Parts

Introduction

If your MacBook no longer charges or you don't see the little orange or green charging light when it's plugged in, check the cord for signs of damage.

In this guide we will change the cord connecting the charger to the MacBook.

Alternatively, you can use this guide to repair your existing cable instead of replacing it.

Image 1/1: A decent welding pen
  • Tools required:

    • A decent welding pen

    • A wire cutter

    • A lead vacuum pump

    • A big heavy-duty spudger

    • A pair of snap-ring pliers for use with external snap-rings. Really any long-nose pliers would do, this is just perfect for the job if you happen to have a pair :-)

    • Super glue

    • 1 or 2 small clamps

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Image 1/3: Heat the power brick's plastic casing with a hair dryer, and/or [https://d3nevzfk7ii3be.cloudfront.net/igi/SyiX2fMVNKIDfWkG|run a razor blade along the seam between the two halves of the casing|new_window=true], in order to weaken the adhesive. This will make it easier to pry the case open.
  • Open the cord winding flaps.

  • Heat the power brick's plastic casing with a hair dryer, and/or run a razor blade along the seam between the two halves of the casing, in order to weaken the adhesive. This will make it easier to pry the case open.

  • Insert your pliers and pry slowly. (Make sure they stay seated in the inside corners, or you may injure yourself or gouge the case.)

  • The cord winding flap will fall out.

  • Do the same on the other side.

  • Work slowly!

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Image 1/2: At some point, the case will crack open. (The edges are glued all the way around, and the interior metal sheeting may be glued to the case with a foam adhesive as well.)
  • Finish it by hand; you'll have to apply some force.

  • At some point, the case will crack open. (The edges are glued all the way around, and the interior metal sheeting may be glued to the case with a foam adhesive as well.)

  • The corner pieces inside the winding flaps, with their flat metal springs, may come loose as well; note their arrangement with springs pointing toward the cord, for reinstallation later.

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Image 1/1: '''Be careful not to touch any of the capacitor leads, or you may receive an electric shock.'''
  • Carefully remove the inside from the shell.

    • Be careful not to touch any of the capacitor leads, or you may receive an electric shock.

  • If the inside sticks to one half of the shell, it's probably due to (a) glue around the edge of the A/C connector, and/or (b) foam glue between the inside and the flat of the shell.

    • Use a heavy duty spudger or other pry tool to pry the edge of the A/C connector from the shell, and carefully pry between the shell and the inside to break the foam glue.

    • Use only ESD-safe pry tools. Do not use metal pry tools or screwdrivers.

  • You may find the metallic sheeting breaks a little; that's okay, but try to minimize the damage!

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Image 1/1:
  • I like to insert a big spudger to make more room to work.

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Image 1/3: Start by removing a bit of lead with the pump.
  • Make sure you note the position of the positive and negative terminals.

  • Start by removing a bit of lead with the pump.

  • Separate the cables. It may require some force, so be careful not to break the board.

On the smaller 45W adapters, it is virtually impossible to desolder the white cable because the solder joint is hidden behind a capacitor.

Tip: Pull with some force on the white cable with the pliers, it should come out clean without causing damage. It is not soldered directly onto the board, there is a receptacle in between which you can pull the cable out of. You can use this receptacle to solder or clamp in the new cable, too.

Matthias Huber - Reply

(on the 45W) Be careful not to pull too hard on the white cable/clamp - I managed to rip a piece out of the PCB. Fortunately, I had another power adapter (with the same cable issue) lying around.

One point that is missing from this guide:

Partially remove the copper shielding to gain access to the white cable.

Do it on the side that does not have the capacitor lead soldered to it.

Simply peel off the adhesive tape, remove the tab out of the slot and peel up the shielding (it will look like a tent) to gain some space to access the 'white' solder spot. Be careful not to put too much strain onto the electrolytic capacitor's lead.

redwoood -

Image 1/2: Bending the wire tips 90 degrees helps with installation.
  • The replacement cable should come with some solder pre-applied; just put the leads in place and apply heat to install it.

