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MacBook Air 13" KEYBOARD AND TRACKPAD FAILURE

33740 Views 23 Replies Latest reply: Mar 17, 2014 12:12 PM by legvaler RSS
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aps215 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
Currently Being Moderated
Mar 27, 2012 11:19 AM

Hi.  I  purchased a close out 13 inch MacBook Air from Tekserve in NYC for a friend in Europe, and she is reporting serious issues with her keyboard and trackpad (i.e. neither of them works).  She has tried rebooting a number of times. The specs of the machine are as follows.  13.3"/ 1.86 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo/ 2GB/ 128 GB Flash.  I am looking to know if anyone has had this issue and if they know how to solve it.  I am not sure which OS she is using, but the laptop was purchased Feb 2012 so I am imaging LION.  I have not yet UG'ed to Lion so I am not aware of any issues myself.  Thank you so much in advance.  Alex

MacBook Air, keyboard/track pad failure
  • AndyO Level 6 Level 6 (17,045 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Mar 27, 2012 11:33 AM (in response to aps215)

    This is not likely to be an issue with the OS version - if the keyboard and trackpad are both inoverative, there isn't a setting or system property in Lion that could cause it.

     

    I would try an SMC reset - it's detailed in http://support.apple.com/kb/HT3964?viewlocale=en_US&locale=en_US but the procedure for a macBook Air is:

     

    1. Shut down the computer.
    2. Plug in the MagSafe power adapter to a power source, connecting it to the Mac if its not already connected.
    3. On the built-in keyboard, press the (left side) Shift-Control-Option keys and the power button at the same time.
    4. Release all the keys and the power button at the same time.
    5. Press the power button to turn on the computer. 
      Note
      : The LED on the MagSafe power adapter may change states or temporarily turn off when you reset the SMC.

    If that doesn't help, and given the lack of responsiveness from the keyboard it may not, and assuming the laptop was bought through an authorised Apple reseller, the warraty should be valid and is worldwide, so it should be possible to have it examined by Apple or an Approved Service Provider in her area.

  • AndyO Level 6 Level 6 (17,045 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Mar 27, 2012 1:55 PM (in response to aps215)

    I'll cross my fingers, though if the keyboard really is inactive, the SMC reset may well not work - and unfortunately I don't believe there's a way to use an external keyboard on laptops with internal batteries.

  • AndyO Level 6 Level 6 (17,045 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Mar 28, 2012 2:06 PM (in response to aps215)

    It's not as likely to be a logic board issue so much as perhaps a connection or something along those lines. The fact that an external keyboard and mouse work and the internal keyboard and trackpad don't doesn't rule out a logic board fault, but it would be expected that a logic board with that kind of issue would show signs of other problems too.

     

    It's not hard to disassemble a MacBook Air, so hopefully your Genius appointment will turn up something! Good luck!

  • captfred Level 7 Level 7 (26,225 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Mar 28, 2012 2:12 PM (in response to aps215)

    Take a look at System Preferences > Universal Access > Mouse & Trackpad tab.

     

    See if the "ignore built-in trackpad when mouse or wireless trackpad is present" option is checked.

    If so, uncheck it.

     

    Regards,

    Captfred

     

    Edit: Nevermind, I see now the keyboard doesn't work either.  This option wouldn't affect that.

    Sorry. 

  • AndyO Level 6 Level 6 (17,045 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Mar 28, 2012 2:14 PM (in response to captfred)

    That had been my first thought too - it's amazing how many times universal access options end up activated unintentionally, with unexpected and tangential symptoms!

  • captfred Level 7 Level 7 (26,225 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Mar 28, 2012 2:19 PM (in response to AndyO)

    Happens everyday..   I wonder if Mouse keys is on for the "disabled keyboard" and the above option is on disabling trackpad....  That would be a first! 

  • AndyO Level 6 Level 6 (17,045 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Mar 28, 2012 2:20 PM (in response to captfred)

    I tried that on my MBA just to see!

  • dcom Level 1 Level 1 (5 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Apr 14, 2012 7:07 PM (in response to AndyO)

    Thanks AndyO, I had the same problem tonight (built-in keyboard and trackpad on a 13" MBA stopped working). Resetting the SMC fixed it.

  • tonymills77 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    May 9, 2012 1:46 PM (in response to dcom)

    I've got an extremely similar problem. Spillage on the keyboard. Unknown, what it was.

    To start with it was dead, no power up.

    Then it dried out. There was still a bit of battery power left, and the mouse and track pad worked for a few minutes then it all froze.

    So I shut the lid. I left it like that, because I couldnt switch it off.

    Much later, opened it up again and all windows opened up, all info was correct,

    I was advised to try wireless mouse and keyboard, but you have to get in there before it freezes again.

    The battery was charging normally as well.

    I made the decision to let the battery die completely and then switch it on again, but sure enough when I did this, it ignored any re-boot command and that's that. Dead as a do-do.

     

    So, without being a computer whizz kid, I presume, it's off to the Apple store for a sizeable bill.

     

    Unless someone else has a cunning plan ????????

     

    I would love to hear it !!!!!!

  • JasonMiller1975 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Aug 8, 2012 9:41 PM (in response to aps215)

    Resetting the SMC worked perfectly for my MB Air (2010) after KB and Trackpad abruptly stopped working today. Bookmarked should it happen again, thanks!!!

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