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MBP 2015 battery expanding - don't qualify for recall, worth reparing? (plus other questions)

kindofsleepy

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Jun 18, 2015
8
0
Campbell,CA
So like the title says, the battery in my 2015(ish) MBP has apparently expanded(was used as a home computer for quite some time which is why I didn't notice till now)

My serial number surprisingly doesn't qualify for the recall. I chatted with Apple yesterday and the guy was optimistic that I could get it repaired for $199 but I have to wait till Saturday to be able to take it into the Apple store for a proper evaluation (no appointments available at nearby stores till then :oops:).

I was just curious if anyone happened to have been in a similar situation and what they were quoted / paid for the repair if you opted to try to salvage the situation as I'm trying to decide if this laptop is worth saving. I'm told the $199 covers the battery + top case which sounds suspiciously too good to be true.

On a related note:

1. Is it possible to grab the data off the hard drive if I put the SSD into an external enclosure and plugged it into another Mac? I remember this being possible with time machine backups, would it work the same way with just plugging in the old drive? I'm contemplating going this route and recycling the computer instead of waiting till Saturday out of safety.

2. How safe of an operation would doing #1 be? :p

Thanks!
 
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chrfr

macrumors G4
Jul 11, 2009
10,192
3,909
So like the title says, the battery in my 2015(ish) MBP has apparently expanded(was used as a home computer for quite some time which is why I didn't notice till now)

My serial number surprisingly doesn't qualify for the recall. I chatted with Apple yesterday and the guy was optimistic that I could get it repaired for $199 but I have to wait till Saturday to be able to take it into the Apple store for a proper evaluation (no appointments available at nearby stores till then :oops:).

I was just curious if anyone happened to have been in a similar situation and what they were quoted / paid for the repair if you opted to try to salvage the situation as I'm trying to decide if this laptop is worth saving. I'm told the $199 covers the battery + top case which sounds suspiciously too good to be true.

On a related note:

1. Is it possible to grab the data off the hard drive if I put the SSD into an external enclosure and plugged it into another Mac? I remember this being possible with time machine backups, would it work the same way with just plugging in the old drive? I'm contemplating going this route instead of waiting till Saturday out of safety.

2. How safe of an operation would doing #1 be? :p

Thanks!
For a 2015 MacBook Pro, I’d definitely replace the battery with a new one from Apple- a benefit of getting the battery from Apple is that you’ll get a new top case and keyboard for that $199, so it‘ll look and feel like a new computer. Swollen batteries can be a fire hazard and shouldn’t be kept around for longer than necessary. I’d back up your data and send the computer in, but leave the disk inside the computer.
The $199 is standard price from Apple for replacing these batteries- there’s no trick or scam here.
 
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Natzoo

macrumors 68000
Sep 16, 2014
1,550
292
you’ll get a new top case and keyboard for that $199
I thought that was only for the 2016-2019 models. I'm sure a top case assembly is $400+ on its own.

But yea I would go the apple way, the only way to guarantee a quality battery.
 
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chrfr

macrumors G4
Jul 11, 2009
10,192
3,909
I thought that was only for the 2016-2019 models. I'm sure a top case assembly is $400+ on its own.

But yea I would go the apple way, the only way to guarantee a quality battery.
All the retina MacBook Pros have a glued in battery. Apple‘s standard battery replacement includes the top case and keyboard. If the computer is brought in for a keyboard problem or other top case issue, then yes, the repair is more expensive, even though the parts are the same in the repair as if the computer were brought in for a battery replacement.
 
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kindofsleepy

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Jun 18, 2015
8
0
Campbell,CA
For a 2015 MacBook Pro, I’d definitely replace the battery with a new one from Apple- a benefit of getting the battery from Apple is that you’ll get a new top case and keyboard for that $199, so it‘ll look and feel like a new computer. Swollen batteries can be a fire hazard and shouldn’t be kept around for longer than necessary. I’d back up your data and send the computer in, but leave the disk inside the computer.
The $199 is standard price from Apple for replacing these batteries- there’s no trick or scam here.

It's not that I think it's a scam or anything, I guess I'm just trying to maintain reasonable expectations given the age of the machine and how it's not part of the batch of serial numbers that are affected by the recall; I seem to remember even just a top case replacement was close to $800-ish on it's own, it seems hard to believe they'd swap out everything for $199.

But we'll see what they say Saturday.
¯\_(ツ)_/¯

(and are there third party batteries? Not that I'd replace it on my own anyways but that seems interesting)
 
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chrfr

macrumors G4
Jul 11, 2009
10,192
3,909
It's not that I think it's a scam or anything, I guess I'm just trying to maintain reasonable expectations given the age of the machine and how it's not part of the batch of serial numbers that are affected by the recall; I seem to remember even just a top case replacement was close to $800-ish on it's own, it seems hard to believe they'd swap out everything for $199.

