MacBook Keyboard Panel Replacement



In the the three years I’ve had my companion – the polycarb MacBook, it’s become trashed and trashed. Okay, not entirely, but I’ve taken less care of my gadgets. My iPod touch is the latest victim of being dropped on the pavement of NYC’s terrible concrete steets.

1) Summer 2008: While hacking and iPod touch with the old Sony VAIO laptop, the software must have become infected with corrupted data. I believe a virus was loaded onto the Apple device, then when I plugged it into my MacBook, it shit the entire system out. I lost everything. No data was spared. I didn’t have a backup system in check at the time. The crisis lead me to replace the 120 GB hard drive with a 250 GB one and the 1GB RAM to 4GB. I also bought a 500 GB Western Digital My Book to back up important files.

2) Winter 2010: A new keyboard panel replacement. Toting around my MacBook to work for the last three months caused damage that bothered me too much. I know, it’s quite minor for most people, and a perfect excuse to replace it with a 13″ MacBook Pro, but I love it too much to fork over the $1200 for a new one. Besides, I love pushing its shitty Intel GMA 950 integrated graphics to limit to see what it can handle. It does 720p off YouTube surprisingly well in OSX, and even better in Windows XP.

Searching around the Internets, I noticed that lots of MacBook owners had the same crack – in the same spot. I already missed the point where Apple could replace the keyboard panel. I also don’t believe in extended warranties or Apple Care – though I’ve heard great stories about Apple’s customer satisfaction service. I firmly believe I’m capable enough to fix 95% of the problems that would ail my gadgets. I hunted down a brand new keyboard panel, and set to work to fix my MacBook over Spring break. An hour later, my MacBook was like brand new.

The CRACK, held by a piece of scotch tape until the replacement panel came.

The MacBook with the keyboard panel dismantled.

A closer look at the RAM modules. 2 x 2GB RAM = 4GB RAM in total.

The old keyboard panel flipped over. That little black square is the module that connects the keyboard & trackpad to the rest of the MacBook components.

The new keyboard panel on top of the old one. See the crack?

New panel about to be installed onto the MacBook.

Thanks to the this repair video the repair went off without a hitch.

Was the replacement part worth the $80? I’d say yes, because I’m not annoyed every time I turn on my computer. Call me a perfectionist, but when you spend your time on the computer for school and work, you notice.

7 Responses to “MacBook Keyboard Panel Replacement”

  1. nice! maria had the exact same crack on her macbook + a shitty battery, please don’t show her this or i’ll have to do it…but very cool.

  2. Quality control was pretty bad at the time. They reimbursed people who bough AppleCare. Bastards.

  3. 3 SmarterThanYou

    You are all idiots. Apple will replace this for you free of charge, even if you don’t have AppleCare or your warranty is expired.

    • 4 MB

      How about a bit less attitude? You’re not smarter than me – Apple stopped fixing this for free, and, they don’t even make the part anymore.

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