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The MacBook is the umbrella title for a small line of notebook computers that tech company Apple develops and refines. Their current line includes the Air and Pro varieties of the laptop. Between the two, the Air is the version that might be a bit more budget-friendly to some consumers, and the Pro has some additional features that some people might find useful.
Both versions of the MacBook use the same processing power, but the Pro variation of the device offers more choices for things like display screen size. In either case, Apple product users will get an excellent, portable computer with a lot of storage for their business and entertainment needs.
As with any computer that you can take with you, the MacBook will run off a battery. In order to make sure the battery has the energy you need, it is a good idea to charge the device at home. MacBooks come with their own chargers, but some Apple owners may have difficulties in getting those chargers to work consistently. In fact, it is possible that some people go through several MacBook chargers over the course of their ownership of a single computer.
We will discuss why this might be in our article below. As we get deeper into the subject, we will talk about whether MacBook chargers might be more fragile than others on the market, whether it is safe to use a charger that you might see as broken, if an iPhone charger could stand in for your regular laptop charger, and some tips on how to stop your charging device from breaking.
In order to get to the heart of this question, we need to look at both the charging unit itself and the cord that connects it to the MacBook. Both of the major parts of the charger could cause some issues, and it is important to determine which one might be the culprit.
The box-like structure on the end of the cable is the adapter that you would plug into a wall outlet in order to charge the MacBook. The cable runs along one end of this adapter, and it terminates in a connector that you plug into the appropriate port on the notebook.
Understanding how these different parts might fail is one of the keys that consumers might use in order to determine how fragile the chargers for MacBooks are.
Having said that, MacBook chargers should not be any more fragile than any other portable device of the same type. You may hear reports of some chargers failing after only a few weeks or months.
Therefore, we cannot rule out some possible defects during the manufacturing process. However, Apple takes such things into account when it uses the limited warranty to provide its customers with coverage against defects like these.
The adapter unit and the cord could take some damage over the years, but there are many variables that could go into trying to see just how strong the chargers are. For the most part, the charger should last at least a few years if you care for it properly.
In desktop PCs, people will usually plug the units into their main power sources and keep them there, sometimes for many years at a time. They do not need to move computers with this form factor so much, so there is not as much of a need to deal with the charging adapter or its power cable.
Conversely, MacBook owners may want to take their chargers with them wherever they go, particularly if they know they will need to give the device some extra juice during the day.
This need results in regular plugging in and unplugging of the charger, to say nothing of rolling up the cord for easier storage options. If you don’t take special care when you handle this accessory for your MacBook, it is a component that might seem more fragile than it is in reality.
As we touched on, it is possible that you’ve received a MacBook charger that has some fault in it. This fault may have already existed when the company manufactured and shipped the unit. If so, they should be able to replace it at no cost to you during the warranty period.
As unlikely as it may be, it is not impossible that you get more than one charger directly from the factory that does not seem to work correctly. If your chargers continue to fail after only a few weeks or months on the job, it could be that you just get accessories that have some kind of flaw in the design.
However, it could be just as likely that you might not handle your charger properly. More than the adapter unit itself, it seems that some MacBook owners have problems with the cable that makes a connection between the charger and their laptops. In such cases, the cables some people use might crack or fray after a short time.
When they do, they may not be able to deliver the voltage necessary in order to keep the MacBook at a full battery charge. Further, it could be hazardous for anyone to continue using a charger in this state.
Part of the reason for this problem has to do with strain relief. This is a concept that applies to all kinds of tech accessories that might use cords. In normal circumstances, the cord should provide a direct link between the charger and the main device.
This link should be without any twists or turns, although most cords can handle a bit of a winding path leading up to the unit. The wires and circuitry wrapped in the cord insulation should only bend so far, and making them bend at odd angles regularly can cause some fraying at the edges.
Once this happens, the wiring inside could break out of the sheath, or the connection that goes right into the adapter could start to come loose.
The answer here can depend on how the charger broke. In particular, you may need to locate the source of the break. Before we get into it, we do recommend that you still try to order a compatible replacement charger as soon as you can.
While some of the ways that the MacBook charger can break may not be dangerous, others are. Even if your charger does not pose any kind of threat, it may lose some of its effectiveness if you need to operate it in this particular state.
You should be able to find inexpensive chargers on the secondary market quite easily, so there is no reason not to get a backup model. We have written an article here about some alternative ways to charge your laptop if you don’t have a charger.
There are different kinds of wires running through your MacBook charger. It has a series of very thin wires that it uses to carry the current to your MacBook for charging purposes. If you can see the bare wires, the voltage level should not be dangerous to you, but you should still avoid touching this part directly.
As a way to extend the life of the charger, you may want to consider adding some tape or other insulating layer as a way to offer protection to those wires. Anything you can do in this regard can extend the life of the charger.
There is another wire that connects the charger’s adapter to your household power, too. This wire would carry a lethal charge. If the MacBook charger has damage in such a way that this wire exposes itself, it is not safe to use the charger. You should discontinue its use immediately, even if that means you are running the MacBook on battery power until you can get a replacement.
The chances of you or someone else touching this part accidentally are too high to be safe, and you may even see sparks from this part of the accessory. With how often you may plug and unplug the charger as you transport your computer, it is important to get a replacement.
This section will take you through some tips on how to keep your chargers for the MacBook from breaking. We’ll tell you some of the ways you can handle the chargers to extend their lives, and we can try to provide a few tips if you do run into a problem.
Here are just a few of the ways you might be able to stop your chargers from failing:
1. Wrap the cables properly to prevent fraying. To do this, you should make a circle that wraps the cable in a sort of coil configuration.
2. Make sure that you don’t let the cable bend too sharply. A bend that makes the cable look like it is turning around a corner is far too sharp, and it contributes to the strain that we talked about earlier.
3. You can use special tubing or small springs close to the ends of the cable. These kinds of materials reinforce the cable itself, and they work to keep it from bending too sharply without you noticing.
It may be possible to fix a broken MacBook charger. However, doing so requires some advanced knowledge of tech repair, and you will also need special tools to complete the job. The cable is one of the most common parts that might break on an Apple charger.
Even though most of the cable is in the open, repairing it usually requires that you take apart the adapter. You would also need to be able to add more insulation to the wiring, strip away parts of the old wire, solder some connections in place, and put the adapter back together with powerful epoxy.
While all of this may be possible, it can be a slow, painstaking process for the average user. Even if your charger is out of warranty when it breaks, it may be quicker and safer to get a working replacement.
MacBook chargers should not be weaker than any of their cousins on the market, but you may find that your chargers seem prone to taking damage or breaking in only a short time. If this is so, there are ways you might be able to protect or reinforce the cables for better use.
You can also handle them differently in order to increase the life of your charger. Some chargers that break might still be useful, but you should use great care when they are in operation. Further, it is best to throw away units that present a clear hazard, and you can get a new, inexpensive charger as a replacement.