Introduction

Replacing the upper case requires removal of nearly every component inside your MacBook Pro 15" Unibody Mid 2010.

Remove the following ten screws securing the lower case to the upper case:
  • Remove the following ten screws securing the lower case to the upper case:

    • Three 13.5 mm (14.1 mm) Phillips screws.

    • Seven 3 mm Phillips screws.

Step 1 (technically step 9 - replacing the base plate) Apparently one of my screws was a micron or two smaller than the others. This screw belongs to the hole above the optical drive, which is also apparently a couple of microns smaller than the others. It took seven attempts to figure which screw had originally been in that hole; all the other screws were too large, but fitted perfectly everywhere else.

Bizarre much?

Will - Reply

It might be a matter of how the screws are driven in, and not that they're slightly different sizes. When I reassembled my MacBook, a couple of the screws, including the one over the optical drive you mention, were hard to drive in and jutted up a little bit instead of sitting entirely flush. Swapping screws didn't help. The solution was to unscrew them and drive them in at a bit of an angle - perpendicular to the slightly curved surface of the back plate where the screw holes were, instead of fully vertical with respect to the ground the Macbook is sitting on. Doing it that way, the screws were easier to drive in and they all ended up flush in their holes. Didn't matter which screws they were. (I swapped a few around just to check after reading this.)

Andrew Janke -

I discovered a great way of organizing the screws. I used an ice cube tray and added the screws in order, keeping the different kinds together. So when it came to reversing the steps, the screw order was an added control step to returning everything in its place.

leonie - Reply

Great advise! Love it! :)

Ririds -

I used to do that and that worked really great until I bumped it by accident and the entire tray went on the rug! I spent the next day sorting things out.

Now I use these:

http://www.sciplus.com/p/50-114-CLEAR-PL...

The lower ones 50 to a package. I mark them w/ blue tape. Often if it's part like the fans, or the optical drive I'll tape the screws into/near the holes where they belong. I did this a lot especially w/ the bottom screws from MBPs until I'd done so many I knew exactly where the longer ones went.

Richard Sato -

I wrapped the screws in a piece of blue masking tape and wrote the number on the little pouch I made. Then I stuck the blue tape pouches on the underside of the case bottom in order.

Roscoe -

I take double-sided tape, put that on a piece of paper, stick the crews to that, and label them.

jelimoore -

Best I've found is a bead sorting tray. They're like $5 at Wal-Mart and they have a lid that seals up and won't let them jump between containers.

maccentric -

I take a sheet of paper, pierce the screws through the paper, take a pen and box the screws and write out what step they belong to.

Nils -

@Will, in my case I had the same result as you did. As a reminder to myself the next time I need to open the computer, I put a dot of white paint on those two screw's head and a very, very thin ring of white on the very edge of each hole, that way I'll know they go into those two holes.

Roger - Reply

Actually the four screws on the bottom were not threaded all the way up. I didn't check to see if the thread gauge was the same on them, but it wasn't until I had about four screws out (I didn't take them out in the order that the bottom all came out first) that I noticed a difference. I then took out the rest of the bottom ones to see if they matched the two that were already out that weren't threaded to the top. They did. So I went under the assumption that those were all bottom screws and when I put it back together everything went fine with no resistance.

So there are three types of screws: Four for the bottom, three long ones as indicated and three others that might be slightly smaller than the bottom ones.

wresnick - Reply

Hi,

Although its more than a year since your contribution, I thought you might be amused to know that it is not just that the screws go in more easily when at an angle, Apple actually drilled and tapped the holes at a 15% angle. I too had tried to drive them in straight. An Apple "genius" - I was in for something else - clarified the design for me. It was done so that the screws lay flush on the angled part of the lower case. Nice design, but since Apple encourages DIY memory and drive changes, they could have mentioned this little ... trap.

H Stahl -

MacBookPro8,2

Intel Core i7, 2,2 GHz, RAM 16 GB

Mountain Lion

May someone help me?

I have installed the second drive with ssd 840 evo, but when I try to copy the file from the new drive to the main hd this in not allowed (errore -36)

Piero - Reply

To my knowledge you can't transfer a single file more than 4gb. I advise compressing to a bunch of rars to split the file size and moving them individually

1982sketcher -

Hey everyone, here's the very best way to PERFECTLY organize your screws AND keep track of the order of the procedure: Get a piece of plain corrugated cardboard and a pen (I like using a Sharpie). For EACH step of the disassembly, draw a simple diagram of the layout of the computer on the piece of cardboard, with dots or Xs where the screws are located. Right after you remove each screw from the computer, poke a hole in the cardboard in its corresponding diagram position with your screwdriver and place the screw in that hole. If there are other non-screw related parts to be removed, you can add notes below each step diagram to remind you of where they go or how they should be placed. This cardboard method is great not only because your screws will not go flying or get mixed up by accident if bumped, but each screw goes EXACTLY back where it came from and you can keep the cardboard as a template for future use if necessary!

