The larger of Apple's MacBook Air laptops featuring dual microphones and 802.11ac Wi-Fi connectivity.

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Right USB Port water damage


About 5 years ago the right USB-Port (the one beside the card reader and the thunderbolt port) of my Macbook Air 13” mid 2013 got some water damage. After it, if I tried to use the USB Port, the Mac got really hot, so I stopped using it. If you look inside the Port you can actually see some burnt material.

I still use the Mac, it works perfectly fine since then, I just don’t use the port.

My question would be if there is an easy solution to replace the port or something in that way.

Thanks for your time :)

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Puan 1


Sadly, once the port is damaged there is very little you can do other than replacing the logic board.


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Yes, in theory you could sit there replacing part after part, and doing constant solder work to get it to work, however that just seems like it’d be a lot of trouble when some other steps might help fix it.

I would suggest giving it a proper alcohol bath. I’ve done this to 4 laptops that were completely dead, and one Nintendo 3DS and it has been successful in reviving them. I will detail how to do it below, step-by-step.

  1. Unplug the charger, and battery from your Mac and hold the power button for 30 seconds. This is important as it will discharge any remaining electricity.
  2. Grab a bucket to catch excess alcohol.
  3. Place the end of the laptop with the USB port over the bucket.
  4. Use isopropyl or ethyl alcohol and pour it directly over the USB port and surrounding components. Don’t be afraid of this step. As long as there is no electricity flowing through your Mac, no damage will occur.
  5. Use a toothbrush to scrub the area gently including inside the USB port.
  6. Once finished you will need to let it dry for at least 24 hours. You can expedite this process with a dust blower, or canned air, but the point is, there can not be any wet alcohol left when you power on the computer. Alcohol dries faster than water, but you don’t want to chance it.

Once it’s finished drying, try your USB port. This will most likely work as you stated the port was working before, just getting hot. Try not to get water on the screen as it can get trapped between the LCD and the Glass (That will take days to dry.)

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Puan 1


Hey Alec, thanks for your extensive reply. I will give it a try :)

What do yo think are the dangers of keep using a kind of malfunction Port. Is there any danger for the laptop or the device connected though that Port?



If something got in it before, and you plugged something in, the damage would have been done already, but since everything is working fine for you, there is likely minimal danger at all, however electronics can sometimes be unpredictable and it's important to practice care. If you plug something in and the computer starts heating up again, unplug immediately. Other than that, I don't see any danger at all if you succeed with the alcohol bath.


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