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13" aluminum unibody, 2.0 or 2.4 GHz Core 2 Duo processor.

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Problem after water damage

So my 3 year old daughter spilled some liquid on my wife's Macbook pro... she let it dry but didn't bother to tell me or clean it until a few days later. She said the computer turned on and worked for a bit and then stopped charging


Model # A1278

Thanks to your detailed disassemble instructions (GREAT JOB!) I opened it up last night to find most of the coffee residue was on the magsafe dc-in board in port and on body of the dc-in port as well. I cleaned it off very carefully so at least now it looks like it wasn't spilled on. I also noticed some left over debris on the monitor ribbon connector (Near the dc-in port) and on one small black coponent on the logic board (couldn't tell you what that little blacked soldiered competent was.) After thoroughly drying and re-assembling the unit I plugged in the the magsafe charger and waited. The wall charger light is on but extremely dim (almost unnoticeable) and when I disconnect it the side charge light flickers very quickly then stops.(just one light.)

After reading through many post I thinks it's either the magsafe DC-in board or the logic board itself? Problem is which one could it be, or both? Can the DC-in board be tested with a VOM?

Thanks in advanced for your replies as I hate to have this computer become a paper weight :(

First of all thank you guys very much for your replies.

OK, SO I charged up my battery with another macbook pro that I own (15") and once the battery was fully charged I placed it back into the 13" macbook pro. and It fired up! and looked pretty good. Everything seemed to work at first then I noticed that the charger was still doing the same thing, just now it would charge very slowly with the green light still very dim. I took the computer to mac to get the Dc-in board replaced and the guy behind the counter guaranteed me that if he sent it to apple they would fix everything since I still have apple care, so I said go for it. I got a call today from apple telling me nothing would be covered due to water/liquid damage and that for 750.00 they would repair everything. further more they said the problem was the screen??? OK can a bad lcd monitor cable cause my charging issue? being that the screen looked fine when it started up. I did notice a bit of darkening on the video cable where it attaches to the mother board but would that cause the dim light charging issue? I'm considering trying to plug in my 15 in monitor to the 13" inch mother board for testing, are they universal?

Thanks again for your replies.

Answer this question I have this problem too

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+ for very well stated question


Thanks Mayer, As soon as apple calls me to go pick my machine up I'm going to try disconnected the monitor cable and just use a second monitor and see what the results are. Also can you suggest a good way to clean a mother board once a spill has occurred? can you actually pull everything off it and use distilled water, tooth brush and then thoroughly dry? Thanks!


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Please read through all of this question link. Replacing Logic Board Myself Possible?

I have heard of the $310 fix all price from Apple from time to time. Maybe we can get more details from the poster. The next expensive option ($250-$350 for logic board) is DT&T services.

Here's the pinout on a MagSafe:

Hook your machine up to an external monitor to test the screen area. I agree with Josh on first replacing the MagSafe port. You might do a web search for a cheap one for testing purposes and if that's it then spend the money on a good one.

Here's my comments from another question dealing with logic board replacements:

The $310 deal seems to pop up now and then but doesn't appear to be consistent. I agree with you completely. I hear of way to many fried logic boards compared to what I actually encounter in my shop. You hit one of my pet peeves. Best Buy seems to be the worst offender around here. Poor technicians claiming it's the logic board and quoting a $1000 price tag, then they send it in and the $ pays for the new DC-IN port or reseated RAM chip.(actual cases that have come to me). admonition - GET A SECOND OPINION on a logic board repair, never take your Mac to a repair place that mainly handles PC's (Macs are a side line to them). Find your Mac tech via recommendations (also a great icebreaker in a coffee shop) I went 10 years with no advertising except customer recommendations.

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I'd try just replacing the DC-in board for testing purposes. They're relatively cheap compared to the logic board. :) I've never tried doing anything with a VOM so I can't help you there. If a new DC-in board takes care of it, you're good to go. If not, then you may need to let it become a paperweight, the logic boards for that machine are not cheap.

Here's the link to the iFixit part.

MacBook Unibody (A1278) MagSafe DC-In Board

MacBook Unibody (A1278) MagSafe DC-In Board Image


MacBook Unibody (A1278) MagSafe DC-In Board


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Josh a VOM is Volt/Ohm meter. Also called a multimeter. I hope you used one of those.


Thanks for the explanation Mayer. I'm aware of what it is, what it does and how to use one. I appreciate your concern. :)


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Dee will be eternally grateful.
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