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Trying to fix a MacBook Pro with a screen problem

post #1 of 5
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Somebody I know told me that his macbook broke, and he doesn't have warranty. I told him to take it to an Apple store but for some reason he didnt.

I looked at it, and after years of flipping the laptop lid up and down the cable somehow became damaged and the screen slowly started getting covered in random-colored lines, until they covered up the screen completely. I took the back cover off, and it looks like I'm going to have to disassemble the laptop, or at least the lid with the screen and I will probably need a new cable.
As for my laptop disassembly experience, I've disassembled a half-smashed HP laptop in working condition just for fun, but I didn't really put it back together, since I had no time or intention to do so, but that's another story...

Does anybody have a suggestion for this situation?
Would provide pictures, but there isn't really anything to photograph, the screen is just random colors, the wire is damaged and that's about it,
If I wasn't clear, I can explain this better, just ask.


tl;dr - macbook lid damaged monitor cable inside trying to fix it
post #2 of 5
Just make sure you get the fixed cable right so it doesn't break again.
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post #3 of 5
Screen is random colors or is it green and pink? Pictures could actually be useful as it may be something other than the cable.

I worked at Apple for about a year and it was rare for the cable to be the issue, granted we would usually just replace the entire LCD or in the unibody Mac's, the entire casing and screen, as it saved time and cut costs compared to pulling it out and replacing the cable.

What year is it or do you have the model? Would be helpful in letting you know how difficult it is to replace/fix it.
You can get that info by dropping the serial # into this - http://support.apple.com/specs/


And maybe check this -- http://support.apple.com/kb/TS2377
Small chance it could be related and even out of warranty it gets replaced.
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post #4 of 5
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by TwilightEscape View Post

Screen is random colors or is it green and pink? Pictures could actually be useful as it may be something other than the cable.
I worked at Apple for about a year and it was rare for the cable to be the issue, granted we would usually just replace the entire LCD or in the unibody Mac's, the entire casing and screen, as it saved time and cut costs compared to pulling it out and replacing the cable.
What year is it or do you have the model? Would be helpful in letting you know how difficult it is to replace/fix it.
You can get that info by dropping the serial # into this - http://support.apple.com/specs/
And maybe check this -- http://support.apple.com/kb/TS2377
Small chance it could be related and even out of warranty it gets replaced.

Thanks for your reply. The last time it was turned on, when he was showing me the problem, I'm pretty sure the lines were gray, pink, and green. However, this failure was gradual, so it started out with just a couple of lines and eventually got the whole screen. The lines also changed when the lid was moved, so I assumed it was the cable. However, I personally know that the mac also overheated A LOT lately, so I really don't know what it is at this point, but your post definitely pointed me in the right direction.

According to the serial number, it's a mid 2009 macbook, which I expected, with the new aluminum unibody, a 13 inch screen and a dark keyboard.
https://support.apple.com/kb/SP541

The GPU is a 9400M GT, so I doubt that they will replace it.
Where do I go from here? And thanks again for the helpful post.
I can't take a picture of the screen right now, my friend forgot to bring the power cord. I'll turn it on and upload some pictures tomorrow or Saturday, depending on when I get the cable.
post #5 of 5
Quote:
Originally Posted by scriptgorilla View Post

Thanks for your reply. The last time it was turned on, when he was showing me the problem, I'm pretty sure the lines were gray, pink, and green. However, this failure was gradual, so it started out with just a couple of lines and eventually got the whole screen. The lines also changed when the lid was moved, so I assumed it was the cable. However, I personally know that the mac also overheated A LOT lately, so I really don't know what it is at this point, but your post definitely pointed me in the right direction.
According to the serial number, it's a mid 2009 macbook, which I expected, with the new aluminum unibody, a 13 inch screen and a dark keyboard.
https://support.apple.com/kb/SP541
The GPU is a 9400M GT, so I doubt that they will replace it.
Where do I go from here? And thanks again for the helpful post.
I can't take a picture of the screen right now, my friend forgot to bring the power cord. I'll turn it on and upload some pictures tomorrow or Saturday, depending on when I get the cable.

Yeah Mac's have never been good with the heat. I can't recall any issues in particular with the 9400 but I do know the 8800/9800 were under a replacement plan for overheating and defects.
The green/pink is usually a GPU issue unfortunately but with it having a change when the lid was moved it is possible it is the cable as well, could even just be loose. So I would start by replacing the cable and seeing if that fixes it and if it doesn't then it's either the LCD (unlikely) or a bad GPU.

This site provides pretty good steps on how to get to everything. It shows how to replace the entire LCD but you really just need to get to the cable portion and end there.
http://www.ifixit.com/Guide/Installing+MacBook+Pro+13-Inch+Unibody+Mid+2009+LCD/1423/1

You can also bring it by an Apple store and they -should- take a look at it and be able to tell you what is wrong and give you an estimate to fix it. In which case you'll just go home and fix it yourself afterwards. Though from what I've heard from my old coworkers they have stopped doing that at a lot of stores, and I wouldn't always trust what they diagnose, as some techs are too lazy to spend 10 minutes opening it up or running a diag on it.
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