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dannyLD

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Mar 1, 2020
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0
Hello, my MacBook Air had water damage and I was able to fix it in a way that it now boots again with the power cord connected, but no battery detected anymore. If the device is switched off and I connect the power supply, I get to see a flashed image of low battery.

I had to clean the flat cable connectors between the main board and the I/O board - there was corrosion there. That brought it back to life, at least through the power supply only after PRAM clearing etc. All keys work, internet etc fully operational, the system settings do not show 'Power' in the list. The battery does not seem to be damaged when I look at it - I also do not see any corrosion or damage anymore...

If I reset the SMC, it does not boot anymore unless I press the power button for 10 seconds and then connect the power supply… then I can keep on using it as long as the supply is connected.

I suppose the problem is related to the SMC - this is located on the main board? Where exactly? Should I replace the I/O board? Could the battery be detected again if I replace the flat cable between the main and I/O board? I read some things about a logic board... where is this one located?

Any help and tips are more than welcome !

Danny
 

DouglasCarroll

macrumors 6502
Dec 27, 2016
364
334
How did you "Clean the flat cable"? You should clean that with Isopropyl Alcohol and then let it evaporate dry. If that doesn't fix it, try a new cable. Also try cleaning the entire motherboard with Isopropyl Alcohol and a soft nylon brush to remove any tiny corrosion you cannot see. I brought a water damaged MacBook Pro back to life by washing the hell out of the motherboard this way.

My 2 cents...

Good Luck!!
 

dannyLD

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Mar 1, 2020
9
0
Thanks for the hint... I used pretty strong alcohol from the pharmacy to clean the connectors. But I really focused on that part only, I will do a full clean with it and give it a try.

Thanks !
 

Audit13

macrumors 604
Apr 19, 2017
6,787
1,800
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
With water damage, the battery is usually damaged. I say this because I have purchased quite a few liquid-damaged Airs and Pros. Out of 10 MacBooks, only 1 had a usuable battery.
 

ApfelKuchen

macrumors 601
Aug 28, 2012
4,334
3,010
Between the coasts
I suppose the problem is related to the SMC - this is located on the main board? Where exactly? Should I replace the I/O board? Could the battery be detected again if I replace the flat cable between the main and I/O board? I read some things about a logic board... where is this one located?
This is flawed reasoning, as it ignores the battery as a potential cause of the failure. Essentially, you're assuming the battery is good, although batteries are commonly damaged by water exposure (for example, a short-circuit can cause a rapid discharge of the battery, which can burn out internal connections). You need to test the condition of the battery.

The fact that the system boots is an indication that the SMC, main logic board and the cable are probably OK. Don't spend money on those until you're first able to test that battery.
 

dannyLD

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Mar 1, 2020
9
0
Thanks for the replies. I assume it is common that the battery is damaged, but nothing is really visible looking at it? Can you share a way to test the battery without a new one, maybe a link?

I really appreciate this feedback.
 

4sallypat

macrumors 68040
Sep 16, 2016
3,454
3,267
So Calif
With it plugged into the charger, download the free Coconut battery app and use it to check the details of the battery.

I use it all the time now on all Airs before I resell....
 
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dannyLD

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Mar 1, 2020
9
0
Well, the battery does not show a lot, even shows the power adapter is not connected (although it is). See att. I assume there could still be an issue on the main or I/O board too?
 

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4sallypat

macrumors 68040
Sep 16, 2016
3,454
3,267
So Calif
Based on the coconut battery report it sounds like the logic board is not working.

If it's worthwhile, ask the Rossman group in NYC if they think it's worth repairing...
 

Audit13

macrumors 604
Apr 19, 2017
6,787
1,800
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Thanks for the replies. I assume it is common that the battery is damaged, but nothing is really visible looking at it? Can you share a way to test the battery without a new one, maybe a link?

I really appreciate this feedback.
I have a liquid-damaged Air on my desk and the battery looks perfect but definitely does not work.

The only way to really tell if it is the battery or logic board would be to try a known-to-be-working battery or try the the battery in a working Air.
 
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dannyLD

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Mar 1, 2020
9
0
Got a reply from Rossman group - indeed a fairly good chance it is the logic board... over $300 :(
 

Audit13

macrumors 604
Apr 19, 2017
6,787
1,800
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Got a reply from Rossman group - indeed a fairly good chance it is the logic board... over $300 :(
I have gone through quote a few liquid damaged Airs 3/5 had a bad battery due to liquid exposure. After thoroughly cleaning the board, everything worked except the battery. After installing a new battery, everything worked.

Have you tried a different battery?
 

dannyLD

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Mar 1, 2020
9
0
Thanks all good input. Even with the battery disconnected, I can only booth the MacBook by holding the power button for 10 seconds, then connecting the power adapter, holding for another 5 seconds and then it boots... so my reasoning is that it might really be a board issue. I can order a new battery, but it might be useless if it does not resolve the problem, although I could take that risk...
 

dannyLD

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Mar 1, 2020
9
0
The power button is routed through the keyboard and trackpad.

Do this: disconnect the trackpad and battery, connect the charger, see if the MacBook turns itself on.
Great ! I have the startup sound but the display does not switch on...
 

Audit13

macrumors 604
Apr 19, 2017
6,787
1,800
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Great ! I have the startup sound but the display does not switch on...
Try an external monitor.

It's also possible there is a problem with the LCD backlight.

When it chimes, shine a bright light through the Apple logo from the outside or shine a bright light at a severe angle against the screen and look for any image that may be there.
 
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Audit13

macrumors 604
Apr 19, 2017
6,787
1,800
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
well, I don't have the connectors to do that, and actually it auto switches off after about 1 minute...
When it chimes, shine a bright light through the Apple logo from the outside or shine a bright light at a severe angle against the screen and look for any image that may be there.

Is the fan spinning when it is powered up?
 

dannyLD

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Mar 1, 2020
9
0
When it chimes, shine a bright light through the Apple logo from the outside or shine a bright light at a severe angle against the screen and look for any image that may be there.

Is the fan spinning when it is powered up?
The display shows light for a second when it chimes, then there is indeed a dimmed apple logo, the fan spins, suddenly makes more noise and then it stops...
 

Audit13

macrumors 604
Apr 19, 2017
6,787
1,800
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
The sensors may be damaged which is causing the rapid fan speed and the unit powering itself off.

I recommend removing all components and thoroughly cleaning them with pure isopropyl alcohol, let it dry, reassemble, try again.
 
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