My Macbook Adaptor Melted!

December 15, 2008 / Reviews, Technology / 33 Comments

UPDATE (Dec 19): Apple Tech Support have replaced it free of charge. Read this entry for details.

And the Apple dealers (since there is no Apple Store in Singapore) are making me pay 180$ for it because I don’t live in the US, where Apple users that face the same problem are given a free replacement.

This is how my magsafe currently looks like:

Magsafe Melted

Magsafe Melted 2

Sorry but I’m not going to pay S$ 180 (US$ 120) for a new magsafe. Here’s why:

  • This isn’t something I dropped, broke or misused. I’ve just been charging my laptop like everyone else. So I should not be held liable for proper use of a product.
  • This is a design flaw. It’s a common problem for Mac users. Just google “magsafe melt” and you’ll find 4,990 sites quoting the same problem. I don’t think it’s a coincidence that thousands of people worldwide have experienced melting adapters.
  • But most importantly, it’s a fire and a electrocution hazard. I’ve seen sparks flying out of this. It burned my fingers when I unknowingly touched it. Can you imagine what would happen if my pet or a younger sibling brushed against this? And what would happen if one of the sparks hit a combustible object while I was out? Companies have the responsibility of creating safe products for consumer use. And clearly, the magsafe isn’t as safe as it claims to be.

I really hate to do bad PR for companies because I know how difficult it is just to clean one bad story up. But truth is, you don’t leave me with an alternative. There is absolutely no support past warranty in this country. And your dealers and authorized service centres either 1) ran out of magsafes, or 2) are charging ridiculous prices for a replacement.

It’s a shame because I was an avid Apple fan – despite having my hard drive overheat within the first 6 months of purchasing the Macbook. I was even thinking about buying the iPhone 3G and the new Macbook Pro next year.

But I guess I gotta think twice now, since I am being forced to pay for a product replacement that has the exactly the same potential to turn out just like my current magsafe.

Let’s simplify my argument even further: I pay for a Macbook just like my American counterparts, and yet I do not receive the same level of support and dedication. Never mind the magsafe, this is a problem in itself.


  • http://claudia.sg claudia

    Oh no! That looks very dangerous. And now I’m looking at my cable and looks like the same thing might happen in a couple of months time.

  • http://www.krisandro.com krisandro

    That’s horrible! I wonder if there is another way to get a replacement.

  • http://www.everdestiny.com Destiny

    Don’t you have friends in the US or Canada? Can they get you one??
    What about ebay?? I’m sure if you shop around you can find something.

  • http://twentyfourcarat.net Katy

    Aw that totally sucks! I’m sure if you complain some more they would be able to send you a new one for free…

  • http://aigoo-chamna.net Tara

    Hence why I stay away from Mac products. Just not worth it.

  • http://shao.pengguo.com Peng

    Macbook power adapter is like $50 USD here. I can send you one when I come back to Rochester next month.

    Yeah, My magsafe looks twisted so I have to untwisted it to avoid the risk.

  • Johahn

    Maybe you could contact the Consumer Association of Singapore. You may have recourse to the courts. As you rightly pointed out this is a fire and electricity hazard that just cannot be taken lightly. I’m pretty sure you have a strong case here buddy!

  • http://www.silvercpu.com/blog Lissy

    that sucks.

  • http://zitseng.com/ zs

    Have you tried contacting Apple Singapore directly for support? I have had quite good outcome with them after complaining about a warped trackpad.

  • http://nanyate.com Ivy

    @claudia: To avoid having the same problem, just make sure that your Magsafe never turns at a sharp angle. I know that can be quite inconvenient (depending where you are), but it’s seriously not worth another 180 SGD.

    @Destiny: It’s not that simple. I bought this laptop in Singapore. And in order to get a free replacement, you need to bring the melted adapter with the laptop to get a new one. So yeah, nothing my friends can do even if they live there.

    @Peng: Haha don’t worry about it Shao!

  • http://act-sion.blogspot.com sion

    o.. tt look serious.
    hope it wont happen to me. or else i gonna stomp it.
    i wont pay for product/design flaw..

  • http://unfoolish-miracles.net Britney

    That sounds like crap that they won’t replace it for free just because you are outside of the U.S. Just seems like a way to money.

  • http://michaelpark.org Michael

    Simpe: Switch to Sony. 😀

  • http://nanyate.com Ivy

    @Michael: Actually, that would be “Switch BACK to Sony.” 😀 My last laptop was a Sony – it lasted 4 years. No hardware problems. The technology simply just got obsolete over time.

  • http://fabrikade.sg Jonathan Kong

    Did you say your MB has past it’s one year warranty status? If so, yes, Apple nor it’s authorised reseller or service centres have no obligation to exchange new one for users. That’s where the Applcare is something you can fall back on.

    Just one week after my purchase of the uni-body MacBook, the magsafe decided to die on me for no reason. The indicator light did not light up when switching on. It was only after a trip to my reseller and then to it’s service centre then I’m able to get a one to one exchange.

  • http://nanyate.com Ivy

    @Jonathan Kong: Actually, because the magsafe is a design flaw that Apple has already admitted to, Apple does one-to-one exchange even when the warranty has expired. This is explicitly stated on support.apple.com.

