Apple's MagSafe power adaptor is another in a long line of the company's attempts to perfect the laptop computer power connector. In the early days of laptops, it seemed that Apple changed its power adaptor every time the company produced a new laptop. Each time Apple did this, it rendered the previous power adaptor obsolete. One thing that remained consistent, however, between the PowerBook adaptor and the MacBook adaptor was the very thin and flimsy construction of the external wiring. This means the wires are the most likely things to go bad or break with normal use.
- Skill level:
Things you need
- Hobby knife
- Wire stripper
- Wire cutter
- Electrical wire
- Electrical tape
Cut the MagSafe end off the power adaptor if this is where your problem lies. If you have a weak connection or intermittent power outages while charging or running your MacBook, the culprit usually will be at the end near the MagSafe plug itself. If the break is not right at the wire junction with the MagSafe plug, give yourself a couple of inches of wire to work with. If the wire is causing problems at the other end, near the power brick, cut the wire two inches out from the brick.
Strip the plastic coating off the wires and get a good look at where the problem is. Most often, the constant plugging and unplugging as well as cord winding will cause the wires to fray and start to separate.
Remove the frayed or damaged part of the wires. If you need a longer power adaptor cord, you will need to add wire where you cut the bad section out. Wind the appropriate wires together with your fingers, then tape them so they cannot touch each other. Wind the new wires together with the old wires making certain you connect the correct wires on both ends. Wind them tightly, then tape them thoroughly to avoid electrical shorts.
Wrap up the entire wire where you made your fix with electrical tape to make it secure. This will not resemble the sleek, white look of the Apple power adaptor, but it should work.
Tips and warnings
- If the problem obviously is a broken MagSafe connector, the only way to fix it is to get another MagSafe connector off a non-working power adaptor. Make sure the other power adaptor does not have problems with the MagSafe plug. Cut the MagSafe plug off, giving yourself two inches of wire, and graft it on to your original power adaptor by winding the wires together and using electrical tape to secure them.
- It takes a lot of tedious work to rewire a MagSafe power adaptor. You can replace it relatively cheaply with a third-party --- non-Apple --- MagSafe adaptor that will save you the hassle of this temporary fix.
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