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Logic Board Reflow Question

Long story short a buddy of mine spilt a few drops of water on his Macbook Pro and it got on the logic board, hence making the computer not work.

I am very experienced reflowing electronics like Xbox 360s and PS3's. I have seen some a few videos of reflowing a Macbook Pro and it looks similar.

My question is: Is a SLIGHTY water damaged logic board completely fried? Or would a properly done reflow of the logic board fix it?

I know there are tons of things that would effect it but i'm just wondering if there is any hope, or if I should not even waste my time. Thanks :)

Risposto! View the answer Anch'io ho questo problema

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Would it be visually obvious which components were shorted? If so would it be possible to replace just the shorted components?

da

If it is water damage you need to fix, then use 100% alcohol and go over the whole board. I fixed many water damaged phones by fully submerging the logic board and gently rubbing the board. Make sure if you fully submerge you are only submerging the logic board and nothing else such as hard disk etc. Be carefull when you rub because depending on corosion you can remove resistors. See if you can find any corrosion and thats where I would start first.

da

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As the others have mentioned, reflowing the board will only fix bad solder joints, not water damage. Water damage will typically cause shorts which can fry components.

Depending on the component, the damage won't always be visible or obvious. If you see a capacitor or resistor that looks dark or warped, that may be a candidate for replacement and be worth a try if your part hunting and soldering skills are up to snuff. But that still won't tell if you if all the complex gates and circuitry inside the larger chips is working properly. With those components, there's really no way to know without sophisticated and expensive equipment and an Electrical Engineering degree.

If you don't see anything obvious or the computer still doesn't work after replacing basic components that look damaged, you're probably looking at replacing the entire logic board.

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A reflow won't fix water damage. Water damage usually causes a short circuit, which in turn causes a (or more realisticly, multiple) component to blow.

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Would it be visually obvious which components were shorted? If so would it be possible to replace just the shorted components?

da

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Reflowing a chip is a solution for chips lifting off the board due to shoddy solder(ing) and won't have any effect on a water damaged board. That being said, you could try "baking" the board for a short time at a low temperature to try and evaporate any remaining water, but I wouldn't get your hopes up.

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