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Late 2011 model, A1278 / 2.4 GHz i5 or 2.8 GHz i7 processor.

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Unreliable keyboard - repair or replace?

BACKGROUND: Altho nearly 8 years old, my MBP does everything I need it to as I’ve upgraded it with 8GB RAM, an SSD and a 750GB hard drive. The battery, which I replaced a couple of years ago (it was swollen and affected the trackpad) holds a charge pretty well, but the system report says it needs service. I manage with ‘Keyboard viewer’ and a bluetooth keyboard , but it’s not ideal. Nothing has been spilled in or on this Mac, and I recently removed the bottom and everything inside looks good to me.

SYMPTOMS: The first keys to become unreliable were 1, 2, 3, slowly spreading to 9. Lately the ‘E’ key only works if I hit it hard. The keyboard seems to work better when the device is cold.

QUESTION: before undertaking the ‘difficult’ Top Case replacement, I just want to check whether there are other things I should check.

Answered! View the answer I have this problem too

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too hard to repair - very cheap to replace - the reason ———— replace

P.S. NO NEED TO REPLACE TOP CASE - just keyboard for about £15!!

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Here’s a video on how to replace your keyboard. The part should be about $25.

A small electric screw driver really helps on this one. Time required for a novice should be about 2 to 2.5 hours.

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I made the replacement, using the above video, as I couldn't find anything else. But beware: several times in the video (and it seemed at the most crucial times) the person's hands or arms made it impossible to see what he was actually doing. Of course, I should have taken photos and made a PDF - but didn't.

I had the most trouble replacing the keyboard ribbon cable (which was super easy to remove).


Sorry, to do that cable you put a piece of electrical tape on it and pull it in rather than trying to push it in.


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It is not difficult to replace the keyboard. The link below is a keyboard that should work for your MBP model. If you need help putting it on post here and i will try and respond quickly. (You can copy and paste the link into your URL Bar at the top and it should take you to the keyboard aforementioned on amazon)

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thank you, Crazy!


You’re welcome Dagnew.


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dagnew will be eternally grateful.
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