2 newbie issues regarding my macbook air

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by cbox, Nov 5, 2009.

  1. cbox macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 5, 2009
    #1
    hello all, i recently got a hold of a used macbook air, but after using it for about a month, i've noticed a few problems that i was hoping to get some light on. i believe this is part of the first generation of MBAs.

    1) i believe this is common, but sometimes (usually after transporting the laptop around in my bag) after opening the MBA and attempting to wake from sleep, the computer will wake just fine (will connect to wifi and show correct battery life remaining as well as time in the task corner), but the keyboard and mouse will not respond. the power button responds, however, so pressing it will bring up the prompt for a shutdown, but i can't do anything beyond that as the mouse and keyboard and unresponsive.

    2) the keyboard backlight is finicky. usually, it will flicker oddly when it should be on and will go on a spasm-fringing light show when i'm typing sometimes. usually, the backlight will stay off in low light conditions when it should be on, until i press down on the keyboard or center body of the laptop with some force. Pushing down on the latop will actually make the lights wake up and work how they are supposed to. again, i would just like to reiterate that this is not an issue of being in a dark or light setting where the auto feature of the backlight will turn on according to ambient light; this is a situation where even in dark settings when the light should be on, it will not until i press firmly down on the body of the laptop.


    3) also, closing the laptop or selecting sleep through the power button sometimes puts the laptop to sleep for only about 30 seconds and then the computer will go through a period of waking and sleeping about every 15 seconds. After repeating this about 4 times, it'll stay asleep. I can tell the macbook is indeed awake when closed as the apple logo light on the back of the monitor glows.


    well, at this point, i think i need to suck it up and buy some applecare. any words of wisdom will be much appreciated! thanks so much.
     
  2. Makosuke macrumors 603

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2001
    Location:
    The Cool Part of CA, USA
    #2
    Never had 1 happen, though I've never had an Air, either. Putting it back to sleep (by closing it) and waking back up might restore it, though.

    As for 2, that sounds an awful lot like a hardware problem, which would be covered by Apple. The keyboard backlight can be a little funky in edge conditions, particularly if the sensor(s) is getting shaded by your hand (or, alternately, getting lit by the screen itself). For example, on my MBP, depending on the screen position the backlight may dim, or I can get it to kick in in relatively bright conditions if I move my hands over the speaker grilles. I don't know where the air's sensor is, though--maybe it's under the keyboard itself?

    Number 3 is exactly the behavior that usually happens if you have a peripheral plugged in that isn't asleep. For example, if I don't turn off my Logitech wireless mouse when I put my MBP to sleep by closing the lid, it will wake due to the mouse, then sleep immediately, the wake, etc. until the mouse itself goes to sleep automatically after some period of inactivity.

    Do you have any external devices attached? If not, maybe the lid sensor isn't working right, and/or maybe one of the internal devices (like the camera or trackpad) isn't sleeping properly, so keeps re-waking the computer.
     
  3. cbox thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 5, 2009
    #3
    i also noticed that when i bang into the table or just physically disrupt the macbook in any way sometimes the keyboard backlight flickers or turns from off to on or vice versa. so it definitely seems like a hardware problem where the lighting power source must be lodged loose or something. i'm past the warranty for the MBA, so i'm guessing applecare is needed for this fix, right?

    as for 3, i don't have any external peripherals. my bluetooth is off (i read somewhere that this sometimes causes my problem) and usually when i close the laptop the only applications running are firefox and finder. this problem of the waking when closed tends to happen more often when not connected to a power source oddly, but it still happens when the MBA is plugged in. this could also be a hardware problem for the sensor to detect when the MBA is closed, except this problem of waking happens even when put to sleep manually through the power button menu. However, letting the computer sleep naturally by just leaving it alone until the power saver options force the computer to sleep will indefinitely put the computer to sleep without and waking. such an odd issue....
     
  4. Makosuke macrumors 603

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2001
    Location:
    The Cool Part of CA, USA
    #4
    You say the warranty has expired... if you mean the 1 year hardware warranty is already up, it's too late to buy Applecare--that only works if you buy and activate it BEFORE the 1-year warranty is over.

    If you just mean that the 90-day phone support period is over, then Apple will still fix any hardware problems up to 1 year after purchase, they're just going to try to charge you for the call if it turns out there's nothing wrong with the hardware.

    Assuming you're out of warranty luck, it's possible there's just a bad connection internally. I don't know how many of the components even have connections in the Air, but if you check out a takeapart guide from a place like iFixIt.com you can see, and maybe get in and fix it yourself if it's just a loose connection. Assuming you're not averse to doing scary things inside a very expensive, very tightly-built laptop, that is.
     

Share This Page