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MacBook Pro too hot!

by cbarnes1213 / February 8, 2011 10:55 AM PST

My computer started to get super hot (like burn my legs hot) about a month and a half ago the fan also runs extremely loud. My dashboard stats say 5415 rmp. It happens after I am on the computer for about ten minutes. i am not doing anything crazy, just on the internet or typing papers. I took it to the mac store and they looked through all of my programs and said everything was fine. Is anyone else having this problem and has anyone been able to fix it?


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Check that all the vents
by mrmacfixit Forum moderator / February 8, 2011 9:01 PM PST
In reply to: MacBook Pro too hot!

are clear of anything that could block them.

Blowing them out with a can of air would aid that process.

If that does not fix the problem, you may want to take it back to the Mac store and get them to "really" look at it.

There is obviously some heat dissipation problem going on inside.


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I agree
by Jimmy Greystone / February 8, 2011 10:21 PM PST
In reply to: MacBook Pro too hot!

I agree, and it's rather unconscionable that the Apple store wouldn't at least open it up to see if the fan is caked with dust or some such. As a certified repair tech for Apple systems, I find that to be incredibly unprofessional, and would actually encourage you reporting the incident to Apple. You can say a lot of things about Apple, but they do take customer satisfaction VERY seriously.

They could have taken 5-10 minutes to check for dust buildup and blow it out with some compressed air if needed.

Also, just a friendly FYI... You shouldn't place your laptop on your lap for any regular period of time. Doing so can cause damage to your skin over time where the laptop would sit. You might have a roughly laptop sized patch of skin on your legs that looks like an alligator handbag while the rest looks perfectly normal.

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Thank you!
by cbarnes1213 / February 8, 2011 11:33 PM PST
In reply to: I agree

I will definitely take it back to the Apple store and have them open it up. Thank you for your help!

Oh, and I also just got a new laptop lap desk so I will make sure not to put it on my legs anymore!

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Burned and shocked by my MBP/"MagSafe" Charger
by 4serena / June 2, 2011 11:45 AM PDT
In reply to: I agree

Jimmy - I hope you get a copy of this... Yesterday (06/01/11) I was watching something on on my 2008 MBP- I paused the show and went away for about 2-3 minutes. When I came back and picked up my my MBP it was so hot I dropped it in my lap. My first reaction after that was to disconnect the power so I went to disconnect the MagSafe charger and it sparked then zapped/shocked me. The Mag"Safe" charger was insanely hot (like touching fire - and the left side of the computer was also extremely hot) - as I pulled on the charger to disconnect it the little metal/magnet part melted away from the plastic
piece/housing and was stuck to the computer. The inside of the plastic housing for the charger was scorched and there's scorch marks on the body of the notebook just about the charging port.

I called AppleCare and they said all they can do is replace the charger - and basically, since the computer is out of warranty (barely by 1.5 months) that they would actually be "doing me a favor." Seriously? I was "injured" and their generosity of a charger is doing me a favor? HAHAHA and some more HA!

So I decided to take it into the Apple store and see if I can fare any better. They too said they think the incident was isolated only to the charger and not the computer and offered to replace the charger.

I, personally, do not find this acceptable. Obviously, something is wrong if the computer was sooo hot I couldn't even hold it - AND the charger subsequently melted (not in the usual way people complain about because of the wires being exposed, etc - my charger was in perfect condition prior to this).

I was upfront and told them I didn't feel comfortable with just a new charger - something more needed to be done. In the 3 years of the life of the computer it has had NUMEROUS repairs, including a whole new clamshell, LCD as well as logic board, etc... etc... I felt like this was the proverbial last straw... so the supervisor and tech looked over all the records and ultimately agreed to send the computer into the "depot" and have any necessary repairs done, free of charge.

While this was a step in the right direction - I personally feel the computer should be replaced. What do you think my recourse is?

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You cross posted this.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / June 2, 2011 2:37 PM PDT

Try to avoid this in other folk's discussions.

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by 4serena / June 2, 2011 2:58 PM PDT
In reply to: You cross posted this.

