MagSafe End Plug failure (bad pin spring)

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by mtbdudex, Oct 13, 2007.

  1. mtbdudex macrumors 68000


    Aug 28, 2007
    SE Michigan
    Earlier I posted problems with my MagSafe charger.

    Look at this photo:
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    View attachment 87304

    Now, I've root caused the flaky LED lights sometimes showing/not to be BAD pin SPRINGS. There are four pin connectors, they are spring loaded. This way when you connect they exert pressure to force a good electrical connection. However, the springs on the two outboard ones have weakened, this caused them to sometimes connect, sometimes not.

    That is why when I held the male connector end "hard" into computer female end the connection would work, I was compressing the springs on the inboard pins, thereby the outboard pins would touch and juice would flow.

    So, I ended up buying a new MagSafe adaptor, since mine was 16 months old. I still feel this is a reliability/durability issue with the basic design, no way should those pins springs fail.

    Hopefully others can notice if they had same issue and get replacment from apple within their warranty.

    I have not taken this apart, in case apple warranty dept wants to dis-assemble it themself.

    Attached Files:

  2. khunsanook macrumors 6502


    Jul 2, 2006
    East Asia
    I have the exact same problem. Almost every time I connect my magsafe I have to first tap it on the table to get the connectors fully extended since the springs don't work.

    It's been trouble lately, but trying to get the Mac dealer here in Thailand to replace anything free of charge is such a complete hassle (They always attempt a service charge even with Applecare...which I completely refuse after already paying 150 bucks for Applecare). I've been round and round with Apple-U.S about the poor service in Thailand, but they claim they cannot do much to remedy Asia partner problems. So I guess I'll be fudging my broken spring magsafe until the next visit to the States.

    Macs are great when you live in the States and things are easily serviceable. Overseas can be a very different story.

    It seems these magsafes could use a bit of re-engineering.
  3. flopticalcube macrumors G4


    Sep 7, 2006
    In the velcro closure of America's Hat
    Again. Oh Apple, when will you get it right?!?! :rolleyes:
  4. 8CoreWhore macrumors 68020


    Jan 17, 2008
    Big D
    I now have this problem! I went to the Genius today, she said it was due to WATER DAMAGE! What a load of crap! :mad:
  5. alphaod macrumors Core


    Feb 9, 2008
    There are instructions from Apple on how to fix the stuck pin.
  6. wmf macrumors newbie


    May 26, 2009
    Pacific Northwest
    More Pin Talk...

    A link might be helpful. Here's one: Troubleshooting MagSafe adapters. (Note they give instructions to troubleshoot, and attempt to fix.)

    I agree with OP - check the pins while you are still under warranty! Any sign of trouble get a replacement. One of my pins began to fail first but plug still worked. Now two pins and almost doesn't work at all. I suspect that some foreign material (cookie crumbs? :eek:) got in there and began the problem. So keep it clean!)

    I called Apple and they were very helpful in checking if I could get a replacement, out of warranty. I cannot. There is a pool of the power adapters they will replace, but mine is not among them. It is worth a call though.

    I am searching the forums here hoping to find a fix as the $79 is a bit painful for me right now.

    Additional Questions:
    • Has anyone successfully fixed their pins?
    • Can I replace just the mag safe part of the plug myself?
    • Is there a third party Power Adapter?
  7. NovemberWhiskey macrumors 68030


    May 18, 2009
    Could this be the underlying cause of the magsafe fires??
  8. drydockdave macrumors newbie

    Sep 23, 2009

    When my 2nd! magsafe power plug failed I tried a fix which may or may not burst into flames one day. I put a small drop of 5-min epoxy at the base of the outside pins, the flaccid ones, and waited a few minutes and then gave the plug a good whack on the kitchen counter so that the errant pins hung down as far as the others and let it dry over night. Works like a damn so far... even found my old one and did the same and got the same result.

    The plug may not sit quite squarely but the orange led and the little lightening bolt should compensate.

    Nope you cannot get just the plug and yes I've heard that there is a third party supplier.
  9. jnewell123 macrumors newbie

    Dec 4, 2009
    easy fix for weak spring problem

    I figured this out while trying to fix my power adapter. The white plastic cap on the end of the magsafe connector (the one with the green/amber leds) is (tightly!) held on by friction, maybe there is a drop of glue in there too. Pulling it back allowed the connector to hold tighter to the socket and compensated for the weak springs.

    I used a razor blade inserted between the metal portion and the plastic cap to loosen the bond on all four sides a bit first. Then I used vice grip pliers to clamp the metal portion of the connector and then pried the cap backwards by leveraging a flat blade between the cap and the vice grip. If you are careful this will not damage anything. If you are not careful you will probably mar the plastic a bit which isn't really a big deal.