- zerø K

zeroK - Reply

for all the mac 2011 owner. we should pressure apple to accept their fault. they gave as a piece of junk while they took our $2000. -betrayed apple fanboy

mindful - Reply

These instructions worked great for me. I ordered a replacement battery from Key Power (on Amazon) for my 15" Macbook Pro (mid-2010). Cost was $74 shipped.

Battery came with 3 different screwdrivers to help with installation. I just needed the one size though, since my 2010 seemed to use all the same size screws.

Thanks!

Marcos - Reply

During re-assembling (put the screws back in), it is important to note that the 3mm threaded holes are not completely vertical, but bent a little bit such that the hole direction is rectangular to the tapered surface. The force of the screwdriver must point towards the direction of the hole. Otherwise the screw gets jammed

kusi - Reply

There is a FOOLPROOF WAY TO ORGANIZE ALL SCREWS and other parts removed.

Print the repair guide.

Yes, the actual photo of the bottom of the laptop with the circles around the screws.

When you remove the screw, tape it to the photograph.

You will tape the screw to the exact location that you just removed it from.

Same thing with any part you remove.

splashzoneent - Reply

Thanks Splash!!! I used your suggested method, and it was perfect: kept all my screws, and i was able to, very easily, put them back in their correct place. I greatly appreciated your feedback. Thank you for sharing!!

Tommy Kedar -

Thank you!!! This worked fabulously - even the I.T. people at my workplace were excited as they never thought to do that before. Replacing the battery took about 10 minutes!

nclarke36 -

Worked like a charm! Took less than 20 minutes.

It's Oct. 2015, and the fan cost me about $10. it was the same brand/model...

SUNON MG62090V1-Q020-S99 .

SOME TRICKS -

1- no T6 screwdriver- was careful using needle nose players to loosen 2 screws protruding up, then use a small phillips to push real hard into the T6 slots, SLOWLY turn , also used a small flat head screwdriver (for eye glass repair) was able to grab thread on T6's, made a small mark with screw driver across the top so I could see when it started to turn.

2- no spudger -made one; cut a little strip 1/2" x 1 1/2" of plastic. couldn't get it to slide under plug, there's an edge where plug fits. so lifted old fan out, pulled upward on the plug it popped right out with very little effort. I used my home made spudger to push the new plug into place.

3- download free "Macs Fan Control" This is how I was alerted to the fan not working in the first place. Program shows temperature of all key components in the computer.

cheers- Durango CO!

Dgodrummer - Reply

Watch the video first, read the entire tutorial and all the comments before you start, and spread a white towel on the floor so you can find screws when you drop them. Watch this first -- http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qiBxhA29e...

kevicoll409 - Reply

Please be aware that you CAN do this replacement with MUCH LESS work. I successfully replaced a trackpad (TP) in this model WITHOUT removing a lot of what is described here. I think i mainly removed the logic board (LB) anchor screws along the TP side and was then able to lever up the LB just enough to get the cable unplugged and snaked out. Followed the reverse and done. Maybe not for all, but it worked for me. // Re screws: i print out the images here of the multi-screws locations and then tape the screws in place on the print-out.

Danno - Reply

Is it necessary to ground oneself to prevent static damage to logic board, etc. when replacing the speakers?

If so, what is the best way to do this?

Do you wear wrist strap designed for this purpose? To what metal object do you attach the clip and wire? I’m assuming the aluminum case isn’t going to work.

Sibyl Smith - Reply

Using both hands, lift the lower case near the vent to pop it off two clips securing it to the upper case.
  • Using both hands, lift the lower case near the vent to pop it off two clips securing it to the upper case.

  • Remove the lower case and set it aside.

After pulling out the lower case and put it back on, the lower case doesn't stick well with the left clip. What should i do now?

Januar Wiyogo - Reply

Remove the two 7.4 mm Tri-point screws securing the battery to the upper case.
  • Remove the two 7.4 mm Tri-point screws securing the battery to the upper case.

  • Note: For certain repairs (e.g. hard drive), removing the battery is not necessary but it prevents any accidental shorting of electronics on the motherboard. If you do not remove the battery, please be careful as parts of the motherboard might be electrified.

  • You do not necessarily have to follow steps 3-6 to remove the battery in order to replace the hard drive. However it is recommended to remove all power sources from electronics before working on them.

