Macbook Pro vulnerable to liquid spills

Version 4
Last Modified: Jul 2, 2013 6:12 AM

Hello and welcome to my User Tip



The MacBook Pro is especially vulnerable to liquid spills on the keyboard area, or by side splashes at the rear or side ports.


(It's also sensitive to magnets and magnetic fields generated by certain electrical equipment.)


It's highly advised not to set drinks near the machine, nor eat or drink near them to reduce the possibility of a splash hitting the machine or food crumbs falling into the keys which attract bugs that then can cause internal issues.


Also be careful of others who might be jealous, intoxicated or careless and cause a spill or splash to occur on your expensive Apple product.




If your machine suffered a spill or splash, it's been my general opinion that if it just was small enough amount to affect the keyboard section only (sticky stuck keys etc) and if replaced your machine is still good, then that's what should be done. Immediatly turn the machine off and flip upside with a absorbent cloth between the screen and the keyboard and hope for the best.


However if it was a substantial amount that literally poured into the machine past the keyboard, reached the logicboard and other parts of the internals, and/or caused it to shutdown, act strange or freeze, then it's really not worth fixing as other parts are also affected or will corrode later and then fail.


In this more extreme case it's likely better money spent on a new machine rather than on the revolving door repair cycle. The internal storage can be physically removed by yourself if need be and a SATA to USB adapter and Apple's Migration Assistant (in your Applications/Utilities folder) used to a new Mac, or MacDrive installed on a Windows PC and using the same SATA to USB adapter, files transferred to the PC.


Install/upgrade RAM or storage drive in Mac's


AppleCare/warranty does NOT cover accidental damage, only factory defects, so it's all out of pocket costs if it's user inflicted damage to the machine, regardless if it's accidental. The repairs likely have their own coverage period or none at all.


If you or the one handling the machine is prone to accidents, stealing, lost or just abusive to expensive hardware from Apple, it might be a better decision to get a inexpensive and thus more disposable Windows PC laptop instead.


For parents of younger kids, it's likely better to purchase a iMac for them to use as it's stationary and the keyboard is external, not internal and thus can be inexpensively replaced if damaged occurred. PC keyboards work with Mac's, especially the wired ones. The wireless ones one has to check first if it requires software and there is a Mac/OS X version that can be used with the replaced product.