MacBook Pro 15" Unibody Late 2008 and Early 2009 Front Display Glass Replacement

Front display glass replacement.

Use this guide to replace a broken front display glass panel. Removal of the front display glass is required to access the LCD. Although it is not technically necessary to remove the display to access the front display glass, it greatly simplifies the task. This guide is not applicable for anti-glare displays.

Edit Step 1 Access Door  ¶ 

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Edit Step 1 Access Door  ¶ 

  • With the case closed, place the Unibody top-side down on a flat surface.

  • Depress the grooved side of the access door release latch enough to grab the free end. Lift the release latch until it is vertical.

Edit Step 2  ¶ 

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Edit Step 2  ¶ 

  • The access door should now be raised enough to lift it up and out of the Unibody.

Edit Step 3 Battery  ¶ 

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Edit Step 3 Battery  ¶ 

  • Be sure the access door release latch is vertical before proceeding.

  • Grab the translucent plastic tab and pull the battery up and out of the Unibody.

  • If the latch is depressed it will lock the battery in place.

Edit Step 4 Lower Case  ¶ 

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Edit Step 4 Lower Case  ¶ 

  • Remove the following eight screws securing the lower case to the chassis:

    • One 5.4 mm Phillips screw.

    • Three 14 mm Phillips screws.

    • Four 3.5 mm Phillips screws.

Edit Step 5  ¶ 

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Edit Step 5  ¶ 

  • Using both hands, lift and remove the lower case off the upper case.

Edit Step 6 Display Assembly  ¶ 

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Edit Step 6 Display Assembly  ¶ 

  • If necessary, peel the EMI gasket off the camera cable connector.

  • Disconnect the camera cable by pulling the male end straight away from its socket toward the optical drive opening.

  • Do not try to lift this connector straight up off the board. Pull the connector parallel to the face of the logic board.

  • Deroute the camera data cable from the channel in the optical drive.

Edit Step 7  ¶ 

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Edit Step 7  ¶ 

  • Remove the two Phillips screws securing the camera cable bracket to the upper case.

  • The leftmost screw may remain captive in the camera cable.

  • Seperate the camera cable bracket from the camera cable and remove it from the computer.

Edit Step 8  ¶ 

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Edit Step 8  ¶ 

  • Grab the plastic pull tab secured to the LVDS cable lock and rotate it toward the DC-in side of the computer.

  • Pull the LVDS connector straight away from its socket.

  • When disconnecting the LVDS cable, do not pull on the black tab secured to the LVDS cable lock. We recommend wiggling the cable while applying tension to slowly "walk" the connector out of its socket.

Edit Step 9  ¶ 

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Edit Step 9  ¶ 

  • Remove the 7 mm Phillips screw from the LVDS cable bracket.

  • This screw may remain captive in the LVDS cable.

  • Lift the LVDS cable bracket out of the upper case.

Edit Step 10  ¶ 

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Edit Step 10  ¶ 

  • Remove the two outer 6 mm Torx screws securing each side of the display to the upper case (four screws total).

Edit Step 11  ¶ 

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Edit Step 11  ¶ 

  • Open your MacBook Pro so the display is perpendicular to the upper case.

  • Place your opened MacBook Pro on a table as pictured.

  • While holding the display and upper case together with your other hand, remove the 6 mm Torx screw from the lower display bracket.

Edit Step 12  ¶ 

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Edit Step 12  ¶ 

  • Be sure to hold the display and upper case together with your other hand. Failure to do so may cause the freed display/upper case to fall, potentially damaging each component.

  • Remove the last remaining 6 mm Torx screw securing the display to the upper case.

Edit Step 13  ¶ 

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Edit Step 13  ¶ 

  • Grab the upper case with your right hand and rotate it slightly toward the top of the display so the upper display bracket clears the edge of the upper case.

  • Rotate the display slightly away from the upper case.

  • Lift the display away from the upper case, minding any brackets or cables that may get caught.

Edit Step 14 Front Display Glass  ¶ 

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Edit Step 14 Front Display Glass  ¶ 

  • In the following steps, you will use a heat gun to soften the adhesive securing the outer black border around the underside of the front glass panel to the display. The area the adhesive is applied to is shown in red in the second picture.

  • Before starting, be sure to clean the display glass with lint-free cloth moistened with a mild solution; it will make the suction cup adhere better, and will make checking for dust on reassembly easier

  • With the heat gun set to low, start by heating the outer black border near the upper right corner of the glass panel.

  • Always aim the heat gun away from the soft rubber strip around the display glass. Heating the rubber will cause it to melt slightly, turning its finish from matte to glossy. Touching overheated rubber can cause it to permanently deform.

  • Due to the heat applied, it is normal for a layer of condensation to develop on the inside of the glass panel and/or the outside of the LCD. It can be removed with glass cleaner once the glass is separated from the display.

Edit Step 15  ¶ 

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Edit Step 15  ¶ 

  • With the panel sufficiently heated, fasten a heavy-duty suction cup near the upper right corner of the display glass.

