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View Full Version : Help! One of my headphones broke off inside my Macbook




SuperSnake2012
Jan 23, 2008, 06:20 AM
Part of one of my headphones got stuck in the jack! :eek: Any ideas on how to get it out safely without breaking the entire thing? I'm so scared right now :(



skyrider007
Jan 23, 2008, 06:31 AM
Ouch, you might want to try ifixit.com guide to remove the card thingy out and then use a tooth pick or something to get the thing out.

Anderson3133
Jan 23, 2008, 08:26 AM
Part of one of my headphones got stuck in the jack! :eek: Any ideas on how to get it out safely without breaking the entire thing? I'm so scared right now :(

Hey, try a magnet ... it won't do any harm to your laptop

tremendous
Jan 23, 2008, 08:39 AM
hey, you're lucky - my headphones once broke off inside my EAR. I had to go to the hospital, was freaking out and thought I was going to die. I (and my work collegues brave enough to go near my ear) could not remove them without pushing them even further in.

This is nothing!

Victor ch
Jan 23, 2008, 08:44 AM
Part of one of my headphones got stuck in the jack! :eek: Any ideas on how to get it out safely without breaking the entire thing? I'm so scared right now :(

Sorry to hear that... Anyway, have you tried with tweezers? I assume that if you have few millimeters around the thingy then maybe you can get a hold of it with the tweezers and get it out. Hope this helped.


-Victor

Yankees 4 Life
Jan 23, 2008, 09:02 AM
magnets are your best bet. A strong fridge magnet should work.

Anderson3133
Jan 23, 2008, 09:59 AM
Sorry to hear that... Anyway, have you tried with tweezers? I assume that if you have few millimeters around the thingy then maybe you can get a hold of it with the tweezers and get it out. Hope this helped.


-Victor

Personally, I would stay away from tweezers. This is just my personal opinion from what had happened to my xbox when i tried to get something out of it.

rsbell
Jan 23, 2008, 10:20 AM
magnets are your best bet. A strong fridge magnet should work.

Use the biggest, heaviest magnet you've got. Set it on the hard drive to keep it handy.
:rolleyes:

pulsewidth947
Jan 23, 2008, 10:37 AM
Forgive me for being paranoid, but magnets and magnetic storage medium (hard-drives) doesn't sound like a good combination.

eluk
Jan 23, 2008, 12:55 PM
You'll never get it out with a magnet. Firstly the chances are it's non-magnetic and secondly there is a switch inside that acts like a clip.

hierobryan
Jan 23, 2008, 01:53 PM
I suggest putting the Mac on its side so the headphone jack is facing up. Then get some Krazy Glue and glue something small like a toothpick to the broken headphone part. Wait a while and then pull out.


hey, you're lucky - my headphones once broke off inside my EAR. I had to go to the hospital, was freaking out and thought I was going to die. I (and my work collegues brave enough to go near my ear) could not remove them without pushing them even further in.

This is nothing!

WTF? What headphones were you using? I don't see how that's possible.

SuperSnake2012
Jan 23, 2008, 03:02 PM
I don't have any Krazy Glue at home, only wood glue... that didn't work out too well :p Any other ideas guys? I can't get any sound on my computer with that stupid thing in there... I'm so mad right now :mad:

SuperCompu2
Jan 23, 2008, 03:12 PM
If you're REALLY careful and good with repairing electronics, you could try putting a tiny speck of solder on the back and yank it out. be sure to use a heavy gauge wire so it doesn't snap off instead of yanking out the jack. Also, lay the macbook on it's side to avoid hitting the edges of the port.

Also, forget the magnets. Nothing's strong enough to yank a 3.5mm jack out of the port that wouldn't harm your Macbook.

Good luck. Also, if you're still stuck after all these suggestions, perhaps an Apple store visit could be beneficial. :)

mankar4
Jan 23, 2008, 03:16 PM
I suggest putting the Mac on its side so the headphone jack is facing up. Then get some Krazy Glue and glue something small like a toothpick to the broken headphone part. Wait a while and then pull out.