A 1/16th flathead screwdriver easily removes the tri-wing screws in this step. I could not find a Y0 Tri-wing driver at any local stores.

Jon Daniels - Reply

I'd like to add that for me, a 1/16th flathead screwdriver did NOT allow me to remove the tri-wing screws holding the battery in place. After several careful attempts, it became obvious I was perilously close to stripping the screw(s), so I abandoned the attempt to unscrew the tri-wing screws with a flathead screwdriver altogether. As it turned out, I didn't need to remove the battery to do what I needed to do (keyboard replacement), but it would have been a whole lot easier had the battery been easily removable.

dave - Reply

The Tri-wing screw driver is impossible to find in retail, amazon and ebay are great bets but they vary wildly in quality... I ordered two, and both were so cheap, and barely got the job done. It could be worth getting it here. When you do get it, make sure you push, the Y0 screws were very tight in my macbook, pressing hard prevents you from stripping the Y screw.

Abe - Reply

I believe they are Y1 screws, no?

Mark -

Short of taking out the battery is there something else I can do to protect the motherboard?

Bruce Bell - Reply

What worked for me was actually a set of needlenose pliers - the heads on those screws aren't flush, they actually stick out enough that it's possible to turn them from the outside. Caused some scuff marks on the finish of the screws but it's not like anyone's going to see them anyway!

oboewan42 - Reply

A tri-wing screwdriver sold as 'for Nintendo Wii' marked 'HFA 360/ x50' did the job. I replaced the screws with standard-head M2x6mm metric screws (M2 = 2 mm thread, 6 mm length of threaded part). Exactly, I took them out of an old hard-disk (with torx head and slightly shorter).

akronymus - Reply

It says "Note: For certain repairs (e.g. hard drive), removing the battery is not necessary but it prevents any accidental shorting of electronics on the motherboard." This is obviously a boilerplate instruction that is not appropriate for a repair guide.

Well, DO you have to remove the battery? IS this one of those repairs where it's "not necessary but prevents accidental shorting"?

Obviously, this instruction is boilerplate text that accompanies almost all the repair guides-- but there shouldn't be boilerplate text there, since this is a specific guide for replacing the Magsafe DC-in jack and not the harddrive.

skat1140 - Reply

Use the tip of your finger to carefully peel back the corner of the warning label to reveal a hidden Tri-point screw.
  • Use the tip of your finger to carefully peel back the corner of the warning label to reveal a hidden Tri-point screw.

  • Remove the last 7.4 mm Tri-point screw securing the battery to the upper case.

Is removing the battery necessary?

bname - Reply

It is not strictly necessary. As mentioned above, removing the battery is the only way to be sure that no parts of the logic board are electrified. It is very easy to replace the hard drive without removing the battery, but it is safer to remove the battery first.

Daniel Brauer -

Note: removing the battery can cause a hitch with OS X 10.9 Mavericks installation to a blank drive, or at least it did for me.

Disconnecting the battery makes the hardware clock reset to something like Jan 1, 2000. This causes the Mavericks installer to fail its self-check with the error message: "This copy of the Install OS X Mavericks application can't be verified. It may have been corrupted or tampered with during downloading."

To fix this, you need to open up Terminal from the Utilities menu in the bootable OS X installer environment and use the `date` command to set your Mac's clock back to the correct time before proceeding with the "Install OS X" menu selection, as described here: http://blog.mconserv.net/2013/10/install...

Andrew Janke - Reply

Thanks for that warning, Andrew.

Max Fenton -

Happened here too, thanks for the tip!

Franco Bianchi -

As a note, my Mid-2010 Unibody Macbook did not have this third screw, just two to remove the battery.

Max Fenton - Reply

Can anyone answer this question. I cannot afford the entire 80 dollar repair kit listed here and the tools needed only list a spunger t6 and a phillips...it appears from some of these comments there are more drivers needed. I am afraid to do this anyway but not having the right tools off the bat will just make things more difficult while waiting for an order to come in...can someone list the exact tools I would need ? Any help would be appreciated...I am ready to order this but want to put in one order....ifixit, can you clear this up perhaps ?

laurie - Reply

One of the most important tool you should get is the head strap magnifier with lighting, it will make your viewing and capable ability much more confident.

James -

Answered my own question ... the list at the top of this page is dif from the list when you order the part.....

laurie - Reply

Taking the battery out is the easiest part once you have the Tri-Wing screwdriver

Tri-point Y1 Screwdriver

Tao - Reply

And yes, taking the battery out does naturally make the hardware clock reset.... It's easily fixed. See Andrew Janke's comment above.

