How to Tighten Loose MacBook Pro Hinge

How to Tighten Loose MacBook Pro Hinge

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Is your MacBook Pro showing signs of a wobbly or unstable screen? Don’t let a loose hinge hinder your productivity and comfort.

In this guide, we’ll share the method to tighten loose MacBook Pro hinges like a pro.Whether you’re a DIY enthusiast or prefer professional assistance, we’ll provide you with the knowledge and options to fix the issue. Our step-by-step instructions will help you reclaim a sturdy and reliable screen.

Let’s dive in and tighten that hinge!

Can MacBook Hinges Get Loose?

Can MacBook Hinges Get Loose

Yes, MacBook hinges can get loose over time. Continuous opening and closing of the laptop’s screen can put strain on the hinge mechanism, causing it to loosen. Additionally, physical impacts or mishandling of the MacBook can contribute to hinge looseness.

It’s important to address a loose MacBook hinge promptly to prevent further damage and ensure comfortable use of the laptop.

6 Signs Your Mac’s Hinge Is Loose

Signs Your Mac’s Hinge Is Loose

A MacBook Pro with a properly adjusted hinge has a nice feel to it. It isn’t too hard to open or close but it doesn’t swing open or close with little effort. A bit of friction by the hinge is necessary to hold the display in place at whatever angle you like.

It is pretty easy to tell when the hinge on your MacBook Pro is loose and in need of tightening. Here are some tell-tale signs that may indicate your Mac’s hinge is loose:

  1. Wobbly or unstable screen: If you notice your Mac’s screen moves or wobbles more than usual when you open or adjust it, it could be a sign of a loose hinge. If the display on your MacBook Pro visibly wobbles up and down or left to right when you have it open, it’s a sign for the hinge to be tightened. 
  2. Difficulty in keeping the screen in position: A loose hinge may make it challenging to keep the screen at a specific angle. It may not stay firmly in place and may gradually move or fall backward.
  3. Clicking or popping sounds: When opening or closing your Mac, if you hear unusual clicking or popping sounds coming from the hinge area, it could indicate a loose hinge.
  4. Uneven or misaligned screen: A loose hinge can cause the screen to be misaligned with the body of the Mac. You may notice that the screen is not flush with the base or that it is slightly tilted.
  5. Excessive movement or play in the hinge: Gently pushing or pulling the screen can reveal excessive movement or play in the hinge mechanism, suggesting a loose hinge. Another indication is when your display will open or close in an unrestricted manner. If it slams shut without you pressing it or opens wide when you turn it upside down, its hinges are loose.
  6. Physical damage after a drop: If you dropped your MacBook recently or it suffered major physical damage, it might be a good idea to check on the tightness of your hinges. Your laptop may operate completely normal after a decent drop but there is a chance you damaged or loosened some component such as a hinge.

If you observe any of these signs, take action and tighten the hinge to prevent further issues and ensure a stable and functional screen on your Mac.

Can I Tighten a MacBook Pro Hinge By Myself?

Can I Tighten a MacBook Pro Hinge By Myself

Yes, you can tighten a MacBook Pro hinge yourself, but it requires some technical skill and caution. The process typically involves accessing the hinge screws and carefully tightening them to secure the hinge. It’s important to follow proper instructions specific to your MacBook model and use the correct tools.

To tighten your Mac’s hinges, you should have the following ready:

  • Phillips-head screwdriver
  • T8 screwdriver
  • Pry tool
  • Grips

However, if you feel uncomfortable or uncertain about performing the task, it’s better to seek professional assistance from an authorized service provider or Apple Support to avoid potential damage to your MacBook Pro.

How to Tighten the Hinge on MacBook Pro

If you are pretty certain the hinges are loose on your MacBook Pro, there are two different ways to go about getting them tightened.

It’s important to note that taking apart your computer in any way could possibly void the warranty provided by Apple or any other seller of Apple products. Even if it’s an easy fix, like a hinge, sometimes you have to get things taken care of by a professional to keep a warranty valid.

1. Have a Professional Tighten Your Mac’s Hinge

AppleCare+ Protection Plan

If your laptop is still under warranty or has an AppleCare+ Protection Plan you can have a certified Apple technician check out your laptop and it will usually be fixed, free of charge. You have to take your computer into an Apple Store but the peace of mind this provides knowing the job will be done by experts is priceless.

Even though the process of tightening the hinges isn’t that complicated, it involves taking apart some pieces of the computer. This can be intimidating if you don’t know how to use small tools and hardware or if you just aren’t comfortable with trying to maintain such a machine.

If you prefer to have a professional tighten your Mac’s hinge, here’s how you can go about it:

  1. Contact an Apple Authorized Service Provider (AASP) in your area. You can find a list of authorized service providers on Apple’s website. Alternatively, you can contact Apple Support directly for assistance and recommendations.
  2. Once you’ve identified a suitable authorized service provider, contact them to schedule an appointment. Explain the issue with your Mac’s hinge and request their assistance.
  3. Before taking your Mac to the authorized service provider, backup your important files and data. It’s a good practice to create a backup using Time Machine or any other suitable backup method.
  4. On the scheduled appointment day, bring your Mac to the authorized service provider’s location. Provide them with the necessary information regarding the hinge issue, and they will proceed with the necessary repairs.
  5. The authorized service provider will inspect and tighten the hinge as needed. The duration of the repair may vary depending on the workload of the service provider and the severity of the issue.
  6. Once the repair is complete, the authorized service provider will notify you. Return to their location to collect your Mac. Before leaving, ensure the hinge has been properly tightened and you are satisfied with the repair.

