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Macbook 13″ Repair – Top Case Removal

August 14, 2019


Topcase Removal To begin, get your philips head screwdrive, and on the right side, with the CD drive, there are two screws. Four screws in the back. Two here and two here. There is no need to remove the left side screws in the front. And on the back, there are two screws located here and then on in the middle. There is also a philips head screw located here, here and here. There are also two located here. And then the ones you need to remove, are here…. and the other ones are not needed in removing the topcase. Begin by removing these. The screws from left to right, in the battery bay, are 2,4,7, and 9. Once those are removed, remove the three philips head screws, that are on the bottom of the machine. Sometimes, a flat head screwdrive is needed in removing, the three philips head screws in the bottom of the machine. Once those are removed, remove the 4 in the very back of the machine. The two screws on the inner most part of the machine, are the longest of the external screws. This will be helpful in putting the machine back together. Once those are removed, remove the two screws on the side. And the two outer ones, located in the battery bay. Once those are removed, remove the remaining ones in the battery bay. Once that is complete, flip the unit over. Grab the topcase at the two ends of the corners, located here. Gently pull up. And lift from the bottom. There you will see a ribbon cable, connected to the logic board. Carefully lift up and out to remove.

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99 Comments

  • Reply Powerbook Medic March 29, 2010 at 1:34 pm

    @tkthecat – Replacing the keyboard / top case assembly should fix your problems. They are available from our website.

  • Reply cryp06457 April 1, 2010 at 4:35 am

    So_I_CAN_CHANGE_Y_KEYBOARD_BLACK/-i-have-an_a1181

  • Reply Powerbook Medic April 1, 2010 at 1:32 pm

    @cryp06457 – Yes, the black and white keyboard /top case pieces are interchangeable.

  • Reply Gabriel Marin April 7, 2010 at 9:39 am

    is it possible that you can provide the different sizes of the screw drivers that you used. thank you and very detailed video btw!

  • Reply Powerbook Medic April 7, 2010 at 3:54 pm

    @stiffler2785 – Phillips size #00 and nlyon spudger tool. All the tools are available from our website.

  • Reply justroge April 14, 2010 at 11:01 am

    it still does not work thou… is it a new logic board that is needed?? pls look it up for me in your records and tell me what needs to be fixed and how much!
    thanks

  • Reply Powerbook Medic April 14, 2010 at 1:39 pm

    @justroge – You can give us a call at 1-866-726-3342, and we'll be able to help you with your unit.

  • Reply Erwin Chiu May 27, 2010 at 5:20 am

    With a Philips #0 screwdriver, I can't remove the small screws underneath the RAM rack, they seemed to be 'struck', what can I do?

  • Reply Powerbook Medic May 28, 2010 at 6:00 pm

    @cheesechiu – You may have stripped the screws. Try a size #00 screwdriver and use enough pressure to turn the screw without stripping it.

  • Reply gee furrer June 19, 2010 at 8:33 am

    thx for the video

  • Reply Powerbook Medic July 12, 2010 at 6:49 pm

    @blckshdw95 – Yes, it will just pop out of the clip and snap back in.

  • Reply 16mmDJ July 20, 2010 at 2:46 am

    Wow. 19 screws just to remove the top case. Impressive.

  • Reply Meghan Linehan September 6, 2010 at 9:33 pm

    Thanks for your videos. They're very helpful. 🙂 However, I'm having a problem putting the topcase back on. The big clip on the lower right (near the hard drive) seems to be preventing the plastic clips above the superdrive from sliding into place. Any advice? Thanks again!

  • Reply Powerbook Medic September 7, 2010 at 1:53 pm

    @Fiannanova – You may need to use your nylon tool to push on that part while pushing down to have it properly line up in the bottom case.

  • Reply Powerbook Medic October 13, 2010 at 3:11 pm

    @marcelos815 – Compressed air won't fix the drive. The drive has likely failed as it is extremely common on your model. You'll likely need a replacement drive. Replacements are available from our website.

