Introduction

If your trackpad is faulty or needs to be removed for easier access to the battery, follow this guide.

For your safety, discharge your MacBook Pro's battery before you begin this procedure. A charged lithium-ion battery can create a dangerous and uncontrollable fire if accidentally punctured.

  1. Before starting this procedure, you must disable your Mac's Auto Boot feature. Auto Boot powers on your Mac when you open the lid, and may be accidentally triggered during disassembly. Use this guide or follow the abbreviated instructions below to disable Auto Boot.
    • Before starting this procedure, you must disable your Mac's Auto Boot feature. Auto Boot powers on your Mac when you open the lid, and may be accidentally triggered during disassembly. Use this guide or follow the abbreviated instructions below to disable Auto Boot.

    • Power on your Mac and launch Terminal.

    • Copy and paste the following command (or type it exactly) into Terminal:

      • sudo nvram AutoBoot=%00

    • Press [return]. If prompted, enter your administrator password and press [return] again. Note: Your return key may also be labeled ⏎ or "enter."

    • You can now safely power down your Mac and open the bottom case, without it accidentally powering on.

    • When your repair is complete and your Mac is successfully reassembled, re-enable Auto Boot with the following command:

      • sudo nvram AutoBoot=%03

    • Before proceeding, unplug and power down your MacBook. Close the display and lay it on a soft surface, top-side down.

    • Use a P5 Pentalobe driver to remove the six screws securing the lower case:

      • Two 6.2 mm screws

      • Two 5.3 mm screws

      • Two 3.4 mm screws

    • Throughout this repair, keep track of each screw and make sure it goes back exactly where it came from to avoid damaging your device.

    • Apply a suction handle to the lower case near the front-center area of the MacBook Pro.

    • Lift the suction handle to create a slight separation between the lower case and the chassis.

    • Insert one corner of an opening pick into the space between the lower case and the chassis.

    • Slide the opening pick around the nearest corner and halfway up the side of the case.

      • This releases the first of the hidden clips securing the lower case to the chassis. You should feel and hear the clip pop free.

    • Repeat the previous step on the opposite side, sliding your opening pick under the lower case and up the side to pop the second clip free.

    • Insert your opening pick once again under the front edge of the lower case, near one of the two centermost screw holes.

    • Give the pick a firm twist to pop free the third clip securing the lower case to the chassis.

    • Repeat this procedure near the other of the two centermost screw holes, popping the fourth clip free.

    • Pull the lower case firmly towards the front of the MacBook (away from the hinge area) to separate the last of the clips securing the lower case.

      • It may help to pull first at one corner, then the other.

    • Remove the lower case.

    • Carefully peel up the large piece of tape covering the battery connector, on the edge of the logic board nearest the battery.

    • Remove the tape.

    • Gently peel back the small piece of tape covering the battery board data cable connector.

      • The tape is integrated into the ribbon cable and will not detach completely. Simply peel it back enough to access the connector.

    • Use the tip of a spudger to flip up the small black locking tab securing the cable in its connector.

    • Disconnect the battery board data cable by sliding it out from its socket.

      • Slide parallel to the logic board, in the direction of the cable.

    • Fold the battery board data cable back and out of the way.

    • Use a T6 Torx driver to remove the 3.7 mm pancake screw securing the battery power connector.

    • Use a spudger to gently lift the battery power connector, disconnecting the battery.

      • Lift the connector high enough so that it stays separated from its socket. If it accidentally makes contact during the course of your repair, it could damage your MacBook Pro.

    • Use a T5 Torx driver to remove the two 2.1 mm screws securing the trackpad cable connector bracket.

    • Remove the trackpad cable connector bracket.

    • Use a spudger to disconnect the trackpad ribbon cable by gently prying its connector straight up from the logic board.

    • Prepare an iOpener and lay it on top of the trackpad ribbon cable for about a minute, in order to soften the adhesive securing the trackpad ribbon cable to the top of the battery.

      • If you don't have an iOpener, use a hair dryer to warm up the cable instead. The cable should be warm, but not too hot to touch. Be careful not to overheat the battery.

    • Carefully peel the trackpad ribbon cable up off the battery, and push it out of the way.

      • Do not fold or tear the cable.

    • Use a T5 Torx driver to remove the ten screws securing the trackpad assembly:

      • Two 4.3 mm screws

      • Eight 5.8 mm screws

    • Remove the trackpad assembly.

      • You'll need to swing the display open slightly to remove the trackpad.

      • Take care to feed the trackpad ribbon cable through the MacBook Pro's frame without snagging.

    • Be sure not to lose the six small washers (two circular and four rectangular) resting on the underside of the trackpad.

Conclusion

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

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Jeff Suovanen

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