MacBook 5,2 [Early 2009]: to repair?

Discussion in 'MacBook' started by BK., Mar 6, 2012.

  1. BK. macrumors member

    Joined:
    May 22, 2011
    #1
    I recently acquired an Early 2009 white MacBook 5,2. It has a 2.13 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo processor, 4GB RAM, 250gb hard drive. The model with the non-multi touch trackpad and separate mouse button. I spent little to no money on it and got it super cheap on eBay, as I currently have a 2007 Mac Mini as my main computer but needed something portable without spending a huge wad of cash.

    I do believe it has been restored by the seller on eBay, and I think it might have been water damaged originally [luckily the seller was honest and told me what exactly did and didn't work, and I was fine with it, but he never said what actually happened]. Here's why:

    1. MacBook won't boot without power cord plugged in, at all.
    2. MacBook won't work without power cord and immediately goes to sleep and then shuts down should the power cord become unplugged.
    3. Seller told me not to buy a new battery, as he had tried a new one and it had made no difference, so it's not a problem with the battery itself.
    4. The zero key doesn't work, the volume down key doesn't work, and the hyphen/underscore key doesn't work.
    5. Light wear and tear on the casing [fine by me!]

    To me, it sounds like it's most probably a logic board failure of some kind, either through water damage perhaps? Or something else. I know logic boards are the most expensive part of MacBooks to replace, in which case, I probably won't get it repaired.

    However, if I could somehow get it working again without the power cord so I could use it on the move, that would be a massive help.

    Does anyone have any ideas of what else could be the problem? I don't have an Apple store in my city [UK] but I'm thinking about taking it to Stormfront to let them have a look over it... unfortunately they charge £50 just to look at it :/ Which is why I'm asking first.

    Anyway, any guesses to what the problem is and if it might be a relatively cheap fix? Ideally I'd love to get this machine working properly as I *LOVE* the white MacBooks over the MacBook Pro design and although this machine is outdated it still looks good and does everything I need it to: word processing, web browsing, iTunes, iPhoto and Adium.

    Thanks in advance.
     
  2. logana macrumors 65816

    logana

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2006
    Location:
    Scotland
    #2
    Do you want to take the MacBook apart ?

    First place I would look is for liquid damage below the battery connector on the logic board.....

    Whereabouts in the UK are you ?
     
  3. BK. thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    May 22, 2011
    #3
    I'm not sure, I've only ever upgraded RAM before so I'm not sure if I could do that without messing it up, but if there's a tutorial or something out there I'm willing to have a look at the least :) If I found out it was the logic board myself I wouldn't bother taking it to Stormfront as I can't really justify spending so much on a logic board replacement. But £50 for them to tell me that it's the LB would be nice to avoid :cool:

    What screwdrivers would I need and is there a video on how to do it?

    I'm in York, England.
     
  4. logana macrumors 65816

    logana

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2006
    Location:
    Scotland
    #4
    It is not a job for the faint-hearted....if you have never taken a laptop apart before then maybe this is not the time.

    Problem is that Apple would look at it for free but as soon as they see the liquid damage (sensors on the logic board) they will tell you to go away (politely of course)

    What did the eBay seller tell you he had done ?
     
  5. BK. thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    May 22, 2011
    #5
    I haven't been in touch with Apple due to the lack of a store here or nearby. I contacted Stormfront and they said they'd charge £50 just for a diagnosis and then I could proceed with getting it repaired or not. There were 3 possible things wrong with it, and they told me which would be the most/least expensive etc.

    And really? I'm not/wasn't expecting anyone to either look at it for free, nor repair it for free. I was hoping to pay depending on what's wrong/how much it'd cost. Do Apple really not fix things for money?

    He didn't. He sold it as is, I'm just assuming that the logic board is the issue, and the fact three keys don't work etc. just make me assume it was water damaged. I could be wrong.
     
  6. east85 macrumors 65816

    east85

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2010
    #6
    You have nothing to lose by taking it apart and maybe snapping some photos to post here as long as you have the logical capability to follow a teardown guide (and the ability to find one). You've already stated that you basically spent next to nothing on it with the intention of possibly repairing it out of curiosity. If it is still under Apple Care I wouldn't touch it though until you bring it to an Apple Store, but from my experience Macs are easy to tear down and put back together.

    As far as actually attempting to fix the water damage on the board, that's where I'd advise you to perhaps find a professional that could solder and whatnot if there's no desire to purchase another logic board. It's almost guaranteed that there's going to have to be some kind of soldering done to repair a logic board with liquid contact.
     
  7. logana macrumors 65816

    logana

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2006
    Location:
    Scotland
    #7
    Yes - liquid damage is most likely culprit....

    The chances are the charging circuit is fried - below F1 and F2 keys and that is a new logic board - £300-400 from Apple/Stormfront. Could just be the battery connector or the DC-in board but probably not.

    I would be happy to look at it and see if there is a cheap or even free solution....

    Probably better to PM me though....
     

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