I initially posted here but realized the dates of the original posts and thought maybe no one would see this so I posted a new one. Sorry - new to these boards! =)

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Take the free power supply!
by timhood / June 2, 2011 4:28 PM PDT

Your computer was out of warranty and you're not happy that Apple was willing to replace a part anyway? I think you need to adjust your thinking. Try that same request with another computer company (or just about any company). More than likely they will tell you in polite words the equivalent of "you're screwed."

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by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / June 3, 2011 4:09 AM PDT

Good point.

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suggestions ..
by jcig / June 24, 2011 2:52 PM PDT

That's why I gave him suggestions on fixing it himself. If you want something done right you need to do it yourself.

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If you ask me
by Jimmy Greystone / June 2, 2011 11:39 PM PDT

If you ask me, you have already gotten well and above what you're entitled to. Take it, and run! Do not pass go, do not collect $200, just take it and run! Expecting a brand new replacement that failed 3 years later is unreasonable. Be happy, you've gotten more than probably 90% of people in your situation would have gotten.

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by 4serena / June 3, 2011 6:39 AM PDT
In reply to: If you ask me

Perhaps my expectations were a little high. Yes, the computer was past warranty - by a little more than a month. Yes, some companies are willing to show you the finger when the warranty expires - but exceptional companies who are in the business to keep their customers happy (thus retaining loyal customers and their $$$) know when they need to "bend the rules" to accommodate a situation. Had the computer had no previous issues and then just suddenly had a problem - I would have conceded to the fact that, "that's just the way the cookie crumbles."

However, As I previously said, my computer has a VERY LONG history of repairs
and many of them were very early on, just months after the unit was
brand new. And there were some very significant repairs (display/lcd, entire clamshell, logic board, etc...) Yes, things break - that's why there are warranties. But
at what point do you draw the line? This was a $2800 computer brand new - it should definitely last longer than 3 years - otherwise it breaks down to $1000 a year - for that money I could buy a brand new, top of the line PC every year.

Also, there were some details which you were not privy to - such as the computer was left sitting on a table - and not on a blanket, pillow or anything soft. The program was on pause - so the video was no longer streaming and thus the computer really wouldn't be working overtime anymore. I had no other applications open either.

Do these computers get hot? Yep - and all the time too. Are they supposed to get so hot they literally burn you? No! There were SCORCH marks on my computer just above the charging station/plug - whatever you want to call it - and you could smell the burn. The whole thing could have caught fire (not saying it definitely would have - but the probability is there).

I have backed down from demanding a replacement. The Apple store shipped my computer off today to their depot and signed for any repairs necessary. Don't get me wrong, I am grateful - but if truth be told - I would have felt far more comfortable with a replacement.

Thanks everyone for your feedback!

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by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / June 3, 2011 6:45 AM PDT
In reply to: Thanks...

In some states the warranty is extended by the time the unit is out of your possession. So if the warranty is that close, you may be in luck.

But I agree with the above. Take that brick.

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I still say
by Jimmy Greystone / June 3, 2011 11:28 AM PDT
In reply to: Thanks...

I still say you made out pretty well here. I've had to send in some units for mail in repairs, and can tell you the retail store is eating about $300 here minimum, assuming that since they're part of the Apple parent company, they can get some kind of exemption for damaged units on the flat rate repairs. Otherwise, from what you've described, they're going to probably be eating over $1,000 to repair the thing. I'd have to look up the specific rates, but the store is likely going to take a pretty big hit on this.

And allow me to just share a little story about a system that I just looked at today. It was only about a month and a day out of warranty, came in because the owner was complaining about it running really slowly. Which it was, and so I run a diagnostic on it, which gives rather strange results. Some CPU thermal sensors aren't reporting any readings. So, I open it up, and there's a tiny little bit of corrosion on the logic board not too far from where the magsafe board plugs into the logic board. Doing my usual due diligence, I take some photos, and send them off to Apple to get a second opinion. They said that it was a shame because the system seems to be in really good condition, but it appeared to be some kind of liquid damage, and the fact that it's out of warranty made it very difficult for them to grant an exception. I don't know the full details of how their exception system works, but
there are some guidelines and I wouldn't be surprised if that store
manager will have to do some explaining for your system. Granting you
that repair could potentially be a career ending move for that manager.

