rMBP 15 heatsink screw stripped, what now?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by darkinners, Mar 26, 2013.

  1. darkinners, Mar 26, 2013
    Last edited: Mar 26, 2013

    darkinners macrumors member

    Mar 15, 2013
    I was trying to reapply the thermal paste through iFixit guide


    I got the tools.
    - W1.2 5-Point Pentalobe screwdriver
    - T5 Torx screwdriver
    - Plastic Spudger


    I manage to unscrew all of them and re-apply the thermal paste.
    Job's done, screw all the carefully managed screws back in.

    Well. Somethings went wrong.
    One of the silver screw for heatsink mount near the fan got stripped after I screw it back on.

    The green one "One 3.5 mm T5 Torx screw" (photo from iFixit)

    I am sure I didn't use excessive force. (my rMBP 15 is a refurb, don't know if this matter? The previous owner already f-ed this up?)
    But when I unscrew that, didn't seem to have any sign of strip/dent on it.
    But when I screw it back on, I feel the the screw and my screwdriver wasn't feeling perfectly fit(the rest of the screws are perfectly fit)
    I knew something's up.

    The actual screw on my rMBP

    I tried some usual method.
    - rubber band between the screw and the driver.
    - a little larger Torx screwdriver.
    - use with philips/flat head screwdriver

    Didn't help at all, by the means. Only made it worse. You can see the photo.

    Now my last resort is solder another screw on it to unscrew it but this is really my last resort.

    So my question is. Any of you have better idea of how to get it done?

    Or I should bring it back to Apple store and seek for their help?
    Will Apple help me on this?
    If no. will Apple void my warranty because of this?

    if Apple won't help me and I managed to unscrew this screw.
    is there a way I can buy a new screw from Apple?

    I checked iFixit, they have the part but they only offer one package which include ALL the screws in rMBP.
    I don't need ALL screws and needless to say it's quite expensive.
    So iFixit screws package is my last resort.

    Any input will be greatly appreciated.:eek: Thanks!
  2. leman macrumors G3

    Oct 14, 2008
    Yes. It will cost you though. A lot.

    Of course they will! You have been doing a non-certified modification and have damaged your machine in process. Your warranty is already void. And even if you replace it with another screw, they will probably noticed that you have worked on the machine. If you will to bring the machine for a repair at some point, don't expect them to do it under warranty.

    Wouldn't it be possible to get a matching screw from another store? There must be some place that sells Torx screws.

    BTW, for the future — I highly recommend you getting one of these: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Torque_screwdriver
  3. Asuriyan macrumors 6502a

    Feb 4, 2013
    I wouldn't tell Apple. A bit of poking around under the hood is fine but I'm pretty sure removing and remounting the heatsink is somewhat frowned upon. Whether they will notice and declare your warranty void for other, unrelated issues is a function of how careful you are from this point onward.

    Perhaps check with local electronics suppliers (not Radio Shack!) for a replacement screw? And as far as removing the existing one, if you have a steady hand soldering is probably your best bet for a screw that small.
  4. Dookieman macrumors 6502

    Oct 12, 2009
    If you finished the job, and got everything back together minus the stripped screw, is it really going to hurt anything if you just leave it like that? My suggestion is to forget about and finish putting it back together.

    I once stripped a screw while adding more RAM to my MBP and it got to the point that it was NOT going to work. So I got my drill, drilled the head of the screw off, and finished the RAM installation. The panel is now only held on by once screw, which is plenty.

    I understand the idea of wanting it to be like it was except for your addition though. Just my opinion.

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