Why am I so unlucky with refurbs?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by GlynJones, Feb 25, 2009.

  1. GlynJones macrumors 6502

    Jun 15, 2005
    Yesterday I ordered an early 2008 MBP 2.4 refurb which I have been waiting to appear for some time on the Apple UK store. Not a bad price of £880.

    I was apprehensive, as I've had 2 other refurbs in the past that have been bad. A PowerMac which had it's front leg stanchion so badly bent that you had to prop it up with a piece of cut out rubber. I also had a BlackBook that looked like someone had taken a sander to it as it was so badly scratched. But I decided to risk it as surly I couldn't be unlucky a third time. How wrong was I.

    Opened my new MBP and discovered that the top case had a few deep scratches. Went on to boot it and all I got was BEEP, BEEP, BEEP. I work in IT so I had a feeling this was badly seated RAM, which it was so it finally booted. Went to put iLife 09 on it and discovered that the aluminum around the Superdrive had been pinched in a little so I decided not to risk it.

    I though well I can report this to Apple and get a new top and bottom case and I'll be fine. Then the machine beach balled and I could hear a ticking from the drive area.

    Connected a firewire drive and put the leopard install disk in and thought I'd install on the firewire and get the whole unit sorted out later.

    Well I've put the install disk in and pressed 'C' as it booted but I didn't get the apple logo up. Tried a few times and finally got it to boot from the installer disk.

    Didn't manage to install on the firewire, as I needed to reboot the MBP, as it wasn't identifying the firewire drive correctly so I prepared the firewire on my iMac. Now I can't get it to boot at all from the installer.

    I've reset the PRAM and that did nothing. I've held the 'C' key as I’ve booted, before booting, after the chime and still nothing.

    Rang Apple and they advised me that I could either send it back for a refund or get it repaired. As these refurbs are so hard to come by I’ve booked an appointment to see a Genius to hopefully fix the MBP and replace the top and bottom case. Do you think I’m mad for doing this? I really want to get this machine working.

    So why did this fail quality control as it's got a few problems. Even Apple stated that it should not have been sent out in this condition.

    Why am I so unlucky with refurbs? I read so many stories about people getting as new machines but I never do.

    Can anyone help me get this booted as I'd love to have a play with it but I think with the fact I can't get the apple logo to come up then it might not be the drive but a logic board failure.

    Sorry for the long post but any help is gratefully received.

  2. Darth.Titan macrumors 68030


    Oct 31, 2007
    Austin, TX
    With all the problems you've described, I'd suggest you forget about playing with it and send it back ASAP. This one's a lost cause.
  3. danny_w macrumors 601

    Mar 8, 2005
    Austin, TX
    I agree. Sorry to hear about you refurb problems, I have had several and ever a problem with any of them.
  4. wahoo10 macrumors 6502

    Feb 11, 2009
    If even Apple's questioning, send it back! But, call them up, say that it was unacceptable (which, for a refurb, kind of is) and demand a replacement ASAP. Tell them you waited this long for the refurb and don't want to wait for it again. This will either get them to overnight a new refurb, or they may send you a whole new unit (which could be just as defective though)
  5. 7even macrumors 6502a

    Jan 11, 2008
    I've found that I have no luck with refurbished Apple products either... :mad:
  6. GlynJones thread starter macrumors 6502

    Jun 15, 2005
    Only problem is that they don't have any and only get this model in very infrequently.
  7. Redneck1089 macrumors 65816


    Jan 18, 2004
    Same here. I'll be on my fourth iPhone soon, and every replacement iPhone I get is a refurbished unit.
  8. pdxflint macrumors 68020


    Aug 25, 2006
    Oregon coast
    totally unacceptable...

    It's unbelievable that Apple would let something like that get out the door. Every refurb I've ever had was shipped from Cupertino, and showed the date of manufacture as if it were new, and the location of manufacture as USA (Cupertino.) They are basically supposed to be made like new, with anything showing wear, or any part that doesn't pass inspection by the tech doing the refurbishing being replaced with new parts. Charger, battery, etc, all brand new. HD also new. Warranty same as brand new. That's why I'm really shocked that Apple would ship something like what you got. I'd be all over them with that as totally unacceptable. Period!
  9. Pixellated macrumors 65816

    Apr 1, 2008
    If they say they don't have it, demand a unibody!