But we'll see what they say Saturday.
¯\_(ツ)_/¯

(and are there third party batteries? Not that I'd replace it on my own anyways but that seems interesting)
3rd party batteries are risky- they're of unknown origin and seldom work as long as the Apple batteries do.
Again, Apple prices the battery replacement differently from a top case repair, even though the parts used are the same.
Apple publishes battery replacement pricing here:
A swollen battery, and any damage it may have caused to the computer, will be priced as a battery replacement.
 
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jerryk

macrumors 603
Nov 3, 2011
6,235
3,187
SF Bay Area
It's not that I think it's a scam or anything, I guess I'm just trying to maintain reasonable expectations given the age of the machine and how it's not part of the batch of serial numbers that are affected by the recall; I seem to remember even just a top case replacement was close to $800-ish on it's own, it seems hard to believe they'd swap out everything for $199.

But we'll see what they say Saturday.
¯\_(ツ)_/¯

(and are there third party batteries? Not that I'd replace it on my own anyways but that seems interesting)

Here is the official Apple battery service page with prices, https://support.apple.com/mac/repair/service

Price is $199. This usually is a top case replacement because the batteries, keyboard, trackpad, and Aluminum case where your hands rest are glued and screwed together. It is faster for them to replace all of this as a package versus trying to disassemble pieces via heating and un-rivting.
 
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Fishrrman

macrumors Core
Feb 20, 2009
20,488
7,271
I consider $199 for a new battery (parts & labor) to be a BARGAIN.
If it's a 2015, by all means get it repaired -- it has years of life left in it.
 
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hollandog

macrumors regular
Mar 13, 2014
223
81
I would fix it for $199. My 2016 15" is currently experiencing the same issue and Apple is quoting me of $800 flat rate for mail in repair. I'm holding on to bring it to the Apple Stores when it reopens in NYC...
 
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kindofsleepy

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Jun 18, 2015
8
0
Campbell,CA
I consider $199 for a new battery (parts & labor) to be a BARGAIN.
If it's a 2015, by all means get it repaired -- it has years of life left in it.

.... I don't think I ever said $199 wasn't a good deal? Yes repairing is the desired outcome, but I have to wait awhile to be able to take it in.

I would fix it for $199. My 2016 15" is currently experiencing the same issue and Apple is quoting me of $800 flat rate for mail in repair. I'm holding on to bring it to the Apple Stores when it reopens in NYC...

Yea, at least taking it in for an in-person evaluation first is the plan at the moment, I was expecting something along the lines of what you were quoted; if I really can get it fixed for $199 then I'm just going to do that of course.

I was considering popping out the hard drive and recycling the computer just to be on the safe side since Covid, as you've experienced, has made waiting for an appointment a possible problem(although I might have still had problems anyways...takes forever to get an appointment these days even in SV!).

Hope your stores open soon!
 
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kindofsleepy

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Jun 18, 2015
8
0
Campbell,CA
I would fix it for $199. My 2016 15" is currently experiencing the same issue and Apple is quoting me of $800 flat rate for mail in repair. I'm holding on to bring it to the Apple Stores when it reopens in NYC...

Manged to snag an appointment today after all, seems like their systems don't update fully till the current week for some reason, looked on Saturday and couldn't see any available till following weekend.

Anyways, you should call them back and try a different CS rep, went today and only got charged $199 + tax.

=====
A general note to anyone else that might have the same issue - just go to an Apple store(assuming they are open in your area) instead of an Authorized repair shop; my experience with Apple repairs directly have been a mixed bag so I can't help but worry just a tiny bit; that said, I can't argue with $199 vs the minimum $450 I was being quoted by a well regarded Authorized repair shop.
 
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hollandog

macrumors regular
Mar 13, 2014
223
81
Manged to snag an appointment today after all, seems like their systems don't update fully till the current week for some reason, looked on Saturday and couldn't see any available till following weekend.

Anyways, you should call them back and try a different CS rep, went today and only got charged $199 + tax.

=====
A general note to anyone else that might have the same issue - just go to an Apple store(assuming they are open in your area) instead of an Authorized repair shop; my experience with Apple repairs directly have been a mixed bag so I can't help but worry just a tiny bit; that said, I can't argue with $199 vs the minimum $450 I was being quoted by a well regarded Authorized repair shop.

That's good to hear. Not sure when the NYC stores will open but I will be taking it to the store.
 
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