Apple chargers = poor cable quality?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by JesperA, Apr 22, 2016.

  1. JesperA macrumors 6502a

    Feb 10, 2012
    Ok, this is getting pretty annoying, especially since the chargers are kinda expensive.

    I have bought 3 new chargers in the last 2 years for my Macbook Pro because after 7-8 months of use the cables becomes very brittle/porous or whatever world fits, the cable starts to feel like chalk and starts to crumble even by the slightest touch.


    I dont mistreat my charger, i don't move it often, maybe one time per month or so and when i do i roll the cables up on those built in "hooks" on the charger, this time the cable had been sitting there untouched for several weeks and when i plugged in my Mac the cable started to flake after an hour of sitting with my Mac in my lap.

    Anyone else that has experienced this? I cant keep buying a new charger every year and Apple told me they don't replace it under warranty :S
  2. RoboWarriorSr macrumors 6502a

    Feb 23, 2013
    Oddly enough my iPhone chargers experience this after about 2 years of use while my mac chargers never have. I'm starting to think the break down is related to the number of time the plastic used around the charger is handled. I'm guessing the material is perhaps reactive towards oils produced by the human body so when handled doesn't last as long. I suggest this since I have accidentally stepped on the chargers multiple times with slippers on, while they turn faded in color don't show any deterioration. Interesting that they mentioned the chargers aren't replaced under warranty as I have had mac chargers replaced but it was probably due to circuitry issues rather than physical (no apparent outside damage but chargers stopped working). Not sure if it matters but I did have AppleCare+ at the time.
  3. oneMadRssn macrumors 601


    Sep 8, 2011
    New England
    How do you wind it? It's not intuitive, but I found this method goes a very long way to preventing the cable from getting damage. Also, wind very loosely, the tigher you wind it the more damage it does.

    I think Apple uses a very soft plastic for the charger cables. This is nice for a few reasons: it makes the cord feel softer, it doesn't get suck in a certain shape, and it's easier to untangle. On the flip side, the softness makes it tear quite easily.
  4. rigormortis macrumors 68000


    Jun 11, 2009
    square trade reimbursed me for a macbook pro charger for cable fraying. its the only claim i have on this computer.
    no deductible was charged because it was a "computer" policy.

    it was magsafe 2

    I'm on my second silicon iPhone case and its crumbled a bit. i haven't tried asking for a new one
  5. JTToft macrumors 68040

    Apr 27, 2010
    Aarhus, Denmark
    If you're adamant you haven't mistreated your cables, the deterioration should be covered under standard EU two-year warranty, and you should be entitled to a replacement free of charge.

    But I'll never understand how people keep destroying the cables that rapidly. Mine's more than 5 years old and there's not a thing wrong with it. My mother's just turned 7, I believe, and it's also perfect.
  6. nutmac macrumors 68040

    Mar 30, 2004
    I was able to replace my charger few days ago at the Apple Store. Then again, I had AppleCare+, but I would think Apple would cover it as long as it's under warranty.
  7. Floris macrumors 68020


    Sep 7, 2007
    The 2m extended lightning cable, the one that came with the iPad, the macbook pro one, or any charger .. Unless you tape them flat on the table and never touch them: they fray. It is happening so much that I stopped going to the apple store to return them utterly frustrated ... they're the worst, i have had no luck with them, they all fray and break within a year. No matter how careful I am with them. It is a waste of money.
  8. 1madman1 macrumors regular

    Oct 23, 2013
    Richmond, BC, Canada
    I haven't had an Apple cable fail since my Firewire iPod cable went sketchy. I still have my original lighting cable and MagSafe 2, both from 2012. They are attached/disconnected almost daily and are still working perfectly with no signs of failure. There must be some environmental factor to it.
  9. gngan macrumors 68000


    Jan 1, 2009
    My 2011 MBP charger is still going strong. No issue with my previous 2007 white MB too (I sold it in 2011 and it was still working). You are either super unlucky or you've misused it.
  10. lobo1978 macrumors 6502


    Sep 22, 2011
    Yep, Apple should think about foolproofing this "hooks" design. You are not the first one to think Apple-made cable is made from titanium and Kevlar...

    BTW: Is it your photo or some random one taken out from internet? There are now many trolls from Microsoft or Sheisung (samsung) invading this forum trying to mislead people.
    BTW2: Is it original charger or you go for eBay knock-offs?
  11. Wowereit macrumors 6502a

    Feb 1, 2016
    I like how blindfolded some people are when it comes to Apple.
    It's a common issue with Apple cables in general, but for sure MS and Samsung trolls are all over the internet complaining about bad cables.
  12. emilioestevez Suspended


    Aug 25, 2015
    It's because Apple's dumbass makes their cables biodegradable.
  13. Fishrrman macrumors G5


    Feb 20, 2009
    I don't wind the cables tightly around the "hooks" on the charger.
    Instead, I loop the cable in a "circle" about 12" in diameter, and then pack it inside the case.

