Can Apple tell if you changed your thermal paste?

ThirtyThr33

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Jun 13, 2011
278
1
Boulder, Colorado
Hey guys, sorry I posted this question earlier but I never really got a reply.

My question is as the title states but to elaborate I want to change the thermal paste with my friend whose done it plenty of times before and I trust his skill in replacing the TP once I get my MBP. I am doing so because I have heard MBPs just run a lot better and cooler with a fresh coat of well applied paste. BUT if I had to take it into Apple for any odd reason down the road, would they be able to spot that I had re-did the paste and thus void my warranty? I'm not sure how they would test this as long as I didnt carve my initials into the CPU or something stupid like that but I thought it was worth asking.
 

bozz2006

macrumors 68030
Aug 24, 2007
2,530
0
Minnesota
The probability that they would ever notice is basically zero. Even if your computer has a failed logic board, the replacement boards come with the heatsinks pre-installed to the board. There is basically no way Apple will ever look at your CPU.
 

Cool Runnings

macrumors regular
Feb 24, 2010
139
0
Sweden
Yes, they can see that IF they remove the heatsink. Of course their technicians knows how Apples their default thermal paste is applied and can easily see that someone has re-done it. But if it´s made "professionally" they doubt they ever will care about it.

But it´s working so why fix something that isn't broken?
 

Hellhammer

Moderator emeritus
Dec 10, 2008
22,166
581
Finland
Warranty is not voided unless you damage something or remove a "warranty voided if removed" sticker. At least in Finland, the manufacturer must be able to proof that the failure was caused by user damage, they can't just say that it was and refuse to fix it.
 

unixperience

macrumors regular
Jul 21, 2010
235
5
Yeah, they wouldn't be able to tell except by how much cooler your laptop runs. haha
Actually I've heard in recent years the TP is a lot better than it's been in the past. SO if yours is brand new it may not be necessary. But that's not what you asked, so I will say no, they can't tell if you changed TP without removing the heatsink, which is highly unlikely for them to do
 

Macsavvytech

macrumors 6502a
May 25, 2010
897
0
Yeah, they wouldn't be able to tell except by how much cooler your laptop runs. haha
Actually I've heard in recent years the TP is a lot better than it's been in the past. SO if yours is brand new it may not be necessary. But that's not what you asked, so I will say no, they can't tell if you changed TP without removing the heatsink, which is highly unlikely for them to do
The recent application of thermal paste on the 2010 and 2011 Macbook Pros has been as bad or worse then it has been on the previous models. Nothing has changed.
 

Lennyvalentin

macrumors 65816
Apr 25, 2011
1,429
783
BUT if I had to take it into Apple for any odd reason down the road, would they be able to spot that I had re-did the paste and thus void my warranty?
Like others have said, if it's been done professionally, with no visible signs of tampering, I doubt they'd notice/care. Just be careful during disassembly and it should be OK probably. There's a bunch of little ribbon cables and other connectors that need to be removed in order to remove the logic board and get at the heatsink. Some of those cables may be taped in place, and it'd be an indicator somebody's been messing around in the machine if those bits of tape have been disturbed.

Also make sure there's no warranty seals covering the screws of the heatsink or the logic board. THAT a tech definitely would notice I'd think... I believe I saw such a seal on the heatsink assembly of the CPU in the teardown iFixit did of an iMac, but perhaps Apple doesn't bother with the MBP.

Anyhow, barring any of the above concerns, there's probably close to zero chance any Apple tech would have need to remove the heatsink anyway in case of a hardware failure - the CPU is soldered to the logic board and can't be replaced without very expensive, specialized equipment (soldering a chip with over 1100 teensy-tiny solder balls underneath by hand and a hot-air gun......no, I don't think so! :D), so they'd have no reason to remove the heatsink to begin with.

Me, I just bought Applecare, I figure if the thing gets heatstroke and dies on me, I'm covered. :p In three years' time I'll be ready to upgrade anyhow...
 

sulaiman71

macrumors newbie
Jul 23, 2011
1
0
Hey guys, sorry I posted this question earlier but I never really got a reply.

My question is as the title states but to elaborate I want to change the thermal paste with my friend whose done it plenty of times before and I trust his skill in replacing the TP once I get my MBP. I am doing so because I have heard MBPs just run a lot better and cooler with a fresh coat of well applied paste. BUT if I had to take it into Apple for any odd reason down the road, would they be able to spot that I had re-did the paste and thus void my warranty? I'm not sure how they would test this as long as I didnt carve my initials into the CPU or something stupid like that but I thought it was worth asking.
even with them know u did it

i think the right thing to do is say the truth :)
 

ThirtyThr33

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Jun 13, 2011
278
1
Boulder, Colorado
Yes, they can see that IF they remove the heatsink. Of course their technicians knows how Apples their default thermal paste is applied and can easily see that someone has re-done it. But if it´s made "professionally" they doubt they ever will care about it.

But it´s working so why fix something that isn't broken?
Well of course it's functional but it'd be nicer to have a cooler MBP
 
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