This is primarily a travel blog in which I write about traveling in our motorhome. Our travels have

Nacogdoches, TX, United States
I began this blog as a vehicle for reporting on a 47-day trip made by my wife and me in our motorhome down to the Yucatan Peninsula and back. I continued writing about our post-Yucatan travels and gradually began including non-travel related topics. I often rant about things that piss me off, such as gun violence, fracking, healthcare, education, and anything else that pushes my button. I have a photography gallery on my Smugmug site (

Monday, January 13, 2014

For Want of a Screw

One bad thing after another happened once the proverbial horseshoe nail was lost. In the end it cost someone an entire kingdom. However, this is not about losing a nail. It’s about a few loose screws, which, hopefully, will not cost me my kingdom. Have any kingdoms been lost from the “want of a screw?” 

A couple of days ago I noticed that the bottom case of my MacBook Pro laptop seemed to be was just a bit loose. I turned it over and discovered that four of the ten tiny screws holding the case together were missing, resulting in a slight gap along the bottom rear seam of the laptop. I didn’t panic but I was concerned about dust and other potentially harmful particles having easy access to the computer’s inner workings. At any rate, I needed to replace the missing screws.

These are “special” screws that are very not the kind you can run down to Lowe’s and purchase. However, I have an active Apple Care protection plan for which I paid around $300 when I purchased my MacBook Pro in late 2011. A few small screws should not be a problem. Correct? Wrong!

I saw no reason to take up any of Apple support’s time on the phone over such a small problem so I sent them an email and asked if they would please send me some replacement screws. I could replace them myself. A week later I was still waiting for a response so I sent a second email, which, contrary to the first, was answered in less than 24-hours.

The response to my second email informed me that a phone call to the Apple Care Support Center would be necessary after all. I made the phone call and explained the problem to an Apple advisor. After being placed on hold for about two minutes I was informed that Apple will not send me the screws. It would be considered an unapproved repair if I were to replace the screws.  

I was offered three options. The first was to ship the computer to Apple in Cupertino, CA. I would be without it for at least a week. That is not an option.

The second option was to take it to an Apple Store. The closest Apple Store is in Houston, a three-hour drive and about $60 to $70 in gas. 

The third option was to take it to an approved Apple repair center. The closest approved repair service is in Tyler, about an hour and a half drive, about $30 to $35 in gas.

Not being too crazy about any of the three options, I have come up with a fourth that will work just fine until I have a good reason to drive to Houston or Tyler.  Fortunately, the MacBook Pro is silver, the same color as the duct tape.


Croft Randle said...
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Croft Randle said...

You're screwed Robert! I am sure duct tape is also an "unauthorized repair".

Bill said...

Robert, check ebay under macbook pro bottom screws. You can get them for $2.99 with free shipping.
That's one thing about Mac... their customer service sucks. I had a charger under warranty go bad and had to go through hoops to get a new one.

Croft Randle said...

I emailed a friend to ask about your screwing problems. She LOL'd and said to tell you there are pharmaceutical solutions. ;) She told me about the screws on ebay as well. She had the battery go on her MacBook Pro and Apple refused to sell her one. She found one on ebay.

Robert & Carol Ann Martin said...

Thank you, Bill. I will definitely check eBay. I'm sure having a tough time getting a screw!

Robert & Carol Ann Martin said...

Croft, I appreciate your friend's advice and will check eBay for the screws. Seems like I've always had a screw lose.

Robert & Carol Ann Martin said...

I just ordered the screws for $2.99 from eBay. A very cheap screw!

peter weller said...

Great post...keep posting....

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