Hardware Failure :( Replacement questions. UPDATE.

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by TheOnlyJon, Mar 8, 2010.

  1. TheOnlyJon macrumors 6502a

    TheOnlyJon

    Joined:
    Jul 25, 2009
    Location:
    Indianapolis
    #1
    So for the past five or six months, one of my USB ports on my early 2008 white Macbook has not been working. Hasn't been too big of an issue because I have a 7-port hub that I just plug into the working port, but it's still annoying. Haven't had the chance to take in my computer yet, however, because I'm at school (as a computer science major) and cannot be without my computer.

    The other night, my headphone jack stopped working. I plug in my headphones, hear audio just fine for a second or so, then popping as if the audio is trying to come through. I tried the toothpick trick already to no avail.

    To make matters worse, my optical drive has been pretty shoddy for the past year or so. I'll put in a CD or DVD and hear it mounting, but sometimes I get what sounds like a crunching sound and then what sounds like a stuck servo or *brrrrrrr* sound. Then, I'll try to eject the CD/DVD, and it will hit the top or bottom lip of the white case and force itself back into the computer making it impossible to eject. It's random though - some days I can put in 4 or 5 discs and they come out without any problem, but other times 5 discs in a row will get stuck.

    My questions are:

    a) Since the USB port is shot, will they have to replace the entire motherboard and/or logic board since the interface is soldered directly to the board?

    b) Since there are so many hardware problems, is it possible that they'll just give me a new/refurb comparable machine? I understand the "rule of 3" that holds that Apple basically won't replace a machine unless a hardware problem persists three times, but would it be in their best interest to just give me a new machine since they'll be replacing the motherboard (possibly the logic board) and the optical drive?

    c) Should I be concerned that I upgraded the RAM to 4GB from 2GB when I take it in for service? As far as I know it doesn't void warranty, but I'd like to keep those 4GB if, by luck, they do give me a new machine...

    I appreciate any help. Apologies for the lengthy post. Just wanted to be thorough.
     
  2. miles01110 macrumors Core

    miles01110

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2006
    Location:
    The Ivory Tower (I'm not coming down)
    #2
    Yes.

    Unlikely.
    Do you still have the old RAM? Couldn't hurt to put that back in.
     
  3. techound1 macrumors 68000

    techound1

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2006
    #3
    Agreed. Rumors used to circulate about people losing RAM when they sent a machine in for service. Don't know how valid they were, being rumors and all, but since you've got the old stuff, it's worth it.

    I too doubt you'll get new - most likely a new optical drive, and probably a new logic board (if not a reflow to re-connect anything that's worked loose). It takes a loooong history of issues before you'll get new.
     
  4. TheOnlyJon thread starter macrumors 6502a

    TheOnlyJon

    Joined:
    Jul 25, 2009
    Location:
    Indianapolis
    #4
    Yeah, I figured as much...I appreciate the help. They've just been annoyances and I was curious as to the extent of the repair work that they would likely be doing.

    Cheers guys.
     
  5. mgridgaway macrumors 6502

    mgridgaway

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2006
    #5
    The last I heard the rule was something like if you bring your computer in 3 times for issues there's a good chance they'll just give you a new one or refurb.
     
  6. mdgolom macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2006
    #6
    Apple will replace a computer at their discretion. I had an iMac that had the HD placed once. It went again about 3 months later and Apple replaced it and the power supply and they couldn't get the machine. Instead of making me wait, they replaced it with a brand new computer. I'm guessing they will only replace the computer after 3 tries, or if they have issues repairing.
     
  7. Mal macrumors 603

    Mal

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2002
    Location:
    Orlando
    #7
    Apple will generally replace a machine (at their discretion, as you said) if it has to be repaired 3 times for the same problem. If there are a high number of repairs for different problems, sometimes they will go ahead and replace it, and sometimes if the part needed is in very short supply, they will replace for you instead of making you wait, although it's handled case-by-case, so there's no hard and fast rules to go by. They're pretty good about making sure you are taken care of, whatever that takes, though, as long as you're not unreasonable with them.

    jW
     
  8. mgridgaway macrumors 6502

    mgridgaway

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2006
    #8
    Yeah it goes without saying that you should be as nice as possible. It could mean the difference between getting your machine repaired and getting a brand new one. Just describe exactly what's happened and don't be pushy. Let them make the calls and hopefully it'll be a good one.
     
  9. TheOnlyJon thread starter macrumors 6502a

    TheOnlyJon

    Joined:
    Jul 25, 2009
    Location:
    Indianapolis
    #9
    I'll be going in on Friday. I like to think I have a good handle on computer problems and I always turn to Google to try and find some remedy before reaching out to the Apple Store for aid. That being said, I should be able to give them a good idea what's wrong and I don't have any concerns about them not doing the repair - the computer has never been dropped or otherwise damaged beyond normal usage.

    It's been in before for a chipped bezel which they replaced for no charge (even though it's apparently not covered under warranty).

    Anyway. I know politeness is always the best tactic...if nothing else, perhaps they can speed along the repair process to get it back to me as soon as possible. I know the "rule of 3" and I'm not expecting a new machine (as great as that may be :eek:)

    I'll be sure to post a follow up in a few days to let you know how things turn out.
     
  10. TheOnlyJon thread starter macrumors 6502a

    TheOnlyJon

    Joined:
    Jul 25, 2009
    Location:
    Indianapolis
    #10
    Update:

    I took my computer in, they diagnosed it the same as I did and said they'd be replacing the motherboard and optical drive.

    Okay. Cool. 5-7 days later, I get my computer back and (stupidly) assume that everything was working, so I take it and leave. (They had said replacing the motherboard was a difficult repair and so it would take 5-7 days for repair, so I call five days later and they said it would still be a few days...I call again on day six and they still hadn't started it but that they would right away. I get it a few hours later. But I digress.)

    The USB port was fixed. That's not the issue. I just plugged in some headphones for the first time since they replaced the motherboard and I'm getting the flashing red light and popping audio in and out, just like BEFORE the "supposed" repair.

    New questions:
    • Is it possible they didn't actually replace the motherboard and there's some other fix for a dud USB port and this faulty headphone jack is actually the same one as before?
    • Is it possible that my Ultimate ears Triple.fi 10 headphones require too much power and are "frying" (so to speak) the preamp? I've never had this problem in the months I've had my UE's, so I don't think this is the issue.
    • Is there some other remedy you guys know of that might fix this issue?
    • Am I rightfully irritated with Apple?
     

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