Agreed. just make sure you don't use excess glue and get it in the jack, and make sure you don't try to pull it out too early before the glue is completely hard. and wood glue won't work, it's meant for wood because it seeps into the wood and is really good for shear forces. you need tensile strength, so you'll need krazy glue or super glue of some kind. and when you put it on, do 2 applications, one to the faces of the headphone thing and your device, wait for that to dry, and then put another layer around the edge. The biggest problem is going to be that the glue will break before the headphone comes out, so you need a couple applications of a really strong glue.

Mr Ikasu
Jan 23, 2008, 03:58 PM
I had the same thing happen to my iMac.
Put some Araldite/Epoxy Resin on the end of a cocktail stick. Like a tiny amount so you don't get it permanently stuck.
I left it the hour or so to set and then it pulled out perfectly.

Give it a try if you aren't too cack-handed. Otherwise don't take the risk and take it to Apple.

Cave Man
Jan 23, 2008, 04:37 PM
Try to seat a bit of masking tape over it, then use a small drill bit (1/32") to drill into it a bit, just enough to pull it out by leaving the drill bit in.

And then pray that no shards get into your computer...

Batt
Jan 23, 2008, 05:44 PM
All of these suggestions scare the hell outta me. Take it to a professional and pay to have it taken out.

tiamat1990
Jan 23, 2008, 05:57 PM
I suggest putting the Mac on its side so the headphone jack is facing up. Then get some Krazy Glue and glue something small like a toothpick to the broken headphone part. Wait a while and then pull out.



Oh that sounds like a really good idea. Try that.

JWest
Jan 23, 2008, 06:07 PM
All of these suggestions scare the hell outta me. Take it to a professional and pay to have it taken out.

^^^^^^^^^^^^^
What he said :P

All of these suggestions sound too risky (well, the glue might work it you only use a teeny tiny itty bit).

Radio Monk33
Jan 23, 2008, 06:26 PM
Try to seat a bit of masking tape over it, then use a small drill bit (1/32") to drill into it a bit, just enough to pull it out by leaving the drill bit in.

And then pray that no shards get into your computer...

-1

I don't think drill bits and laptops belong together. :p Just go with the superglue lol.

eluk
Jan 24, 2008, 07:27 AM
The drill bit is unlikely to work as the jack will twist. As already said I too would be very reluctant to risk swarf getting into the laptop.

notengolegs
Jan 24, 2008, 07:39 AM
It is a MBP, why damage it with these useless home remedies. Send it off to iResQ (http://www.iresq.com/portables) or TechRestore (http://www.techrestore.com). At least then you have a professional doing it.

Cave Man
Jan 24, 2008, 08:52 AM
Try to seat a bit of masking tape over it, then use a small drill bit (1/32") to drill into it a bit, just enough to pull it out by leaving the drill bit in.

And then pray that no shards get into your computer...

This is one of the dumbest ideas I've ever heard. This guy's watched too many episodes of Home Improvement.

SuperSnake2012
Jan 24, 2008, 04:49 PM
It's not a MBP, just a regular Macbook. If I took it to Apple or mailed it in would they be able to help me? I have Applecare for a few years on this machine...

tveric
Jan 24, 2008, 11:42 PM
Take it apart. You'll even learn stuff along the way. Maybe upgrade the RAM while you're in there!

kbenker
Jan 24, 2008, 11:43 PM
I've had the same problem for a little over a month and have tried a couple of the suggestions on here and they didn't work. I haven't tried the glue one yet, but I'm hesitant about putting glue in there.

I took it into an Apple Store and they didn't really know what to do, same with Apple phone support.

christopher3071
Jan 24, 2008, 11:45 PM
It's not a MBP, just a regular Macbook. If I took it to Apple or mailed it in would they be able to help me? I have Applecare for a few years on this machine...

