How do I fix my wine-y keyboard?

Over a week ago I spilled a glass of wine on my keyboard. I mopped it up immediately and used a hairdryer (on no heat) to dry it out the best I could.

Certain keys won't work at all (a,s,e . . . all very necessary) and sometimes a there was a repetitive dinging and as a letter would zip repeatedly across the page.

When I returned home, the computer seems to work just fine as long as I'm using my new bluetooth keyboard and magic mouse.

Is there anything I should do to open it up and clean out any residual stickiness or does it need to go away to a mac hospital for a tuneup?


Answered! View the answer I have this problem too

Is this a good question?

Score 7
Add a comment

3 Answers

Chosen Solution

It's interesting to completely open a keyboard and look how it works inside. There a many plastic sheet with conductive lines called traces. Looks like a diagram and each key has a specific trace. When you push on a keyboard key the action is transfered to a small rubber button under the key that initiate an electrical contact on the sheet traces and the chosen character is recorded by the processor and transfered to the screen so you can see it. When liquid is dropped on the keyboard it may reach the internal sheets and dissolve part of the electrical traces causing a key malfunction, the electrical current flow being interrupted. Wine can easily dissolve the traces and that can't be repaired. You have to replace the keyboard.

Was this answer helpful?

Score 8
Add a comment

Try popping up the keys and wiping them down with a wet paper towel, though unfortunately you may need to replace your keyboard.

Was this answer helpful?

Score 3



One of the answers suggested that I pop up some keys and while I thought about that, I didn't know HOW to without breaking them off. I even thought about removing those four tiny screws on either side so that I could lift off the whole thing.

But then, I remembered some of my dad's attempted tv repairs from the 50's that ALWAYS resulted in a more expensive professional repair.

A new keyboard is in my near future.

Thanks again!


It helps to take off the key and clean under when the key is sticky (but responding) but when the key doesn't respond at all then the internal layers have been affected by the liquid and there's no possible recovery. A keyboard swap is the only solution.


Popping them off with a pen is good.


Add a comment

I had the same thing happen to me (my friend spilled the wine and instantly knew he had to fix it no matter the cost) after pulling apart the mbp and cleaning it up a bit my 'u' and 'back' keys were still not working. A new keyboard seemed the only solution and was purchased through ebay for around $100AUD, would be quite cheaper if you're in the US. A month later and all is fine, just make sure you use the guide here to take it apart so you know what to do and MAKE SURE you are receiving the right keyboard for your model or it won't work. Good luck!

Was this answer helpful?

Score 1
Add a comment

Add your answer

sandy Sober will be eternally grateful.
View Statistics:

Past 24 Hours: 1

Past 7 Days: 15

Past 30 Days: 67

All Time: 13,453