How to replace 13″ MacBook Air cracked screen

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Replacing cracked screen on 13-inch MacBook Air laptop

Today I’ll be replacing cracked screen on a 13-inch MacBook Air. This laptop was dropped and the screen got messed up. The left side of the screen still displays normally but the right side shows only bleeding colors.

You can use this guide for replacing damaged display assembly on any 13-inch MacBook Air produced in 2013, 2014, 2015 and 2017.

We’ll be removing some internal components and screws so be organized, make notes. Keep track of the screws.

New or pre-owned display assemblies available here:

You’ll need following tools: P2 Pentalobe 1.2mm screwdriver, T5 and T8 Torx screwdriver, tweezers and plastic pry tool.

Keep screws organized


Remove ten P5 screws securing the bottom cover. Two screws circled in yellow are longer than eight screws circled in red.

Separate the bottom cover from the body of the laptop.

Remove screws from bottom case


Disconnect the battery by pulling the tab attached to the connector.

Disconnect laptop battery


Remove the black flex cable connecting the MagSafe board with the logic board.

Disconnect I/O board flex cable

In order to unplug the flex cable, lift it up from the connector using plastic pry tool.

Disconnect cable on both ends.

Unplug I/O board cable from logic board

The flex cable attached to the fan by adhesive tape.

Separate cable from the fan and remove it.

Remove flex cable


Disconnect cooling fan cable from the logic board.

Unlock the connector by lifting up the locking tab at a 90 degree angle (red arrow). Pull the cable from the connector (yellow arrow).

Disconnect fan cable from logic board


Remove three T5 screws securing the fan. All three screws have different length. Pay attention which screw goes where.

Remove fan screws

Lift up the heatsink gasket.

Lift up heatsink gasket

Remove cooling fan from the laptop.

Remove cooling fan


Disconnect the MagSafe board power cable from the logic board.

Disconnect MagSafe board power cable


Disconnect the webcam cable. I use tweezers to push the webcam cable plug out of the connector.

Disconnect webcam cable

Unroute the webcam cable.

TIP: if the cable got stuck under the MagSafe board, remove one screw securing the board and lift it up a little bit. It’s not necessary to remove the board completely. Just lifting up the left side should be enough to release the cable.

Unroute webcam cable


Unplug antenna cables from the Wi-Fi Bluetooth card.

Disconnect WiFi Bluetooth antennas


Unroute antenna cables from the guided path in the top case.

Unroute antenna cables

STEP 10.

Now we are going to disconnect the display screen cable.

Display screen connector

Unlock the connector by lifting up the metal bracket.

Unlock video cable connector

Pull the cable out of the connector by the black tab.

Unplug display cable

After all cables are unplugged and unrouted we ready to remove the display.

There are six T8 screws securing display hinges.

Six screws securing display hinges

Open up the display and place the laptop upside down on the edge of the desk.

Place laptop upside down

STEP 11.

Remove three screws securing the left hinge.

Three screws securing left hinge

There is a metal bracket attached to the antenna cable.

Antenna cable bracket

STEP 12.

Remove three more screws securing the right hinge.

Three screws securing right hinge

STEP 13.

Separate the display assembly from the laptop body.

Separate display assembly

Now we are ready for replace the damaged display with a new one.

In MacBook Air laptops the LCD screen is permanently glued inside the display assembly. If the screen got cracked or damaged otherwise, it’s necessary to replace the entire assembly as it shown on the following picture.

Replace damaged display assembly

Here are a couple of tips for reassembly.

In order to make sure that your new display mounted correctly, do the following.

Install just one screw on each hinge but do not tighten them yet.

Install display back in place

Close the display and move it as necessary to make sure it’s seated evenly on each side of the laptop.

After that tighten two screws and install remaining screws securing the hinges.

Position display correctly

When installing antenna cable back in place, push them into the guided path using plastic pry tool.

Install antenna cables in guided path

Reassemble the laptop following all steps in the opposite direction.

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