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-   -   MacBook emitting smoke... (http://www.mac-forums.com/forums/apple-notebooks/134070-macbook-emitting-smoke.html)

PauliePower 12-18-2008 01:42 PM

MacBook emitting smoke...
 
This is my first post, I needed some advice on this so just signed up.

Last night, the smoke alarm went off in my house. I put it down to some errant candles and left it at that. This morning though, when I went to turn on my Macbook, I found this:

http://i3.photobucket.com/albums/y82...c/DSC_0001.jpg
http://i3.photobucket.com/albums/y82...c/DSC_0002.jpg
http://i3.photobucket.com/albums/y82...c/DSC_0003.jpg
http://i3.photobucket.com/albums/y82...c/DSC_0005.jpg

It was running last night when it did this. Strangely, it still works perfectly, and smcfancontrol isn't reporting anything out of the ordinary.

It's a year-and-a-half old, and spends most of the time whilst I'm at home plugged into an LCD tv, but I always keep the lid open. The battery is still fine too.

Anyone have any suggestions?

jimd144 12-18-2008 02:16 PM

Might take it to an Apple store. They may want to fix it for free as this is a fire hazard.

D3v1L80Y 12-18-2008 02:25 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by jimd144 (Post 773391)
...take it to an Apple store. They may want to fix it for free ...

If the machine is out of warranty, then that scenario is highly unlikely.

chscag 12-18-2008 03:03 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by PauliePower (Post 773373)
It was running last night when it did this. Strangely, it still works perfectly, and smcfancontrol isn't reporting anything out of the ordinary. It's a year-and-a-half old, and spends most of the time whilst I'm at home plugged into an LCD tv, but I always keep the lid open. The battery is still fine too. Anyone have any suggestions?

A filtering capacitor may have burned open either in the power supply or possibly elsewhere. Typically when this happens, it emits a good amount of smoke until the capacitor opens and no longer conducts.

Depending on where it's located in the PS circuitry, it may or may not impact on the operation of the machine. However, without knowing what caused that to happen (might just have been component failure) or if something else may have been damaged, I would take it on in to Apple and let them look at it. If the machine is still under warranty you probably won't be charged for the service.

Regards.

PauliePower 12-18-2008 03:06 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by D3v1L80Y (Post 773393)
If the machine is out of warranty, then that scenario is highly unlikely.

It's a year and a half old, so I suspect that this is correct. I'll keep an eye on it, and see if it behaves. Is it worth getting someone to take it to bits and see what happened? Could be as simple as some dust getting caught. As I said previous, it still works perfectly, so it's not like any important components have failed.

Jaygray 12-18-2008 03:32 PM

(Note to self...Do not buy any any used Macbooks on ebay from PauliePower.) :D

PauliePower 12-18-2008 06:09 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by chscag (Post 773411)
A filtering capacitor may have burned open either in the power supply or possibly elsewhere. Typically when this happens, it emits a good amount of smoke until the capacitor opens and no longer conducts.

Depending on where it's located in the PS circuitry, it may or may not impact on the operation of the machine. However, without knowing what caused that to happen (might just have been component failure) or if something else may have been damaged, I would take it on in to Apple and let them look at it. If the machine is still under warranty you probably won't be charged for the service.

Ooops, totally missed this. I've cleaned the smoke damage off now, but will take it to the local Apple Store this weekend and get it checked over.

Why does this have to happen when I'm broke??? :[

amrk48 12-18-2008 07:16 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by D3v1L80Y (Post 773393)
If the machine is out of warranty, then that scenario is highly unlikely.

not really

unless Apple wants to get sued, they are going to fix it for free

think before you type

dtravis7 12-18-2008 07:26 PM

Apple sued for a machine way out of warranty. Did it catch on fire? Did it burn down the house?

To the OP, do have it checked. That does not sound very good and I feel that chscag is on the right track as to what happened.

ViriiGuy 12-19-2008 06:59 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by dtravis7 (Post 773513)
To the OP, do have it checked. That does not sound very good and I feel that chscag is on the right track as to what happened.

I agree completely. I would also like ot add, that ANYTIME any electronics smoke... or burn.. you should STOP using them right away. At least until you have it checked out. The risk of it catching on fire later on is too great.

Just 2 months ago, a regular client of mine noticed some smoke coming from his power supply in his tower. He turned off the computer and looked everything over. It seemed ok, so he powered it back on. All was working fine, so he decided to continue using it. That weekend he left town with his wife for a couple days. On Saturday night, they received a call.. Their house had burnt to the ground. The computer was later determined to be the culprit.

Moral of the story, never EVER trust electronics that have smoked. $200 today, could save you THOUSANDS tomorrow.

ErikJenkins1187 12-19-2008 07:51 AM

You got lucky, it's a filtering cap. Sometimes when they blow, they SHORT, then your MacBook will become a brick, unlucky scenario. If it blows OPEN, your OK, essentially what a cap is an open in a circuit, it will not filter as well but the unit will usually work OK. This will add noise into whatever it was filtering though, have Apple check it out!!

wshowell 12-19-2008 11:24 AM

Your Macbook might still be under a warranty, not apple but through your credit card. I charge everything on either my AMEX and VISA and pay it off in full each month. Both my AMEX (Costco) and Visa double the warranty on anything I own up to an additional year for free. I bought a digital camera with a one year warranty, when the flash stopped working I called Visa. They told me to go get a repair estimate and fax them the estimate to. The camera cost $225 and to repair the estimate was $200. I faxed it in and they offered me the $200 repair estimate credited back on my card. I took them up on the offer and I was able to buy a better camera for the $200 at Costco using one of their coupons. So, if you charged your purchase of your Macbook you should contact them and determine if they will cover the repairs. I've used this two times now, digital camera and a Linksys router that developed a short. They didn't even ask for an estimate and just refunded my $110 for the router. Even crazier is they let me keep the digital camera, works great in the day just no flash at night so it's good for day hiking trips etc.

PauliePower 12-20-2008 10:52 AM

Right, it's now with Apple.

And for a laugh, here's my receipt thing. Am loving the description.

http://i3.photobucket.com/albums/y82...mac/img001.jpg

(It's full size).

tcphoto 12-20-2008 11:15 AM

I would not have cleaned it up before going to the Genius Bar. He/she must not be paid by the letter for that description;)

PauliePower 12-20-2008 11:25 AM

Think they just wanted rid of me.

What happened:
Them: Is it still in warranty?
Me: No, it's a year and a half old.
Them: *Condescending* Didn't you take the extended warranty?
Me: *Annoyed, and rather loudly* No, I DIDN'T EXPECT IT TO CATCH FIRE.
(Bearing in mind it's a very busy store the week before Christmas).

I will report on developments as it goes. Last question: if this happened to anyone else, even though it's not in warranty, would anyone expect to have to pay out?

I know I shouldn't really have cleaned it, but they should see the extend of the damage when they get the lid off, there's black soot coming out of the keyboard.


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