It's a small hassle, compared to needing to possibly replace your logic board because a surge from your battery fried it.

Tao - Reply

Ne trouvant pas de tournevis Y1, j'ai utilisé avec succès une pince électrique à bouts fins pour déserrer la vis puis j'ai terminé avec un tournevis plat très fin (1.5x35)

Ivan Keller - Reply

I stripped the Y screw! Arghhhh. Any help ideas?

erinandjoy - Reply

new battery drains at the rate of about 10% a minute. i may have received a faulty one but i wouldn't have bought it if i knew what i know now.

aozoren - Reply

Is this a battery from iFixit?

Scott Dingle -

Is all of this necessary if I am just needing to put a new top to my old bottom?

sherry williams - Reply

Lift the battery by its plastic pull tab and slide it away from the long edge of the upper case. Do not try to completely remove the battery just yet.
  • Lift the battery by its plastic pull tab and slide it away from the long edge of the upper case.

  • Do not try to completely remove the battery just yet.

Add Comment

Tilt the battery away from the logic board enough to access the battery cable connector.
  • Tilt the battery away from the logic board enough to access the battery cable connector.

  • Pull the battery cable connector away from its socket on the logic board and remove the battery from the upper case.

  • Pull the battery cable connector away from the center of the logic board.

I'm having the same problem as previous commenters: the battery now drains much faster. It's the original factory unit—I only replaced the HD, which is working great.

Is there something I am missing with the battery reconnection? Maybe it's loose?

I just want to make sure before I crack open my laptop again.

cmalec722 - Reply

Fast battery drain problems might be due to a corrupted power manager circuit on the logic board. To reset it, remove the battery, press the power button for about 5-10 seconds, then reinstall the battery. I know the problem might have been partly due to removing the battery in the first place, but this is the procedure for resetting what might have gone wrong. It might also help to do a PRAM reset, by holding down Command-Option-P-R at power (not just from a restart), and let the Macbook chime twice after its initial powerup chime.

johnsawyercjs -

The spudger works well for detaching the connector.

skat1140 - Reply

Remove the three 3.4 mm T6 Torx screws securing the left fan to the logic board.
  • Remove the three 3.4 mm T6 Torx screws securing the left fan to the logic board.

    • In some models, these T6 Torx screws may be 3.1 mm long.

Je vais juste vous surprendre car je suis français.

JI'll just surprise you because I am French .

I understood the problem of the left fan. In fact the problem is with the design at Apple. The fan housing is too narrow vertically a few tenths of millimeters. This is why so many problems . The left fans deteriorate very quickly.

The solution is very simple. Buy a new fan in China, it is the cheapest and level it's very fast delivery . Warning it comes fan already used but in good condition.

The thing to do is to over- raise the fan does not rub and deteriorating. To do so just buy a zinc washer 3 mm diameter available from my local hardware store ( € 3 for 70 pieces ) and place it under the black screw fully right and top right . The over- elevation leads to no longer have friction effect.

Thats ALL !!!

olivierbartoli - Reply

on my screwdriver set, the T6 screw driver felt wobbly. It felt like I would strip the screw if not careful. So I used a T7 screw driver, and it was much more snug.

Bryan Chun - Reply

Use the flat end of a spudger to disconnect the left fan connector from the logic board. It is useful to twist the spudger axially from beneath the fan cable wires to release the connector. The fan socket and the fan connector can be seen in the second and third pictures. Be careful not to break the plastic fan socket off the logic board as you use your spudger to lift the fan connector straight up and out of its socket. The layout of the logic board shown in the second picture may look slightly different than your machine but the fan socket is the same.
  • Use the flat end of a spudger to disconnect the left fan connector from the logic board.

  • It is useful to twist the spudger axially from beneath the fan cable wires to release the connector.

  • The fan socket and the fan connector can be seen in the second and third pictures. Be careful not to break the plastic fan socket off the logic board as you use your spudger to lift the fan connector straight up and out of its socket. The layout of the logic board shown in the second picture may look slightly different than your machine but the fan socket is the same.

I successfully removed my right fan, cleaned it and installed it back. But when it came to the left one I accidentally broke the connector from the logic board. Now I'm left with only one functioning fan. I'm using an external laptop fan. Do I have to replace the whole logic board or can it be fixed somehow? My temp is between 90-95 C when I run a heavy game.

khalid alodan - Reply

I made the same mistake! Did you solve it?

Rosario - Reply

In case anyone else accidentally breaks a fan connector, check the comment on step #14. It is basically the same connection, so that should work here.

