[Late 2013] Water Damage

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by RedMage65535, Jul 15, 2015.

  1. RedMage65535 macrumors newbie

    Jul 15, 2015
    Hello fellow Mac users, I could really use your help.

    So, I recently spilled beer on my Late 2013 MacBook Pro while it was in use.

    The liquid went into the vents and wreaked havoc on the system. Initially, I did not notice that beer had been spilled in it and continued to use it. Seconds later (not sure exactly, but less than a minute), the system locked up.

    I held down the power button. Then, the system shut down... Though I am uncertain as to whether this was caused by me holding the power button or damage from the spill.

    Ever since then, I cannot start the computer back up. In addition, the LED on the charger no longer glows when plugged in (this charger has been tested with other Macs and has worked fine with them).

    Does anyone have any wisdom to share? I would like to believe that my Mac is not gone with the wind, though I am not hopeful.

    On a related note, I took the machine apart to remove the SSD and recover data. The SSD bore the brunt of the spill and I am wary of placing it into a family member's Macbook (of the same model) and recovering data. Is my wariness justified?
  2. dwfaust macrumors 603


    Jul 3, 2011
    The only advice I can offer is Apple Genius Bar. There are only 2 types of electronics that get liquid damage: those that fail right away and those that fail later. Sounds like you're among the former group.

    Make an appointment at Apple and find out just how much damage you did. Sometimes you gotta just bite the bullet. Good luck.
  3. old-wiz macrumors G3

    Mar 26, 2008
    West Suburban Boston Ma
    Almost certainly fried the logic board, an expensive replacement. Genius bar will tell you how much to fix it. Unfortunately liquid spills are not covered by warranty or applecare
  4. DeltaMac macrumors G3


    Jul 30, 2003
    Maybe, but a safe method would be to install the removed SSD in an external case, then try to recover your data while connected to the your 2nd laptop. If it works, you are good. If it doesn't work in an external enclosure, then there's little risk, if any, to the 2nd laptop.
  5. bobbytomorow macrumors 6502


    Nov 10, 2007
    Left Coast
    I've saved 2 MacBooks from water damage, both were completely dead...One, an uMBP was completely submerged in a flood, both attempts to repair were successful. Be warned though that its going to take the better part of an afternoon, but heres what I did both times.

    First you need:

    -bottle of 99% isopropyl alcohol (approx 500ml)
    -precision screwdrivers (phillips & torx T5) and a guitar pick or credit card for prying
    -tackle box or some other container with several compartments (I got a tackle box at the dollar store)
    - Q-tips, cotton swabs and a toothbrush
    -head over to https://www.ifixit.com/ and find your specific model of MacBook
    - a shallow pan or plastic container to hold alcohol and logic board
    -thermal paste

    1) teardown MacBook following the step by step guide on ifixit
    2) put screws and parts into their own compartment according to the guide steps
    3) the goal here is to get the logicboard bare, without the heatsink, just the board
    4) look the board over closely you will see white color chalky substance in small spots on the board, this is what we need to clean, this corrosion is causing the short
    5) pour alcohol into the shallow container and place the logicboard into it, fully submerged
    6) get the toothbrush and scrub gently all of the visible corrosion and sticky spots from the beer
    7) let the board sit in the alcohol bath for an hour or so to loosen up any crud still on there and gently brush it again
    8) let the board dry
    9) in reverse order put back together

    The swabs are for cleaning under the heatsinks and the thermal paste is for re-applying the paste. It sounds daunting but it really isn't as long as you take your time and keep track of the screws. Your battery might be toast too, for good. Where I found the most corrosion was near the power circuitry close to where the magsafe plugs in.

    *edit- cost= <$20
  6. DeltaMac macrumors G3


    Jul 30, 2003
    Good listing, and always a possible good result. If you have not waited too long, then the attempt would be worth trying.
    However, keep in mind that the best cleanup _sometimes_ will simply reveal that the corrosion has gone too far. I tried very much the same job on a couple of different MacBooks several years ago, and both unfortunately had component leads eaten away, and one had several spots of damage on circuit board itself, with circuit paths eaten away. I'm not skilled enough to repair damaged leads, nor to replace individual chips.
    Both, I believe, had red wine spilled.
    IIRC, the owners each got to pay me for a couple of hours of my time in the attempt.

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5 July 15, 2015