Keyboard behaving erratically on early '08 MBP - ideas?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by oxfordguy, Nov 2, 2011.

  1. oxfordguy, Nov 2, 2011
    Last edited: Nov 2, 2011

    oxfordguy macrumors 6502a

    Feb 27, 2008
    Oxford, England
    Okay, have just got my early '08 Macbook Pro back from Apple after having a (free) logic board repair , my machine now turns on okay, but I was hoping the logic board replacement was also going to fix some really annoying keyboard problems I've been experiencing the last 6 months (but getting worse recently), but it hasn't :-(

    The most common problem is that either the keyboard stops working altogether (i.e. pressing any of the keys has no effect, but otherwise the computer works fine, including the trackpad) or when typing, some of the keystrokes seem to get "missed" (i.e. the keystroke has not been recognised), even though they have actually been made, so text comes out as gobbledigoook.

    Another problem that has happened is that a key seemingly gets "stuck" (not physically) and a single character or action (e.g. continually scrolling to the bottom of a web page) is repeated ad infinitum.

    Both the above problems have been happening a lot - i.e. usually at least once every few hours of use!

    Strangely this seems to happen more so under Windows XP using Bootcamp, though both Mac OS X and Windows XP are affected.

    A reboot of the machine always seems to fix the problem, at least for a while.

    The thing is, I took the machine into a local Apple-authorised Mac repair guy a few months back (before the logic board replacement) and he ran some diagnostics and said he couldn't find anything wrong!:

    "I have carried out a full system test and an individual keyboard test 3
    times and can not find any faults."

    Does anyone have any idea what could be the problem? I've never spilled any liquids on my computer nor has it been dropped or otherwise bashed around. Maybe a replacement keyboard would fix the problem, but maybe not?

    I guess I could take it to an Apple Genius bar (again... its just come back from one) and get them to check it out, but there isn't one local.
  2. vitzr macrumors 68030


    Jul 28, 2011
    It certainly sounds like a good possibility you require a new keyboard to remedy the problem. There is no specific "service life" of a keyboard. I've been using laptops daily for years and had a few keyboards that required replacement sooner than one might expect. One at 14 months and one at 20 months.

    Otherwise my PowerBooks and MacBook Pro's have had great keyboards that lasted and are still going strong. I have what is essentially an Apple Laptop museum since I can never bear to part with one, once I upgrade to the next years machine. :)
  3. neenja macrumors 6502

    Jul 17, 2008
    i have the exact same mbp as you, also got my logic board replaced. no garbling problem but..

    - the "stuck" repeated key press, i notice that too from time to time, specially when i bring the computer back from sleep. my password box pops up and my keys dont stop being pressed. but randomly will happen out of no where while im in the osx.

    - my trackpad and keyboard both randomly will stop working too.

    usually i just reboot and it works fine again, but its really annoying when it does happen. specially when im in the middle of working on something.

    had these problem before the logic board was replaced, and still after.
  4. oxfordguy thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Feb 27, 2008
    Oxford, England
    I've checked around a bit online and it looks like a replacement keyboard for my model would be around £25-40, would it cost much to fit it though, do you you think? I'd imagine it was a reasonably straightforward job (compared to the logic board replacement, for example!). I don't want to spend a fortune on this, though, as it might not actually solve the problem!
  5. squeakr macrumors 68000


    Apr 22, 2010
    This solution may not help the two other posters, but I had this issue on my early 2008 MBP and the issue turned out to be a faulty blue-tooth device. My magic mouse would hi-jack the computer when waking from sleep. The trackpad would work most of the time but the keyboard would fail to respond. Stumped both me and the genius, when I came up with this theory. Turned out my mouse was turned on and within distance of the computer and it would occasionally hi-jack and lock the system (as the mouse got worse so did the problem). We were finally able to reproduce it. He went and got a test mouse and all issues were resolved. Apple swapped out the mouse and haven't had issues since. So, it could be a BT module or a faulty device hi-jacking the system. As with my case a hard reboot always fixed the problem.

    I suggest trying to turn off the BT and side off the issue goes away.
  6. oxfordguy thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Feb 27, 2008
    Oxford, England
    In my case I don't have Bluetooth turned on, when I do use a mouse its a USB one with cable (Razer Deathadder)

    Anyway, have booked an appointment with the Apple Genius Bar (again) for this Sunday, though in Reading this time, hopefully they will have some idea what might be wrong.

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