Another Leaking G5

Discussion in 'PowerPC Macs' started by cal6n, Jun 8, 2007.

  1. macrumors 68000

    cal6n

    Joined:
    Jul 25, 2004
    Location:
    Brighton, UK
    #1
    Well, about 2 weeks ago the unthinkable happened. My beloved G5 started making sizzling and popping noises and then it just died. Unplugging it and removing the outer cover revealed that the worst that could happen had happened. I'd been bitten by the dreaded G5 coolant leak. Still, I'd paid for Applecare and there was still a couple of months remaining so I was sure that Apple would see that the problem was resolved satisfactorily. I thought about starting a thread here so that my progress through the system could provide a focal point for discussion among those with similar issues and some entertainment for other forum members, but I decided to just let Apple do their stuff. That was 2 weeks ago, but now I'm not so sure. It's now looking like the saga may start to drag on somewhat and so I've decided to document my experiences after all.

    My first step was to drop into the retail branch of my local AASP and have a chat with a manager there. He advised me take the incontinent beast to their service centre and the problem would be dealt with. Once I got there (by taxi, incidentally) it was a different story. The tech confirmed the leak and the fact that the machine would not start. He then explained that, as it was very likely that multiple parts would have failed, Apple don't allow them the discretion they would require to replace more than one part and I would have to work through Applecare directly. I phoned Applecare from my mobile, hoping for them to give their OK for the repair to be conducted locally but they were unwilling to deviate from their "1 component' guideline, although they arranged for a tech to phone me within 48 hours. Another expensive taxi later and I was back in my flat and starting to get frustrated.

    The tech from the contractor Apple uses actually phoned that afternoon and arranged a pick-up for the next day, which also went as planned. He phoned back a couple of days later to explain that there was a long wait for the processor block, which was on backorder and that he'd also ordered a power supply. It looked like they'd be waiting a minimum of 3 weeks before getting the part and even then, there was no guarantee that there wouldn't be more damage. Now, a week or so to fulfil the terms of an extended (and paid for) warranty is reasonable but I didn't feel that being deprived of my Mac for at least a month was acceptable and I told him so (politely :) ). He suggested I talk to Apple and I said I'd do that.

    Before talking to Apple, though, I did a little research on the internet and found that I'm by no means alone. Cooling system failures on this model aren't as rare as they could be, especially around the 18 - 24 month mark. Some labs running multiple G5s are reporting 15% - 20% failure rate. I rang Apple and asked for customer relations. I asked about the availability of the processor and was told that they'd expedite delivery to their contractors and that it'd get there within 48 hours. I also asked about the failure rate, what would happen if the new processor failed after 18 months and whether they'd extend the warranty to a reasonable level. A resounding "NO" was the reply. A standard 90 days from the date of the repair was all they were prepared to offer. Still, at least the part was on it's way and I'd get my machine back soon, eh?

    A couple more days brings us up to the present. I've just returned a missed call from customer relations. The original estimate for the processor's availability was correct. Well, I say it was correct. It may well take even longer, for all I know. So here I am with just my lappy, with a minimum three more weeks waiting for my machine; a machine that may or may not be repaired at the end of that time; and even if it is repaired can I ever trust it not to spring a leak again? Still, at least I got the impression that I was talking to someone with a little more seniority at Apple today and she promised to keep me informed of progress. I think I've done all that I can and it sounds like Apple are taking their responsibility seriously, so is it reasonable for me to feel like I'm getting a raw deal here?
     
  2. macrumors 65816

    Sweetfeld28

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2003
    Location:
    Buckeye Country, O-H
    #2
    I think i would of been very ticked also. Did you try demanding a non-liquid cooled, or newer G5?

    What did/or are they going to give you?
     
  3. macrumors G5

    leekohler

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2004
    Location:
    Chicago, Illinois
    #3
    I'd be PO'd. I have the last rev G5 and if this happens to me and I go through what you just did, there will be a phone call to my lawyer.
     
  4. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jan 12, 2007
    #4
    Like that would speed things up.
     
  5. macrumors 6502a

    Karpfish

    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2006
    #5
    I believe that someone here had the same problem and got a Mac Pro out of it. You shouldn't have to wait at least a month for a manufacturing mistake on apple's part. Call applecare and stand your ground until you get something.
     
  6. macrumors 65816

    yadmonkey

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2002
    Location:
    Western Spiral
    #6
    Yeah, polite yet unyielding is the way to go from here. I hope it works out for you, as it sounds like you've been very civil thus far and it's nice to see a victory for the nice guy once in a while!
     
