2014 MBP swollen battery replacement DIY vs Genius

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by qkypgy, Jul 29, 2019.

  1. qkypgy macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2019
    #1
    So my out of warranty Mid-2014 15" retina MBP has been getting thicc recently to the point that the trackpad is now extremely hard to press.

    I called Apple Support, and based on what I told them, they suspect (like I do) that it was due to swollen battery. In order to send the laptop in, they requested that I paid them $630+ first to process the repair.

    They literally just sent an email, requesting payment with zero detail, then they will send me the box to ship back laptop upon me paying the bill first. This is without them seeing my laptop first, without any diagnostics, and no itemized bill for what I am paying for.

    Obviously I took issue with this and called them again, then they told me the estimate they quoted is from the phone support person who deemed that is how much fixing my laptop requires. (This time, they confirmed, it's the swollen battery). I asked them to schedule me for a genius bar appointment instead.

    Now, I have a couple questions:

    A) Is $630+ the going rate for battery replacement at Apple nowadays??? It seems outrageous. Sure, I guess they might have to replace the entire bottom casing due to the bending metal, but don't I get a say for what I want to have replaced or not?

    B) How hard is it to do a DIY battery replacement? Is it safe to handle swollen battery? If it's not safe, what's the going rate for non-Apple repair shops?
     
  2. jerryk macrumors 601

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2011
    Location:
    SF Bay Area
    #2
    Not sure where you are, but in the US that is way too much for a top case (battery, track pad, keyboard, and Al case where your hands rest) replacement. That is $199 USD, per this https://support.apple.com/mac/repair/service
     
  3. caileach macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 12, 2018
    #3
    Watch the video.

     
  4. qkypgy thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2019
    #4
    Yep, in the US. I thought the battery replacement was around $200 as well, that's why I thought they added charge for replacing the entire bottom case.

    Also, in my initial call, I mentioned that my screen was suffering from staingate. But again, the email they sent me had zero information whatsoever. It was just a bill to pay $630+ in order to "start" the repair process. I have no idea what I'm being charged for. I only found out from my second call to support that the repair order was for swollen battery, they didn't mention about the screen. All in all a terrible experience with Apple Support so far.


    Thanks for the video! I have seen these tutorials. My only concern is with the swollen battery, are they more combustible?
     
  5. chscag macrumors 68040

    chscag

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2008
    Location:
    Fort Worth, Texas
    #5
    The estimate Apple gave you not only included the battery and top case but also the display. Add their labor to that and it would easily cost $630.00. If you can live with the "Staingate"; like others have said, you can get the battery replaced for $200 or less.
     
  6. qkypgy thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2019
    #6
    I thought that was the case as well. They sent me the total without telling me what I'm being charged for and without me having the option to pick what I want to do the repair on. The second support call also did not say anything about the screen. No transparency whatsoever. I'm bringing the laptop to genius bar, and this time I'm just gonna ask about the battery fix to see what they quote me.

    Between battery and staingate, I'm more than happy to just fix the battery. Also, before anyone else brought it up, I know that there was apparently a four-year warranty for staingate, but my laptop was already out of that service window.
     
  7. FuriousGallus macrumors newbie

    FuriousGallus

    Joined:
    Apr 4, 2019
    #7
    It is absolutely not safe to touch a swollen battery. It can fairly easily explode and catch on fire if mishandled. I'd either take it to someone experienced with this who would replace it for you or to Apple themselves, but I would never do it myself.
     
  8. Fishrrman macrumors P6

    Fishrrman

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2009
    #8
    That 630 price is A RIPOFF.
    DON'T pay it.

    Make an appointment, then take the MBP to a REAL brick-n-mortar Apple Store.
    The standard charge for battery replacement should be $199, which INCLUDES parts AND labor.
     
  9. zhenya macrumors 603

    zhenya

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2005
    #9
    I am in the same situation with my 2015 12" Macbook. Slightly swelling battery. Apple phone support wants $650 for battery replacement, which includes a new top case/trackpad/keyboard because they are not fully functional at the moment because of the pressure.

    They are refusing to do just the $199 battery replacement through the mail. They claim they would 'probably' do it for that price in-store, but the nearest store to me is 70 miles away.
    --- Post Merged, Jul 30, 2019 ---
    Where do you see that includes the parts other than the battery on that page?
     
  10. jerryk, Jul 30, 2019
    Last edited: Jul 30, 2019

    jerryk macrumors 601

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2011
    Location:
    SF Bay Area
    #10
    The standard Replacement Unit includes all the pieces since they are glued together. Apple has been doing this since the early Retina days and won't allow their service people to separate the glued in battery
    --- Post Merged, Jul 30, 2019 ---
    I think Apple phone is combining/confusing the 2 issues. A screen is around $600.

    I think you should go to a real Apple store and tell them you are concerned about the battery/trackpad and see what they say. My guess is it will be $199 for the top case assembly replacement.
     
  11. Fishrrman macrumors P6

    Fishrrman

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2009
    #11
    zhenya wrote:
    "They are refusing to do just the $199 battery replacement through the mail. They claim they would 'probably' do it for that price in-store, but the nearest store to me is 70 miles away."

    Then get in the car and go to the store.
    If you don't own a car, rent one for a day.
    If you don't drive, call uber or something (probably cheaper in the long run)... ;)
     
  12. zhenya macrumors 603

    zhenya

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2005
    #12
    LOL. I own several cars.

    Still, going there is going to take me half a day. With 3 little kids and a full time job and the rest of life, half days are pretty darn valuable. And I might spend that half day to find out that they won't do it for that price anyhow, since they won't tell me in advance.

    It's absolutely insane that they won't do this through their mail in program.
     
  13. qkypgy thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2019
    #13
    Thanks for the advice! Good to know.


    I've heard that the phone support and in-store quotes are sometimes different in the past as well. Very strange, since you'd figure they are all done by the same service center in the end. In any case, I'm doing the genius bar appt.


    Wow, $600 for screen is ridiculous. It's a perfectly workable screen, just the staingate issue. I'm gonna fix it by just rubbing off the coating myself. I've read countless posts of people who's had the replacement done only to have the same issue coming back.
     
  14. qkypgy thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2019
    #14
    I thought that might be why they quoted $630 to me as well. I suspect they are including the charge of replacing the whole bottom casing of trackpad and keyboard due to some metal bending from the bulging battery. If that's the case, what a ripoff indeed.

    I just didn't feel comfortable forking the money when they haven't seen my laptop whatsoever. I thought they would ask me to send in the laptop for inspection, then send me a quote for what needs to be fix. Instead, they ask for money upfront.
     
  15. jerryk macrumors 601

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2011
    Location:
    SF Bay Area
    #15
    The coating is not just there for fun. It does serve a purpose to reduce glare from light and the sun, especially in situations of high contrast. The issue with the cost is the entire display assembly is replaced. It is all glued together. Unless it is really bad, I would just leave it.
     

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14 July 29, 2019