    The logic is simple. The magsafe remains a fire hazard in or out of the warranty. Apple is wise to simply replace them for free instead of facing a lawsuit, when someone gets electrocuted or someone’s house burns down.

    All except for one caveat: your country needs to have an Apple Store or an authorized service center that is willing to exchange for you – both which Apple Singapore currently lacks.

  • http://www.iva-is.me Iva

    This is absolutely insane. Are you sure someone isn’t making extra money here, for getting free replacements and selling them?

  • http://scruf.us scrufus

    Which service center did you go to? My gf’s Macbook battery was replaced even if it was out of warranty for this issue at the service centre at Wheelock.

  • http://nanyate.com Ivy

    @scrufus: I went to Funan. Anyway, it’s all solved. I now can walk into any service centre, quote my case ID given to me by Apple and receive my replacement.

  • http://www.rin-wendy.com Wendy

    Somehow Singapore and Malaysia are always left out…same goes with games where peeps in US or UK can download much more but over here we have limited choice.

    I’m glad to know that they have decided to replace it for your free of charge in the end.

  • http://nanyate.com Ivy

    @Iva: It’s a one-on-one exchange. So you need to bring your faulty one for a replacement and quote your serial number. You can’t just walk in there for a free one. LOL.

    And btw, those really are pictures of my magsafe.

  • http://www.mikeyip.com Michael Yip

    Wow… and I’m planning to get the MacBook in 2009 to replace the notebook I’m currently using. Now I have to think twice.

  • http://www.kongtechnology.com hyperX

    Oh my gosh…. I never see this kind of problem before. Myself is using laptop for years and I almost all my friends have a laptop but we all didn’t encounter this problem before. What more it’s a macbook! lol

  • http://styke.sg S. Kiat

    I’m glad you’re able to exchange for a new adapter. Are the authorised dealers here trying to make a quick buck out of your problem?

  • http://knoxious.net Knox

    wow this is some what rather interesting and scary at the same time. i just got my macbook a few days and i’m loving it until i came up to your post. as soon as i read, do not let the the wire point sharply, i adjust my wire lol. thank you for the tip. i will take note of this if one day mine melts too haha! cheers!

  • http://simply-precious.net Simply Precious

    Oh woah! I’m sorry to hear that!!! My sister wants a Macbook because the adapter for her Toshiba’s messing up. LOL. She ONLY wants a Macbook JUST because of the adapter. LOL.

  • http://sgviciouscycle.blogspot.com/ ViciousCycle

    the only “mac” im considering getting is the iphone

  • http://justshen.com Shen

    That sucks. I’m glad you’re getting it replaced free of charge. I guess the time spent negotiating paid off in the end. =)

  • http://www.danielfranklingomez.com Gallivanter

    Golly, you should sue the living daylights out of them! :-)

  • http://fabrikade.sg Jonathan Kong

    @Ivy Thanks for the heads up on this issue. Glad your magsafe has been replaced. You sure did your research very well. haha! 😀

  • http://www.macryu.com MacRyu

    Sorry to hear about your problem. I was overseas when this happened, so I didn’t really know about this until like yesterday.

    Basically, I’m never, never, going to defend Apple Singapore or MI(which by Funan service centre I presume you are talking about them, unless you are talking about the Sapura service centre that just opened in the last few months). Apple Singapore really isn’t much of a support centre. All repairs are outsourced to external companies such as Sapura or iShop, and seriously speaking their repairs, not to even mention their knowledge of updated Apple policies on warranty coverage, is seriously lacking.

    In your situation, firstly, I will call the Applecare hotline. Simply explaining your situation to the telephone support will warrant a case number and get you a replacement at any authorised service centre immediately.

    Try calling the Chinese hotline, usually the people there are more free and willing to help you submit a case report.

    With a case report, all the authorised service centres will just follow the required servicing stated on the report and not ask any questions. Therefore, it sometimes help to exaggerate the claim over your call to Applecare. In your case, you can claim that it is often “sparkling”.

    Either way, in Singapore, for authorised service centres, try to go to Micro 2000, which is located in Sunshine Plaza. They are, still, by far the best service centre that I have came across for Apple service.

    iShop service on the other hand, is hit or miss. They used to be good, but I heard complains from a few friends in the last few months.

    As for Sapura, what else can I say? They are owned by the Malaysian Government. Avoid if possible.

  • Pingback: Thank You Apple! — nanyate()

  • AppleButter

    I have the same problem with my iPhone power adaptor within 6 months in 2008 and despite being a customer of Singtel since I’m 16, the apple customer service chap (a young man) located in Singtel Somerset HQ, told me to pay for a new one. Naturally, using my common sense I fought back and got a new power adaptor but it wasted my entire lunch time and incurred mobile calls & Internet charges as I had to talk to the Australian Apple Care counterparts and email pics to prove my point that this is a design flaw and a fire hazard. I flared up when e Australian side agreed with me and I pressed for Singtel to waive off my mobile calls & emails to Australia. I strongly agree that Apple Care in Singapore is BIG SHIT! I own an iPhone, a MacBook and an iPod nano, so I’m VERY SURE what I’m talking about.