MacBook Pro had issues and repaired several times, but issues still persisting.

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by BlueCorn, Jul 17, 2013.

  1. BlueCorn macrumors newbie

    Oct 23, 2012
    I own a 2010 17" MBP. I have upgraded the RAM from 4GB to 8GB, removed the optical drive and installed the optibay cover (1TB HDD in the optical bay slot and 300GB SSD in the primary). Approximately about a few months before my extended warranty was up, I began experiencing issues and eventually, I was unable to start my computer at all. No fans spin up, no boot screen, no indication the machine in on. The only thing that was functioning was the battery indicator LEDs on the side.

    Background (not relevant): This is my primary mobile machine. I own a few desktops I've assembled myself and the MBP. I've used the laptop in several cities and the only repair I've had before this was the display. It had severe light bleeding issues. I take care of my laptop and I've done the upgrades as mentioned above. I actually clean out the dust every 4-6 months or so. It's actually quite amazing how much dust can accumulate in the computer.

    Trip #1: Took it to an apple store for repair, the tech told me the logic board had failed and they would have to send it out for repair. They replaced the logic board and the hard drive (apparently bad blocks showed up in the test). Got my laptop back in a little under a week and computer was working great. A couple weeks later, my applecare has expired and the computer begins to shut down randomly.

    Trip #2: Go back to the apple store and explain my situation. The genius is curious since the chance of two faulty logic boards is pretty slim. She thinks it might be an issue with the power button itself so she opens up the bottom and attempts to short out the starter pins to start the computer. Nothing happens. She says they will likely have to replace the logic board again and this time the computer will undergo deeper testing to ensure it's good to go. I say great and luckily they have the parts at the store so turnaround time should be quick. Got it back, everything is fine, but again after a few weeks the computer shows the exact same problems.

    Trip #3: Somehow the computer comes back to life when I show it to the genius. It boots up just fine. This is the same person I saw from Trip 1 so he's somewhat familiar with the situation. He hooks up the computer and runs the diagnostic. Thermal sensors near the magsafe port is too hot so he says that might the cause all along. He also says that it might be something to do with components under the keyboard? I don't know... Got my computer back yesterday and they ended up replacing the logic board again along with the magsafe board. I used it during the night and once again the computer shut off randomly. I'm sensing some impending doom here, but hopefully it trudges through.


    If I add up all the repair costs that Apple has done so far, it's basically the cost of the computer. One display replacement, 3 logic boards, a hard drive, and a magsafe board along with all the labor...

    It is becoming extremely irritating to keep going back to the Apple store to get my machine fixed and I cannot keep taking time every other week or so to get it taken care of. I would like to sell the computer and just buy a new one, but who is going to buy a computer with so many issues right after the warranty is gone (all repairs have been free due to the 90-day grace period from a repair). And I won't omit the fact about the repairs either since it's a crummy thing to do and they would be able to find out anyway if a tech at an Apple store looked it up.

    Can anyone tell me what my options are if the computer fails again? Or will I just have to endure my computer continually eating logic boards?
  2. gobigorange macrumors member

    Sep 8, 2010
    I'd go ahead and take it back and tell them that it shuts off randomly. It would be better to have it documented right away rather than wait it out.

    From what I understand, Apple has an unofficial policy that if a computer is repaired 3 times for the same reason, then they usually replace it.
  3. BlueCorn thread starter macrumors newbie

    Oct 23, 2012
    Thanks for the advice. I'll try and set up an appointment later this week if I can.

    Does this policy have a name? Technically, I've just gotten the same repair 3 times and no one at the Apple store mentioned this to me.

    Thanks again orange.
  4. mac00l macrumors 6502

    May 3, 2011
    On a 17" it might be trickier since they don't produce them any more. I wouldn't get my hopes high.

    On the other hand, Apple tend to be very flexible on their policy. Maybe after the 5th time they can arrange to get you a rMBP 15" in exchange???

