How to unstick keyboard keys on a mac

To replace this, you will have to remove the battery, fans, speakers, and logic board to swap the internals to the new assembly. If you are going to go this far, just replace the keyboard and save yourself the money.


  1. Apple will replace damaged keys or entire keyboards on ‘sticky’ MacBooks - MarketWatch.
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To understand all of this better, I "dissected" a dead MacBook Pro keyboard to better show how all of this comes together. Looking at the back of the keyboard a dead donor from a MacBook Pro that had to be cut out due to a stripped screw there is a black protective cover. The only electrical contacts that can be seen is for the backlight and the keyboard connector interface.

Removing the back cover, we can get a better look at the backplate. This piece provides the stability and structure for the keyboard. Looking at the front of the keyboard with the keys removed, we can see through the plastic membrane layers all the way to the back plate this portion is where the stripped screw was that had to be cut out. Taking an even closer look at the key, we can see how the mechanism attaches physically to the back plate to keep it in place.

Peeling back the layers we can see how it all comes together. The plastic membrane with the rubber cups on top of the plastic membrane with the electrical traces on top of the metal back plate. Cutting out a section of the trace membrane we can wee how the electrical connections are made. Key s are stuck.

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Stuck key? Learn the right way to clean your MacBook's keyboard

The circuit path is shorted. This could be due to a foreign contaminant including the key mechanism itself putting pressure on the contact pad or some sort of FOD foreign object debris shorting out the circuit path. Key s not responding.


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  • The circuit path is broken. When you press a key and nothing happens, no signal is being sent for the keyboard to recognize a key press. This could be due to a short, bad contacts, a physically broken path, etc. A note on intermittent problems. An intermittent electronic failure is a subset of the above conditions.

    Helpful answers

    These solder joints may be completely open circuit, or they may be intermittent, high resistance or noisy. It is therefore essential that no dry solder joints are present in any electronics equipment. Source: Electronic Notes - Solder Joints. The electric conductivity is caused by a component that makes ca. Beware of Decayed Glue under IC.

    Apple Offers Free Fix for MacBook's Sticky Key Problem | Digital Trends

    Listen now. Home Questions Tags Users Unanswered. Keyboard key stuck or not being recognized; how to fix Ask Question.

    How to fix a stuck key on the New Macbook Pro - Butterfly Keyboard

    Look at the second picture and align the two piece then push them together. There should be a soft clicking sound. In the same alignment as the second picture, place the carrier in the spot on the keyboard where it came off and press firmly into place. Optional: If your keys are particularly sticky use rubbing alcohol and a q-tip to wipe the back of the keys. Cancel: I did not complete this guide. Badges: Ugh it frustrates me that the author doesn't comprehensibly guide you through the complexities of taking keys off and on your keyboard.

    How to Prevent Stuck ‘Butterfly’ Keys Due to Dust Accumulation on the MacBook Pro

    They are delicate and fit together elegantly. You should really elaborate before going and telling people to yank their keys off. Difficulty Moderate. Steps Time Required 10 - 30 minutes. Sections 1. Flags 0. Introduction Sticky keyboard keys are a common problem with laptops, usually resulting from drink spillage, food crumbs, or other substances gumming up the keys. Tools Buy these tools. Add a comment.

    The Problem With Butterfly Keyboards

    He told me that they would need to send it out for repair and couldn't give me an estimate for the repairs. I also emailed Apple, but it didn't immediately respond to my request for comment. So, my advice to those typing on a MacBook model with a butterfly keyboard -- the current MacBook Pro models and the inch MacBook -- is to keep a can of compressed air on hand.


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    • It did the trick for me. If the problem is happening regularly, either switch from everything bagels to plain bagels or visit your local Apple Store -- ideally before your warranty is up. And if you are already past your warranty, then be prepared to pay a sizable repair bill. I've read that it's not as simple as replacing a single key but that the entire keyboard or bottom half of the laptop may need to be replaced. One last thing you might try before sending your MacBook out for repair is to follow the method described in the top comment of this 9to5Mac article of using your fingernail to scrape the metal edges of the keyboard deck below a stuck key.

      Others have responded to this comment with profuse thanks saying it worked for them.

      About the Author

      Basically, you are removing a build up of grime below the key that is causing it to stick. If you have a method for fixing a stuck or unresponsive MacBook key, please share in the comments below. And if you've had your MacBook keyboard repaired by Apple, please share that experience and the associated cost, too.