Yea, my best mate had this happen to his iPod nano a year ago. The guy at the apple store was a bit surprised but he did give my buddy a new nano for it. If you bring it to apple they will definitely repair it. It's too hard to get the tip out so they will most likely replace the jack or next biggest component containing the jack. That's what they did for him anyway. Best of luck..

tremendous
Jan 26, 2008, 05:51 PM
I suggest putting the Mac on its side so the headphone jack is facing up. Then get some Krazy Glue and glue something small like a toothpick to the broken headphone part. Wait a while and then pull out.




WTF? What headphones were you using? I don't see how that's possible.

those in-ear headphones that have replaceable rubber ear pieces. guess i just pushed it in too far and it went into my ear.

SuperSnake2012
Jan 31, 2008, 11:16 AM
Yea, my best mate had this happen to his iPod nano a year ago. The guy at the apple store was a bit surprised but he did give my buddy a new nano for it. If you bring it to apple they will definitely repair it. It's too hard to get the tip out so they will most likely replace the jack or next biggest component containing the jack. That's what they did for him anyway. Best of luck..

I sent it into Apple and they told me that to fix it they would have to replace the entire logic board, something that would cost over $800 (yes, you read that correctly :eek:). I just told them to send it back, I'd rather try the Superglue trick.

Eric Lewis
Jan 31, 2008, 11:18 AM
I sent it into Apple and they told me that to fix it they would have to replace the entire logic board, something that would cost over $800 (yes, you read that correctly :eek:). I just told them to send it back, I'd rather try the Superglue trick.


800 dollars? what the ??

hierobryan
Jan 31, 2008, 01:36 PM
I sent it into Apple and they told me that to fix it they would have to replace the entire logic board, something that would cost over $800 (yes, you read that correctly :eek:). I just told them to send it back, I'd rather try the Superglue trick.

good decision. i'm pretty sure it'll work. just use a small amount of glue and make sure to give it enough time to dry before trying to pull it out. if you don't wait long enough you'll end up with too much dried glue in the hole...not good.

SuperSnake2012
Feb 3, 2008, 12:44 AM
I tried the superglue and it didn't work... it dried sufficiently, then when we pulled it out the piece didn't come out. I'm willing to try it again, but this is really discouraging... is there a way to get to this from the inside?

motulist
Feb 3, 2008, 12:56 AM
With the computer fully turned off, try holding the macbook with the headphone jack pointing towards the floor, and then giving it some pretty good whacks on the top side. When any modern laptop is turned off they're usually really quite rugged, so you should be able to shake it and smack it pretty good without doing any damage.

No guarantee though, proceed at your own risk.

Other than that, I'd try the tweezer idea. Just get the smallest thinnest ones you can get. Maybe even try a medical supply store for some forceps or other tools you could repurpose. Remember, medical tools are design to work on the tiniest and most delicate of structures, so one of them should be perfect for doing a little home surgery on your macbook.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Forceps

EDIT:

I did a little googling around on forceps just out of my own curiosity, and I found the perfect ones for you! They're called splinter forceps, and they're these super thin little things designed specifically for pulling out splinters! Check it out!

http://www.fcsurplus.ca/shopping/shopexd.asp?id=2193

In fact, this other site even says they're:

Great for grasping anything which would be inconvenient or impracticable to grasp with the fingers. Especially useful for delicate operations such as those of:
-Watchmakers
-surgeons
-dentists

http://www.bannertherapy.com/ProductInfo.aspx?splinter-forceps&number=05-575

SuperSnake2012
Feb 4, 2008, 12:06 AM
That site has a minimum order requirement of $24... is there another place to buy those? I don't want 12 of those tweezers :D

Consultant
Feb 4, 2008, 11:26 AM
That site has a minimum order requirement of $24... is there another place to buy those? I don't want 12 of those tweezers :D

Print out page, go to hardware store.
Or ask guys at hardware store about your problem...

