Spilled coffee in 4 day old Air. Trouble. What now?

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by akm3, May 4, 2008.

  1. akm3 macrumors 68020

    Nov 15, 2007
    Brand new macbook air. Got a coffee spill on it.

    Immediately shut it off and cleaned what I could up, but some coffee got in the keys on the right hand side.

    So now, when booting, there is no 'BONG' start up. It asks for a password to login, but it won't accept the right password (like the keys are pressing the wrong buttons) - pressing the 'enter' key during this process puts a character up in the password screen like a different key is being pressed.

    Can't log into it. Haven't disassembled it yet to see what I can see, but looking for advice. My wife just bought this for her business (first nice thing she's ever bought herself) and is mortified to have spilled coffee in it after only 4 days.

    What should we do? There are no Apple stores within 250 miles.

  2. island macrumors 6502


    Feb 19, 2007
    Check with your credit card company, my AMEX has protection for accidental damage within the first few months.
  3. Tracer macrumors 6502

    Jun 20, 2007
    Try a USB keyboard to confirm whether it is just the keyboard that is bad.

    Apple will be able to fix it, for a sum.

    The lack of a bong could mean that the internal speaker is toast or that the computer is on mute.

  4. iJohnHenry macrumors P6


    Mar 22, 2008
    On tenterhooks
    Why does no one ever say they turned it upside-down, immediately??

    To hell with your clothes, or the carpet, get that liquid to reverse it's flow.

    STAT !!!
  5. akm3 thread starter macrumors 68020

    Nov 15, 2007
    We did turn it upside immediately, Turned it upside down and then wiped the keys off as best we could,a nd then left it upside to 'dry' before we tried booting it up
  6. MazingerZ macrumors 6502


    Aug 22, 2007
    Let it seat for a while for an hour or so. Then try again.
  7. ayeying macrumors 601


    Dec 5, 2007
    Yay Area, CA
    Worst idea ever. When you flip it over immediately, the liquid doesn't stay still but move all around. If the liquid is on the edge of damaging something, you should shut it down to prevent any possibility of damaging the circuit board. Afterwards, clean up, then if you can, take it apart to dry it off internally.
  8. ntrigue macrumors 68040


    Jul 30, 2007
    If you need to urgently login then use an external keyboard. I would suggest sending it to be cleaned by Applecare - 3rd party Repair - Dishonest solution would be to return it within 14 days.
  9. trainguy77 macrumors 68040

    Nov 13, 2003
    I would leave it off for 3-5 days. Then turn it on, the keyboard make work. Thats what i did after i washed my keyboard in the sync. After 2 days a couple keys worked but at 4 days it worked %100. And i washed it like that because it was either that or it would be toast anyway..... So wait a couple days see if it works. If not then its time to decide if u want to open it up to clean or not.
  10. Stuart in Oz macrumors 6502

    Jan 16, 2008
    Sydney, Australia

    I know your pain - I spilled a bourbon and ginger ale through my 4-day old Titanium G4 back in 2000.

    Long story short, I found out that most of the damage from 'spills' comes from the corrosion to circuit boards, chips and other parts in the 1-7 days after the spill as the moisture sits, trapped inside the case.

    If you can open it up and dry it out, using a hairdryer or the sun or whatever, you have a better shot at recovery. You might still need a new keyboard (if the coffee had sugar in it that makes it sticky) and/or some other parts but you will stop any corrosion of the major boards and chips.

    I was told by the service techs of laptops that had orange juice put through them that worked after drying out - and after they'd had the pulp cleaned off the circuits.

    Sorry for your pain.

    EDIT - needless to say, disconnect the battery and don't try and boot it up again until it has been to the service centre.
  11. akm3 thread starter macrumors 68020

    Nov 15, 2007
    I have a set of jewelers screw drivers, but none of them are small enough to get at the case screws. Anyone know what size it actually is so I can pick it up?
  12. wordy macrumors regular


    Feb 26, 2008
    Do you have an eyeglass repair kit? That fits the screws well.
  13. princealfie macrumors 68030


    Mar 7, 2006
    Salt Lake City UT
    man I would keep all drinks away from laptops! desktops win in this respect for drinkers :p
  14. pilotError macrumors 68020


    Apr 12, 2006
    Long Island
    Do you use Sugar in your coffee?

    Sugar and Electronics don't mix well. Sounds like your going to need a new keyboard at a minimum.
  15. Le Big Mac macrumors 68030

    Le Big Mac

    Jan 7, 2003
    Washington, DC
    I'm now thinking of putting a masking tape circle around my desktop keyboard--a liquid-free zone.

    It never ceases to amaze me how many of these accidents there are. Hope you can get it fixed for not too much coin.
  16. akm3 thread starter macrumors 68020

    Nov 15, 2007
    Her coffee is loaded with sugar AND cream. What a palava.

  17. squeeks macrumors 68040


    Jun 19, 2007
    i dont understand the need for people to have a drink sitting within spill range of their notebook, it seems at least one person spills something on their machine on this forum everyday
  18. akm3 thread starter macrumors 68020

    Nov 15, 2007
    Well, in our case the notebook was 'out and open (and on)', my wife was walking by it with her coffee, and I bumped her.

    Typically, I wouldn't 'drink' while using a notebook (much less a 4 day old Macbook Air) and neither would she.
  19. Gasu E. macrumors 601

    Gasu E.

    Mar 20, 2004
    Not far from Boston, MA.
    If you ARE going to spill a drink on your keyboard, I recommend Diet Coke.;)

    Seriously, if you must drink around a keyboard, you should carefully consider what you can do to reduce the chance of large scale spillage. For example, try to use short stable containers that dont knock over easily. Plastic bottles and paper coffee cups = BAD.
  20. Satori macrumors 6502a


    Jun 22, 2006
    I for one appreciate the frequent reminder from others to be careful! I was surfing on my MBA & drinking a cup of tea (which is now safely over the other side of the room) when I clicked onto this thread!
  21. drewsof07 macrumors 68000


    Oct 30, 2006
    I cleaned 2-year old pepsi that was spilled on my friends iBook G4 from the motherboard/CPU before sending it to Applecare to get fixed. They found "No liquid damage" so the repair was covered. Note: when the owner spilled the liquid, it went into a hyper-dry cycle. It was weird. After the fans ran at full speed for 2 hours, it turned off. He booted later that night and everything worked perfectly for the next 2 years, then the DC board failed.
  22. themanfromvlad macrumors 6502


    Mar 11, 2006
    NEVER, EVER, buy expensive electronics without using a credit card that covers accidental loss or damage. Both my Mastercard and Amex do this, and neither of them charge a fee.

    That's the easiest way to stop these sad stories.
  23. bigandy macrumors G3


    Apr 30, 2004
    My advice would be to resign yourself to the cost of a replacement logic board.

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