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What to do with defective MacBook Air (out of warranty)?

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by trashy, Nov 7, 2012.

  1. macrumors newbie

    So here's the deal. I somehow managed to miss the deadline for extending AppleCare earlier this year...and I'm about to pay for this mistake, big time... :(

    Wife's late-2010 MBA 11" won't stay on long enough to log in. Tried it all - SMC and PRAM resets, DiskWarrior scan, complete hardware diagnostics run, wiped SSD and reinstalled OS X. Nothing fixes this glitch.

    I can temporarily keep it on by holding down the Option key during all phases of bootup. Once logged in and on the desktop, I can release the key and then I have to watch for the shutdown pop-up window. As soon as it pops up, I have 2-3 seconds to hit the cancel key, otherwise it powers off.

    I managed to get all of our data off the SSD by hitting the cancel key a lot.

    I took it to an authorized repair center here in Mexico and they diagnosed the logic board which they will repair for about $850 USD.

    My one main concern is whether or not Apple will warranty the replacement logic board. If so, I think we're all good. If not, then what?

    Can anyone tell me what type of warranty might be in place this replacement part?
  2. jsw
    Moderator emeritus


    I'm not sure of the answer to your question, but I have an alternative: why not buy a refurbished 11" MBA? I see a "Refurbished MacBook Air 1.6GHz dual-core Intel Core i5" (4GB/128GB) listed now for $829, and I'm sure similar deals are available. Seems a lot better to me than paying even more than that to replace a logic board in an older system.
  3. macrumors Nehalem


    If you replace the logic board I think there is a 1 year warranty on the parts if Apple does it. It doesn't extend the warranty on the entire machine afaik.

    However, for that price I would most certainly sell it for parts and get another (if you're in the market). It is a shame though that the logic board failed on a machine that is only a couple of years old. My damn powerbook has lasted 6 years without anything more than a new battery replacement.
  4. macrumors 65816


    In Mexico.....

    I will check


    to start/get some official answer

    If you can afford and the warranty applies to the logic board replacement, I suggest you do it. But check if it is available any similar machine as a refurb as another poster as said. In this way, you got esentially a new machine, with warranty

    If cant afford or warranty in the new logic board dont satify you, maybe you have to take the hard decision to sell your machine as a parts machine or salvage it to sell individual components. Both ways are a loss for you, tough:(

  5. macrumors 6502a


    Get yourself a refurbish MBA 11 or 13 from apple for about the same price as the logic board repair (but have full 1 year warranty from apple for the laptop). Replace the SSD with your existing one to get the data out. Make sure to get a 2011 model as the 2012 model uses a different connector as compared to your 2010 MBA.

    A second option is to get yourself any other laptop you want and get an external enclosure from OWC for your SSD to get your data out with your new computer.
  6. macrumors newbie

    I saw that one before, but our main concern is with possible import fees here in Mexico. Not sure how to work that out...
  7. macrumors 6502

    Get the refurb

    Even if import fees are 10%, it's a better deal than fixing what you have.
    If the repair is more than 50% of the cost to replace with a new or refurb, I will never fix the item.
  8. macrumors 65816


    Maybe if....

    a)You go to your local or nearest Apple Certified Store you can get some machine in that range of price. Some tend to have stock for selling/show and with luck you can strike a deal.

    b) I dont know what are the current customs fees in Mexico, but if you needed imported in Mexico, why dont look in Mercado Libre or something?. If the seller is near to you, you can see the computer running.

    Any of the above it is valid if you go with a refurb/used computer route

  9. macrumors 6502


    Bite the bullet, man. Either buy a brand new one and avoid customs fees, or buy a refurb and pay them. Either or, you gotta sell that one you have for parts.. you will get a couple of hundred bucks for it, more than likely.

    Just accept the mistake and never do it again... buy AppleCare. :D
  10. macrumors 68020


    Have you tried popping the machine open and unhooking the keyboard immediately after starting it? It really sounds like your keyboard is shorting out or something.

    I'm honestly surprised nobody's suggested a fix...
  11. macrumors newbie

    I'm all in favor of that solution - however, I would need the appropriate pentalobe tool. Know where to pick one up in Chiapas?
  12. macrumors 68020


    No, but I'm willing to bet a pentalobe screwdriver would cost you a lot less than a new mac :)

    The bad news is that IIRC, the keyboards on all of the unibody laptops are held on by like 50 tiny screws (I think they're phillips bits). The good news is, they can be replaced!

    Still, if you get the shutdown dialog box immediately after letting go of the option key, I think your keyboard might be borked. That would also explain why holding down a key (I wonder if ANY key held down will work) lets you start the machine up :)
  13. macrumors newbie

    Once I'm logged in, the frequency of the shut-down prompt varies greatly. At times it is frequent, at other times it might go five minutes. During this time, I can use the keyboard as normal. I wish that I could narrow things down to the keyboard. It would greatly simplify things.

    OTOH, acquiring a pentalobe would be tricky and time-consuming and would still require that I replace all the screws with Phillips #00 screws. After all that, I might still end up w/ a MBA that has a failed logic board, and all that effort would have been wasted. In the meantime, my wife can't do any work...
  14. macrumors 68020


    You could always just use the screwdriver you already have and save buying screws for the case where the machine still works.

    Oh yes, and I really appreciate the sarcasm and rude attitude I have received in return for giving you some constructive advice.
  15. macrumors regular

    I think it is the keyboard also. I have replaced the keyboard when I had a similar problem. Takes a long time to change. And just be really careful not to strip one of the many little tiny screws. The screwdriver is not too hard to find, eBay. JoeG4 gave you some good advice. It isn't as difficult as it may sound.

  16. macrumors newbie

    Joe - First, I think my mild sarcasm was completely appropriate. My location in Mexico was mentioned a few times before your first response, yet you act like I can just walk into the nearest store and grab any tool available in the States. Second, on a related note, you don't seem to be reading my responses. I *HAVE NO* screwdriver that fits the pentalobe screws on the back of a MacBook Air. I do have a set of PC screwdrivers, but none of them get any traction. I can't just 'pop it open' or I would have already done so. Third, an authorized repair center has diagnosed it as a logic board failure. I'm going to take their word for it at this point.

    At this point we've decided to go a different route altogether. We're going to sell the old MBA for parts and switch the wife to an iPad w/ keyboard, camera kit, etc.

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