Whacks will probably not get it out. Might cause damage.
Do you have a picture?

eluk
Feb 4, 2008, 12:32 PM
...

Whacks will probably not get it out. Might cause damage.
Do you have a picture?

Definitely won't, too little mass in the part and it is held in by the switch that disconnects the internal speakers.

arynna
Mar 1, 2008, 08:37 PM
I had the same problem and spent the better part of the afternoon today reading forum posts in the hope that I'd find a good solution. I was a little hesitant to risk using superglue around my computer, but decided that it was the best immediate option.

Bought superglue (the GEL kind, not the liquid), put a dab of it on the end of a toothpick, stuck the toothpick in there and let it sit half an hour. Just pulled it out, and the broken off end of the headphone plug came out with the toothpick perfectly. (It came out so easily, in fact, that I didn't realize it had worked until I looked down at the toothpick and saw the plug still stuck onto it.)

It was cheap, really easy, and worked like a dream. Don't be afraid to try, and you only have to use a TINY amount of glue.

Hope this helps someone!

SuperSnake2012
Mar 8, 2008, 12:40 PM
Kind of a happy ending to this story... couldn't get the headphone piece out. Luckily (or unluckily :D) my ethernet jack died, so I brought it to the Apple Store in White Plains, NY and had it checked out. The guy said that the entire logic board was going to be replaced, free of charge, which would fix my headphone problem. :) :D When I mailed it in to Apple they wanted to charge me $800 for it! Plus I got a whole new top case to my Macbook so I have a fresh keyboard again :cool:

hershey3000
May 16, 2008, 03:45 PM
Ok, so this unfortunate event just happened to me with a newly purchased set of speakers/subwoofer. The metal part to the headphones connector just snapped off in half into my mac book. I simply inserted a safety pin into the ear phones jack and slowly pulled the ear phone connector out. IF that doesn't work, send it out to the guys at mac, and they'll do the same exact thing for you, except with the proper tools.

martin painter
Jul 2, 2008, 07:06 PM
ok i had the same problem thanks to my house mate. went to the mac shop and they said they cant get it out and they reckoned they had the best tools (tweezers) for the job then proceeded to tell me it will cost 350 for a new logic board or something. i spent an hour searching for a remedy and there was no way i was going to bond a cocktail stick to my macbook. i had tried a tooth pick and little tweezers from those little pocket knifes you can get and they just didnt work. then i came across a hair clip. with a knife i took the bobbles of the end and opened it up so i had just 1 straight end. i had a quick look inside and kind of realized that there was kind of a clip holding the jack in place quite far in (it was only the smallest tip that had snapped inside.) so as you look into the jack hole i slid the hair clip in to the left side down past where it was held by a clip and from there it pretty much just popped out. i hope this helps everyone. i couldnt believe how easy it just came out. please let me know if you need help.

corks
Oct 16, 2008, 11:11 AM
Just had this issue with my macbook, and as mentioned above the toothpick with superglue is defiantly the way to go. Thanks for the help guys!

Kwales66
Dec 27, 2009, 01:21 PM
Hi all - I was a bit dubious trying the super glue on a cocktail stick to get the broken headphone jack out of my mackbook.

But with a little patience I now have sound again !! YEY !!!!

K

DoNoHarm
Dec 27, 2009, 08:02 PM
you shouldn't use superglue - you need metal epoxy. if you go to your local hardware store there is metal epoxy for a few bucks. you could use either a toothpick or possibly even the broken off end of the headphone jack. use a very small ammount, enough to create a droplet smaller than the contact area of the headphone jack. a good way to ensure that you're using a tiny ammount may be to wet the end of a toothpick and dab the broken headphone jack a few times. then insert and wait for it to harden. the welded headphone jack may even be stronger than before!

