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Use this guide to upgrade or replace the solid-state drive in a MacBook Air 13” Mid 2011. This MacBook Air uses a proprietary storage drive connector, and is therefore not compatible with common M.2 drives without the use of an adapter.

Before you perform this repair, if at all possible, back up your existing SSD. Then, either familiarize yourself with internet recovery or create a bootable external drive so you’ll be ready to install macOS onto your new drive and migrate your data to the new SSD.

Finally, we strongly recommend installing macOS 10.13 High Sierra (or a later macOS) before replacing the original SSD from your MacBook Air. Most new SSDs require updated storage drivers not found in versions of macOS prior to High Sierra.

    • Before proceeding, power down your MacBook. Close the display and lay it on a soft surface, top-side down.

    • Use a P5 Pentalobe driver to remove ten screws securing the lower case, of the following lengths:

    • Two 9 mm screws

    • Eight 2.6 mm screws

    Pulling the fan cable out was terrifying but you actually just pull on the cable itself. No way to get any leverage at the connector to dislodge it. Did come out easily but like I said, scared me!

    allison - Antwoord

    Draai de schroefjes voorzichtig los en leg ze op een stabiele plek neer en let erop dat de schroefje een verschillende lengte hebben.

    bwgvanderveer - Antwoord

    I thought I could replace my 256 Gb SSD with 512? regards

    ola m - Antwoord

    Do you have good Test Point Voltages? It appears there are silver colored Test points on the I/O Board. I am working on a water spill and trying to troubleshoot if both the I/O board and the Logic need replaced.

    andrew - Antwoord

    It's probably not necessary but may be a little safer to completely discharge the old battery before replacing it.

    Larry Smith - Antwoord

    tell a model that was not inferior to the speed of the one in the laptop.

    Thank you

    ilyabuhov - Antwoord

    Do i need to order tools separately to replace the battery i just ordered?

    anne uhlir - Antwoord

    im looking for a Logic Board for a

    Apple - MacBook Air® - 13.3" Display - Intel Core i5 - 8GB Memory - 128GB Flash Storage (Latest Model) - Silver Model: MQD32LL/A

    Any help is appreciated.

    Jamie Comstock - Antwoord

    P5 pentalobe screwdrivers are too big! The correct size for these screws are p4 pentalobe. P5 pentalobe was just able, with difficulty, to turn some of the screws. If the screws were at all tight, my p5 was unable to get them out, and started to strip the screws. A p4 screwdriver fit better and removed the screws with ease. (I was using high quality Wiha brand screwdrivers.)

    William Skinner - Antwoord

    I had same experience (with MacBook Air 13-inch Mid-2012) … had to get P4, which worked swimmingly

    eric -

    Very simple installation. The screwdriver heads were exactly what we’re needed, one head for the outside case screws, the other for the screws holding the battery in place. The computer started right up. Now to see how the battery holds up, but I have a good feeling about this!

    Dennis Eaton - Antwoord

    My P5 and the T5 worked perfectly with my early 2015 Air 13”! And it is super fast! Thank you iFixit!

    Pennny Beach - Antwoord

    The supplied kit and instructions worked perfectly!

    Nikolay Andreev - Antwoord

    Comments that the P5 pentalobe are too large are absolutely spot-on. There is no way the P5 pentalobe bit I have will work with the MacBook Air without destroying the screws. Hard target search for P4 pentalobe bit in progress…..

    joemoog - Antwoord

    Bonjour j’aimerais changer mon SSD de 128 Go pour en mettre un de 512 Go. Je ne sais pas ce qu’il faut prendre car il faut qu’il soit compatible avec le macbook air A1466. J’aurais vu un Samsung Evo 970 500 Go mais si je ne me trompe pas, il faut un adaptateur.

    Merci pour votre aide.

    chicco33 - Antwoord

    oui, vous aurez besoin d’un adaptateur, pour completez le changement.

    Dan -

    The tool kit should include tweezers for re-inserting the battery connector.

    Andre Clement - Antwoord

    P5 pentalobe worked perfectly for me. Instructions were spot-on. Antenna connections were a bit fiddly to refit but got them in ok.

    michaelquinnell - Antwoord

    Maybe the problem some are experiencing is that the designations are confusing (blame Apple rather than iFixit). the P2 is also known as PL1. The P5 is also known as PL4. The P6 is also known as PL5. So it is possible to mistake the P6 (PL5) for the P5 (PL4), meaning it (P6-PL5) will be too big, while the P5 (PL4) will be just right. Sort of a 3 Bears explanation, but it is very confusing.

