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Battery Explosion

A couple of weeks ago, I had to order a new laptop battery for my Macbook Pro.

I believe that my battery was the culprit of the issues I’d recently been having…my hard drive shutting down at random times, even completely crashing once so that I had to reinstall the operating system.  More recently, when I couldn’t click my built-in mouse button, I knew I had to replace the battery.

The last time I did so was three years ago.  That was when my entire casing was bulging.  The laptop had to go to Apple Care Support for a complete overhaul, including a fix for the casing.

At least this time, I caught the problem before things got too bad.

The new battery arrived within two days, and I was set to go.

Meanwhile, I’d set the old battery aside, unsure what to do with it…where to recycle it.

Then, a couple of days ago, I happened to glance down at the old battery…

Seeing this…

Pretty scary, eh?

That thing was inside of my laptop.

Can you imagine the damage it would have done to the rest of my computer?

Much like a mama “knowing” that her baby is sick long before the symptoms confirm it, I’m glad I was attune to my electronic baby and able to remedy the situation before things got lethal.

She’s My Baby

Personification.

It’s the figurative language device I’m teaching my students right now.

Yesterday, I told them that we personify everything.  Personification is sprinkled throughout our conversations, literature, advertising, and even music!

Last night, personification took on a very personal meaning when my baby got sick.

No, it wasn’t Chicky.  She’s back at school.

It wasn’t Rooster either.  He’s away with a few church members…preparing a camp location for the students who will bombard it in a few short weeks.

It wasn’t even one of my furry babies.  Gambit seems to be doing a lot better thanks to the extra TLC he’s receiving.

Nope.

My baby…well…it’s this…

I’ve had the 17-inch version of the MacBook Pro since 2006 when I went back to college to finish up my Bachelor’s degree.

On Sunday, she completely shut down on me…when I was in the middle of composing a document.

As her mother, I know her nuances, and starting her back up was challenging.

I sensed something sinister amiss; however, she recovered, and we proceeded as before.

Then last night, I was working on a Reading Endorsement assignment (I have two left for this class), when she shut down AGAIN!!

This time things were not okay.

She started up, but she wouldn’t go past the Apple logo.

Oh my gosh.

Nothing makes me crazier than when one of my babies is sick.

As if she were a human or fur baby, I immediately went to the internet for assistance.

What I read wasn’t good.

I tried a few “fixes,” but my baby was a little too sick for the remedies to work.

Finally, after popping in my software CD, I found the disk utility program and did the unthinkable.

I reset her.

I’d been backing up my files; however, my last backup was in early April.

Oy!

Still, something was better than nothing.

Within a couple of hours, I had my baby up and running as before.

Yet, I, being a worry wort and a bit of a hoverer, am holding my breath every time I turn on the computer.

I know her hard drive is on its last legs.

I don’t relish the thought of replacing it.

I mean, she’s six years old!!

I’ve already had the keyboard, logic board, battery, and other things replaced.

Sigh.

I’m keeping my fingers crossed that the Lord performed a miracle last night, and that she, like a cancer patient who outlives a dire prognosis, will continue to keep on ticking for a few more years.

She’s got to, or else I’ll be devastated.

She is, after all, another one of my babies.

Now THAT’S Service!

Although I was busy knitting socks this week (see previous post), that’s not the primary reason why I missed a few days blogging.

The culprit was this…

What is it, you might be asking yourself.

Well, that, my friends, was the battery to my MacBook Pro laptop.

It’s funny how life’s little journeys begin, eh?

You see, last week, I was innocently typing along when, all of a sudden, I realized that my mouse pad’s clicker was not clicking properly.  In fact, it wasn’t clicking at all, and I was having a lot of trouble doing things that one should normally be able to do with the clicker.

At first, I thought it was me.  I am, after all, AuburnChick, aka World’s Biggest Klutz.

I figured I had hit something wrong.

Well, after rebooting my computer, I still had the problem.

So, I did what I naturally do in such situations.

I visited Google, my favorite go-to-in-a-pinch-site.

I began reading what other people had done, and I tried their suggestions.

I ran the corner of a piece of paper under that button to see if I could dislodge any foreign objects that might be hiding underneath.

Nada.

I tried it again.

Nada.

I went back to Google, clicking on this or that…reading forums where others had asked for assistance.

Someone suggested removing the battery, which is located on the back side of the laptop (and directly underneath the mouse pad and clicker), blowing to remove hidden objects, and replacing the battery.

Well, when I turned my computer over, I noticed that my battery was weird-shaped…puffed out, in fact.