  • Reply daraboss November 6, 2010 at 1:10 pm

    Very useful! Thanks!

  • Reply jackr1956 December 2, 2010 at 2:57 pm

    While instructing how to remove the screws inside the battery recess, you first point to screws # 2,4,7 and 8. Then you proceed to remove 2,4,7 and 9! Huh?

  • Reply Michael Timmers January 18, 2011 at 8:45 pm

    hi, i've removed all the screws, but the bottom left and top right of the keyboard are apparently still jammed. As you don't need to put any force to remove the keyboard, what could be the problem with mine? thanks!

  • Reply Powerbook Medic January 19, 2011 at 4:12 pm

    @advoce – If all the screws are out, it should pop right off. You may need to use a little force, but the general rule is that if you have to use force something wasn't removed properly.

  • Reply Michael Timmers January 20, 2011 at 8:08 am

    @PowerbookMedic – apparently where the screws needs to be fixed, there are some small hooks. Gently removing the white cover from the base in the horizontal direction was all that it took. Also there were some firm clips above the CD drive holding it back. Problem solved, thanks!

  • Reply Powerbook Medic February 1, 2011 at 3:08 pm

    @Elan2jay – That means it is stuck in optical out mode. You can try to plug your headphones in and out a few times and see if that fixes the issue, but more often then not, you'll have to have the logic board repaired.

  • Reply Archangel_Omega February 11, 2011 at 2:27 am

    excuse me, my fan is stop working, 0 rpm

    i hear i can fix it permanently by opening the top case and cleaning the fan cause it could be dirty, is that true?

    also is there a video of how to assembly and put back the top case all over again? thank you

  • Reply Powerbook Medic February 14, 2011 at 7:33 pm

    @dsniper17 – If it isn't spinning at all, it likely needs to be replaced unless there is an obstruction.

  • Reply Chopinco February 19, 2011 at 3:41 pm

    hahaha i hate i cant do this while playing the video xD

  • Reply SenoreQueso February 27, 2011 at 6:28 am

    Hey there, the keyboard on my black Macbook has stopped working. Some keys work, but other don't. Will replacing the entire top case (keyboard and trackpad seem to be part of that) fix this problem? And what are the odds that I do some serious, unrepairable damage to the laptop? I build computers for fun, but have never worked on a laptop.

    Thanks!

  • Reply Powerbook Medic February 28, 2011 at 6:51 pm

    @SenoreQueso – A replacement top case should get you fixed up. They're available from our website.

  • Reply socroni March 12, 2011 at 3:34 am

    very helpful video, I totally fixed my win machine but…but you pointed at the wrong screw at 1:36. But you win man, keep drinking the tiger blood.

  • Reply Powerbook Medic April 11, 2011 at 2:26 pm

    @gunsrocks0978 – A monitor being dark could be any number of issues. I'd recommend getting it professionally diagnosed.

  • Reply Powerbook Medic June 30, 2011 at 2:14 pm

    @dacs1081 – You likely bought a bad trackpad top case assembly.

  • Reply DeYu Zen July 9, 2011 at 10:57 am

    lol wtf so complicated compared to new laptops 🙁

  • Reply pinoyALLmotorEVOIXMR July 17, 2011 at 10:24 am

    I have the latest one. How do I open the monitor? I just wanted to fix the Apple logo or put a colored film behind it so it'll be a different color instead of white. Please help!! I need to clean the inside too the dirt in the corner of my screen is bothering me and I can't get in there without scratching the screen :/

  • Reply jason bmw July 20, 2011 at 3:15 am

    I have the same laptop it still a good laptop after 5years out

  • Reply Powerbook Medic July 21, 2011 at 2:23 pm

    @sonofsam70 – Sometimes that trick will work, but if it doesn't you'll have to replace the logic board to fix the issue.

  • Reply Powerbook Medic July 24, 2011 at 11:53 am

    @jaydog3355 – You likely need a professional diagnosis. We offer free diagnosis. You can call us at 1-866-726-3342.

