Repeated HD failures

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by Jefferyd32, Mar 9, 2014.

  1. Jefferyd32 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2009
    Location:
    Portland, Or
    #1
    I have a 2009 MacBook Pro, and for the past 3 years I have had annual HD failures. After the first two I went with an SSD thinking that would make it last longer, but that did not work either. Any ideas on why my HD would keep failing like this? It just seems bizarre.
     
  2. KUguardgrl13 macrumors 68020

    KUguardgrl13

    Joined:
    May 16, 2013
    Location:
    Kansas, USA
    #2
    What does the machine do when it fails? If it starts to a flashing folder with a ? instead of the Apple logo, then it may not be the hard drive that's failing. It may actually be the SATA cable that connects the hard drive to the logic board. Those cables are flimsy and known to fail in the 2009 models (used to happen in mine a lot when taking it back and forth to class).

    If it made a clicking noise and was slow, then it's a hd failure and I have no other explanation. But if it just all of a sudden doesn't boot (especially after a hard restart with the power button?), then it could be the cable. Unfortunately the only way to fix it is to replace the cable. Apple has no other solution. You can find them for about $20 on Amazon or give Apple about $75 to have them do it.
     
  3. Jefferyd32 thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2009
    Location:
    Portland, Or
    #3
    It may be the cable as I did get the flashing folder, but after booting up with the install disc no HD is shown in Disk Utility. It's an SSD so I assume I wouldn't hear any clicking sounds from the HD. How hard is the install on the cable?
     
  4. T'hain Esh Kelch macrumors 601

    T'hain Esh Kelch

    Joined:
    Aug 5, 2001
    Location:
    Denmark
    #4
    You can put your drives in an external enclosure and check if they work. Would be a good idea, since you have so many failing.
     
  5. KUguardgrl13 macrumors 68020

    KUguardgrl13

    Joined:
    May 16, 2013
    Location:
    Kansas, USA
    #5
    Not very challenging if you follow the iFixit guide. Basically you lift the connector off the logic board, loosen the hd bracket and lift out the drive, disconnect the cable from the side, and pull it out of the machine. Then reverse to install the new cable. Just be careful not to bend it as that's one way it gets damaged.
     
  6. ecschwarz macrumors 6502a

    ecschwarz

    Joined:
    Jun 28, 2010
    #6
    Also, you mentioned you had an SSD - if it's actually a hardware failure (I'd first get a SATA-to-USB adapter ($25-$30) and see if it works that way), I'd get in touch with the manufacturer for a replacement. Most SSDs have at least a 3-year warranty, so you can at least not have to sink more money into your computer. If you haven't gotten rid of your hard drives, you could also check them with that adapter.
     

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