  • Don't fasten the suction cup on top of the rubber strip around the edge of the display glass.

  • To attach the suction cups we sell, first position the suction cup with the movable handle parallel to the face of the glass panel. While lightly holding the suction cup against the glass, raise the movable handle until it is parallel with the other handle.

  • Slowly and gently pull the corner of the display glass up off the display assembly.

  • If only the top edge of the glass lifts up (as seen in the third picture), repeat steps one and two until you can lift up the corner of the panel.

Edit Step 16  ¶ 

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Edit Step 16  ¶ 

  • Gently lift the corner of the display glass enough to insert a spudger between it and the display assembly.

  • Use the flat end of a spudger to gently pry up the adhesive securing the front glass to the display.

  • Pry up the glass panel a few inches away from the upper right corner along the top and right edges of the display.

Edit Step 17  ¶ 

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Edit Step 17  ¶ 

  • Use a heat gun to soften the adhesive under the black strip along the right side of the front glass panel.

  • Attach a suction cup along the right side of the front glass panel.

  • Pull up on the glass panel while you use the flat end of a spudger to separate it from the rest of the display assembly.

  • Continue working along the right edge of the front display glass until it is separated from the display.

  • It may be helpful to use a guitar pick or another thin plastic object to keep the upper right corner of the front glass panel from sticking back down to the display assembly.

Edit Step 18  ¶ 

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Edit Step 18  ¶ 

  • Use your heat gun to soften the adhesive under the black strip along the top edge of the glass display panel.

  • Attach a suction cup near the top edge of the glass display panel and use it to pull the glass panel up off the display.

  • Work along the top edge of the glass panel, carefully using the flat end of a spudger to separate the adhesive if necessary.

Edit Step 19  ¶ 

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Edit Step 19  ¶ 

  • Use a heat gun to soften the adhesive under the black strip near the upper left corner of the glass display panel.

  • Attach a suction cup near the upper left corner of the glass display panel.

  • Pull up on the suction cup and use the flat end of a spudger to carefully pry the glass display panel out of the display assembly.

  • Once the upper left corner has been separated from the display, it may be helpful to use a guitar pick or another thin plastic object to keep the glass from sticking back down to the display assembly.

Edit Step 20  ¶ 

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Edit Step 20  ¶ 

  • Use a heat gun to soften the adhesive under the black strip along the left side of the front glass panel.

  • Attach a suction cup along the left side of the front glass panel.

  • Pull up on the glass panel while you use the flat end of a spudger to separate it from the rest of the display assembly.

  • Continue working along the left edge of the front display glass until it is separated from the display.

Edit Step 21  ¶ 

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Edit Step 21  ¶ 

  • Now that the top, left, and right edges of the glass are free from the display, slowly lift the top edge of the glass panel and gently rotate it out of the display.

  • If necessary, use the flat end of a spudger to free the bottom edge of the glass display panel from the display assembly.

  • Before reassembling, be sure to clean both the inside of the glass display panel and the LCD as any dust or fingerprints trapped inside will be annoyingly visible when the machine is on.

Edit Step 22  ¶ 

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Edit Step 22  ¶ 

  • Insert the edge of a plastic opening tool between the display glass and the camera bracket, and run it around the camera bracket to separate it from the display glass.

  • Do not forget to stick the camera bracket down to the new front display glass before reassembly.

Edit Step 23  ¶ 

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Edit Step 23  ¶ 

  • During the glass removal process, the camera cable may stick to the adhesive on the glass panel, disconnecting it from the camera board as the panel is lifted. If your camera cable is still connected to the camera board, skip this step.

  • To reconnect the cable, first use the tip of a spudger to remove the piece of foam tape over the camera cable ZIF socket.

  • Use the tip of a spudger to flip up the ZIF cable retainer on the camera cable socket.

  • Insert the camera cable into its socket on the camera board and use the tip of a spudger to snap down the ZIF cable retainer, locking the cable in place.

  • Reapply the piece of tape covering the camera cable socket.

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

For more information, check out the MacBook Pro 15" Unibody Late 2008 and Early 2009 device page.

Required Tools

Heat Gun

$24.95 · 39 In stock

Heavy-Duty Suction Cups (Pair)

$14.95 · 50+ In stock

Phillips #00 Screwdriver

$5.95 · 50+ In stock

Plastic Opening Tools

$2.95 · 50+ In stock

Spudger

$2.95 · 50+ In stock

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Comments Comments are onturn off

The A1286 has no Access Door.!!

I actually can see no sign of the battery!...

aguib, · Reply

Quote from aguib:

The A1286 has no Access Door.!!

I actually can see no sign of the battery!...

I assume you have the newer model, with the built-in battery. It's still removable with tools, but these are the wrong instructions for that model.

lgc90, · Reply

when will there be a guide for the other unibody macbook pro. that does not have an access door?

irishking, · Reply

Is there a manual to show, how disasembly the display, i mean, after step 5, to check the display between lcd and aluminiun back case?

