Mac Mini Mid 2010 Fan Replacement

Removing the Mac mini's single fan.

Use this guide to replace a noisy worn-out fan.

Edit Step 1 Bottom Cover  ¶ 

Image 1/2: Rotate the bottom cover counter-clockwise until the white dot painted on the bottom cover is aligned with the ring inscribed on the outer case.

Edit Step 1 Bottom Cover  ¶ 

  • Place your thumbs in the depressions cut into the bottom cover.

  • Rotate the bottom cover counter-clockwise until the white dot painted on the bottom cover is aligned with the ring inscribed on the outer case.

Edit Step 2  ¶ 

Image 1/1: Remove the bottom cover and set it aside.

Edit Step 2  ¶ 

  • Tilt the mini enough to allow the bottom cover to fall away from the outer case.

  • Remove the bottom cover and set it aside.

Edit Step 3 Fan  ¶ 

Image 1/1:

Edit Step 3 Fan  ¶ 

  • Remove the two 11.3 mm T6 Torx screws securing the fan to the logic board near the antenna plate.

Edit Step 4  ¶ 

Image 1/1:

Edit Step 4  ¶ 

  • Lift the ear of the fan nearest the RAM up off the standoff secured to the outer case.

Edit Step 5  ¶ 

Image 1/1: Carefully pull the fan cables upward to lift the fan connector up out of its socket on the logic board.

Edit Step 5  ¶ 

  • Lift the fan out of the mini for enough clearance to access its connector.

  • Carefully pull the fan cables upward to lift the fan connector up out of its socket on the logic board.

  • Remove the fan.

Conclusion

To reassemble your device, follow these instructions in reverse order.

Now that you've finished, share your repair story with others.

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14 Comments

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There are actually 3 T6 screws securing the fan. The third screw is out of the screenshot, just below the RAM.

inferno10 - Reply

Nope, that third screw is actually just a post that the rubber grommet attached to the fan body slips over. Step 4 shows how the fan comes off of it. When you go to remove the fan, you simply remove the two screws closest to the antenna plate and then lift the fan off this post. The screw you are talking about is removed in Step 14 and does not need to be removed until this point.

Andrew Bookholt -

Successful install completed, but I had some trouble getting the fan reinstalled. When I removed the fan from the "Step 14" post, the rubber piece stayed on the post. When attempting to reinstall the fan, it was impossible to get the loop to go back over that rubber piece. So, I had to remove the post (again), and with the help of the spudger and some patience, worked it through. Then installed the fan using the 2 screws and the post. I think it may have saved some time and trouble if I just removed all 3 in the first place, leaving the post in the fan.

meag -

On mine I needed to remove the 26 mm T6 Torx standoff during this step rather than step 12

philipashlock - Reply

on my mid-2011 mac mini, that 3rd T6 post/screw had to be removed to get the fan out. It goes right through a hole in the fan housing. No way the grommet is slipping over anything without wreaking major havoc.

Derek Shaw - Reply

Whats a standoff? Is that a screw?

brzmn - Reply

A standoff is like a screw extender. It screws into a screw-hole, and its head has a screw hole on it. When you attach something to a standoff, it makes that something stand off the original screw-hole surface.

cityzen -

Pulling on the ear didn't do anything, so I removed the whole screw at this step. The screw stayed fixed on the fan and I didn't have to remove it at the step where you remove the logic board screws.

Probably I didn't want to use too much force .. but it worked

Alexander Kogler - Reply

This is the approach I used. no way was the "ear" pulling over the head of the standoff without breaking something. The standoff simply unscrewed from whatever is under the logic board and stayed with the fan assembly. WAY safe

Derek Shaw -

Loosen the fan standoff from the motherboard using a T6 driver.

bobcloninger - Reply

When I pulled the fan ear off the standoff the rubber grommet stayed on the standoff. That's fine, but it makes it difficult to put the fan ear back on during reassembly. So I just pulled the rubber grommet off the standoff and put it into the hole in the fan ear. Then I was able to push the fan ear onto the standoff with out trouble during reassembly.

dhein - Reply

I was a bit too rough in unclipping the fan and broke off the connector on the board?

Is my only option to replace the board?

Anthony DeFreitas - Reply

You may be able to use something like Macs Fan Control to adjust the fans manually (or tell them to use another sensor to adjust the speed).

maccentric -