Liquid Spills

Ok, you were just sitting there reading the latest news, enjoying your favorite beverage, and the phone rings, startled, you reach for the portable and your sleeve catches the edge of your drink. Over it goes and into your laptop keyboard! Your stomach sinks, what do I do now??!!

Stop! Do not pass go, do not collect $200!

The Mac Doctor, Inc. offers a Concierge service to handle Liquid spills on your Mac Laptops.

My partners specialize in Mac notebook spill remediation and logic board repair. Through their process, they are able to clean the spilled liquid and repair the electronics, including tiny components, pads, etches and circuit masking with a 95% success rate and offer a 1 year warranty! * (see end of page for details). They also repair failed logic boards, damaged screens and so forth. They diagnose and repair even the most difficult problems, including those which others have said cannot be fixed.

What to do in case of a spill

Unplug the Laptop and remove the battery (the bottom case screws of your Mac take a PH00 Phillips screwdriver). Even still, there is usually a BIOS or PRAM battery on the board which supplies power to the board to keep the clock and other settings while the Laptop is off. This battery will also drive corrosion. So, don't put off action. The presence of that electric current accelerates the corrosive process that damages the circuit boards inside. All liquids, except distilled mineral free water WILL short circuit and corrode electronics.

Dry your Mac. Put a towel down on the table and turn the computer over so that the keyboard is on the towel and the screen hangs down from the tabletop. This will allow as much liquid as possible to exit. Do NOT use a hairdryer to speed up the process as the heat can do more damage than has already occurred.

Do NOT put the Laptop in a bag with rice as the grains only get into vents and slots and end up in places they should not be! And it doesn’t work anyway.

Do NOT power your Mac back on to see if it survived!

GET YOUR MACHINE TO ME ASAP. Liquid spills that are cleaned professionally within days can save your Laptop a high percentage of the time. In our initial communication I will ask for your model information so I can get you a rough quote of the likely repair cost in a worst case scenario.

What Next?

Generally, the news is never good in this situation but your Mac is not always beyond salvage. Sometimes damage is limited to a keyboard, top case or maybe a charging board. Unfortunately, damage sometimes extends to the logic board, or main system board of your Laptop, or liquid may have gone into the screen. These are much more expensive repairs and can sometimes exceed the value of the unit. On the other hand, a new MacBook Pro decently configured is currently in the $1500 to $1700 range and above.

By the way, none of these repairs are covered by your Apple Warranty or by AppleCare. All Mac Laptops now have several liquid spill indicators which change color when they get wet so a technician will know that your computer has been involved in a spill!

Often, the data on the hard drive is a primary concern. Hopefully, you do a regular backup and have all your data in a safe place. You do backup your data, don’t you? If you have no backup, all is not lost. Most hard drives are well sealed and normally survive spills. Your drive can be removed from the Laptop and the data recovered when you are ready.

If you agree to go forward after the quote, once I have your pre-payment, I will prepare, package, and expedite your Mac to my partners for cleaning and repair. Turn around time is typically 7-14 days depending on workload.

Remember - keep your drinks away from your computer. But if the worst happens, follow the steps above and get your Mac to me ASAP! And a silicon keyboard cover might be a good idea!

What's included in the repair?

My Partners offer true electronic component-level repair of your computer. They strive to understand what is wrong with the electronics in your machine and then effect a repair. This is far more cost-effective than swapping boards and parts around from other units, basically trying everything until something sticks. There is also less risk involved for you, as you won't be getting a board with someone else's problems. Here is a brief description of the process: The first thing done with a liquid spill logic board is to clean off the liquid. This is done correctly by cleaning the board in an immersion bath with industry-standard chemical solutions and using high-powered ultrasound to remove all the contaminates. This step is essential because unless you get all the liquid off, even from under the chips and other devices, the corrosion will continue and the board will -- guaranteed -- fail again. Without the ultrasound, there is no way to properly clean a board.

The next step is to repair any damage to the circuit board itself. This includes damaged masking, substrate damage, corroded etches and missing or damaged pads. Then they look for missing or damaged devices which must be repaired or replaced. These devices are truly tiny, some the size of a grain of sand. These steps are performed using a high-powered microscope and specialized soldering equipment. They also use specialized chemical compounds to repair the board itself. Finally they might need to replace some of the Ball Grid Array (BGA) or QFN devices like the video processor, memory controller or some of the various power regulators or other chips. This step is done using highly specialized and costly equipment which allow the removal, alignment and or replacement of these devices.

They include a Warranty!

Once your computer starts up and runs, they run it though a burn-in process to make sure it works. And then put a 1 year warranty on it and ship it out!

Risk Free to Try

If they are unable repair your laptop because the damage is too extensive, it will be returned to you free of charge, other than your initial Shipping and Services fee from The Mac Doctor, so there is no huge risk to try this service.