MacBook Pro - Cleaning insides with "electronics spray" cleaner - Monitor Issues

wakoavo

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Oct 7, 2011
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Hello fellow Toms !

Short Version Question:

Does alcohol-cleaner spray ( universal electronics cleaner as per the label) damage the inside of laptop screens ?

Long Version Question:

So recently a family member of mine spilt a full cup of tea over her laptop. MacBook Pro 13" 2019 model.

The laptop was switched off, taken to a MacBook repair shop, and it was deemed to be replaced by insurance.

The laptop actually still works though.
The issues currently are as follow: the keyboard sometimes misses a keystroke, the trackpad is a little weird sometimes and the fingerprints sensor does not work at all, but the rest of the device seems to be fine (The touch screen inside the keyboard works perfect too). We can easily use it with an external keyboard, mouse and monitor with no issues (so far).

Now, my family member did not opt to claim the insurance and replace the MacBook, due to her have done this 4 times already. [Twice for theft I believe, and once for someone else breaking it.]

Now all that said, after deciding to "make it work" for another year or two (and then purchase another one ) she brought it to me to have it checked out.

She asked that I clean it out on the inside just to be safe, because the repair center said they wont do it. So I purchased electronics-cleaning spray (I believe it is alcohol based), stripped the laptop open and sprayed the whole in-side out and cleaned out all the milk deposits. (Only the bottom of the laptop though, the monitor had minor damage but was fine when tested before we sent it to the repair shop)

Now comes the issue...

After getting the laptop up and running the next day, the monitor is completely stained on the inside.

After all the research I have done, everywhere I read online, alcohol cleaner should be safe for all electronics right ? I never researched regarding inside of monitors and it seems there is a pretty good chance it is NOT safe for the inside of the monitor.

My best guess would be that somehow I probably got the alcohol spray into the monitor assembly. I did not directly spray it into the monitor, but I did have the bottom chassis open, and spray the bottom side of the motherboard a good flushing with the stuff. My guess would also be that the electronics cleaner got behind the monitor and damaged the backlight as well as the display layer of the screen.

The reason for posting on here it kind of three-fold.

  1. Is there anything that can be done to fix the stain on the inside of the monitor ? Like opening it up and wiping it off somehow ?
  2. Could we assume that the inside will be ok for at least a year or two ? if by now if we have had no issues so far ? (Its been about a week)
  3. For people with similar issues to learn from my mistake and maybe get some valuable info in the comments below.
Thanks for your time !

Picture Below comparing the monitor to another Macbook.
JDL
 

Ralston18

Titan
Moderator
1) No. The monitor would need to be fully replaced.

2) Unknown. The cleaner may have caused indirect damage that after a few or many power cycles (heating up, cooling down) results in some failure. Alcohol based is one thing: the other ingredients (solvents etc.) are another. May take the residues some time to eat through, degrade, to the point where a future failure occurs.

Especially if the cleaner was, as it appears, heavily applied.

3) Yes. Category: lesson learned.

What brand cleaner? "Universal" is a broad claim.

Knowing the actual ingredients and %'s may prove useful.

If the labeling can even be trusted....
 
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wakoavo

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Oct 7, 2011
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1) No. The monitor would need to be fully replaced.

2) Unknown. The cleaner may have caused indirect damage that after a few or many power cycles (heating up, cooling down) results in some failure. Alcohol based is one thing: the other ingredients (solvents etc.) are another. May take the residues some time to eat through, degrade, to the point where a future failure occurs.

Especially if the cleaner was, as it appears, heavily applied.

3) Yes. Category: lesson learned.

What brand cleaner? "Universal" is a broad claim.

Knowing the actual ingredients and %'s may prove useful.

If the labeling can even be trusted....
Thanks for your reply !

You seem to confirm what I feared.

The cleaner has no info on it regarding its composition, which is annoying. The Product name is : Crayon Electro Cleaner. The label heavily suggests its safe for "anything" electronic. That being said, its common sense that the delicate layers inside the screen would be damaged by a "cleaner" getting in there.

Lesson learned I guess </3

Thanks again for the reply,

JL
 

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