Use this guide to replace the trackpad.
What you need
Use a P5 Pentalobe driver to remove ten screws securing the lower case, of the following lengths:
Two 9 mm screws
Eight 2.6 mm screws
Wedge your fingers between the display and the lower case and pull upward to pop the lower case off the Air.
Remove the lower case and set it aside.
There is a nub on the inside of the case which is attached to the battery. When you try to pull it open, it appears to be attached to the plastic casing of the battery, which sometimes splits. I gently unhooked the nub from the battery before removing the case fully. This seems to happen if the battery has suffered some drop damage (plastic parts broken around screws and parts of plastic frame split). Just an FYI in case your lower case doesn't pull away easily.
To add - the slim 1cm tab “nub” is on the centre of the back cover & fits into a hole in the battery frame. I ran my fingers around the whole of the cover to eventually here it click out.
I bought the part and tools from iFixit and followed the directions. The mechanical part went smoothly - maybe 10 minutes to disassemble/replace/reassemble.
Getting Catalina (the current MacOS) to install was not working until I used Cmd-Opt-R (as noted in the OWC paper sheet that came in the box) which brought up the proper installer - I believe from a pre-prepared bootable SD card but it’s hard to say. From there the install succeeded taking ~1.5 hours.
Beware that (a) the install requires a working internet connection for verification and updates, and (b) the system must have been running at least macOs 10.13 (High Sierra) before the install in order to have an EFI BIOS that recognizes the SSD.
Thanks for the detailed photos. When repairing equipment, I don’t really like to disassemble plastic parts, they can be damaged, but your screenshots help a lot. For my studies, I am writing an essay comparing the reliability of laptops from various manufacturers and the complexity of their repair, maybe it will be useful for someone to check the essay for plagiarism here essay checker, when comparing different manufacturers, I understood why people love Apple so much. The minimum number of failures. Of course, repairing it in an official service is not cheap, but with the help of such detailed instructions, you can do it yourself and save a lot.
The screwdriver bit to use on these case screws is not named, but I found that my "CR-V 1.2" did the job nicely.
The driver for the screws inside the case are named, as "T5".
Grab the clear plastic pull tab attached to the battery connector and pull it toward the front edge of the Air to disconnect the battery from the logic board.
@&?! - pulled plastic tab on new battery to line up with logic board pins look to be coming out of male connector? Argh?!
Can expect anyone from ifixit to get back to me?
It may be that one of the pins did not lock in properly into the plastic housing. You can try pushing the corresponding wire into the connector housing to try to lock the pin in.
If that does not help, please respond to my email. Thanks!
The original battery plastic pull tab broke off when I tried to pull it towards the front of the Mac. How do I get to disconnect the battery connector now?
My connector would not release as shown, using reasonable force, so I unbolted the battery to slide it back, then was able to slide the connector back. Ultimately, it popped up on its own - suggest review of this process. No drama, nothing broken, all good.
Remove the following five screws securing the battery to the upper case:
Three 6.3 mm T5 Torx screws
Two 2.4 mm T5 Torx screws
The center screw on my Macbook Air 6,1 is slightly longer than the 6.3 mm screws. John H. is right: when putting back together step 3 is easier and safer to do before step 4. In order of reassembly: Step 5, 3, 4, 2, and 1.
Lift the battery from its edge nearest the logic board and remove it from the upper case.
Charge it to 100%, and then keep charging it for at least 2 more hours. Then, unplug and use it normally to drain the battery. When you see the low battery warning, save your work, and keep your laptop on until it goes to sleep due to low battery. Wait at least 5 hours, then charge your laptop uninterrupted to 100%.
If you notice any unusual behavior or problems after installing your new battery, you may need to reset your MacBook's SMC.
Two Questions and a Comment:
1) “Allow the battery to drain overnight” - Should the computer shut down automatically (during the first drain, as well)? If not, what percentage should the battery reach before charging it to 100%?
2) While the battery is draining, can I use the computer?
When installing the new battery, I found it much easier to insert the battery connector before screwing in the battery.
When reinserting the battery, plug in the battery connector before screwing the battery into place. Some wiggle room is required to reconnect the batter and tweezers will help with the plugging in.
Check to ensure that all 5 holes in the battery enclosure are drilled through. One of mine wasn’t and needed a little push through before setting the battery in place.
Also, as noted above, definitely re-connect the cable before screwing in the battery!
Followed this guide step by step for a successful battery swap thanks iFixit!