    Still using the original charger that came with my mid-2010 MacBook Pro.

    But I have mentioned before that the design of the "older" (i.e., non USB-C) chargers was a weak one. The connecting cable on the "low voltage side" (that runs from the charger to the MacBook) should have been removable, so that it could easily be replaced if it wore out.

    That Apple chose NOT TO design it that way, suggests to me they were interested in additional revenue from selling replacement chargers to a lot of folks...
  14. lobo1978 macrumors 6502


    Sep 22, 2011
    Seriously?! Seems you don't know how business and internet works... Wake up!!

    Now, ask yourself - you mistreat your cables - because you don't care, so you come to forum to ask/complain about it?

    Internet is full of "guides" on how to NOT fray your cable in apple charger -- common sense (not even intelligence) is enough to solve it, after FIRST damaged cable...
  15. iMacC2D, Apr 23, 2016
    Last edited: Aug 12, 2017

    iMacC2D macrumors 6502a

    Jun 24, 2010
  16. MrOzzySan macrumors newbie


    Apr 23, 2016
    I never had any issues like this with both of my macbook pro's.
    But to give you a tip, i would just buy some "cable shrink" and put it over that part of the cable and shrink it so then you can still safely use it.
  17. ajcgn macrumors regular


    Oct 19, 2014
    Toronto, Ontario
    Sample of one, for what it's worth. I've had to wrap my power cable (2011 MBP) in electrical tape a couple of years ago.
    My MBP sits on a two foot high coffee table and the power cable hangs loosely over the edge down to the floor, fraying where it touches the table. I guess that constitutes abuse in the eyes of some. I've done the same thing with my PC laptops for years and never had an issue.
  18. ThisBougieLife macrumors 68000


    Jan 21, 2016
    SF Bay Area, California
    I haven't had mine get that bad, but the chargers ARE bad. I had to replace mine twice in the 2 and a half years I had my last MacBook Pro. They didn't come apart like in that picture, but they got to the point where I had to jiggle them around to get them to work. Even though they were hooked up, sometimes the power would randomly cut and I had to jiggle it to get the power back. Absurd. I've had a Dell power cable for an older laptop for 9 years and it STILL works. I would love it if Apple made their chargers a little bit more robust, but considering the design hasn't changed in like a decade, I won't expect anything.

    (Mine also always get discolored, and look yellowish-brown near the end of the cable--my Lightning cables do that too).
  19. brewmonkey macrumors regular

    Feb 17, 2016
    Among all the things in the Apple world I've been most baffled by is how I've had 4 various MBPs over the past 6 years (still have 3 of them, and all of the original chargers) and have never seen any sign of a power cable fraying/cracking, even though I'm very well aware of the extremely apparent tendency for them to do so based on tons of reviews on and I don't do anything special with them but just never have them fall apart like so many folks report. I know I shouldn't look that gift horse in the mouth too much, but it's really weird...why am I so lucky?
  20. happyfrappy macrumors 6502

    Oct 14, 2007
    Location eh?
    Haven't had it happen on a PowerBook charger, MagSafe, dock connector cables or lightning cable. Some theories on Reddit & other forums is the cable supplier Apple has on a contract varies from batch to batch and some batches the cable coating is more UV light sensitive. Haven't tested the UV sensitivity factor on my Apple cables but I've seen it happen with everyday USB 2.0 cables connected to computers/printers sitting at the window, thinner the USB cable it'll crumble... higher quality(ex: AmazonBasics, Belkin or Cables To Go) you don't have cable failures.

    Only Apple power cable I managed to suffer a 110V shock from was an iMac G3 translucent cable, it crumbled while I was unplugging it... the G3 was being replaced with an Intel Mac. After that incident the Intel Mac used a heavy duty Sun Microsystems power cable.
  21. mrex macrumors 68030


    Jul 16, 2014
    i just used Sugru to fix one.

    google apple + sugru and you will find lots of ways to fix apples cords...
  22. steve23094 macrumors 68020


    Apr 23, 2013
    The problem is common to iPhone cables too, they end up damaged in the same way. So explain to me why third party companies can design reliable iPhone cables and Apple can not?

    They are electrical cables and should be able to handle a modicum of normal use, not have to be treated with kid gloves like some sort of priceless artefact.
    --- Post Merged, Apr 24, 2016 ---
    Heat shrink tubing with large enough diameter to fit over a Magsafe 2 connector will not shrink enough to form a decent seal.
  23. AFEPPL macrumors 68030


    Sep 30, 2014
    I've had 2 go bad in 3 years too. I don't wrap my cable at all.
    However it's not really any different to the apple lightening cables quality tbh.

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