  • Bending the wire tips 90 degrees helps with installation.

you need to solder those new leads to the board - that part seems to be missing here

deanholdren - Reply

Are you talking about the ends of the cable ?

If it is the case, just strip a little bit no longer than 3/16" of an inch ( like 3mm ) you have to make sure it is not too long; you can see at the step 8, there is no room on the other side of the board.

And heat it to apply soldering on it so it looks like the picture, it is easy to insert and it weld solidly.

Pierre Merineau - Reply

Image 1/1: It will be a tight fit!
  • Carefully put the power assembly back in the first half of the casing.

  • It will be a tight fit!

When I opened the charger, it turns out the white wire is attached to a connection on the PCB marked "Out +", but the black one is loose so I don't know where it used to be. There are two options next to where the white wire is, one marked "Out -" and the other "ID"; also slightly further back there's one marked "ADJ". Anyone know which of those the black wire is meant to go into?

Sorry if this should be obvious, but I'm a bit of a noob... :}

Rob - Reply

Image 1/1:
  • Place the cable grommet in the proper position in the casing.

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Image 1/1:
  • Put the cord winding flappers back in position.

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Image 1/1: Avoid the flap areas and the grommet area.
  • Put some super glue on the cover.

  • Avoid the flap areas and the grommet area.

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Image 1/3: Hold the flaps in place and install the other half of the casing.
  • You might want to wear gloves so as not to get excess super glue on your fingers.

  • Hold the flaps in place and install the other half of the casing.

    • It will be tight—be patient!

  • Make sure the flaps stay in place.

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Image 1/2:
  • Clamp the casing together and give it a few hours for the glue to set.

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Image 1/1:
  • Just like new!

Good articel.

I just repaired the power adapter for my friend's MacBook and it's now working perfectly. The case cracking method is inspired! Never would have thought of using a pair of needle nose pliers that way. I hate that cliche about "thinking outside the box" but it truly applies in this case. Thanks.

BTW,this articel is also very usefull.

http://www.eachbattery.com/guide/how-to-...

hewanyv557 - Reply

Conclusion

Apply and repeat to all your friends victim of faulty cable ;-)

38 other people completed this guide.

8 Comments

This guide was very helpful in figuring out what needed to be done and how to do it. I don't have access to a lead pump so I ended up removing the old wires and then soldering the new ones on top of the remaining solder. So far it's working just fine!

Wildlife Ecology - Reply

I wasn't able to open my charger, even when using heat, the pliars as shown here and even a knife. As the damage to my cable was a few inches from the charger I just cut the cord and soldered a new one to the end. Cable looks a bit ratty but you could use white tubing to place over the top.

This guide is great and would definitely use it if possible =)

Ben Winkler - Reply

Thank you guys.. this guide was super helpful, without this I would have to spend 73 box unnecessarily.

Thanks again..

Lorenzo Cremisi - Reply

My powersafe adapter(a1436) has broken cable and i want to repair it, do you know how many volts out if you connect the multimeter on the black and white cable? I get 9,77v is that correct?

Fotis Karolos - Reply

Great instructions. No solder pump either but so far it is working. $6.50 for parts instead of $40 for a new unit. Thanks very much!

Frederick D - Reply

Great guide thanks, I bought my replacement lead on eBay for £5 and it's now working a treat.

One word of warning though, careful where you stick your fingers as I got a couple of zaps of electricity from something inside (yes it was unplugged :)

If you don't have a solder pump / solder sucker then I recommend you buy one before you start, it'd be tricky to clear out the holes on the board without one.

Andy B - Reply

I did this on an 85W adapter (official from apple, the one that came with the laptop) and the system is now reporting the connected charger as 60W. Any ideas on why this would be the case?

steve - Reply

My guess would be that even though you have an 85 w charger, your computer only needs and draws 60w. Hope this helps

Harry - Reply

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