FYI, as someone else pointed out, if you try removing the battery connector after you have installed it for one reason or another the pins pull out of the plastic connector piece (the adhesive does not hold). You have to push the cable back into the plastic connector so the pins are all the way back in.
There is a plastic film across the new battery that wasn’t on the old one, should I remove the plastic film on the new battery?
Actual removal and installation was super easy. Just be sure to have a small container to put the screws in!
Going through calibration right now
Use the tip of a spudger or your fingernail to flip up the retaining flap on the trackpad ribbon cable ZIF socket.
Pull the trackpad ribbon cable straight out of its socket toward the rear edge of the Air.
If you are newer at repair, use the new part to practice flipping the retaining clips. This can help before moving on to the real one.
While carefully lifting the keyboard ribbon cable with one hand, use the tip of a spudger or your fingernail to flip up the retaining flap on the keyboard ribbon cable ZIF socket.
Pull the keyboard ribbon cable straight out of its socket toward the front edge of the Air.
the trickiest step on re-assembly is reinserting this back-folded cable into the socket and then making sure the retaining flap (now hidden) is firmly down again. You can tell if it is still up (and so the cable loose) if the cable does not feel flat when you run your finger lightly over it.
If it will not “plug” back in do you have to buy a whole new keyboard? I have pretty good eyes and magnifying glass and headlamp and my keyboard just won’t work anymore. This thing must have detached when I was putting in a battery. I was happy to see the thing here but disappointed because now my keyboard will not work because I can’t tell what’s wrong. It seems plugged in but won’t work! Does that mean I have to buy a new keyboard? I’d really like to know.
A magnifying glass and bright light can help immensely in this step. The retaining flap is tiny and difficult to see while the cable is still connected.
Dick, do you have a suggestion for a magnifying glass/light set up? I used a magnifying glass and a small flashlight. But found that the job required two hands so it was hard to see while I was trying to do it. I thought about ordering the magnifying glasses sold here but don’t know how well they work.
A head lamp has become an indispensable tool in my laptop repair business.
This is where I had a problem. Part of the plastic retaining flap broke off. Now my trackpad, which had a problem, is working but about half the keys on my keyboard, which was working before, aren’t. I don’t know whether its because I damaged this cable connections in the attempts to seat it earlier or whether not having the pressure on one half of it is causing the connection to not be made with a number of the keys. Since my keyboard had worked with my old trackpad and the socket clamp isn’t broken on that, I was thinking of attaching it to see if clamping the cable down properly will solve the problem. But of course then my trackpad wouldn’t work anymore. But it might tell me that I have to replace the trackpad again with one with a working clamp (retaining flap?) to make the keyboard work. And then I am back with dealing with troublesome trackpad screws. I can use an external keyboard but since I wanted to be able to use this laptop for traveling, that’s not my preference. Any thoughts???
Use a small strip of electricians tape on one end fold it over to make a pull tab, then place on the ribbon cable so you can pull the ribbon into the slot.
Most of the time the latch clip can be refitted in if you haven’t broken it in half. The system won’t work correctly without it!
Hi Dan, I did, unfortunately, break the latch clip. Only about a third of it is left- the other 2./3rds broke off completely. From what you said that is the most likely explanation why certain keys ( 3,e,d,c,6,y,h,n,space bar and /) don’t work. I had wondered if I might have damaged the cable connections when I was trying to get them into the slot earlier (not realizing there was a retaining clip down.) If it is the clip, then the answer seems to be to replace the trackpad again. Which would be no problem if the screws weren’t so bad. But am worried that I will never be able to get all the screws out and new ones screwed in properly. But maybe worth a try. Any suggestions?
Have no magic here…
Somehow you need to replace the latch. Getting a replacement part is one way, the other is looking for a broken system to steal the latch off of carefully removing it without breaking it, then popping it on your systems connector.
Dan, that’s a great idea. I have my old Apple trackpad and the piece is still intact on that. It hadn't occurred to me that I might be able to take it off and put it on the cable on the new trackpad. Thanks for the suggestion!
I do not think there is a latch to be opened.
Both the logic board and the trackpad connectors use a compression bar (latch). When you have it in the open state its ZIF but to secure the cable you need to close the latch to hold the cable and make the needed electrical connection Trackpad Flex Connector
Yes there is a latch towards the back of the connector, opposite of where the cable enters the connector. It is very thin. Opens from back to front.