Relevant part of comment - “To replace it, I removed the socket, held it in place against the solder pads and ran a 750degF soldering iron across the pads. It's definitely reattached it, I'm not sure how good the electrical contacts are yet.”

John - Reply

Lift the left fan out of the upper case.
  • Lift the left fan out of the upper case.

Add Comment

Remove the three T6 Torx screws securing the right fan to the upper case.
  • Remove the three T6 Torx screws securing the right fan to the upper case.

on my screwdriver set, the T6 screw driver felt wobbly. It felt like I would strip the screw if not careful. So I used a T7 screw driver, and it was much more snug.

Bryan Chun - Reply

Use the flat end of a spudger to pry the right fan connector up out of its socket on the logic board. It is useful to twist the spudger axially from beneath the fan cable wires to release the connector.
  • Use the flat end of a spudger to pry the right fan connector up out of its socket on the logic board.

  • It is useful to twist the spudger axially from beneath the fan cable wires to release the connector.

  • Remove the right fan from the upper case.

There is no way to reconnect the fan cable. It looks like it was soldered onto the logic board. I disconnected it and can't reconnect it.

Has this happened to anyone else.

Vicki - Reply

Vicki, you tore the connector off the board. They can be re-soldered if you are very careful/skilled with a soldering iron, but that is not something that you should try to do if you haven't soldered SMD components before.

rcoleskelton - Reply

Use the flat end of a spudger to pry the AirPort / Bluetooth ribbon cable up off its socket on the logic board.
  • Use the flat end of a spudger to pry the AirPort / Bluetooth ribbon cable up off its socket on the logic board.

  • Fold the AirPort / Bluetooth ribbon cable back to keep it out of the way of the logic board.

Add Comment

Disconnect the iSight cable by pulling its connector toward the optical drive opening.
  • Disconnect the iSight cable by pulling its connector toward the optical drive opening.

I was afraid to pull too hard, but wiggling it worked! :)

Mark - Reply

Use the flat end of a spudger to pry the optical drive cable connector up from the logic board.
  • Use the flat end of a spudger to pry the optical drive cable connector up from the logic board.

  • Fold the optical drive cable back to keep it out of the way of the logic board.

hello i just installed a brand new logic board in my mac, in my mac i have replaced the cd drive with an second ssd - but when i turn the mac on, the OS cant find the second ssd, the cable is in (it clicks in) - does anybody know how to fix this or ?

Best regards Mathias

mathiastondering - Reply

Carefully pull the subwoofer/right speaker cable up to lift its connector out of its socket on the logic board.
  • Carefully pull the subwoofer/right speaker cable up to lift its connector out of its socket on the logic board.

Same problem as with step 11. I pried up the connector as shown and can't reconnect it. It looks like it may have been soldered to the logic board. How can this be fixed?

Vicki - Reply

The only problem that I face on substituting the top case was when I tried to connect the subwoofer connector to the socket on the logic board. I did some tentatives but on the last the socket on the logic board I suppose unsoldered. Some suggestions?

Thanks

Paolo Sperati

paolosperati63 - Reply

Deck the Halls
With tools and Fix Kits
Use the flat end of a spudger to pry the hard drive cable connector up out of its socket on the logic board.
  • Use the flat end of a spudger to pry the hard drive cable connector up out of its socket on the logic board.

Add Comment

Remove the two short Phillips screws securing the small EMI shield to the logic board. Remove the EMI shield from the logic board.
  • Remove the two short Phillips screws securing the small EMI shield to the logic board.

  • Remove the EMI shield from the logic board.

Mine was stuck to the Keyboard Ribbon Cable; needed an extra pull, but it's safe and should come off - it's not attached to anything. :)

Mark - Reply

Use the flat end of a spudger to pry the trackpad cable connector up out of its socket on the logic board.
  • Use the flat end of a spudger to pry the trackpad cable connector up out of its socket on the logic board.

Add Comment

Use your fingernail to carefully flip up the keyboard ribbon cable retaining flap. Make sure you are flipping up the retaining flap, not the socket itself.
  • Use your fingernail to carefully flip up the keyboard ribbon cable retaining flap.

  • Make sure you are flipping up the retaining flap, not the socket itself.

  • Use the tip of a spudger to pull the keyboard ribbon cable straight out of its socket.

How will I know I have inserted the keyboard ribbon successfully? After installing a new upper case I can't seem to get the keyboard ribbon to stay in its socket. Or does the EMI sheild hold it in place?

cemcatikkas - Reply

Ditto. It seems very tricky to reinsert the keyboard ribbon.

