Macbook MagSafe Adapter Replacement Program

Cory Blog, Hardware, Mac, Repair

I bought my Macbook Pro back in the early 2008. It’s been great ever since but this last year, the power adapter stopped working – right before I needed to take it to a client meeting – nice. While I picked up a new one (newer model actually) at Best Buy, I’ve now stumbled upon Apple’s Adapter Replacement Program. Why I came across this recently is because the replacement one I bought at Best Buy recently broke to – I suspect there was a scenario involving a child and some scissors, but I have no evidence to prove it although it IS suspicious, although it could be a faulty “L” style adapter too.

Bad MagSafe Adapter - "L" style

I started doing some research late last night and came across this article on CNet. The author states
“Those particular adapters, the 60W and 85W versions that shipped on earlier models of the company’s MacBook and MacBook Pro portable computers, were prone to splitting and became the target of a class action lawsuit.
The lawsuit claimed that the particular adapter design was defective to the point of where it “dangerously frays, sparks and prematurely fails to work.” The 2009 filing accused Apple of knowing about, and misrepresenting the problem, claims Apple denied in‘s Web site notes the settlement is “not an admission of wrongdoing.”

"T" style MagSafe Adapter

This applies to those with the “T” style MagSafe adapter, like below. The article cites Apple’s own support article on the issue (linked above) and provides steps on how to get a replacement. It just so happens that I never throw anything tech related away, so I had my original T style adapter buried in a box in my office – lucky me. But since we have no Apple store in these here parts of Western South Dakota, I was left to adventure out on how to get my replacement and soon – since my Macbook Pro was dead. I first, and reluctantly, called the local Apple Service Provider. They stated that they’d have to keep the computer for a few days and they check it over, yada, yada, yada, and get back to me in a few days. Next I called Best Buy. I figured that since they sell Macs, they might participate in replacement programs as well. It was a long shot. They also told me to call Apple.

Every time I called Apple I got directed to the Apple Care department and since I don’t have a subscription, I couldn’t get through. So I called 1800MyApple and asked for Sales. The person had no idea what I was talking about and I sat in the phone for a good 10 minutes in silence. He then directed me to the service department (pretty much Apple Care) and I got to speak with a tech. He also had no idea what I was talking about until I gave him the link to the support article on Apple’s site. (I was able to start my Mac up just long enough to grab the link before it died again. Did I mention there’s no battery life left either? Time for a new mac I suppose.) Well, this tech put me on hold again and 15-20 minutes later I was speaking to yet another guy. THIS guy had me repeat that I had an adapter that I believe falls within the replacement programs guidelines (sucky adapter) and he asked which one [adapter] is it and I said “it’s the ‘T’ style….” He cut me off mid sentence and said “yup, that’s all I need to know.”

He took my information and issued a new one be sent to me this week – for free (pending I send the old one back). I was hoping I could salvage my previous one but it was too far gone for now so I went back to Best Buy and bought the latest adapter. Ya, I’ll have two but that’s ok – scissors and children still exist in my house.

L style MagSafe Adapter

A few years ago Apple redesigned the MagSafe adapter and switched from the “T” style to the “L” style, or as the Apple tech I talked to last night, the ToothBrush style. There has been debate about whether or not the new adapter will work with the older “powerbook” style Macbook Pros, like mine so I at first I was unsure about buying one, but I’m glad I did. Apple reinforced the connector end and the new shape is much less intrusive. The downside is that on my model it blocks the USB port that’s next to the connection. Problem solved by just flipping the adapter around.

So this Thursday will show for sure if the 30+ minutes I spent on the phone trying to reach a real person at Apple pays off and I’ll be sure to update this article. Although I’ll need to send them to “T” style adapter, I’ll still have the bad “L” style one laying around. So I might see the need for a hack repair. 


UPDATE: I did, in fact, get my new magsafe adapater! As it turned out, it didn’t matter because my macbook died anyway. Yup, bad logic board, so I had to go buy a brand new one.