Model A1286. Released February 2011 / 2.0, 2.2, or 2.3 GHz Quad-core Intel Core i7 Processor

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Is it possible that the logicboard will kill any new airport card?

Hello friends, I have some unhappy problems with my MacBook Pro.

Four weeks ago I put it into sleep mode, carried it to university and woke it up there. After waking up I could not connect to the universities WiFi network, this worked for the last 2.5 years by the way. The airport symbol showed me, that aiport was turned off, but I did not turn airport off!

I tried to put my MacBook Pro back into sleep mode but it was not going into it. I could not wake it up so I had to turn it off forcefully holding the power button. After that it was not able to boot up again. I was not able to boot from internal drive, not from recovery partition, and not from any Mavericks installation USB device (the system is running Mavericks).

I tried as much as I was able to do, including resetting of the hard drive via my iMac. The ONLY system that was working was Snow Leopard, which came with the MacBook Pro.

After installing and booting Snow Leopard I was not able to enable airport.

A few days later, I brought my system to a local Apple authorized service partner (in Germany, we don't have many Apple Stores here) to let them check my MacBook Pro out.

They told my that my AirPort card is dead and replaced it for 150€ ($200 US). But, this took some time. The first diagnoses was the dead AirPort card. After replacing it they told me that the problem was not solved and they said it might be a logic board defect. Because they wanted to be paid with 650€ ($880), I did not want to have them replaced the logic board. This was last Friday.

On Monday they called me and said that the replacement AirPort card was broken, too, and they replaced it a second time. After the second replacement it was working. Because of this I took the system home and was able to install Mavericks again onto it. And the Airport was working fine, I installed all updates via AirPort. Then I put the MacBook Pro into sleep mode.

After coming home this evening I wanted to test the system a little bit (airport, cpu, optical drive, etc...). But, instead of performing any tests, I had to see the same disabled airport which was the reason for all problems.

To make an even longer story short: The same problem again. ARGH!

I disconnected the AirPort card and was able to boot the installed Mavericks. Yeah! Now I have A MacBook Pro without a working airport (not WiFi).

So, I have a question now: Is it possible that there are more damage here and I'll need a third! AirPort card?

One more thing: While my local reseller was calling me, they said that they have found corrosion at the internal displays connector. It looked like there was some liquid in their, but, the display connector and the AirPort connector are at different ends of the logic board! I cannot see any coherence between the broken airport cards and this corrosion!

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If you got your system we on one side its' possible it got wet on the other. Just sitting your system down on a wet surface could do you in.

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At this point I think you'll need to do some investigating. Do you have the needed tools and skills to open up your system? (don't forget ESD protection here as well). If you do pop the bottom cover and visually inspect things. Don't forget to pull out the AirPort card and inspect the connector & contacts as well. You might want a magnifier to help you here. If you see some corrosion or any staining from something spilled you will want to clean it up. But before you do make sure to disconnect the battery and then using a cotton swab (Q-Tip) with some distilled water (don't use tap water!) carefully wipe down the areas. make note where you cleaned and go over the same spots a second time with a high grade of isopropyl alcohol. In this case the alcohol has two functions the first to clean out anything oily and the second to act as a drier to help remove the water. Even still here I would wait a day to give the system some time to air dry, if you used a lot of water.

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