Today I am going to give a “shout out” to a very cool Macintosh repair website: iFixit.com. I have used this site to repair many different Macs over the years. I even used them when I had access to Apple’s repair guides, they are just that good. If you are contemplating repairing or upgrading one of your Macs, then read on!!
If your Mac (there are iOS device repair guides as well) is still under warranty then I recommend just letting Apple fix your issue. If you are just wanting to upgrade, you may be able to do it yourself, but keep in mind that may void your warranty. The thing about Mac computers is they really do last a long time which makes upgrading an older Mac a viable alternative. Some of the repairs are difficult and not for a novice. However, I am here to tell you, if you have the right tools and can follow a repair guide step by step, you can do this!!
I want to show you how the iFixit website works by taking you through the steps I used to upgrade my Late 2012 iMac. I covered my actual take apart steps in this article, but I just want to show you how to access a repair guide on the iFixit website.
The following information is going to contain several screen images so follow along. Here is what iFixit looks like when you first arrive:
There are four main areas you can use, Repair Guides, Answers Forum, Parts & Tools Store and Teardowns. I almost exclusively use Repair Guides and Parts & Tools Store. On rare occasions I look through the Forums for an answer on some issue.
So, let me show you the steps to upgrade the hard drive in my Late 2012 iMac to an SSD. First, click on the Repair Guides link and you are taken to this screen:
You can see you can attempt a repair of all kinds of stuff. I pretty much stick to Mac computers. Once you click on the Mac icon you get this window:
I have used the laptop repair at times, but today we are going to click on the Desktop icon:
There are repair guides for many older Desktop Macs. Mine is an iMac model so that is what I chose:
In the iMac listings I chose Intel and was taken to the Intel iMac page:
Of course, I chose the 27” model which brought me to this page:
I happen to know the EMC number for my Mac, but if you don’t just click on one and you will be taken to the Repair Guide. At the top of the page there is an Apple description of the model. Be sure you are in the correct guide for your Mac!!
All you have to do is click on the repair or upgrade you want to make. Some repair instructions are contained within other repairs, don’t be afraid to look through more than one guide if necessary. In the case of the Late 2012 iMac I clicked on the Hard Drive Replacement icon and was taken to the Repair Guide:
Take note of the degree of difficulty! Getting into the newer, thinner iMacs is rated as “Difficult”. Trust me, it IS difficult. Also, take note of the section with the blue text. That is a listing of the tools you will need for that repair. Sometimes, only a couple of tools is required, other times several.
From this point, you just scroll down through the repair guide performing the steps in order. It does not hurt to look through the entire repair before beginning.
Don’t let this “Difficult” repair scare you away. Many repairs to Macs, especially laptops, are not too difficult if you just follow the instructions one step at a time.
Also, quite often you can buy the tools and parts you need from iFixit. Go to their Home page and click on the Parts & Tools Store link. Their tools are good quality and so are their parts. They aren’t the cheapest around. If you are looking for cheap used parts you might try eBay. I have bought several tools and parts from iFixit over the years and have never regretted it.
You can do this!! If you are interested in upgrading one of your Macs, you cannot go wrong with iFixit. Best practice is to read through the repair guide for your Mac BEFORE you buy the parts and tools. If you feel comfortable with the repair, then go for it!