-rob a-
Feb 21, 2010, 01:46 AM
i was reading about the glue idea and i was getting ready to try it, but then
i found my toolkit with some needle nose pliers and pretty skinny tweasers... the very tip of the headphone plug had snapped off in the jack and there was not enough space to simply pull it out with the needle nose.
i also tried to pick it out with a really skinny micro flat head screw driver, but that didn't work...
i was able to get the tweezers into the jack, but i couldn't get enough grip to pull out the piece. so, i was able to get a stronger grip and pull the piece out by using the pliers along with the tweezers:
i stuck the tweezers in the jack, gripped the piece, then gripped tweezers as close to the tip as possible (with the pliers for added strength) and viola!!

-that's how i did it. i hope this helps someone.
:apple:

mulze22
Apr 17, 2010, 01:00 AM
Ok, so this unfortunate event just happened to me with a newly purchased set of speakers/subwoofer. The metal part to the headphones connector just snapped off in half into my mac book. I simply inserted a safety pin into the ear phones jack and slowly pulled the ear phone connector out. IF that doesn't work, send it out to the guys at mac, and they'll do the same exact thing for you, except with the proper tools.

I took your suggestion about using the safety pin and that worked for me as well. I was freaking out too because I had used all the precision tools in my tool and nothing was working. Thanks for the advice.

mastermind6192
Apr 17, 2010, 02:55 AM
Is it just me, or do most of these methods sound very damaging to you mac if you mess up. Go to the apple store and they will fix it for free ( if you are still under warranty).:apple:

Dozerrox
Apr 17, 2010, 03:26 AM
Is it just me, or do most of these methods sound very damaging to you mac if you mess up. Go to the apple store and they will fix it for free ( if you are still under warranty).:apple:

The OP said they wouldn't fix it under apple care.

andershusa
Dec 5, 2010, 05:36 PM
The first thing that hit me when part of my headphone jack got stuck inside my Mac Pro was to super glue a toothpick to pull it out. Since it seemed a bit risky I googled to look for other suggestions and came across this thread. This made me go ahead with the glue, but I used it on the broken headphone jack and not a toothpick. Worked like a charm.

I just used a tiny drop of glue, and allowed it to sit for a good hour. Then I yanked it out in one quick motion.

luis.s
Dec 18, 2010, 12:40 AM
A headphone jack broke off inside my 13" MacBook Pro about an hour ago (just the very tip bit). I searched and found lots of solutions, including this thread, but I was scared to stick super glue in such a small space of my laptop. I tried tweezers but they weren't strong enough.

I then tried sticking the part of the plug that didn't break off in, and after a few attempts and various amounts of wiggling and pulling out at different angles, the broken bit came out with it :D I thought I'd share this solution here, as it's such a simple one but it took me a while to think of it, and I'm so glad I did this before sticking glue in my laptop. It may not work for everyone with the problem, but try it first if this happens to you.

teejusb
Dec 18, 2010, 02:43 PM
I had a similar (if not exact) problem happen on my old toshiba laptop. Heres what I did and i fixed it without ANY problems...

What you need.
-Scotch tape
-Your broken earphone
-Patience?? (not really takes like 5 minutes)

1. Take the tape and wrap the broken end of your earphones so that around a centimeter sticks out off of the end. Make sure you have enough layers so its stiff enough to go into your earphone jack without bending. Don't put too many layers otherwise it won't fit.

2. Stick the broken plug (with the tape) into your jack and once the tape's wrapped around the broken piece, pull it out. The broken piece should come out with it. (You might have to do this twice to get all of it out) and voila! Le Fin :)

Worked without any problems!

Robscot
Apr 14, 2011, 02:21 PM
I found this post after this happened to my macbook pro. I tried a combo of some of the varied suggestions (thanks for helping me come up with this solution). Using a product called superglue tape, which is a type of strong double sided tape with a thick gel consistency I cut off a tiny piece and crammed it on to the broken end of the jack plug with a blunt needle then pushed it firmly into the jack socket and hey presto, pulled it out with broken end attached. I think this may be a safer way than applying glue or solder etc.

rushingdragon
Aug 27, 2012, 02:35 PM
I had the same problem and manage to resolve it using the glue technique thank for the tips!

