Yes, another water-damaged MBP - Advice on repair/replacement decision?


macrumors newbie
Original poster
Feb 17, 2011
I'm ashamed to post, because a.) I'm a lurker, and b.) I fried my beautiful, innocent mid-2012 MacBook Pro (2.9 GHz, 8 GB RAM, 750 GB HDD), and I know how many desperate, futile posts already exist on this sad topic, because I've read nearly all of them.

I decided to write anyway, because I could really use some advice, and I'm hoping one or more of you might be willing to weigh in before I make a decision about how to proceed.

Here's the situation. Unbeknownst to me, my three-year-old poured part of a bottle of water on my MBP the middle of the night...while it was open, on, and charging. The next morning, I noticed the computer was off and the charger wasn't working, so I pulled the cord out of the MBP and plugged it back in. The charging light came on briefly, I smelled burning and began to hyperventilate, and then the light quickly went out again. Since then, my MBP's been bricked. It won't charge...or turn on, obviously.

I need a computer ASAP in order to work, and I have no money (and, I mean, no money).

I also don't have an Apple store near me, and I don't know of anyone else who can diagnose the damage for free. I could send it in to one of the companies that offer free diagnostics if you let them repair your computer. I'm concerned, however, about losing $60 or more in shipping/diagnosis costs and being back at square one if it turns out I can't afford the fixes needed. $60 is a major expenditure right now.

So. I'm trying to scrape together funds, somehow, and make a decision about the least expensive - and wisest - course of action.

Here are my options:

1.) PRAY that "just" the logic board on the MBP is damaged and send it to one of those online logic board repair services to be fixed. Looks like the cost would be $350-$400. Seems like this would be a big gamble, but it might pay off.

2.) Buy a basic MacBook Air, 11.6" screen, 4 GB RAM 128 GB SSD, from a good friend who's up for figuring out an informal "payment plan" with me if I need her to. In other words, she could use some money for it now, like $400 or so, but she'd be fine if I couldn't give her more for a while. I've loaned her things in the past, we trust each other and I'm good about paying debts, so I suppose this could be an ok solution. I don't love the idea, though.

3.) Buy a cheap Windows laptop and hope for the best. (Would try a Chromebook, but I need to create Word documents offline a lot for work, so I think the OS would present problems). I haven't really used Windows to do more than check email at my mom's house since 2003 or so. From what I remember, Windows is going to be tough to adjust to. Still, it seems like I could get something functional for word processing, basic WordPress tasks and online research for less than 400 bucks.

What do you wise Mac people suggest?

I'd be VERY grateful for any and all opinions, cautions, musings and/or suggestions folks are willing to offer. Bleak predictions are fine, too, even. Just hoping to get as much information as I can before making the tough choice.

Whether you get around to replying or not, thanks for reading this. Happy forum-surfing.


macrumors 6502
Dec 6, 2008
Space: The Final Frontier
There is no guarantee that only the logic board was damaged. You could pay the 350/400$ to get the logic board fixed but at the end of the repair, you might need another part replacement such as the keyboard, etc. I was in the same situation a few weeks ago. I ended up buying a new laptop as the cost of a repair from apple would run into the early $1000 mark. Plus they might not honour my warranty for the remainder of the applecare period.

I would try and get an estimate on the repairs directly from apple by shipping it to them and then choose a course of action depending on the cost of damages.
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macrumors 6502a
Feb 25, 2013
Sorry to hear about this man, this plucked a few of my heart strings, I sympathize.
I think the best option from the ones you presented would be the Macbook Air. It's the fastest, probably the most reliable and likely the cheapest option Unless your prayers are answered, which I hope they are.
I'd hold onto your fried Macbook for now until cash is a little less lean, then get it repaired.

I wouldn't touch the Chromebook, the price might be the best part of it but the OS is useless, it's still a little too new.

Again, I sympathize, good luck.


macrumors regular
Mar 17, 2012
What software do you normally run? If it's just Microsoft Word and email, you might be best off temporarily switching to a cheap Windows laptop, because you could get one for <$300 and it would definitely be the cheapest choice. Sure, Windows 8 is kind of annoying, but if all you're doing is email, browsing, and Office, it'll be fine - some features are even nice for those, like AeroSnap which makes research and writing much easier (the features of which are also available on 3rd party Mac windows managers). Plus if something should happen to that laptop you'll only be out $250 or so. Alternatively, you could consider putting your MBP up on ebay. Depending on the specs, condition and size, you could get $300-$600 for it, which could mean as much as $1000 towards buying a new MBP, which could get you a used or refurbished 13".


Sep 21, 2012
In the middle of several books.
If you are comfortable with making payments etc., I would get the Air. Also, someone is selling a Macbook for $85.00 with shipping in the marketplace forum.

I feel for you. I hope you can get it all sorted out.
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macrumors member
Dec 30, 2003
I didn't see any mention of insurance? Do you have renters or owners insurance by any chance? I have heard of some policies covering personal electronics.


macrumors 65816
Jun 28, 2010
I know you're not near an Apple Store, but you might want to venture to one and see what they can do. At worst, they can get it sent in and repaired for a fee. At best, they might make an exception and cover the repair. It never hurts to be honest and explain your situation.


macrumors regular
Apr 9, 2011
Independence, MO
I would have to go with option 3 out of those choices. I picked up a new laptop for my daughter before Christmas and have been really happy with it. It is a Toshiba 15.6" screen, Core i5 dual core 2.6 Ghz, 500 GB HD, and I upgraded the Ram to 16 GB and with the warranty from Office Depot that covers accidental damage I spent less than $600. It's the same processor that was in the higher tiered 13" rMBP in early 2013. There are some cheaper also, but I have been very impressed with this laptop for the price we paid. Before the memory upgrade and insurance it was under $350 and had a $50 mail in rebate on top of that. I believe it had 6 or 8 Gb of Ram before the upgrade, so it wasn't really needing it either, I just got a good deal on some and put it in. There are some very reasonable priced machines out there for decent prices.



macrumors 6502a
Jun 21, 2012
Sorry to hear about your mac, i think the best thing to do first is to go to an apple store be honest with them and ask them to diagnose it, apple does make exceptions at times to keep their customers happy, a similar incident happened in my family she told the genius to diagnose it and i would pay for repairs, the genius went in and came back saying we can make an exception this time and the mac was fixed. So hope they do that otherwise have them diagnose it and get an estimate accordingly you could have it repaired outside. I have seen a few people who had water damage and it would not power up but after cleaning any residue or corrosion the machine powered on fine or had some things not work.
I myself would not feel so good about paying anyone in part i cant say about if i may have the money to pay the remaining ahead. So i would say if the apps you use can work on windows see if you get a used or a new one for a good price and save up for repairs of your macbook or if the repairs are costly buy a new one that fits your budget.Also i would keep my laptop out of reach from my toddler when its un attended.
Hope things turn out in a good way for you.


Staff member
May 3, 2009
Option 2 seems the most viable, though option 3 could be feasible if you choose wisely. There are plenty of cheap windows laptops, but you need to consider any software costs.