  • Reply Antoine Forêt August 3, 2011 at 4:59 pm

    Hi Guys I broke my macbook screen in a concert in Czech Republic … My question is , How I can know whitch screen I should bay ? there is a number of model… thanks in advance

  • Reply Powerbook Medic August 3, 2011 at 8:02 pm

    @tonchebe – You can call us at 1-866-726-3342, option 1, and we can assist you in ordering the correct part.

  • Reply Powerbook Medic August 12, 2011 at 9:02 pm

    @Connorhey92 – The procedure is the same. You can't replace it with a Multi-Touch trackpad

  • Reply Xan Adrenalini August 20, 2011 at 9:21 pm

    Thanks for this how to !

    i succesfull repaird my macbook whit it.

    after I had fallen on it, the optical drive failure.
    After opening the input was only slightly bent.

    Now back to work 100%

    1000x thanks

  • Reply Ariel Gurgel August 25, 2011 at 11:19 pm

    right side is being stupid and wont come off, what do i do??

  • Reply Powerbook Medic August 26, 2011 at 2:15 pm

    @aaaaariiiiielllll – There are clips above the optical drive which require lifting up the top case to disengage them. If that isn't the issue, make sure you have moved the correct screws (specifically the ones in the battery bay.)

  • Reply Powerbook Medic September 2, 2011 at 1:39 pm

    @scott93257 – It is not sealed.

  • Reply edfunk September 16, 2011 at 11:34 pm

    Can't get this damn screws off in the battery slot!! All of them are very hard tightened! Any tricks?

  • Reply Powerbook Medic September 19, 2011 at 7:43 pm

    @edfunk – It shouldn't be that hard unless you are using the wrong size driver.

  • Reply SkittyGirl300 October 12, 2011 at 1:46 pm

    Whoa the inside looks so cool! Thnx. I do need to get a new cover anyway.

  • Reply Direnc May October 14, 2011 at 9:42 am

    Thx voor the vid. helpend me a lot

    THX…

  • Reply Kenneth Turner October 24, 2011 at 2:01 pm

    my mac just turned black can some one help me cuz it doesnt go on any more

  • Reply Powerbook Medic October 24, 2011 at 3:48 pm

    @mw2liker100 – It's likely you have a logic board issue. Give us a call at -1-866-726-3342.

  • Reply Kenneth Turner October 26, 2011 at 6:52 pm

    @PowerbookMedic owh thnx but my macbook is already 2 the appele people they gonna repair but thanks for saying that

  • Reply CH0622 December 28, 2011 at 11:43 pm

    Three of the four screws on the RAM side are stuck. I can't remove them. :'(

  • Reply Powerbook Medic December 29, 2011 at 3:36 pm

    @CH0622 – I'd recommend having a professional remove them.

  • Reply jamma January 28, 2012 at 12:22 am

    I love Mac, and I really love my macbook, been with it since mid 2007….

    But there's really an issue with white macbook, mine already has two problems, first if i don't do anything (push any key or move the trackpad) it just turn off… some says i have to replace logic board and that's too expensive!

    And second, about 20 min my macbook started doing some crazy noises, maybe is the fan,,, i bet i have to replace it too!

    That just sucks, i mean its supused last for life!

  • Reply Powerbook Medic January 30, 2012 at 5:55 pm

    @jamma – Both issues are likely the logic board. These machines are not built to last forever.

  • Reply yazmac February 1, 2012 at 9:18 pm

    Quick question before I start and have a panic attack once its all opened up – when it comes to putting it all back together – how do you re-attach that ribbon cable?

  • Reply Powerbook Medic February 1, 2012 at 10:15 pm

    @yazmac – You push it down in the connector and then lay the top case back into position.

