick in, then the machine powered off normally as it would from a forced shutdown via power button.
  • Immediately turned MBP on its side with right side facing down to drain (pretty sure this was not a great decision.
  • Grabbed some canned air and went to town blasting air through the left side ports, the fan vents, etc. for about 10 minutes until there was no water noticeably leaving the chassis
  • Left the MBP on its right side, open, over an absorbent cloth for 24 hours
  • Read that I should air it out keyboard face down, so let it sit keyboard facedown over an open crate for ~36 hours.
  • Finally (too late I assume) faced my fear and opened up the case, disconnected the battery, and assessed the damage
  • Found a few drops of standing water on the I/O board cable bracket and corrosion on the keyboard connector and keyboard cable and visible water marks on the large-ish metal rectangle in the middle of the logic board.
  • Disconnected the keyboard cable from the keyboard connector, took the photos linked in the album above, and decided to post here before proceeding.

So it's been about 60 hours since the initial spill. I have not attempted to power on since the forced power down at the time of the spill. Pretty sure I would've voided it a few times over already, but my MBP is not under warranty.

Any advice or information you could give would be greatly appreciated. Let me know if you have any questions or if I left anything out. Thanks!

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Remove the logic board and clean any corrosion with a toothbrush and 95%+ isopropyl, there might be some on the other side. It is safe to use isopropyl to clean the keyboard cable and connector.

After this, leave it a day to dry. Reassemble and try to power this on. If any of the keyboard connector pins are burnt, it is likely a diagonal row of keys will not work, in which case you will need to solder a new connector on. To be honest, after cleaning, just test it and see if the keyboard is working or not (if the Mac boots that is). The keyboard mainly uses signals and a very low voltage (3.42V), so there is no harm in trying this after cleaning.

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