Help: Early 08 MacBook won't power on.

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by deadmatrix, Jun 30, 2015.

  1. deadmatrix macrumors newbie

    Feb 23, 2014
    Does anyone have any advise for an early 2008 MacBook A1181 white that has only a dim green led on the magsafe (L shape) and does not respond to the power button except for when turning the unit on with the SMC debug/bypass method? It also does not see its battery, which I dismantled to find the middle cell has a very slight bevelance to it from gas build up. ASD 3S123 EFI finds nothing wrong and the ASD OS variant only errors out on the heatsink sensor. I did put on new thermal paste already and the heatsink is installed correctly. SMC resets and NVRam/Parameter Ram resets do absolutely nothing. And because of the power button being unresponsive I can not even do a firmware restore from a cd-r. I have 2 60W magsafe psu's but its the same story on both and the unit will not power on with or without the battery present. The service manual contradicts itself saying that the master battery is also the cmos battery and needs to maintain 2% or higher capacity to post, but later on in the troubleshooting section asks if the said machine can post with the battery out which I thought was odd. Appreciate any and all thoughts and comments and recommendations beyond going to an Apple store. :)
  2. DeltaMac macrumors G3


    Jul 30, 2003
    The dim LED can be a bad power adapter, or the internal Magsafe DC-in board, or the internal battery connector.
    If none of those help, then it's simply a failure in the power circuitry on the logic board.

    The backup battery is underneath the optical drive. That's not likely causing your problem, as the backup battery doesn't really affect power to the system.
    In my experience, a dim green light on the adapter connector usually is a bad magsafe DC-in board. Make sure that the connector contacts are clean, and undamaged, check for any foreign materials on that magsafe port (it can easily pick up metal shavings, which are difficult to clear out)

    I have been using an early 2008 MacBook for a couple of years with no main battery installed. It's not portable anymore, but I don't need that. Runs just fine with no battery.

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