  • Reply rosario porcumelinu March 9, 2012 at 4:26 am

    +++++++++++++++++++++ottimo-

  • Reply Aurelio Jargas April 19, 2012 at 12:56 am

    Thank you VERY much for the video! My old 2007 MacBook was very noisy. Guided from your video I've opened it and found that the fan was very dirty. I've cleaned it, put back the screws in reverse order from the video and now I'm here typing in my SILENT MacBook. Thanks!!

  • Reply Jaco Mendoza June 12, 2012 at 9:21 am

    how do you put back those 2 chips in the battery dock??

  • Reply Jaco Mendoza June 12, 2012 at 9:22 am

    reply asap!! please!!

  • Reply MacintoshRelate June 19, 2012 at 4:27 am

    I am doing a keyboard replacement on a 2007 Macbook. Thanks. This is a lot easier than taking an iBook apart

  • Reply Powerbook Medic July 12, 2012 at 2:36 pm

    Most likely the top case cable isn't properly connected. Go back in and check the cable, and that will likely fix the issue.

  • Reply Malkav2024 August 21, 2012 at 10:00 am

    Great tutorial !
    An extra tip : Be sure to identify the screws you remove for there are many different types to handle in the top case removal process. What I did was to draw a little schematic of the laptop and put the removed screws on the picture at their respective place.

  • Reply Leandro Burgues September 10, 2012 at 4:23 am

    Tanks a lot. Opened my moms laptop and cleaned the fans out. Thanks for the help.

  • Reply canoncola September 22, 2012 at 7:56 pm

    I love the music… ringtone status

  • Reply Tecnovlog October 28, 2012 at 5:09 pm

    a lot of screws 😀

  • Reply Arnée Martin November 15, 2012 at 11:55 pm

    Should I take the RAM/Hard Drive out before I remove the top case, I want to install the magsafe board & battery cable in a 13" white macbook.

  • Reply Powerbook Medic November 16, 2012 at 5:29 pm

    You don't have to remove the ram and hard drive for that procedure.

  • Reply bazzarish November 19, 2012 at 3:10 am

    You made me look like a hero. Thanks.

  • Reply gzathagenius24 December 17, 2012 at 1:33 am

    I have a problem with my macbook first I got the ? folder problem then assumed the hard drive was no longer good I just recently purchased a 500gb one and tried to install chronium into the new hard drive by holding the option button to select the USB where the program is at but nothing happens just a mouse scroll screen? why isn't my mac reading the usb or displaying the hard drive thanks in advance!

  • Reply Powerbook Medic December 17, 2012 at 12:38 pm

    If it's a brand new drive it has to be formatted before you can use it.

  • Reply Powerbook Medic December 17, 2012 at 5:34 pm

    You need to format your new drive.

  • Reply boilerette April 5, 2013 at 1:18 pm

    Now as you know if you're an owner of a MB like this one, there are cracks and chips at the palm rest area of the box. Guess what… this was an item that Apple very willing knows is a problem. I took my 3-year old MB to the Genius Bar and they fixed it for free.

  • Reply Knowltey May 30, 2013 at 8:25 pm

    First time through when you were showing the 4 screws in the front of the battery area you showed 2,4,7,8 but then when you actually removed them you removed 2,4,7,9

  • Reply Powerbook Medic May 31, 2013 at 1:43 pm

    The screws are available in a set from our website or by calling us at 866-726-3342, option 1.

  • Reply Angella Gretchen June 8, 2013 at 12:17 am

    Anyone know the name of the cord that connects the keyboard to the MacBook??
    please help.

  • Reply XX DEATH NINJA FROM HELL 69 XX June 11, 2013 at 1:12 pm

    too many screws, i cant do it

  • Reply Rae June 17, 2013 at 8:23 pm

    I was going to try this but now I'm nervous since there are so many screws. I just want to clean the fan. :/

  • Reply Powerbook Medic June 25, 2013 at 2:59 pm

    It probably isn't the power button and is something else like the logic board. You can give our repair department a call at 866-726-3342, option 2 for your options.