    Thomas Lewis - Antwoord

    To add to this. In searching for the P5 screwdriver to buy in UK, as far as I can tell, it is also known as

    Pentalobe 1.2(mm)

    also

    P4 = 0.8

    P6 = 1.5

    Just unscrewed the back case of MacBook Air 13” mid 2011, with no problems using Pentalobe 1.2

    nijafe -

    I have not replaced a display on the A1369 but have done many A1466 which is a newer 13” model. They seem really similar and its not clear why one needs to remove the logic board to remove the display. The antenna cables on the A1466 dont have to rest under the logic board but can be tucked in the hinge crevice. Cant this same thing be done with the A1369?

    Sean Love - Antwoord

    Did mine today - but new battery wasnt charging. Went back in and noticed the battery connector cable was not quite 100% “seated. It was sticking out by less than a millimetre! - you need to give it quite a firm push in to get it seated properly. Otherwise - all ok .

    John Brennand - Antwoord

    Just installed on a MacBookAir6,2 (13-inch, Early 2014).

    Was very easy.

    New iFixit battery looks great so far:

    Full Charge Capacity (mAh): 4922 -> 7333

    Jonathan Cross - Antwoord

    can you tell me which size of screwdrivers you’ve used to crack it up, please? I have the same model and size,

    hawk_lpc -

    Screw P5 Pentalobe 1.2

    Mario Verlent - Antwoord

    Install went flawlessly. Only challange was reattaching blue tooth antennas. Those sockets are so tiny.

    Joel Sebastian - Antwoord

    Installation was a little challenging at first because the instructions on this site did not perfectly match my model (late 2013 to early 2015).

    Found this video on YouTube which described the procedure perfectly https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Lue6lVWh...

    Also the Ifixit kit I received was well put together with everything I needed and more. The calibration went perfectly and I am very pleased. Will buy again!!

    Donald Niamath - Antwoord

    Gently pulled out connector of old battery, then pressed and held the power switch for 1 minute. Unscrewed and removed the old battery. Pressed and held power switch for 1 minute again. I know from previous work that this helps drain charge from spontaneous recharging as the dielectric recovers. Gently “fine tuned” leads from new battery to connector till connector stuck out at right angle to the edge of battery. Held the battery by the edges and let the connector slide into the socket. Set the battery down and put the screws in all the way. Then checked that the connector was completely seated before tightening the screws. The laptop come on immediately and showed 98% charge and registered normal (checked in “About this Mac”. Very happy to this point. Now for calibration.

    Amir Zaidi - Antwoord

    Thank you very much for the guilde. My MBA2011 had reborn !

    Billy Wong - Antwoord

    Allow for electrostatics, otherwise you may cook components on the logicboard /motherboard (like I did with one of these!)

    See great advice: Electrostatic Discharge

    Fletcher Cole - Antwoord

    … und wenn du eines von diesen wirklich kleinen Schräubchen vermisst: bevor du den Boden aufkehrst oder mit einem starken Magneten absuchst, schau mal am seitlichen (magnetischen) Ladekabelanschluss nach … ?

    ... and if you miss one of these really small screws: before you sweep the floor or search it with a strong magnet, take a look at the (magnetic) charging cable connection on the side … ?

    Blatt - Antwoord

  1. Wedge your fingers between the display and the lower case and pull upward to pop the lower case off the Air.
    • Wedge your fingers between the display and the lower case and pull upward to pop the lower case off the Air.

    • Remove the lower case and set it aside.

    There is a nub on the inside of the case which is attached to the battery. When you try to pull it open, it appears to be attached to the plastic casing of the battery, which sometimes splits. I gently unhooked the nub from the battery before removing the case fully. This seems to happen if the battery has suffered some drop damage (plastic parts broken around screws and parts of plastic frame split). Just an FYI in case your lower case doesn't pull away easily.

    Jeannie Crowley - Antwoord

    To add - the slim 1cm tab “nub” is on the centre of the back cover & fits into a hole in the battery frame. I ran my fingers around the whole of the cover to eventually here it click out.

    nijafe -

    When closing this back up make sure that the antenna cable is tucked away neatly

    Gabriel - Antwoord

    So this is a legit back cover for MacBook Air?

    ASHANTI SMITH - Antwoord

    What about disconnecting the battery?

