Previous 1 2 Next 24 Replies Latest reply: Nov 3, 2010 12:56 PM by littlenitnoy
naja15 Level 1 (0 points)
I stupidly spilled some coffee on my macbook not a long ago and the trackpad is not very responsive anymore. The keys still work fine, the computer works ok, external mouse is plugged in and it all works fine. BUT, I'd love to try and fix/replace the trackpad if possible, but I have no idea what part to look for.

I searched the web and there were suggestions that I'd need to change the whole top part including the keyboard, but I was wondering if that was correct?
Could someone please point me in the right direction? And is this also something I could do myself or is it too complicated?
Thank you!

Macbook pro 13.3", Mac OS X (10.5.8), 2 Gz, 1Gb 667 Mhz DDR2 SDRAM, MacBook 2 Ghz Intel Core Duo
  • rkaufmann87 Level 9 (55,218 points)
    Could someone please point me in the right direction? And is this also something I could do myself or is it too complicated?

    Sorry to hear about this and unfortunately it will be an expensive lesson. I'm afraid your best bet is to make an appointment at your local AASP and get ready to pay. How much I have no idea you will need to get an estimate.

    There simply is no easy fix for this.

  • Michael Black Level 7 (20,382 points)
    The unibody does come with the keyboard, trackpad and upper case all as one single integrated component. has them for $299.95 and also has instructions about how to replace it (they categorize this repair as "very difficult" since you basically need to completely dissemble the machine starting from the underside).

    Sorry - but I'd say it is something to take to an Apple certified repair shop and have pro's fix it.
  • k.panic Level 3 (605 points)
    Actually the 13" trackpads are the easiest to do because you don't have to remove the logic board, but you DO have to remove the integrated battery, which voids any warranty you may have. If you have it serviced by an AASP at least your warranty will continue on from there.

    Trackpads are absolutely separately replaceable but I have no idea where you would get one out in the consumer world. I also don't recommend voiding your warranty. They're tedious to do if you've never done one or worked on computers.
  • naja15 Level 1 (0 points)
    Thank you, it's out of warranty anyway and apple will not cover spills.

    So I can do it myself then. I saw some on ebay, some are new some are used.
    I'm not by any means an expert but have changed dvd and hd before on my previous macs. Unibody is strange to me as no visible parts so haven't even attempted to do anything. But I can follow instructions.
  • Michael Black Level 7 (20,382 points)
    Really? I know for the 13" Macbook, you can buy trackpads by themselves, but I've never heard of that for the MBP or seen it offered anywhere. All the unibody models seem to only have fully integrated top cases, keyboard and trackpad as one unit available. Maybe that's just through the retail side though - do you think a parts wholesaler could get individual components somewhere?

    And ifixit's repair guide for the 13" MBP shows that everything has to be removed - fans, battery, drive, logic board - the whole shebang since they only seel the single integrated case part. It looks very tedious to do, with lots of steps where it would be oh so easy to break some small connector or part.
  • naja15 Level 1 (0 points)
    How expensive will apple be then? More than a new macbook?
  • Michael Black Level 7 (20,382 points)
    Well, if online places are selling the part(s) for $300, I'd think an Apple authorized repair shop should charge less then that in labor, so the whole thing might be $400-$500 (I'm really guessing at that since you would need to ask a shop how much to actually do the installation).

    Certainly well less then buying a brand new machine though.
  • Michael Black Level 7 (20,382 points)
    naja15 - I'm confused - your title says Macbook pro buy your signature says Macbook? which is it, or which is broken. An older plastic case Macbook will be even cheaper to repair.
  • naja15 Level 1 (0 points)
    That's too pricy for my pocket at the moment
    I'll have to ring around or just put up with a mouse.
  • naja15 Level 1 (0 points)
    I haven't updated my signature, sorry.. It's macbook pro that I have now since last year.
  • Michael Black Level 7 (20,382 points)
    If you do decide to do it yourself, look it up on and you can go through the procedure (with pictures) to decide if it is something you want to tackle yourself.

    The repairs like this are not so much difficult, as tedious and take a lot of patience (little connectors and such that have to be gentle eased off, lots of screws to take carefully off and keep organized so you'll remember where to put hem all back to). You just need to be prepared to do them slowly and not rush it.

    Which is why I stay away from them I'm fine with a socket wrench or a hammer on things the size of cars or buildings, but I do not have the patience to try this kind of repair.
  • k.panic Level 3 (605 points)
    Yeah, that's why I said I don't know what's available on the consumer side of things. I know for certain that the trackpad can be removed/replaced independently of the top case, as long as it's a unibody.

    For the 13" MBPs the only components that need to come out are the bottom case and battery. You need a special screwdriver for the battery, probably a #0 tri-lobe, depending on the model. You also need a #00 phillips and a Torx T6 for the trackpad itself.

    The trackpads are usually under $100 for the part. Labor depends on where you go. It's not too bad through an Apple Store or AASP. The mail-in repair would be a lot because they charge a flat rate for accidental damage that's kind of nuts if the trackpad's the only problem.
  • naja15 Level 1 (0 points)
    Thank you, I'll have to psyche myself up for that then!
  • naja15 Level 1 (0 points)
    Thanks, I should have all the screwdrivers that I bought when I had to deal with previous mbs, so fingers crossed I'll find the part on ebay.
    I will ring around and check the price of the repair.
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