  7. macrumors 65816

    vohdoun

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2006
    Location:
    Far away from Earth.
    #7
    Ouch. :(

    Which G5 do you have cal6n, Dual 2.5, 2.7 or the Quad? I don't see any mention of it.

    I'm trying to work out what causes the leak, as from looking at the hoses and such http://homepage.mac.com/thunderaudio/PhotoAlbum11.html everything looks just as tight as a car radiator. I dunno, but its not like serious pressure goes under it.

    Even on my Motocross bike same sort of setup for the watercooled radiators but those get so hot you'll fry yourself. Though the only time they ever leaked was once when I wrecked the radiator. I physically knee'd the rad scoop on the way I crashed, where the radiator sits behind the scoop and busted all the fins/vertical pipes.

    Perhaps the jubilee clips work loose and if there is any pressure at all perhaps thats when the leaking starts? Or unless its the water pump that leaks, perhaps the seals have went on it...

    The amount of G5's that has leaked I don't think anyone has ever came back and actually described what went specifically wrong with it?
     
  8. macrumors G5

    leekohler

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2004
    Location:
    Chicago, Illinois
    #8
    I've had a few similar problems with other things in the past, she usually takes care of it with a phone call. The problem is solved in a few days at most. She's good. ;)
     
  9. macrumors 601

    dpaanlka

    Joined:
    Nov 16, 2004
    Location:
    Illinois
    #9
    My friend had a severely faulty iMac G5 that was a few years old and she got a replacement Core 2 Duo for free. I'm sure if you dealt with AppleCare in person they would patch it up better. Demand a new system.
     
  10. thread starter macrumors 68000

    cal6n

    Joined:
    Jul 25, 2004
    Location:
    Brighton, UK
    #10
    Thanks for your thoughts, people. My customer relations contact should be contacting me again tomorrow and, if there's still a long wait for the processor, then I think I'll suggest that a replacement is a more suitable fulfilment of the warranty than an extended wait for the repair.

    @vohdoun:

    It's a dual 2.5, one of the very first ones delivered in the UK. Unfortunately, I don't think we'll ever know what actually happens when these units go bad. The cover is fitted using an anti-tamper rivet. I certainly wasn't going to risk invalidating my applecare by fiddling with it.

    *EDIT*

    Woot! I received a phone call from my CR rep just before the keynote. The delivery date for the processor has been pushed back another week, so she suggested replacing my G5 with a Mac Pro instead of repairing it. I didn't even have to ask. There may be a delay as my G5 is at the contractors and my hard drive is with me. Her supervisor had left for the day, but hopefully it'll be OK for me to return the hard drive later. If not I'll have to buy a cheap SATA - USB2 enclosure in order to retrieve my data. I should know tomorrow.

    Go, Apple!
     
  11. macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jun 12, 2007
    Location:
    virginia beach
    #11
    G5 coolent leaking

    O my G-d....
    I am not alone. I saw only one other mac person who this has happened to.

    My G5 didn't start today. Took it to my Mac man ie. the one who sold it to me and yes he is a true Mac genius. As I lifted this tank off the back seat, about 3 tlbs of green fluid was puddle on my leather seat. I actualy showed him, he had never ever seen this.. Needless to say this is my only working computer. My old g4 lost the power to read or wright DVD's. I am a professional photographer who doesn't have $4000.00 extra to buy a "loaner" for a week of two or more. The apple store doens't have rentals or loaners.

    Help I take it to the store tomorrow and don't know what to do. It sounds like this problem isn't a quick fix. Or that I would even want the computer back after this leak.. Ikes!! Any suggestions? This damsel is in extreme distress!!!

    It would help if I had some info. Feels like I am taking my car in the shop and I don't want to get #$^&$##..

    Thanks guys and gals
     
  12. macrumors G5

    CanadaRAM

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2004
    Location:
    On the Left Coast - Victoria BC Canada
    #12
    #1 - Don't panic

    #2 - get on the phone with the Yellow Pages. Locate computer rental places and Apple dealers and find one that has a suitable machine and rent that. Apple will not cover the expense of the replacement rental but your business losses would likely be much more than the rental price.

    #3 - BEFORE YOU SEND IT INTO THE SHOP get your Mac guru guy to pull out the hard drive with your data, and advise you on the best way to get this attached to a rental
    - #3a buy a suitable Firewire drive enclosure for your drive to use it as an external, or
    - #3b buy a large Firewire external drive (500 Gb or so) and Carbon Copy Clone your existing drive to that, so you can send the machine into the shop with the drive. (this might involve temporarily installing your drive into a different Mac.

