Dropped my MBP - What to do?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by ankr, Feb 6, 2009.

  1. ankr macrumors newbie

    Feb 6, 2009
    Hey all

    i just dropped my macbook pro (core duo) and got two pretty substantial dents on the front left and right corners.

    The screen will only operate at the lowest brightness setting, even when it is set to maximum in system preferences.

    Anyone know how serious this is and how much it might cost to fix? Also it is still in warranty. Do I call apple? Do I admit that i dropped it? What course of action would you take?

    thanks for the replies.
  2. SilentPanda Moderator emeritus


    Oct 8, 2002
    The Bamboo Forest
    You can call Apple for a quote. Admit you dropped it. Apple didn't do anything wrong. It won't be covered.

    If you've had it for any amount of time it's not like lying will get you anywhere anyway. "The corners pulled the metal inwards by themselves I swear!". They will know you dropped it. If you don't mention the drop and they quote you just to fix the brightness issue, they will send it back to you unrepaired once they see the exterior damage. Save yourself the time.
  3. bartelby macrumors Core


    Jun 16, 2004
    Applecare doesn't cover accidental damage. They'll repair it for a price...
  4. THX1139 macrumors 68000


    Mar 4, 2006
    You don't need to admit you dropped it, Apple will know. Dropping your computer is so serious that it voids the warranty.

    You'll need to get it repaired ($$) if you want to use it correctly. Apple will take the computer in and get back to you with an estimate. You'll have to replace the dented case (if Apple deems that the dented case will affect performance) and components that got damaged. If the motherboard is damaged, then you've probably totaled your machine. The cost to replace the case and motherboard would be expensive and you might want to just buy a new machine. Apple won't repair it unless they fix everything that affects performance. Say you want to repair defective components, but don't want to replace the dented case, then you're going to need to have a 3rd party repair it or do it yourself.
  5. dissdnt macrumors 65816


    Aug 3, 2007
    Sorry to hear that :(

    I think it's like 300 bucks to get the case replaced. That's what a "genius" told me when I asked about my latch buckling.
  6. BLewisMaltz macrumors newbie

    Jan 15, 2004
    Yeah, it really sucks but they won't cover any damage you do to it yourself, such as dropping it.

    My wife and I have been very lucky, each having a few incidents of dropping our respective PowerBook and iBook in such a way that it narrowly survived with only a scuff or two. Just been lucky.
  7. leodavinci0 macrumors 6502

    Jan 26, 2006
    If it runs fine then the logic board is not damaged. Tell me, when adjusting the screen brightness manually, does the indicator bezel show up on the screen? Is it only the ambient light sensor that is not working, and manual adjustment increases the brightness? I've dropped mine several times, and only came away with dents. I wouldn't deal with the dents, since it would be costly to need to take everything out of the frame, and put them in a new one.
  8. ankr thread starter macrumors newbie

    Feb 6, 2009
    wow thanks for the quick replies.

    It is not a logic board issue because the computer runs just fine except the screen is extremely dim. I don't care about the case that is aesthetic damage only. When i attempt to adjust brightness in system preferences, nothing happens. It only operates on the extremely low (almost black) brightness setting. So no, it is not the ambient light sensor.

    I've spoken to a few people and they seem to think its either A) a bad inverter B) A cable came loose or C) broken backlighting

    One guy believes it is a broken backlight, meaning it needs a whole new screen. This seems to make the most sense. Apple will charge 1,000 dollars so thats out of the question. Do you think the entire screen is toast like I am told? Has anyone attempted to install a new screen themselves?
  9. deadpixels macrumors 6502a


    Oct 30, 2006
    the backlighting failing and / or inverter board seems the most likely reason. if it's not a led screen then the backlighting is done by the inverter board and a fluorescent tube, if you find replacement parts and change it yourself you will sure save some $$$. u can put a flashlight behind the apple logo to see if the screen appears lighter.
  10. leodavinci0 macrumors 6502

    Jan 26, 2006
    If the backlights were damaged (I'm rather sure this thing still had CCFL and not LED backlighting), then they would most likely not work at all; they tend not to be something that can partially fail. I would go with a loose/broken connector between the screen and logic board that is causing the control circuit to act inappropriately. If this is the case, then you are in luck, and probably wouldn't cost much to repair. Getting the screen apart on this model of MBP isn't that difficult, if memory serves correct (it use to be a pain). Therefore you should be able to have someone with relative ease get the screen and body open and see what the issue is. Do you know someone who is electrically savvy, and do you trust them? Go to ifixit.com for directions.
  11. SummerBoy macrumors regular


    Dec 19, 2008
    Theres website that fix your screen damage for 200 bucks includi g labor tax shipping
  12. ankr thread starter macrumors newbie

    Feb 6, 2009
    leodavinci - i believe that in the lowest brightness setting the backlight may be completely off. the screen is extremely dark and very hard to see. I'm assuming that is why one of the people I contacted suggest that it was a failed backlight - because it does not turn on regardless of brightness setting.

    does anyone know if this is true? does the lowest setting turn off the backlight?
  13. InLikeALion macrumors 6502a

    Jul 18, 2007
    Greener places than I used to live
    If by "lowest setting" you mean no white squares showing on the brightness scale, then yes, it is off.

    If you had described it as "the off setting" instead of lowest brightness setting we would have realized you meant zero backlighting. I took it to mean the dimmest amount of backlight, which made it a confusing thing to diagnose.

    I'd say yes, your backlight is broken.
  14. Pika macrumors 68000


    Oct 5, 2008
  15. ankr thread starter macrumors newbie

    Feb 6, 2009
    OK, thanks lion.

    looks like i can get a screen for 200 dollars on ebay so this shouldnt be too bad.
  16. Ryan1524 macrumors 68000


    Apr 9, 2003
    Canada GTA
    You might need new video cable, backlight power cable or backlight inverter/driver board too if those were damaged during the drop.

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