2. Tighten Your Mac’s Hinge Yourself

As already mentioned above, you can tighten loose hinges on your MacBook Pro. We’ll look at the steps below but if you’re comfortable using a small screwdriver and slightly disassembling your computer, you can finish this task in a short time.

Follow these instructions to tighten your Mac’s hinge yourself:

Step 1: Remove the Screws on the Bottom of Your MacBook Pro

Turn your MacBook upside down to get a good look at the screws on the bottom. There will be 10 P5 pentalobe style screws you need to remove. Remove these screws (with the right tools) and you can lift the lower case off of the computer.

Here are the screw locations:

Remove the Screws on the Bottom of Your MacBook Pro

Step 2: Take Off the Clutch Cover

The next step is to take off the clutch cover. This is basically a plastic strip that covers the area where the hinges are. You need to remove this cover to adjust the hinges. Use a small plastic tool to carefully remove this cover.

Take Off the Clutch Cover

Step 3: Tighten the Hinge Screws

The next step is to actually tighten the hinge screws to fix the problem. These hinge screws will be on either side of the display. 

Some MacBook models have two screws under the clutch cover and some have four. If these screws are loose, go ahead and tighten them.

Tighten the Hinge Screws

If they seem worn or broken, you will have to purchase new screws to finish the job.

Step 4: Reassemble Computer

The final step is to put your MacBook back together. Pop the clutch cover back on, screw back the lower case screws with the 10 screws you removed, and your hinge should now be tight and your display will open and close nicely.

If you are looking for Hardshell cases for you MacBook, Go through this article.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why is it important to tighten a loose MacBook Pro hinge?

It is important to tighten a loose MacBook Pro hinge because it can cause the screen to wobble or not stay in position, making it difficult to use the laptop comfortably. Tightening the hinge ensures a stable screen and prevents further damage.

What tools will I need to tighten the MacBook Pro hinge?

You’ll need some tools to tighten the MacBook Pro hinge. Typically, you’ll need a small Phillips-head screwdriver and possibly a spudger or pry tool to access the hinge screws. It’s recommended to have a soft cloth or mat to protect the laptop’s surface during the process.

Are there any risks involved in tightening the MacBook Pro hinge?

Tightening the MacBook Pro hinge requires caution and precision to avoid damaging other components or stripping the screws. It’s essential to follow proper instructions and use the correct tools. If you are uncertain, it’s best to consult a professional technician.

What should I do if tightening the hinge doesn’t solve the issue?

If tightening the hinge doesn’t solve the problem, it could indicate a more complex issue that requires professional attention. It’s advisable to consult an authorized service provider or Apple Support for further assistance.

How often should I check and tighten the MacBook Pro hinge?

While MacBook Pro hinges are generally durable, it’s a good practice to periodically check for any signs of looseness and tighten the hinge if necessary. The frequency may depend on the usage patterns and how often the laptop is opened and closed.

Final Thoughts

Tightening the hinge on your MacBook Pro is not a difficult task but it is daunting since it involves opening up your machine. Although it’s an easy DIY fix, if you’re not comfortable with small repairs or if your computer is still under warranty, it’s best to take your MacBook to a certified professional. This will ensure you get the repair done correctly and leave your warranty intact.

Have you ever made any small repairs on your MacBook such as this one?

About Eric
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Eric currently uses a 15-inch MacBook Pro for both work and personal errands. He did all the research and testing to make sure all the fixes and optimization tips shared on the blog are relevant to Apple’s latest macOS updates as well as fact-checking.

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  • Theo

    In the picture with the clutch cover I see a cable hanging off the cover, I don’t see any steps for disconnecting any cables.

  • Seb

    Would this work with an Intel 2017 Mac air?

  • Julia

    What kind of screws are used to replace worn hinge screws for a MBP 17″?

  • Lucas

    What if after all 4 steps the hinges are still loose? I mean screen collapses when set below 60 degrees or above 120 degrees. How to tighten the hinges themselves, not only their screws???

  • Ben Stevenson

    I’m scared to do it myself. Do I have to put the plastic cover back on? Would you skype me and talk it through with me?

  • Oliver Rowe

    Hi, I have a stripped screw and one missing, please can you tell me the specs of the hinge screws so I can purchase new ones? Thanks.

  • Ben Willy

    Another awful design by Apple. Ten screws with special heads, and an otherwise useless tool. Really? To tighten a loose screw?

    Nice that it has the stainless steel and rounded corners though…

    • august

      its made like that exactly to discourage people from trying to fix things themselves and so that they take it to an apple store instead. they’re very cunning about these sort of things