    I would definitely call Applecare before going to the Apple Store again, calmly explain the situation and ask for solutions. Saying that the machine is experiencing random shut-downs even after getting 3 different logic boards, it would be in the best interest of both to get a new machine, since up to now it has cost Apple a lot in labor force, handling and pieces. Not saying your own time spent going to the store.
  5. Mr Rabbit macrumors 6502a

    Mr Rabbit

    May 13, 2013
    I would call AppleCare and explain your situation. You've been experiencing problems for months now, while they have repaired you have been without a computer, the frustration is obviously there and they will surely understand. Once a problem becomes unreasonable (i.e., unresolved after 2-3 lengthy repairs) and starts impacting your work they tend to be good about offering replacements.

    With that said, they would likely not be able to provide a 17" replacement. A coworker of mine was in a similar situation about a year ago where his 17" MBP had been through three or four depot repairs in a matter of a month or two and AppleCare eventually replaced his machine with a top of the line 15" retina.

    If they do replace it with a retina model be sure to mention the mismatching of capabilities since the retina models don't have optical drives, ethernet ports or firewire ports. Apple will likely send you the necessary adapters/drives to even things up in regards to capabilities.

    Best of luck!
  6. gobigorange macrumors member

    Sep 8, 2010
    I'm not sure it has a name, but mention that the same major repair has happened 3 times. By the way, I make no guarantees. :)

    Let us know how it goes for you.

    By the way, they still have 17 inch MBPs in the Refurbished store, so I'd imagine that they could potentially be able to replace yours with a 17 inch.
  7. BlueCorn thread starter macrumors newbie

    Oct 23, 2012
    No go on the replacement. I came in mentioning the slew of problems and the genius said would attempt to replace the top case and the logic board again (4th repair involving the logic board now). I mentioned if a replacement would be possible and he said no. There is no official policy on the 3 times rule so I have nothing to reference.

    I'm a pretty reasonable, level-headed person and they always treat me nicely at the apple store so I let it go, but this will be the last time. If I have another issue again, I will probably have to resort to being much less understanding and insist on a replacement. I know people personally who have had their computers replaced for a lot less and they probably accomplished it by being "unruly", but I really don't want to stoop to that level.

    Well, here's hoping that 1) this repair finally solves everything or 2) a Haswell rMBP is released before I would get a replacement. While the rMBP is nice, I really am going to miss the real estate of the 17" if it comes to that.

    Thanks again for all your help/suggestions guys.
  8. auero macrumors 65816

    Sep 15, 2006
    I had very similar issues with a 17" macbook pro. The replaced the logic board and power button the first time around in the store. Same problem ended up happening so I called Apple and sent my machine out for repair. The machine came back with the same issue. I sent the machine out again and waited. The machine came back not only having issues but had a few scuffs. At that point they issued me a new machine. The rep I was dealing with told me that they try three repairs before throwing in the towel. I'd call Apple and let them know what's going on.
  9. BlueCorn thread starter macrumors newbie

    Oct 23, 2012
    I think that might be what I end up doing.

    Important or unrelated fact I left out is that this 17" is actually a replacement of a 2008 17" MBP that had a ton of issues (also it was doomed to fail thanks to the Nvidia GPU). I only had to buy Applecare after that and the computer has been working like a champ until now.

    I got a call from the manager at the store who mentioned that the genius said I mentioned a replacement. He specifically stated that the computers were only replaced in extreme circumstances (I don't know what to call this) and that because this machine is the replacement of an older one that it wouldn't be an option anyway. I don't know if he thinks I'm trying to game the system or something (felt I picked up on that from his tone), but I am not. I've purchased about 6-7 Apple products in my life personally and have bought or recommended them for friends and family, but it seems like this MBP specifically is the only thing that has been giving me issues. I just want a working computer. Whether it's from the repair, a refurb, or a brand new one I don't really care.

    If I have another problem (I really hope I don't since it is becoming such a pain to be after all this), I will definitely be contacting an Apple customer support line instead of the taking it into the store.

    Thanks again everyone for all the suggestions.

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