    I suspect a bit of sandpaper/file work on the cap would allow me to push the cap back on all the way and still allow the connector to sit more snugly.

  10. cderalow macrumors 6502


    I had this issue a while back on my original power adapter. brought it to genius bar, they replaced with new one, no questions asked.
  11. harperjones99 macrumors 6502

    Nov 3, 2009
    This is why people hate risking the service never know if you are going to get someone helpful or someone like this dumb chick, oops sorry "Genius" :rolleyes: who tries to use nonsense excuses to blow you off.
  12. macbook1967 macrumors newbie

    Mar 31, 2010
    me too!

    My MagSafe end plug has bad outer springs, too. They aren't stuck, because gravity plus a little shake moves them in and out. I went to Genius bar, and they would not replace or try to fix. (The guy only isolated the problem to the adapter, and did not really want to look any further.)

    From the Genius bar, I learned that Apple considers these items "consumables" - they don't expect them to last much longer than a couple years. I guess they figure anything wrong between the end-plug and the body is due to users straining the wires too much and taking the plug out by the cord. I've always been careful to avoid this, and still, it broke.

    Bottom line: the MagSafe end-plug represents poor design - features at the expense of reliability. The new end-plug shape (cylinder) is better in that it makes it harder to pull out by the cord, but this doesn't necessarily address the pin-spring breakage problem, a problem that they don't even recognize.

    I shelled out the $80 for a new one - I needed to use my computer - but it hurt.
  13. captainhair macrumors newbie

    May 24, 2010
    A quick fix

    a way to "quick Fix" this is grab the cable about 10cm from the connecter itself and hit it on your hand a few times.

    I have the same problem and it seems to work, just it gets annoying cause the pins automatically retract as soon as there pushed and dont rebound....still recommend going to the apple store to see if your eligable for a free replacement
  14. dll31p macrumors newbie

    May 25, 2010
    Had the same issue - warranty covered it

    I had the same exact issue on my 6 month old magsafe. Outer two pins flopping around just like in that picture... And I DEFINITELY don't pull on the cord to release it; I just flip up the connector housing itself to break the connection then pull it away, so I know this is another Apple design flaw. Any way called them up and they sent me a new adapter (I have to send the old one back as proof I suppose). The cool part is they seem to have gone back to the old school 'L' shape. I remember seeing one of these on an old Macbook Pro and was a bit curious so I went looking. Turns out this is a bit different (shinier) but still very much the same design. The cord now points towards the rear of the Macbook instead of out the side (which was annoying in its own right when sitting it in your lap). Any way I like the new one, seems to physically support the connection better. Just look out for this version if your shopping around (don't get stuck with the poor design).

    And as for those genius bar fools, I don't trust them at all. I drove an hour and a half to the closest store because my slot loading super drive was eating DVDs. Guy found a scuff on the side (I move it around a lot in a laptop backpack) and told me issue was probably my fault and wasn't covered under warranty. They look for the stupidest crap just to get you to shell out for faulty equipment. I think I'm going back to Sony for my next laptop...
  15. agentphish macrumors 65816


    Sep 7, 2004
    Post a picture. You probably have corrosion on your magsafe adapter, hence their answer. This happened to me, my cat played with it a bunch, probably licked it, and it got rusty and corroded.

    don't worry it wasn't plugged in :)
  16. navets2020 macrumors newbie

    Mar 18, 2012
    Solder works for me!!

    Ive had 2 magsafe that messed up on me due to the pin on each end always get stuck. Instead of opening it or messing with it, i just got my soldering iron and some 60/40 Rosin-Core Solder(found at RadioShack) and i just

    1. Heated the iron to 450'C
    2. Stuck the Solder to the iron(NOT THE PIN!)
    3. Very Carefully touch the soldering iron to whatever pins are stuck.( BE VERY CAREFUL TO NOT LET THE SOLDER STICK TO ANOTHER PIN!!
    4. After u apply solder to a pin, be sure to let it cool down for 10 seconds before moving to the next pin.

  17. mb235267 macrumors newbie

    Dec 7, 2012
    Widening the pin holes...

    If you take pliers and pull off the "L" part right next to the light, then you can push out the rectangular plastic piece with the 4 holes that are causing the pins to stick. Then you can push a clothes pin or something in there to widen the holes a bit. After putting it back in and snapping the first part back on, my pins didn't stick when retracted any more and I was able to charge the computer again. I beats buying a whole new charger!

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