November 19, 2021

MacBook Keyboard Replacement

Apple has identified a keyboard issue with some Apple laptops. In 2019, they announced a program to repair the keyboards of various MacBook, MacBook Air, and MacBook Pro for Free.

You can find all the details, and the supported models, on their Keyboard Service page:

Keyboard Service Replacement
https://support.apple.com/keyboard-service-program-for-mac-notebooks

I recently visited the Apple Store to get my "MacBook Pro (15-inch, 2016)" fixed. There is an issue with some of the keys and the spacebar didn't always work when clicked on it.

Five Things I Learned

Like any Apple repair inquire you need to schedule an appointment.

You can't check in to your appointment at the Genius Bar until 5-minutes before the actual appointment. You are welcome to visit the store earlier and browse the computers, but you can't "check-in" until 5-minutes before the appointment time. They will send you to a table to wait for a technician.

The technician first verified that there is an issue with some of the keys. She then ran some tests on the computer - which involved restarting the computer. She informed me that there is also an issue with the battery.

Here's the kicker... In order to fix the computer keyboard they need to send it out to a repair facility. This means that it could take up to five days before I would get the computer back. Since the issue I am having is a work computer, I declined to part with the laptop for five days. (Without the computer, I wouldn't be able to work.) Who has the time to give up their laptops for 5-days?

One More thing... On the bottom of the Keyboard Service Program for MacBook, MacBook Air, and MacBook Pro. is this statement:

The program covers eligible MacBook, MacBook Air, and MacBook Pro models for 4 years after the first retail sale of the unit.

Wait, what?

This means that the "MacBook Pro (15-inch, 2016)" isn't eligible for the free keyboard replacement program - even though it is listed on the website as an eligible model. that Apple would likely charge me for the service.

The technician didn't say anything about a charge. But I wonder if they would have said something once it arrived at the repair shop.

Apple should update the page with the current list of supported models.

Quick Alternative Solution

I use an external Bluetooth keyboard. It works perfectly well. I didn't have to buy one, I had a spare one from an old iMac.

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