Max

Max, · Reply

On other guides you state the height of the HD that can be supported, e.g. http://www.ifixit.com/Guide/Repair/Insta... , I have read ( but have not confirmed ) that the uni-body MacBook Pro can be fitted with the 750GB and 1TB 12mm drive from Western Digital.

Can you confirm this?

Many thanks in advance.

ahothabeth, · Reply

Quote from SHerwood Ball:

My display and aluminum casing has separated.

I don't know if it just snaps back together or does it need to be glued.

I dropped mine on the carpeted stairs and the display still works.

I'm hoping I can just snap it back together and that no plastic pieces or teeth of the snapping

portion have been broken........

SHerwood Ball, · Reply

When you say "left fan" is this "left when looking at the logic board after turning the computer over and looking it up opening it up" or "left when sitting at the computer keyboard and typing on it"?

thvv, · Reply

We always use left and right in reference to the computer when you're using it.

Andrew Optimus Goldberg,

Directions were great and the worn dc in board was replaced. The hardest part of the procedure is disconnecting the data display cable. A better description of step 21 is to slide the connector parallel to the circuit board towards the outside corner. Reconnecting correctly took several tries.

I used the tip of the spudger to nudge the corners a little at a time to seat the connector.

The ribbon connector for the keyboard has to be inserted all the way before seating the retaining cap. It took me three tries . First try power button did not work second try numbers keys did not work.

Thanks for the directions ...could not have done it with out them!!!

landryd, · Reply

Hi, My name is Jess I need help asap I accidentally dropped my macbook Pro and i cant find the silver screw for the top left back side, Does any one know if I can replace it with an eye glass screw?? If you can help at all Please e-mail me at Chambliss_jess@yahoo.com thx please help me my bf is going off... ;(

Jess, · Reply

The fixit PH00 is the wrong screw driver for this entire job. It did not fit in the screws, it was too pointy and caused screws to be rounded off.

mattrittgers, · Reply

About midway along each edge is a snap. To release each snap, gently slide the flat edge of a Spudger under the lower case, then lift the lower case away.

jonathansturges, · Reply

I have an late 08 macbook pro and replaced my cd drive with a hd caddy and hard drive put in it. everything works but my wifi is saying no hardware installed. Bluetooth and camera working just the wifi isn't. Everything was working just find before i did this but now i cant get my wifi back on. I checked the cable looks to be inserted properly any one else had this happen or have any solutions ?

myjellio, · Reply

I have a problem with previous made unprofessional teardown of this mac, and the port that the camera cable is connected to, on the m-board, is cracked, because somebody pulled it straight up .. can someone please, share an idea about the way of fixing it, or maybe a name of the part i need ?

sanchoser, · Reply

Ccouldn't make it past step 10 as the two T6 screws on the right stripped. I was using the correct tool, correctly seated, but the screws were simply unwilling to turn and the screw head gave out before they turned at all. The ones on the left came out alright, but there seems to be some type of thread glue on them. Recommendations on how to break that seal without stripping the screw heads might be a good idea. Otherwise - be forewarned.

Jonathan Field, · Reply

I have the same problem with step 10. Can't remove the screw on the left, it is all damaged.

Benny Chew, · Reply

Unlock without removing them , the two remaining center 6mm Torx screws securing the display to the upper case.

thierry28722, · Reply

What about matte screens?

I need to change the LCD on a 15" MBP with a matte screen.

Is the process of removing the grey metal frame similar? I guess not.

Pierre Touzet, · Reply

Another caution is needed - the heat gun is capable of discoloring the LCD panel (giving uneven coloration) if it overheats. This is possible on the low setting. Proceed cautiously, heating in increments until the glass releases.

Alden Stradling, · Reply

I was wondering the same, is absolutely necessary to disassemble the screen to change the glass? Can I jump to step 21?

caholzmann, · Reply

Be careful with the spudger and the soft rubber strip around the glass. Since the rubber strip has been heated up by the heat gun, it is easily smushed and deformed by the spudger.

robcork, · Reply

Be patient and work slowly or else you will crack the glass like me.

BillyRachel1, · Reply

If you don't have a guitar pick, playing cards works too.

robcork, · Reply

If you will be reusing the glass, with new adhesive, then you will want to remove the old adhesive. This is a bit of a pain, as alcohol doesn't work, and you need to be careful to avoid damaging the black screen border, which is black paint on the back (adhesive) side of the glass.

To remove the adhesive, note that it is actually a thin film with rubber cement on both sides. First, use a razor to carefully pull up one corner of the film and gently peel it off of the glass. If you are gentle and slow, the underlying adhesive may also come off; if not, then rubbing with your finger or a hard rubber eraser will do the trick.

griscom, · Reply

what to do when new glass starts to peel after a week ?

labig, · Reply

This step is only needed if replacing the glass. If you are only replacing the LCD, there is no need to do this step

robcork, · Reply

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