There are two versions of the connector depending on the trackpad and logic board. Yours should be like the one I posted.
The other one is more like this one Keyboard Connector
A video that shows how this thing unplugs and plugs back in would be helpful. It just looks like a piece of black tape. I had no idea there were tiny prongs that have to be plugged in. Now my keyboard doesn’t work.
I was looking at these instructions because while I was following your battery replacement instructions I accidentally unplugged this thing.
Your instructions on how to plug it back in font show anything at all.
Remove the following twelve screws:
Six 1.6 mm Phillips screws securing the trackpad to the upper case.
Six 1.6 mm Phillips screws securing the trackpad brackets to the trackpad.
I have a Macbook Air early 2013 A1466 Model. These are not PH00 screws in my case— like not even close. i am going by a jewelry store. Maybe, it is the case for the US version. Not working for this German model. Just FYI. Or perhaps you know as you are leaving the ph00 out of the description here and are just referencing the 1,6 mm.
Actually I went and got a phillips ph00 1,6 now specifically: screws up the screws. Doesnt work as many are saying on youtube. But whats the right screwdriver then??
So how did you do it after all?
I also had problems with the screws. Started out using the PH00 screwdriver and the screwheads were being stripped. Switched to the PH 000 as suggested by the commenter above and it still stripped screws (ones that hadn’t been touched before). Finally gave up, put the screws I had managed to get out back in (surprisingly they screwed back in without much difficulty), and put everything back together without being able to replace the trackpad. Luckily the computer worked but still having to use an external mouse to click. It seems that the screws for the trackpad are very soft and the heads strip easily. Not sure what to do at this point.
Apple uses a thread sealer which makes it hard! I first try a little bit of some acetone around the base of the screw dripping a little down letting spork and adding a bit more as it evaporates. When that fails I reach for my small nozzle heat gun as I want to focus the heat just to the head of the screw using foil to protect the rest of the area.
I had an easy time with the JIS000 screwdriver bit I have so if you have one, give it a try.
What is a JIS000 screwdriver and where do I find one?
JIS is japan Industrial Standard which sets a standard for both screws and the tools needed for them.
Here’s one set iFixit - JIS Driver Set
The brackets on mind had stripped screws a d are now broken. Anyone know where I can buy those brackets?
I went ahead and ordered the iFixit - JIS Driver Set on Lareina’s recommend here, and only 6 of the 12 screws came up with it. It started to strip the upper six. They are all, after all, 1.6 mm, and the smallest driver on the JIS driver set (not recommended BTW) is 2.0mm) so that was useless advice. so back to square one, weeks waiting to get this thing installed!
In my case, I had just that one last screw that was stripped - and what I was able to do to remove it was to wriggle the bracket to get the screw to move free - which then made it much easier to unscrew it with a PH000 bit even though it was stripped. I was able to duplicate the process 2 more times (so 3 total) working on 2x MacBook Airs.
I haven’t tried anything else - where I was just about to break out my Dremel to turn the screw into a chisel tip (high risk given all the metal dust flying about) or wear out the edges to make it easier for me to use side cutters or pliers to grasp the edges and remove it…
When reassembling, I had to gently lift the replacement track pad up with the spudger on the keyboard side to get the bracket screws to align with the trackpad.
Remove the right and left trackpad brackets from the upper case.
The 1.4 mm T5 Torx screw near the front edge of the case must be adjusted correctly.
I needed to tighten the set screw a bit farther than I expected to get the click action of the replacement trackpad to feel right. With everything reassembled, except for the final outer bottom cover, I made slight adjustments to the set screw and then flipped over the macbook to test the actual click pressure. Did this a few times to get it set up properly and then secured the bottom cover to complete the job.
Step 10 shoud´nt be on this guide, it´s misleading, not necesary at all to change the trackpad nor to clean it; first 2 comments on this step, "i screw the screw" (pun very intended)
Use the flat end of a spudger to carefully lift the edge of the trackpad closest to the keyboard from its recess in the upper case by lifting it away from the brackets attached to the upper case.
Remove the trackpad from the upper case.
I suggest leaving the brackets attached to the trackpad until after removing the trackpad from its recess, and then attaching the brackets to the new trackpad before replacing it in the recess. Otherwise, the loose trackpad will drop onto the screen.
To reassemble your device, follow these instructions in reverse order.
To reassemble your device, follow these instructions in reverse order.
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there are times when my trackpad wont click. Is there a reason why?