    I'm on my sixth :rolleyes:
  10. The Hammer macrumors 6502

    The Hammer

    Jun 19, 2008
    Toronto, Canada
    I'm sorry GlynJones but how did you manage to go through all this with your latest refurb if you ordered it only yesterday?
  11. wahoo10 macrumors 6502

    Feb 11, 2009
    Is this not a uni-body? And if not, I agree, demand one.
  12. Pixellated macrumors 65816

    Apr 1, 2008
    He said it is early '08. :) And yes, he does deserve it.
  13. GlynJones thread starter macrumors 6502

    Jun 15, 2005
    I ordered it yesterday morning and it arrived this lunchtime. I've had all the fun and games since then with it.
  14. Nabooly macrumors 6502a


    Aug 28, 2007
  15. gilesrulz macrumors member

    Jun 17, 2008
    I would go through warranty repair on it. If it is really as bad as you suggest, they are unlikely to fix it, and will probably give you a new machine. There is only so much work that is worth doing to a machine before it becomes cheaper to give you a new unit.
  16. GlynJones thread starter macrumors 6502

    Jun 15, 2005
    That's my thinking as well. If I get a top and bottom case and the problem fixed it will look like a new machine and if I keep getting problems then they will replace it.
  17. GlynJones thread starter macrumors 6502

    Jun 15, 2005
    Tried switching it on last night and it booted up fine :confused:

    Ran the diagnostics from the install disk as it would now allow me to boot from the Superdrive and it found no errors :eek:

    Played "World Of Warcraft" for a bit and it looked stunning. Did a bit of surfing which froze momentarily for a bit and then a sound that sounded like Dr Zoidberg from "Futurama" before the ticking sound returned. Failed to reboot again after that.

    Tried again this morning and it booted up. Looks like it's a heat issue but the noises and ticking do not sound like the hard drive and if it was it doesn't explain why it will not boot from the Superdrive.

    Hopefully this will make sense to the Genius on Saturday but have anyone else had similar symptoms and if so what was the fault?


  18. kastenbrust macrumors 68030


    Dec 26, 2008
    North Korea
    I thought if you have to send a refurbished laptop back to Apple in the UK they replace it with a new one? They've done that for me in the past, although the one i got was a complete dud.
  19. tcphoto macrumors 6502a


    Feb 23, 2005
    Madison, GA
    Why would you accept such a problematic machine? It is unacceptable and I would return it or ask for a replacement. If you don't, you deserve the headaches of sending it back and waiting for repairs and pray that the same technician does not work on it again. If they are out of the 2.4's then ask for an upgrade to the next higher processor.
  20. GlynJones thread starter macrumors 6502

    Jun 15, 2005
    The reason is that they don't have any left and they come in very infrequently as it's not one of the new unibody types. They can only offer me a repair or a refund.

    If I have lots of problems with it later on then they may replace it with a unibody but i'm quite willing to let them fix the problem as it will not be my main machine and the price was excellent.
  21. HarleyMan macrumors member


    Feb 2, 2009
    Demand Being the Keyword

    With all the problems you listed it is appalling that Apple, known for their quality, would let this thing go out. And thats exactly the approach to take when talking to Apple.
    No need to get ugly, or vulgar, but take that approach and DEMAND at least another unit, or even a new unit, for your troubles.
  22. GlynJones thread starter macrumors 6502

    Jun 15, 2005
    Well after a long 3 weeks I've finally got it back.

    Here is a list of what was replaced:

    Display Clamshell, Matte Screen
    Bottom Case Assembly
    Hard Drive 200GB SATA
    SDRAM 1Gb DDR2-667 x 2
    MLB 2.4Ghz Rev2 Logic Board
    Flex Assembly HDD/IR/SIL
    Hardware Repair Level 2

    All in all this was £1333 worth of repairs. The machine looks mint and I'm busy transferring all my apps across. I'm sure some of the parts did not need replacing but Apple seems to think if in doubt, replace.

    It took a while due to negotiations over the case repairs but I was really surprised when they said they would replace the whole case assembly including the screen. They said it was easier and as I had a stuck pixel they decided to replace it.

    Once again you really cannot fault Apple over it's after care service. Three weeks ago I had a lemon but now I have a mint condition Macbook Pro and I could not be more happy.

    Glyn Jones.

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