So, count yourself lucky, because you could have been in the position of the person from my story, where I had to refuse the repair. Had this been any other company, they probably would have just said there's nothing they can do, it's out of warranty and not their problem. If it were me, I'd probably call up Apple and say how happy I was with the service I received at that store, and single out the manager in particular. You want to think long term here, and keep that person in that position should you ever run into an issue like this again. It's not worth burning this guy to get a single new system if the person they replace him with is some hard-**** who will be happy to show you the door or where you can BUY a new system at full retail, but little else. Don't be greedy here, take your winnings and quit while you're ahead.

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Point well taken...
by 4serena / June 3, 2011 3:29 PM PDT
In reply to: I still say

I'm not trying to be greedy - I didn't want a brand new, current model - I was happy to get a furbished model from close to my year - if that was even possible, which I figure it wasn't.

I'm all about writing complimentary letters (in addition to negative ones) - so once the computer comes back I'll be sure to let Apple know how well the manager and tech guru gal helped me!

Thanks for your feedback.

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To clarify...
by timhood / June 3, 2011 3:49 PM PDT
In reply to: Thanks...

I didn't say that I thought you left the computer on the bed, only that if you had left the computer in a manner where the fan exhaust would be even partially blocked that it could exacerbate the overheating issue. Also, prior to the very latest Flash update, it would suck up your CPU and kick on the fans to control overheating even if the video was paused. Merely having Flash running was enough. That's probably why Steve Jobs basically calls it such a piece of crap. (The very latest Flash has improved the situation somewhat--like going from crap to crud.) The scorch was likely from the faulty power supply, but in any event, it sounds like you got a lemon of a computer and Apple is going out of their way to make things right. It's a bigger deal than most people would realize because most companies would figure that customer is lost for any future business, so why bother. Hopefully, they resolve everything that's wrong and you get some more good life out of your computer.

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What about Flash?
by timhood / February 11, 2011 9:02 AM PST
In reply to: MacBook Pro too hot!

You mentioned surfing the 'net. I have seen where a page with Flash can get the computer going--the processor starts getting busy, which heats up the computer and turns on the fan. Try using your computer without a web browser for a time and see if it still heats up. Another thing to do would be to go into Utilities and run Activity Monitor. You can sort the running processes that show up by the % of CPU they are using. There shouldn't be anything taking up a lot of CPU time, unless you specifically are running it, like video compression.

For example, right now, Safari is using about 5% of my CPU on my late 2008 MBP (2.8GHz). If you find something using a lot of CPU and aren't familiar with it, post it here or search the web for information about it. Nothing on my computer is using more than 10% right now.

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clean it out, lap heat sink, and use AS5
by jcig / June 24, 2011 2:44 PM PDT
In reply to: MacBook Pro too hot!

Overheating has been a known issue on 13" macbook pros, especially ones with i7 cpus. When you purchase a laptop as small as the 13" there is less space for the hot air to circulate and exhaust out the vents. As the vents and the case itself are much smaller.

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If you DO do that
by Jimmy Greystone / June 24, 2011 11:19 PM PDT

If you DO do that, then you will void your warranty. Believe me, it's not difficult to tell if someone has taken a system apart before. You'll never get the torque on the screws the same, there will likely be visible signs of the stress the screwdriver put on the screw, a lot of times I find people don't put screws back in the correct locations, or may forget a screw. It is not that difficult to tell which systems have been worked on before and which haven't.

Any time I run into a system that I suspect has been worked on before, I immediately check Apple's service provider support and look up the repair history for the system. If I don't find anything there, and I see no prior record of it having been worked on by my employer in the past, I generally write it up as saying it's been tampered with, and we're not going to touch it unless you pay the full price for all the parts and labor. I have no idea what you may have done while attempting some unauthorized repair/modification, so I'm not going to get blamed for and/or pay to fix something you screwed up by futzing around with something you shouldn't have. You tamper with it while it's under warranty, you assume any and all responsibilities for fixing it from that point forward.

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silly boy
by jcig / June 25, 2011 6:56 AM PDT
In reply to: If you DO do that

Cleaning out a Mac Book pro does not void its warranty.