If It can help I took an old pen which I unscrewed, took the long plastic bit and in fact it goes into the audio thing perfectly and is just about the right size to go around the little part of headphone I had left (maybe for some wouldnt even need the glue) I just had to add a little bit of glue inside of the plastic tube (I also made sure I wouldn't have any excess of glue by testing with a toothpick first) waited some time and it was done!

I'll attach a pic so you can see which part of my headphone was broken inside so you can see if you have the same problem

http://hpics.li/600f84f

soaps
Feb 18, 2013, 04:54 PM
I'm coming back here in 2013 after reading through all these posts dated 2008-2012, to report that the Superglue/Toothpick trick worked for me!!!

Thank you to whoever came up with that brilliant idea. It saved me a fortune, got my audio working again on my MBPro, and literally only cost me 4 bucks!

Here's exactly how I did it for any future visitors who find themselves with this scary problem:

About 3/4 of my audio jack was stuck in the headphones port. I had a warning that this could happen because the jack had bent about a week ago, but like an idiot I still kept using it. Eventually the audio was spotty so I kept bending and pulling on the jack which caused it to break off.

So I searched for answers and despite several posts here and mostly in other forums saying that Superglue was too risky, I figured it was really my only hope. I don't have the money for any other more serious type of fix. I could not see myself attempting to drill, that seemed too extreme.

So, off to Walmart I went to get this: Loctite Super Glue with Extra Time Control. It is a thicker formula than a liquid, but not a gel. It gives you more time to align correctly because it takes longer to dry. Which at first I thought wasn't good, because I was scared the toothpick wouldn't stay steady.

I held the laptop on its side so that the toothpick stood up vertically.

I cut off the point of the toothpick near the tip with scissors so I could align a flat surface to the little nub left in the center of the broken-off audio jack.

I dipped the flat end of the toothpick into a drop of the superglue. I used VERY VERY LITTLE OF THE GLUE. So little I thought it might not be enough, but I wanted to take NO chances of any pooling in the headphone port. It didn't.

I admit I kept checking the toothpick periodically throughout the hour I waited for it to dry. I moved it from each side to see how ready it was. I probably should have left it alone, but ...

it worked anyway! After 1 hour of letting toothpick sit vertically against broken off audio jack, I turned the laptop back to its normal flat position with the toothpick pointing horizontal. Then I held the toothpick (I think with 2 fingers) steady & closer to the base of the toothpick (near the port area, but not right up against it), and gave it one quick, steady yank out. Not too hard, not too light.

I was shocked that the entire audio jack came out with the toothpick, clean and clear! I noticed after that the glue was still actually a bit wet, so surprised it actually still worked. Probably because it was the time control superglue.

I can't say I'd recommend another method, because the way I did it worked. At first I thought glue was too liquidy, but the trick was making sure to only use a tiny amount, and making sure the toothpick was positioned steady, flat and dead center against the broken-off jack's center (the nub part that stuck out from it a bit in the middle).

I hope my description helps someone. Give it a try. Any method has risks, but at least many have found that this way worked, and it's cheap! :p:D:)

p.s. I should note that I said a prayer just before pulling out the toothpick. Thank you, God :)

Ccrew
Feb 18, 2013, 05:02 PM
-1

I don't think drill bits and laptops belong together. :p J

They work well if you use a hammer to push the drill bit in :P

Nanaree
Oct 26, 2013, 02:34 PM
I just did the super glue trick and it worked! I didn't use a q-tip or toothpick. I used the broken headphone piece. I put a little tiny amount inside the piece it was connect too, held it there for about 5 minutes and pulled. It came out!!!

HelloMiguelSanc
Dec 10, 2013, 06:08 PM
Hi guys the same problem happened to me today.

I tried the superglue trick twice unsuccessfully, but the dried glue left on the broken part actually added some grip which allowed me to use a small pair of tweezers from a Swiss army knife to retrieve it.