Hmmm…

This laptop is three years old.  Could this be old age, I wondered?

Either way, removing the battery, blowing, and replacing did not fix the problem.  However, I discovered that my clicker clicked when the battery was out.

Hmmm…

Much like a mom on a mission to find out who dunnit, I started seeing some pieces of the puzzle coming together.

I did more reading.

It would seem that I missed the memo (there really wasn’t one, but I don’t frequent techie forums unless I need help) that other Mac owners were having the same bulging battery issue.

I read that Apple had replaced some at no charge to the owners.  Others had paid $129 for a new battery.

Hmmm…

The next morning, I called Apple Support.

Now, I must say.  I paid a lot of money for my machine.  I also paid extra for the Apple Care Protection Plan, which adds a couple of years to the original warranty.

Thank gosh.

The guy who answered the phone checked my records and discovered that I was STILL WITHIN WARRANTY!!!

Folks, when does this ever happen?  How often does something break days AFTER such warranties expire?

Plus, this is AuburnChick we’re speaking of.  Such luck does NOT happen to this gal.

Anyhoo, the guy warned me, though, that the battery was not covered under warranty.

Yeah.  My bubble of happiness burst.

BUT, the guy continued, there were some circumstances when it would be replaceable at no cost.

Hope sprung in my heart.

He asked me several questions, which I answered.  In the process, we discovered that some of my casing had been damaged because of the enlarged battery.

Oh my gosh!

At that point, I was transferred up a level to a Tier 2 tech guy.  He made arrangements to have a new battery sent out…Fed Ex…OVERNIGHT!!!

Plus, I would also be receiving a box, postage-paid, to return the old battery.  This was a requirement in order to avoid paying the $129 for the new battery.

You guys.  Fed Ex is a scant .5 miles from my house.  I could walk there.  Did I mind taking the package?  Heck no!

Oh, and this wasn’t all of the good news.

Apple would also be sending me a larger, pre-paid postage box in which to send my laptop, my precious baby, to the support center to check out the casing issue.  The technician was concerned that other parts inside might have been affected.

And the angels sang.

Seriously.

I received my battery the next morning…before 9am!!!  I could not believe it!!  Oh, and I almost forgot.  A scant 30 minutes after I had spoken to the tech the day before, I received e-mail confirmation that my battery had shipped.

In case you’re wondering, I took a picture of the old and new batteries, side-by-side…

Can you believe it?

I know I couldn’t!!

So, I replaced the battery and mulled over the decision to send the rest of the laptop in.  Honestly, as a tech myself, I was concerned that my baby would not come back in the same shape as it left me.

I allowed myself to go through the weekend, my computer still in my possession.  I needed the time to re-vamp my resume and fill out an application.  Since I had 30 days to send it in with the pre-paid packaging, I wasn’t rushed.

However, I went ahead and decided to send it in on Monday.  Apple had promised a 3-5 day turnaround.

So, pack it up, I did.  The instructions in the box were very easy to follow.  Apple had considered everything, including the various laptop sizes and the packaging materials.  I had to poke out the most packaging since mine is a luxurious 17-inch.

And I waved my baby goodbye (when the Fed Ex clerk wasn’t looking, of course.  Mustn’t totally embarrass myself).

I received a call two days later that my machine was in poor shape.  There was dust galore inside of it, and the fans had stopped working.  In addition, there had been a recall on the motherboard, which the warranty covered.

Oh yeah.  That extra $100.xx I spent on the warranty was proving to be well worth it, eh?

So, Apple fixed my laptop, and Fed Ex delivered it bright and early this morning…before I started my morning session with the treadmill.

I was a good girl…finished my exercising BEFORE breaking open the box.

I’m not ashamed to admit that I kissed my laptop.

I really did.

Those who know me in person KNOW I really did this.

heehee

Contained within the package was an itemized list of what was repaird:  the keyboard, two fans, two hinges (the laptop no longer squeals when I open it), several casings, and the graphics motherboard.

Oh my gosh.

I opened my laptop, turned it on, and it’s silent, except for the clicking of my fingers on the keys.

The fans seem to be working properly!

The trackpad is rough, which is wonderful.  It’s proof positive that this is a new part.

Oh yeah.

I am one happy girl, let me tell you.

For those who might poo-poo the monstrous company that is Apple, I will just say that I love them.  The customer service I received earned my loyalty.  I will forever sing their praises because they cared enough to think about every detail, and they instilled a confidence that they would take good care of my precious computer-baby.

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