Model A1369, 1.6, 1.7, or 1.8 GHz Processor, 64, 128 or 256GB Flash Storage

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Bake my motherboard longer to solve three beeps?

Macbook Air A1369 circa 2011


When trying to startup my Macbook Air circa 2011, I encountered the dreaded "three beeps" followed by a few seconds' pause repeating endlessly.

I tried all of the answers in this helpful thread 3 beeps on start up

and none of them worked until the last, surprising one: baking the motherboard! Doing so at 350 degrees F for 8 minutes led to the following: when I pressed the power button, I heard the Apple "chime" and the normal blue screen lit up.

I was so happy! But then, after about 1 second, a series of multi-colored flashing bands appeared on the display. The screen then went black. Now, the three beeps has occurred again and the I can't get the chime or normal blue startup screen anymore.

Does this minor success mean the baking is useful and I should try it again at a higher heat? Longer time? Or at this point is my computer just toast? (no pun intended)

Any help is appreciated . . .

Answer this question I have this problem too

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None of the top techs have touched this question for a very good reason. Baking a logic board is analogous to going to a doctor with a broken finger and coming out with a body cast. Yeah, the finger got a cast on it.

You've probably destroyed any chance a tech had of actually repairing it.

Your best shot was taking it to a tech an having them reflow the RAM that is not working! With a hot air work station.

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Thanks - wish I'd known that sooner! FWIW many in the thread I linked had success with baking the mobo to reflow, and I only did it as a last resort. Any other suggestions on best thing to do at this point? Like I said above I did have some brief success after baking the mobo at 350 F for 8 minutes.


Well 12 year olds post on forums but I wouldn't take their advice on how to treat cancer over a doctors. Here a list of the top ten old wives tales. Add to it, putting it rice to absorb water and baking a logic board will fix it. Go talk to a professional before ever following the advice of amateurs found on the internet. Look at the reputation of someone before taking advice from them.


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Ok, so the reason you bake a motherboard is to attempt to try re-solder everything when it heats up and then cools back into place. Although from the link you provided, it sounds like bad solder could be an issue, I highly recommend this as a last resort type deal. I would first attempt to reapply the thermal paste like John had said (putting a motherboard into a microwave isn't always safe).

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Isn't always safe", is rather an understatement.


Thanks - I have already tried reapplying thermal paste, cleaning out under the battery, and all else in the thread I linked. Sadly they didn't work. My question here is 1) Is there anything to learn from the brief success I saw from baking the mobo? and 2) Are there any other solutions to this short of an entirely new mobo?


@bilb0baggins - Aaron what you saw was the realignment at the atomic level of the solder changing from a non-conductive state to a conductive state (Tin is a semiconductor).

What happens is the chips heat-up and over time the solder connections decompose. If you has a microscope and looked you would see the Tin within the solder crystallizing. What the oven trick does is push the temperature beyond the crystallization state causing some of the crystals to breakdown back to the amorphous state (conductive). Sadly, there are still crystals present and these act as seeds allowing the re-crystallization to happen again in a short amount of time. Here's a nice little experiment you can do to see this effect: Sugar Crystallization

The proper way of dealing with this is to completely strip the solder away so there are no crystals that way the solder stays in the conductive state longer. This is where the chip is fully removed cleaned as well as the circuitboard and then resoldered down. This is beyond what a DIY can do, and I don't do it any more either.

So why is this such a problem? The solder needs a bit of Lead to buffer the Tin but as Lead is such a nasty poison it was removed from solder. I'm all for removing Lead, but there are some places it's just needed, like around hot running chips.


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Aaron Marks will be eternally grateful.
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