GrooveStomp - Reply

I just did this - it is kinda tricky. The ribbon cable has a flap on top that is designed solely to help you coax the cable back into the socket....don't make the mistake I did and spend an hour trying to feed this flap through the socket. What worked for me was a combination of using the flap with my fingers and tweezers on the actual cable to reinsert it into the socket. Took a few tries, but I got the cable re-inserted, pressed down on the tiny locking thing, and the keyboard cable was in and secured.

dave - Reply

Indeed, it is difficult to insert the keyboard ribbon cable. It will stop after about 1mm of insertion. It needs to go in quite a bit further. Angling it slightly, you may be able to get a corner to go in, then straighten the ribbon while applying forward pressure. I reassembled it a few times with that sinking feeling on startup before I realized that it wasn't really making contact!

dennishodge - Reply

I've replaced the keyboard, so reinserting the ribbon was particularly tricky. After several failed attempts, here's what finally dawned on me... I took a piece of scotch tape, maybe an inch long. I folded on end on itself, maybe a quarter inch from the top. That left a sticky zone and a non-sticky zone on the tape. I taped it to the ribbon, and was able to use the tape and a "handle" to pull the ribbon into the socket. Afterwards, I carefully removed the tape without pulling the ribbon out of the socket.

Bryan Chun - Reply

This was the hardest part for me. Be sure you flip the release flap up before removing or re-inserting.

Jonathan Daiello - Reply

Use the flat end of a spudger to pry the battery indicator cable connector up out of its socket on the logic board.
  • Use the flat end of a spudger to pry the battery indicator cable connector up out of its socket on the logic board.

Add Comment

Grab the plastic pull tab secured to the display data cable lock and rotate it toward the DC-In side of the computer. Pull the display data cable straight out of its socket. Do not pull the cable upward, as the socket is very fragile. Pull the cable parallel to the face of the logic board toward the corner of the upper case.
  • Grab the plastic pull tab secured to the display data cable lock and rotate it toward the DC-In side of the computer.

  • Pull the display data cable straight out of its socket.

  • Do not pull the cable upward, as the socket is very fragile. Pull the cable parallel to the face of the logic board toward the corner of the upper case.

One of the chips in this image was covered in glue. when I flipped the data cable clip, the glue plus encased chip popped right off the board. Does anyone know what chip this is? Without it, my Mac plays the startup chime, but the screen is black. The backlight is on, but it just displays black.

https://www.dropbox.com/s/befonnaz125fn9...

Jon - Reply

I did the exact same thing. I still have the tiny chip. Is there a way to glue it back on or will I need a new logic board now?

Louis Adams - Reply

There's a bracket / handle clip attached to the display port. I didn't know it was there and accidentally bent it off. Can't get it back on, but it seems to work OK without it.

Bryan Chun - Reply

Use the tip of a spudger or your fingernail to flip up the retaining flap on the keyboard backlight ribbon cable socket. Be sure you are prying up on the retaining flap, not the socket itself.
  • Use the tip of a spudger or your fingernail to flip up the retaining flap on the keyboard backlight ribbon cable socket.

  • Be sure you are prying up on the retaining flap, not the socket itself.

  • Pull the keyboard ribbon cable straight out of its socket.

I couldn’t see the flap as mine was already popped up. Try looking at it from the side to get a better view of the state of yours.

Cyrille - Reply

Remove the following screws:
  • Remove the following screws:

    • Seven 3.3 mm T6 Torx screws securing the logic board to the upper case.

    • Two 8 mm T6 Torx screws securing the DC-In board to the upper case.

  • Do not remove the logic board yet! There are components on the underside of the logic board attached to the the upper case that must first be disconnected.

Add Comment

Carefully lift the logic board assembly from the left side and work it out of the upper case, minding the port side that may get caught during removal.
  • Carefully lift the logic board assembly from the left side and work it out of the upper case, minding the port side that may get caught during removal.

  • Do not entirely remove the logic board yet!

I just took one apart that had some pretty strong adhesive holding the speaker onto the upper case. I had to slip a spudger underneath and pry it up, else it was going to overly bend the mobo before it would release.

jkamis - Reply

My board was stuck to the bottom plastic. I had to gently release it by pushing the black plastic beneath the board down, while carefully moving the board upward.

Jonathan Daiello - Reply

Lift the logic board enough to gain clearance and use a spudger to pry the microphone up off the upper case.
  • Lift the logic board enough to gain clearance and use a spudger to pry the microphone up off the upper case.

On this step, the microphone was attached to the board so the whole unit lifted off easily.

seandodd - Reply

Mine was too; it was part of the speaker assembly, a much better arrangement.

maccentric -

Slide the logic board away from the port openings and lift the assembly out of the upper case.
  • Slide the logic board away from the port openings and lift the assembly out of the upper case.