  • Reply Inth June 28, 2013 at 12:52 pm

    29 screws it was a nightmare but its done

  • Reply Powerbook Medic July 1, 2013 at 8:27 pm

    We do ship to the Philippines.

  • Reply DarkMasterIX July 20, 2013 at 5:53 am

    I have a question, I have a macbook like on the video, I so fucking slow that I cant do nothing, I have alredy installed the 10.5 twice, then I upgraded to 10.6 and is the same issue, and for last I did the bootcamp and wind7 is working even slower than mac, I wanna ask: IS THIS ISSUE MADE BY DUST ON THE FAN OR SOMETHING LIKE THAT? IT IS COMPLETELY NECESARY TO OPEN IT TO CLEAN IT?

  • Reply Fabian Ontiveros July 22, 2013 at 4:27 am

    How did you remove the battery?

  • Reply Powerbook Medic July 22, 2013 at 2:00 pm

    Our battery removal video will show you that, but basically just unlock it and pull out.

  • Reply Paul Weber August 14, 2013 at 1:52 am

    Does the order of removal really matter?

  • Reply Powerbook Medic August 14, 2013 at 1:07 pm

    It depends on exactly what you're doing.

  • Reply Paul Weber August 15, 2013 at 12:25 pm

    In my case, just opening the Macbook to clean it out.

  • Reply Ashley mateo September 1, 2013 at 7:34 am

    mines trackpad button are jammed. please teach me how to fix it.

  • Reply Preeto October 13, 2013 at 3:35 pm

    thats prolly because the battery is swollen
    if u take it out it should work fine!

  • Reply vampiroast October 24, 2013 at 4:31 pm

    My Macbook 13'' doesn't have a battery but was connected to the power supply adapter, which is a generic, not the original, it was working fine and suddenly I hear a "pop" sound, and it turned off, the power supply seems to be fine, because I smell something burned inside my Macbook, I don´t know if it was my HD or maybe the connection between my Macbook and the power supply that burned. Any ideas will be appreciated.

    Thanx!!!!

  • Reply Matus0919 March 6, 2014 at 10:23 pm

    which screwdriver is? 

  • Reply Skywalking007 March 12, 2014 at 6:30 am

    Really helpful thanks!

  • Reply jangeltrain April 28, 2014 at 6:09 am

    My fan runs at all times and I've never really cleaned my computer as I was worried about damaging it. Would taking off just the top case and giving it a douse of compressed air be safe? I'm sure there is a ton of dust in there. 

  • Reply Jaryn Frostwing July 19, 2014 at 9:01 pm

    I am having trouble getting some of the screws in the battery compartment out. My screwdriver doesn't seem to properly fit the depth of the screw slots. Can you recommend a screwdriver?

  • Reply Hector Doblanc July 30, 2014 at 5:05 pm

    thanks for tip I help myself much

  • Reply Justin Cilia October 15, 2014 at 12:34 pm

    Hi guys! figured out screwdriver needed is Philips 00"

  • Reply albert sneij January 5, 2015 at 11:25 pm

    very helpful

  • Reply Kuma Kuma January 16, 2015 at 7:39 am

    Yeeeehaaa~

  • Reply MATT J January 1, 2016 at 11:38 pm

    damn this is hard

  • Reply Claudio Rocha December 16, 2016 at 5:20 pm

    Hi, I followed your instructions and managed to open my Macbook White, it was cool, but I can not solve my problem, that is: the keyboard and mouse does not work. I called APPLE CARE here in Brazil, and they informed me that my equipment (2009) is obsolete and has no more support or parts.
    thanks for the tips.

  • Reply Joe Moore October 28, 2017 at 10:11 pm

    Thank you for this helpful video. If I want to upgrade the drive and the Ram on my old 2007 White MacBook what do you recommend? I currently have a Hitachi 128GB 5400RPM Sata and 2 512 mb Ram. Can I upgrade to an SSD? Can this Mac hold more Ram. I seem to recall that 512 X 2 was the max. HELP!

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