Chocolate milk spillage on MacBook air

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by francisdeso, Dec 14, 2012.

  1. macrumors newbie

    Dec 14, 2012
    Hey guys,

    Clean my late 2010 13" macbook air without having to incur a hefty bill.

    Amateur LOL!

    Isopropyl Alcohol (rubbing alcohol)
    Compressed Air
    Ifixit's Pro Tech Toolkit
    --54 Bit Driver Kit
    --Assortment of plastic spudgers
    --Anti-static wrist strap
    Silver Thermal Paste
    Thermal Material Remover
    Thermal Surface Purifier
    Microfiber cloths

    EXTENT TO Which SPILLAGE Has SPREAD Internally

    On left side near the SD slot if mac is opened up facing you (3 Litmus indicators in this area are activated/discoloured from white to red)

    On the SSD

    On the CPU (doesn't appear to have gone under the CPU where the pins are as there is no visible residue of the sugary milk on the sides of the logic board next to the CPU)-3/4 (can't remember how many) Litmus indicators by the CPU & RAM are NOT dis-coloured

    STICKY space bar, Enter key, & Up and Down keys BUT after spraying with compressed air are NO longer sticky! One small issue solved i guess lol


    1) The isopropyl alcohol is not dissolving the chocolate milk residue & i'm wondering if this has got to do with the immiscibility of the alcohol with the chocolate milk?? But both contain carbon so are organic compounds right?

    2) Would using microfiber cloths to wipe down the SSD, logic board etc cause an electrostatic discharge from the rubbing action if I'm earthed???

    3) Would using the edge of a plastic spudger to gently scrape off the residue on the mini-circuits on the logic board, SSD etc damage the chips?

    Hoping anyone out there can offer me some wise words as to how i can overcome the problems faced OR if there is anything else I should be aware of. Thank you in advance for any helpful comments and suggestions made.

  2. macrumors regular

    May 19, 2011
  3. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Dec 14, 2012
    Hey PraisiX,

    Thanks for the input.

    When the event occurred before i shutdown the mac the trackpad and arrow keys were not enabling me from moving the webpage i was on up or down. Thus i'm assuming either they are, or some other unknown internal part is damaged. However I'm assuming that the trackpad is not damaged as there was no chocolate milk residue anywhere near the trackpad and none of the litmus indicators have been tripped.

    Additionally from what i have read on various websites and forums online people report of corrosion occurring internally over time after a spillage or their laptops just eventually fail a few months down the line.

    I was hoping that if i thoroughly cleaned it I could get it up and running again for at least enough time to transfer over those files which i hadn't backed up. More so if i could just at least continue using my mac for another year at the minimum until i can afford another one down the line.
    At the moment though my biggest problem is the inability of the isopropyl alcohol being able to dissolve the chocolate milk residue which means that there is still a fine layer of the residue on the ssd, logic board, near the CPU & on the heat sink.

    In regards to my initial post i was wondering if yourself or anybody had solutions to this problem I faced and the others :confused:
  4. macrumors Nehalem


    Feb 19, 2005
    I don't know, but if isopropyl alcohol isn't cleaning it you may be hosed. I do not recommend using anything to scrape any part of the logic board or attached components. Finally, I don't think the cloth will cause issues regardless of your location on earth but I would be gentle. Q-tips are useful.
  5. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Dec 14, 2012
    Hi Jessica,

    Thanks for your suggestions.

    Unfortunately i think your right about the isopropyl alcohol and as for the Q-tips it has been mentioned to me in the past so I shall give it a try. The one thing i'm afraid off with that is if any very fine cotton hairs fall onto the logic board or anywhere else and i'm unable to see it, once i switch the laptop back on would it not fry those circuits, cause a build up of heat depending on where it is or cause be it a very small fire? Hence I would assume washing with isopropyl alcohol again, leaving it to dry for several hrs and then spraying with compressed air should ensure that there are no fine cotton hairs nor any dirt on the internal circuitry. Correct?
  6. macrumors Nehalem


    Feb 19, 2005
    The latter. Just wipe, don't drench the Q-tip, and let dry. A soft blow off with compressed air (be careful with that) and then it should be okay as far as the cleaning goes. Whether the machine survives is another story.

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