  • Before reinstalling the logic board, it is easiest to press the microphone down into its housing in the left speaker to keep it in place.

  • To avoid ESD damage, be sure to lay your logic board on a soft, static free surface during service.

After prying off the mic from the top case and carefully lifting the logic board, I realized there was still a wire connected near the display connector, under the board. I was able to disconnect it but I'm wondering if I missed something or if this cable is missing from the instructions. The wire was connected under the board so it could not be disconnected before removing the board.

Laurent Daudelin - Reply

This is the magsafe cable. Step 23 details removing the torx screws holding the magsafe board in place. If you remove the screws, you don't need to remove the cable.

supersuade - Reply

Remove the two Phillips screws securing the hard drive bracket to the upper case. These screws are captive in the hard drive bracket.
  • Remove the two Phillips screws securing the hard drive bracket to the upper case.

  • These screws are captive in the hard drive bracket.

  • Remove the hard drive bracket from the upper case.

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Using its attached pull tab, lift the hard drive out of the upper case.
  • Using its attached pull tab, lift the hard drive out of the upper case.

  • Don't try to completely remove it yet, as it is still connected to the hard drive cable.

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Pull the hard drive connector out of its socket on the hard drive. Pull on the connector, not the cable itself.
  • Pull the hard drive connector out of its socket on the hard drive.

  • Pull on the connector, not the cable itself.

  • Remove the hard drive and set it aside.

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Remove the following four screws securing the hard drive/IR sensor cable to the upper case:
  • Remove the following four screws securing the hard drive/IR sensor cable to the upper case:

    • Two 2.5 mm Phillips screws.

    • Two 10 mm Phillips screws.

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Carefully peel the IR sensor cable off the adhesive securing it to the upper case. Pull the hard drive bracket/IR sensor housing away from the side of the upper case.
  • Carefully peel the IR sensor cable off the adhesive securing it to the upper case.

  • Pull the hard drive bracket/IR sensor housing away from the side of the upper case.

  • Remove the hard drive/IR sensor cable from the upper case.

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Use the tip of a spudger to pry all three AirPort/Bluetooth antenna connectors up off the AirPort/Bluetooth board.
  • Use the tip of a spudger to pry all three AirPort/Bluetooth antenna connectors up off the AirPort/Bluetooth board.

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De-route the three antenna cables from their channels in the AirPort/Bluetooth housing. De-route the camera cable from its channel in the AirPort/Bluetooth housing.
  • De-route the three antenna cables from their channels in the AirPort/Bluetooth housing.

  • De-route the camera cable from its channel in the AirPort/Bluetooth housing.

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Remove the following two screws securing the AirPort/Bluetooth housing to the upper case: One 3.8 mm Phillips
  • Remove the following two screws securing the AirPort/Bluetooth housing to the upper case:

    • One 3.8 mm Phillips

    • One 8.6 mm Phillips

  • Remove the AirPort/Bluetooth assembly from the upper case, minding any cables that may get caught.

I switched the colors denoting the 2 screws in this step. I can't speak for anyone else's, but in my MacBook Pro the screw on the left in the picture was twice as long as the screw pictured on the right. However, I guess I don't really understand editing on the site because my changes do not show up in the history or the document.

Robert Ciaccio - Reply

Good catch! You didn't see your edits before because they do not take effect until an admin goes through and approves them to ensure the accuracy of the edit.

Andrew Bookholt -

Cool, thanks! Glad to help :)

Robert Ciaccio - Reply

Remove the following three Phillips screws securing the optical drive to the upper case: One 4.5 mm Phillips screw securing the optical drive bracket to the upper case near the fan.
  • Remove the following three Phillips screws securing the optical drive to the upper case:

    • One 4.5 mm Phillips screw securing the optical drive bracket to the upper case near the fan.

    • Two 2.5 mm Phillips screws securing the optical drive to the upper case near the optical drive opening.

    • In some cases, all three may be 2.5mm screws.

  • Remove the optical drive from the upper case.

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Remove the following six screws securing the subwoofer and right speaker to the upper case: Two 3.2 mm Phillips screws.
  • Remove the following six screws securing the subwoofer and right speaker to the upper case:

    • Two 3.2 mm Phillips screws.

    • Two 12.3 mm Phillips screws.

    • One 2.5 mm Phillips screw.

    • One 8.3 mm Phillips screw.

  • Remove the subwoofer/right speaker from the upper case.

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Remove the 8.6 mm Phillips screw securing the antenna/camera cable retainer to the upper case. Remove the antenna/camera cable retainer from the upper case.
  • Remove the 8.6 mm Phillips screw securing the antenna/camera cable retainer to the upper case.

