Macbook Pro Bottom Case Repair...Need help!

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by kinetickatie, Jan 23, 2009.

  1. kinetickatie macrumors newbie

    Jan 23, 2009
    If this is covered somewhere else in the forums, I'm sorry for duplicating. I did a search and didn't find anything that I needed, so here it is:

    I dropped my 17" Macbook Pro and dented the bottom case on the corner. There is a significant gap and I'm afraid that dust or anything else harmful will get into the inside and really damage my laptop.

    I purchased a new bottom case (I purchased it from a private seller) for $50. I had no idea installing it would involve so much trouble!

    The best quote I have received for installing it is $270. A lot of places online won't install it because I didn't purchase the new case from them. I have been searching for guides and manuals that will assist me in figuring out if I even have a remote chance of installing it myself, but there are a ton out there and none of them have specifically instructed me on how to remove the bottom and then re-assemble it.

    I absolutely cannot afford to spend any more than $100 on installation, so I'm thinking I'll have to do it myself. I don't have any experience so I need as much information as possible on how to do it.

    I know you're all going to tell me, "If you have no experience DON'T risk it, just spend the money to have it installed professionally. You'll end up saving yourself money doing it this way because if you try it yourself you'll probably need far more expensive repairs." But the truth is I absolutely, in no way whatsoever, can afford to have it installed. $100 is the highest I can go.

    Advice on how to install the new case?
  2. macrem macrumors 65816


    Mar 11, 2008
    Does this look like your MBP? Just 82 steps to replace the lower case!

    PS: to the tools list (Phillips #00 Screwdriver, Spudger, T6 Torx Screwdriver), I would also have an ice tray, some labels and a pen handy to put the screws in and label where they came from (e.g., "step 5 screws").
  3. cerealj macrumors member

    Feb 28, 2008
    I say don't risk it. Repair the hole with something safe, like tape or glue. It'd be ugly, but if spending a lot of money isn't an option, then I think it's unwise to risk a $2000 laptop by trying it yourself.

    If it were me, I'd rather live with a bit of tape or glue (even as a temporary solution until you can get the repair done by a professional) than risk breaking my very expensive laptop and incurring even larger fees just to get it operating again.
  4. macrem macrumors 65816


    Mar 11, 2008
    ...whereas I would welcome the challenge. I would also have some compressed air handy to clean the parts and some beer.
  5. kinetickatie thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jan 23, 2009
    That would be it! I've seen a lot of videos from PowerbookMedics on how to disassemble each part, I just didn't know what I had to remove. The ifixit guide is a good structure to go on.

    I think I can take the components out without hurting anything, but I worry I won't be able to get them back in! Is that particularly difficult?
  6. cerealj macrumors member

    Feb 28, 2008
    Personally, I would also just do it myself, but that doesn't mean I'll recommend it to anyone because there is always the chance (even though it's a very, very slim chance) that something could break and that isn't a risk that everyone might be comfortable taking.

    Bottom line is, if you've found a good step-by-step guide, changing the bottom of the case shouldn't be a complicated procedure. It's still inherently more risky than just using some tape, but that may be acceptable to you and I really doubt anything would go wrong.
  7. yrael macrumors newbie

    Aug 20, 2008
    West Coast
    uh, wow.

    I've seen a friend of mine change the harddrive, and I thought that was intense...

    What he does is print out all the pages and put the assorted parts on that portion and lay all the parts-on-pages out to keep all the screws and stuff from rolling around and mixing.

    Notes: Step 9 is actually really really tricky. Not only is it attached to a ribbon, popping out the tabs can really be hard, since they're so easy to bend backwards.

    For everything else, just be careful about it and don't rush it. It might take a long time to get through all of it, but it's worth the effort to do slowly.
  8. macrem macrumors 65816


    Mar 11, 2008
    All valid points, I agree.
  9. kinetickatie thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jan 23, 2009
    Thanks for all your help, guys! I'm going to go for soon as I can find the T6 Torx screwdriver. If all else fails I'll just have to order it online. :rolleyes:

    Thanks again!

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