Macbook hinge is completely loose!
July 24, 2008 8:13 AM   Subscribe

The hinge that allows the lid of my macbook to stand upright has dislocated from the base of the laptop. Is there anything I can do?

The lid won't stand without something (in this case a heavy book) to hold it up due to a lack of pressure being applied to the hinge from the sides of the base. It isn't "tight" enough. I can see the wiring (only slightly) that delivers the visual feed to the screen in the crevice that has opened up by the hinge dipping rather than staying in place.

In short, left to its own devices the lid will fall back all the way, or slam shut.

Is there an at home fix for this that will allow the lid/hinge to be functional again? If not, any idea how much an apple store will charge for a structural repair? Or if they even deal with this sort of problem to begin with?

Thanks for your help.
posted by jne1813 to Computers & Internet (6 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
If it's actually broken, the entire hinge and supporting assemblies will need to be replaced (each side of the screen has a hinge that's part of a separate unit). If it's just loose, you need only tighten a few screws after opening the laptop. However, if you haven't been into a MacBook before, I would recommend not trying. There are a few ribbon cables that are very fragile and if something is moved slightly out of alignment can sever/rip them. Then your problem compounds. If you take it to the Apple store, it'll likely cost you $100+ just for labor (assuming the laptop is out of warranty). Hopefully my response at least gives you a little insight. I recommend taking it into the store to at least get their opinion.
posted by alcoth at 8:36 AM on July 24, 2008

Unless you're very familiar with disassembling and reassembling laptops, I would not recommend attempting to open this machine up and check the hinges. In the world of laptop disassembly, many of the recent Mac notebooks are some of the worst. Though I don't know how much a repair would cost at the Apple store.
posted by The Great Big Mulp at 8:45 AM on July 24, 2008

Knew a person with this problem use duct tape. It worked for awhile but let me say that it looked like a mess (kind of ruined the whole Apple chic thing) and she STILL had to try to get it repaired because things started to have that burning smell. Let the experts handle this, really.
posted by jadepearl at 9:43 AM on July 24, 2008

I had this problem with an old Powerbook G4 and used Powerbook ResQ and had a good experience with them. See also this previous question.
posted by buddha9090 at 9:55 AM on July 24, 2008

There are left and right hinges that hold the screen up. Once one goes, the other follows close behind. has some excellent repair guides if you want to investigate the repair yourself.
Here is the repair guide link for the right-hand hinge:
posted by tmt at 12:46 PM on July 24, 2008

The same thing happened to my dell inspiron laptop a couple of years ago. I made a hinge out of an erector set an used epoxy putty to adhere it to the side of the thing... works like a charm! It's super ugly and I get stopped at airport security almost every time I travel with it, but it gets the job done.
posted by ThomThomThomThom at 1:26 PM on July 24, 2008

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