  • Remove the antenna/camera cable retainer from the upper case.

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Remove the single 8.6 mm Phillips screw securing the display data cable retainer to the upper case. Remove the display data cable retainer from the upper case.
  • Remove the single 8.6 mm Phillips screw securing the display data cable retainer to the upper case.

  • Remove the display data cable retainer from the upper case.

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Remove two of the three 6 mm T6 Torx screws securing the right side of the display to the upper case.
  • Remove two of the three 6 mm T6 Torx screws securing the right side of the display to the upper case.

  • We purposely have you leave one screw attaching the display to the upper case to aid in future steps.

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Remove two of the three 6 mm T6 Torx screws securing the left side of the display to the upper case.
  • Remove two of the three 6 mm T6 Torx screws securing the left side of the display to the upper case.

  • We purposely have you leave one screw attaching the display to the upper case to aid in future steps.

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Open your MacBook Pro so the display is perpendicular to the upper case.
  • 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 left hand, remove the remaining T6 Torx screw from the upper display bracket.

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

  • Remove the last remaining T6 Torx screw securing the display to the upper case.

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

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Conclusion

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

59 other people completed this guide.

8 Comments

In my experience, re-inserting the battery connector to the mobo is a pain with the battery in place. There is very little room to maneuver the connector and reconnect it - after several very careful attempts, I got the connector back on, but next time I'm removing the battery.

dave - Reply

Great, easy repair (at least for me).

I only had problems with a 2.5 mm phillips screw, the one holding the right speaker assembly from the side. I needed to use a drill to drill it from the center away.

So 100% success, 1 screw less.

jacopochiapparino - Reply

I am having a heck of a time reinserting this keyboard ribbon cable. The first time I powered up, only the left side of the keyboard worked. I tried reinserting, and all further attempts have resulted in no keyboard response at all. The ribbon is starting to "dogear" a tiny bit in the corners, so I am hesitant to try my current technique too many more times. I'd really like to do this correctly. Has anyone had luck slightly removing the logic board to aid in getting a better angle on inserting the cable? Any help would be appreciated!!!

rylandkoopus - Reply

A number of these steps are unnecessary to replace the upper case. For example, there is no reason why the hard drive needs to be removed. After getting to the steps where the upper display hinges are removed, I couldn't see any reason why the logic board needed removal. My advice would be to disconnect the battery. Then perform Step 21 (disconnecting the display cable). Then perform Step 32 (disconnect Airport/Bluetooth antenna cables). Then proceed to Step 37 and complete the guide from there. If you encounter any part that's in your way (perhaps the edge of the logic board might prevent the upper display case from being pulled away from the lower case), just go back through this guide and follow the directions to remove only that particular part. But just be aware that quite a few steps in this guide are not necessary, and it is certainly not true that "Replacing the upper case requires removal of nearly every component inside your MacBook Pro 15" Unibody Mid 2010."

Chris Dahler - Reply

The hard drive and logic board are installed in the upper case. How could you not remove them? You'd be rebuilding your computer with the new upper case, without a logic board or keyboard. You aren't confusing the upper case for the display, are you? This guide is about replacing the top case, which is the part where the keyboard is, not the display.

John M -

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nuna - Reply

Fantastic guide, thanks!

I'd suggest adhesive for reaffixing the sticky strips but not sure what kind would be best, mine had just enough old glue attached to them.

There was a tiny padded mesh chunk (maybe em shielding?) stuck to the back of the keyboard that did not have enough sticky stuff left on it, I did not put this into the new case as I wasn't sure if it had been glued with conductive or nonconductive adhesive and didn't want to risk it coming loose and shorting something.

If you have the time to post re-assembly steps they would be very useful.

Thanks again.

naomijarvis - Reply

Hello there,

allow me one question. I have a C2D 2.66 SD MacBook Pro 15", Mid 2009.

a few months ago, it fell and in result the case is damaged in the corner, but it works fine! although dust accumulation is noticeable and common.

A couple of days ago, I found a business opportunity, a Mid 2010 i5 15" Macbook Pro, which seems to have all the cases in good condition. I'm thinking it could be a good opportunity to refurbish mine, by replacing all my cases with the cases from this one.

So my question is: Can I replace my Mid 2009 Macbook Cases with the ones from this Mid 2010? Although it's an i5 instead of a C2D...?

I know the batteries differ... apparently mine is 73 W h Li-Poly, the other is 77.5 W h Li-Poly...

can anyone help please?

Thank you

ChristianLoeffler - Reply

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