This often happens due to a swollen battery. It bumps up against the bottom of the trackpad, preventing it from clicking down. It tends to get worse over time. If removing the battery allows your trackpad to click normally, or if the battery is visibly swollen, replace your battery right away.
When I reinstall my trackpad, there is too much "play" or too much room for clicking. It seems like the set screw is screwed in farther than it was originally, and it still doesn't seem to be enough. Also, the mouse isn't working; it won't move, and the click doesn't cause any action. What did I do wrong?
Ok, stuck to mechanical clicker part of this trackpad there is a v. small clear plastic nib (maybe 1mm, maybe smaller), which would sit between the mechanical clicker and the set-screw. It’s so small im not sure if its supposed to be there (maybe its extra cushioning?), but when you are removing or installing the trackpad (after all the screws are out), it can get caught on the casing and tear and flip over. Then when you reinstall the trackpad, it can get caught between the trackpad and the casing which in turn will bypass the mechanical clicker part, then the clicking of the trackpad wont happen. Just an FYI, maybe someone else can expand on this..
just finished a post traumatic repair of my Air following your extremely valuable instructions, thank you a lot!
Thank you for this guide. In my case I found that the only problem was the Trackpad cable and the old trackpad itself was just fine. I followed the first half to remove the cable including the great diagrams of the ZIF socket. It turns out there is the same ZIF socket on the other end of the cable too. Remove both, leave the trackpad on place and put the new cable (orderable from this site) in place. Seems like the cable is small and fragile so older machines can get corroded pins especially when they have had old batteries.
Many thanks for the meaningful and goal-oriented guidance. I followed it and am happy about the result of my work!
Pulling the fan cable out was terrifying but you actually just pull on the cable itself. No way to get any leverage at the connector to dislodge it. Did come out easily but like I said, scared me!
allison - Yanıt
Draai de schroefjes voorzichtig los en leg ze op een stabiele plek neer en let erop dat de schroefje een verschillende lengte hebben.
bwgvanderveer - Yanıt
I thought I could replace my 256 Gb SSD with 512? regards
ola m - Yanıt
Do you have good Test Point Voltages? It appears there are silver colored Test points on the I/O Board. I am working on a water spill and trying to troubleshoot if both the I/O board and the Logic need replaced.
andrew - Yanıt
It's probably not necessary but may be a little safer to completely discharge the old battery before replacing it.
Larry Smith - Yanıt
tell a model that was not inferior to the speed of the one in the laptop.
ilyabuhov - Yanıt
Do i need to order tools separately to replace the battery i just ordered?
anne uhlir - Yanıt
im looking for a Logic Board for a
Apple - MacBook Air® - 13.3" Display - Intel Core i5 - 8GB Memory - 128GB Flash Storage (Latest Model) - Silver Model: MQD32LL/A
Any help is appreciated.
Jamie Comstock - Yanıt
P5 pentalobe screwdrivers are too big! The correct size for these screws are p4 pentalobe. P5 pentalobe was just able, with difficulty, to turn some of the screws. If the screws were at all tight, my p5 was unable to get them out, and started to strip the screws. A p4 screwdriver fit better and removed the screws with ease. (I was using high quality Wiha brand screwdrivers.)
William Skinner - Yanıt
I had same experience (with MacBook Air 13-inch Mid-2012) … had to get P4, which worked swimmingly
Very simple installation. The screwdriver heads were exactly what we’re needed, one head for the outside case screws, the other for the screws holding the battery in place. The computer started right up. Now to see how the battery holds up, but I have a good feeling about this!
Dennis Eaton - Yanıt
My P5 and the T5 worked perfectly with my early 2015 Air 13”! And it is super fast! Thank you iFixit!
Pennny Beach - Yanıt
The supplied kit and instructions worked perfectly!
Nikolay Andreev - Yanıt
Comments that the P5 pentalobe are too large are absolutely spot-on. There is no way the P5 pentalobe bit I have will work with the MacBook Air without destroying the screws. Hard target search for P4 pentalobe bit in progress…..
joemoog - Yanıt
Bonjour j’aimerais changer mon SSD de 128 Go pour en mettre un de 512 Go. Je ne sais pas ce qu’il faut prendre car il faut qu’il soit compatible avec le macbook air A1466. J’aurais vu un Samsung Evo 970 500 Go mais si je ne me trompe pas, il faut un adaptateur.