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You sure about that?
by MarkFlax Forum moderator / June 25, 2011 7:04 AM PDT
In reply to: silly boy

Many manufacturers say that "Opening the case will void the warranty"

Are you sure that Apple are different?

There are many discussions about that, for example;

"Important: Do not open the hardware product. Opening the hardware product may cause damage that is not covered by this warranty. Only Apple or an AASP should perform service on this hardware product".


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not true
by jcig / June 25, 2011 7:25 AM PDT
In reply to: You sure about that?

<span style="border-collapse: collapse; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); line-height: 16px; font-family: verdana, sans-serif; font-size: 13px; ">Opening up your MBP will not void the warranty.
<span style="border-collapse: collapse; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); line-height: 16px; font-family: verdana, sans-serif; font-size: 13px; ">

Read the Apple care Protection plan:

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impossible to prove anyways
by jcig / June 25, 2011 7:29 AM PDT
In reply to: You sure about that?

Besides, even if it did void the warranty, and it doesn't, how could they prove it? Unless you stripped a screw or something its impossible to prove the case has been opened.

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That's the care plan of course
by MarkFlax Forum moderator / June 25, 2011 7:36 AM PDT

Terms and Conditions of AppleCare.

Warranties are different.

How can they tell? I have no idea, but you want to bet against it? Or more importantly, you want to advise others to bet against it?


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Theres only one apple care
by jcig / June 25, 2011 7:39 AM PDT

Maybe for PCs as there are so many, but not for Macs. That is the warranty. That's the official apple care warranty.

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On this point
by Jimmy Greystone / June 25, 2011 9:00 AM PDT

On this point, s/he is correct. APP (AppleCare Protection Plan) is Apple's official extended warranty program. It is sold and serviced by Apple. There's also ALW (Apple Limited Warranty) which is the initial one year period. There's effectively no difference between the two insofar as the terms and conditions. APP is just a 2 year extension on the ALW, and also includes on-site repairs. That's pretty much it.

Apple may be a bit more willing to issue a CS Code (Customer Satisfaction Code) if you have APP and something happens that would not be otherwise covered. Or if your system just passed out of coverage and something went wrong, they might make an exception. But if they find evidence of you tampering with the system, odds are they're going to refuse to have anything to do with the system.

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Au Contrai
by mrmacfixit Forum moderator / June 25, 2011 10:01 AM PDT

believe me, there are many ways to tell if someone has opened the case and been inside the machine.

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That's a good one!
by Jimmy Greystone / June 25, 2011 10:41 AM PDT

That's a good one! Spoken like someone who has little to no actual experience repairing computers. It's not difficult at all. I actually had a system in recently, a coworker at another location claimed that they removed every component trying to isolate a problem, and let's just say I caught them out on that little fib. I had a laundry list of 6-7 different ways I knew they were full of it that I gave to their boss' boss.

You seem to be under the impression that we would need to use the standard of proof required in criminal trials, where it's beyond a reasonable doubt. However, this is a civil matter: breech of contract. All that's generally required there is what's known as a preponderance of the evidence. Meaning that it's more likely than not that one chain of events is true over the other.

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case is not hardware
by jcig / June 25, 2011 7:42 AM PDT
In reply to: You sure about that?

A computer case is not hardware.

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You said
by Jimmy Greystone / June 25, 2011 8:54 AM PDT
In reply to: silly boy

You said that people should remove the thermal grease applied at the factory and apply their own. On a MBP, that requires removing the logic board because the CPU and GPU are on the under side of the laptop (from the perspective of working on it). That most definitely will void your warranty. I've had Apple tell me to decline a repair on someone's system for far less than that.

I repair Apple systems professionally. It is my job to know the ins and outs of what is and isn't a violation of the warranty agreement. Removing the logic board, then the heatsink, to apply your own thermal grease, will definitely be a violation of that agreement.

And there's no real way to clean the fan or vents on an MBP without removing the fan, which again could very easily be considered an unauthorized repair, because the fan sits right next to the logic board and it would be very easy for you to introduce ESD damage if you do not know what you are doing.

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damage or modify
by jcig / June 25, 2011 9:36 AM PDT
In reply to: You said

Only if you damage, change, modify something in the process.

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