    #4 - Remove any non- stock RAM and hard drives from the Mac and send it in in as close to stock condition as possible.

    #5 - Contact Apple re possible extended warranty coverage for coolant leakage.


    ? DO you have backups of your data
     
  13. thread starter macrumors 68000

    cal6n

    Joined:
    Jul 25, 2004
    Location:
    Brighton, UK
    #13
    My addition to #5 is this. Be polite when you talk to Apple and try to talk to "Customer Relations" if "Customer Services" can't help. Be the kind of person that the person you speak with would actively want to help.

    I posted here a couple of days ago regarding my experience with a coolant leak. That situation is being resolved at the moment but I had bought Applecare. If you haven't, it might be worth your while enquiring if it's not too late to purchase it retro-actively.

    I will say, however, that I feel your pain and hope that you get sorted.
     
  14. macrumors 603

    Dont Hurt Me

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2002
    Location:
    Yahooville S.C.
    #14
    The G5s have had many issues everywhere it was used. Steve gave it the boot quick!
     
  15. macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jun 12, 2007
    Location:
    virginia beach
    #15
    thanks

    great advice!!!

    thanks so much
     
  16. macrumors 65816

    vohdoun

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2006
    Location:
    Far away from Earth.
    #16
    You're only hearing about the unlucky ones that are failing. I'll bet there is plenty liquid cooled G5 machines out there that are still working fine to this day.
     
  17. macrumors 65816

    macenforcer

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2004
    Location:
    Colorado
    #17
    And all the voices said this would not happen. This is the future of all liquid cooled G5s I'm afraid.
     
  18. thread starter macrumors 68000

    cal6n

    Joined:
    Jul 25, 2004
    Location:
    Brighton, UK
    #18
    Well, from the research I've done, it doesn't appear to be an epidemic yet, but these aren't isolated incidents either. We'll get to see what unfolds over the next couple of years...
     
  19. thread starter macrumors 68000

    cal6n

    Joined:
    Jul 25, 2004
    Location:
    Brighton, UK
    #19
    A brand new 2.66 Quad with 1 GB RAM, bluetooth & airport has just arrived. Thank you, Apple!
     
  20. macrumors 65816

    Sweetfeld28

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2003
    Location:
    Buckeye Country, O-H
    #20
    :eek: Wow, congrats on the new Mac Pro.
     
  21. macrumors 65816

    macenforcer

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2004
    Location:
    Colorado
    #21
    Kudos.

    I had the same thing happen with IBM. I had 2 old thinkpad T23s that were falling apart. They had only a few months left on the 3yr warranties. IBM swapped BOTH of them for brand new T42Ps which at the time cost $4000 each. Also upped the ram to 2gb each for waiting for them to ship from japan. I ended up selling one for $3500 and still to this day have the other one. Has a 2ghz Pentium M in it. Still a fast computer. I was so freakin stoked. Especially since I bought those T23s off of ebay for $450 each. :eek:
     
  22. macrumors 68020

    Erasmus

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2006
    Location:
    Australia, Where Omnius can't find me!
    #22
    Woo! Go Apple!

    Did you have to fight for it, or did they just send it to you?
     
  23. thread starter macrumors 68000

    cal6n

    Joined:
    Jul 25, 2004
    Location:
    Brighton, UK
    #23
    Thanks, Guys. I'm stoked.

    They offered, but only once it had became apparent that they couldn't source the parts to repair my G5 within a reasonable time (7-10 working days). I had previously (politely :) ) expressed my concern that a repair could result in the same damage occurring sometime later: i.e. once my Applecare had lapsed. I don't think that was a factor, though.
     
  24. macrumors 65816

    vohdoun

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2006
    Location:
    Far away from Earth.
    #24
    Awesome stuff, cal6n. Will you be posting pics in the mac setup thread? :)

    Sure we know what a Mac Pro looks like, but nothing beats the smell and experience of a new machine. :D


    I had a feeling it would be a matter of time before struggling to supply spare G5 parts. I'm surprised its not even been discontinued completely by now. I just hope my G5 lasts for a long time, it'll be 3 years come summer 08 for me.
     
  25. macrumors 68020

    AdeFowler

    Joined:
    Aug 27, 2004
    Location:
    England
    #25
    Mine being one of them :eek: (touches wood)

    Nice one cal6n, really pleased for you. I have the same machine, two and a half years old, six months of AppleCare remaining... I'm scared. I wonder how Apple would compensate me for the 8gb of RAM I bought.
     

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