Merci pour votre aide.
chicco33 - Yanıt
oui, vous aurez besoin d’un adaptateur, pour completez le changement.
The tool kit should include tweezers for re-inserting the battery connector.
Andre Clement - Yanıt
P5 pentalobe worked perfectly for me. Instructions were spot-on. Antenna connections were a bit fiddly to refit but got them in ok.
michaelquinnell - Yanıt
Maybe the problem some are experiencing is that the designations are confusing (blame Apple rather than iFixit). the P2 is also known as PL1. The P5 is also known as PL4. The P6 is also known as PL5. So it is possible to mistake the P6 (PL5) for the P5 (PL4), meaning it (P6-PL5) will be too big, while the P5 (PL4) will be just right. Sort of a 3 Bears explanation, but it is very confusing.
Thomas Lewis - Yanıt
To add to this. In searching for the P5 screwdriver to buy in UK, as far as I can tell, it is also known as
P4 = 0.8
P6 = 1.5
Just unscrewed the back case of MacBook Air 13” mid 2011, with no problems using Pentalobe 1.2
I have not replaced a display on the A1369 but have done many A1466 which is a newer 13” model. They seem really similar and its not clear why one needs to remove the logic board to remove the display. The antenna cables on the A1466 dont have to rest under the logic board but can be tucked in the hinge crevice. Cant this same thing be done with the A1369?
Sean Love - Yanıt
Did mine today - but new battery wasnt charging. Went back in and noticed the battery connector cable was not quite 100% “seated. It was sticking out by less than a millimetre! - you need to give it quite a firm push in to get it seated properly. Otherwise - all ok .
John Brennand - Yanıt
Just installed on a MacBookAir6,2 (13-inch, Early 2014).
Was very easy.
New iFixit battery looks great so far:
Jonathan Cross - Yanıt
can you tell me which size of screwdrivers you’ve used to crack it up, please? I have the same model and size,
Screw P5 Pentalobe 1.2
Mario Verlent - Yanıt
Install went flawlessly. Only challange was reattaching blue tooth antennas. Those sockets are so tiny.
Joel Sebastian - Yanıt
Installation was a little challenging at first because the instructions on this site did not perfectly match my model (late 2013 to early 2015).
Found this video on YouTube which described the procedure perfectly https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Lue6lVWh...
Also the Ifixit kit I received was well put together with everything I needed and more. The calibration went perfectly and I am very pleased. Will buy again!!
Donald Niamath - Yanıt
Gently pulled out connector of old battery, then pressed and held the power switch for 1 minute. Unscrewed and removed the old battery. Pressed and held power switch for 1 minute again. I know from previous work that this helps drain charge from spontaneous recharging as the dielectric recovers. Gently “fine tuned” leads from new battery to connector till connector stuck out at right angle to the edge of battery. Held the battery by the edges and let the connector slide into the socket. Set the battery down and put the screws in all the way. Then checked that the connector was completely seated before tightening the screws. The laptop come on immediately and showed 98% charge and registered normal (checked in “About this Mac”. Very happy to this point. Now for calibration.
Amir Zaidi - Yanıt
Thank you very much for the guilde. My MBA2011 had reborn !
Billy Wong - Yanıt
Allow for electrostatics, otherwise you may cook components on the logicboard /motherboard (like I did with one of these!)
See great advice: Electrostatic Discharge
Fletcher Cole - Yanıt
… und wenn du eines von diesen wirklich kleinen Schräubchen vermisst: bevor du den Boden aufkehrst oder mit einem starken Magneten absuchst, schau mal am seitlichen (magnetischen) Ladekabelanschluss nach … ?
... and if you miss one of these really small screws: before you sweep the floor or search it with a strong magnet, take a look at the (magnetic) charging cable connection on the side … ?
Blatt - Yanıt
Fot All People ha ing trouble finding their SSD
DONT PRESS CMD +R + POWER
I just installed Monterrey with WD black sn 770 SSD in m'y macbook air 2015
Albert - Yanıt
IFixit just had me submit "my story" re. fixing my MacBook Air 2013.
This repair was NOT difficult. The battery is enclosed in a plastic frame. It is NOT glued in like the newer models of Apple laptops. And unlike older laptops, the battery is not totally enclosed in a plastic housing. So once you remove the screws holding the batterie's frame, you can remove the battery.
Follow the instructions. Read the comments. Also read the comments re. installing a new battery.
Good luck. - Eric J.
ECJohansen - Yanıt