    Luke Grimes - Antwoord

    I bought the part and tools from iFixit and followed the directions. The mechanical part went smoothly - maybe 10 minutes to disassemble/replace/reassemble.

    Getting Catalina (the current MacOS) to install was not working until I used Cmd-Opt-R (as noted in the OWC paper sheet that came in the box) which brought up the proper installer - I believe from a pre-prepared bootable SD card but it’s hard to say. From there the install succeeded taking ~1.5 hours.

    Beware that (a) the install requires a working internet connection for verification and updates, and (b) the system must have been running at least macOs 10.13 (High Sierra) before the install in order to have an EFI BIOS that recognizes the SSD.

    Lance Berc - Antwoord

    As noted by others, be a bit careful removing the lower case. There is an oblong black plastic locator very near the center of the lower case. Unless you gently pry the bottom cover pretty much straight up, you will break the ends off of the locater.

    BobY - Antwoord

  2. As a precaution against accidental discharge or shock, disconnect the battery connector from the logic board. Grab the clear plastic pull tab attached to the battery connector and pull it toward the front edge of the Air to disconnect the battery from the logic board.
    • As a precaution against accidental discharge or shock, disconnect the battery connector from the logic board.

    • Grab the clear plastic pull tab attached to the battery connector and pull it toward the front edge of the Air to disconnect the battery from the logic board.

    • Be sure to pull the connector horizontally toward the battery, and not straight up from the Air, or you may damage the socket on the logic board.

    The clear plastic tab is missing on mine. Whoever worked on my laptop before me seems to have ripped it off. Now what?

    mjmorawski - Antwoord

    My plastic tab pulled off the connector. I worked the connection apart using two spurgers, slowly backing it out side to side.

    Ric Thistlethwaite - Antwoord

    I don’t see my socket on logic board, how can I fix it

    QUYNH PHAM - Antwoord

  3. Remove the single 2.9 mm T5 Torx screw securing the SSD to the logic board.
    • Remove the single 2.9 mm T5 Torx screw securing the SSD to the logic board.

    Should this screw be really difficult to remove?

    Kitty - Antwoord

    It should give a little resistance but not a lot that it doesn’t come out.

    Jonathan - Antwoord

  4. To avoid damaging its socket, do not lift the end of the SSD excessively. Slightly lift up the end of the SSD and pull it straight out of its socket on the logic board.
    • To avoid damaging its socket, do not lift the end of the SSD excessively.

    • Slightly lift up the end of the SSD and pull it straight out of its socket on the logic board.

    • When reinstalling the SSD, be sure it is properly seated before reinstalling its retaining screw.

    I’ve heard tales of an adapter that will make this computer work with a stand SSD drive.

    Doesn’t seem like there’s enough space to make it work, but if this is possible I’d love to learn more.

    Alberto Einsteino - Antwoord

    Yes, you can put a normal SATA SSD in, with an adapter. I just installed a WD Blue 1TB. This page explains all the details: https://macandegg.com/upkeep/macbook-air...

    peternorthup - Antwoord

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79 andere personen hebben deze handleiding voltooid.

If I replace the SSD with another one purchased from iFixit, will it appear as an external or internal drive?

At my job, it's standard to encrypt drives. I purchased an SSD from another vendor and because it showed as external, couldn't be encrypted. I just want to avoid this problem before purchasing one from here.

flux1968 - Antwoord

Muito bom o roteiro, deu certinho.

ahdesiqueira - Antwoord

This should really be rated as easy. Took less than 5 minutes thanks to this excellent guide.

Tyler Berry - Antwoord

Absolutely spot on. Thanks Andrew! The only potential pitfall in this job is getting the right replacement SSD (or, if you're extracting the SSD to use elsewhere, getting the right caddy.)

Ben Godwin - Antwoord

anybody knows if exist any hdd to replace the ssd?

I have a mb air 13 mid 2011 in my hands and it has behaviour a mac(/pc) with a hdd damaged? same noise, same latencies, same way to damage files…

and over the top “informations about this mac” says it is a macbook pro 13

never seen in my life…

smoker_man2004 - Antwoord

This was really easy! I removed the hard drive from my mid 2011 MacBook Air and placed it in a free standing caddy - no problem. But it appears that the disk is empty. Is that what it would look like if the hard drive was ruined? (I was told the hard drive was fine - it was my logic board that was fried. So I’m trying to retrieve my data.) Or do I have it inserted wrong? Or… any other explanation?

Tammie - Antwoord

The one screw holding the SSD will not turn. How much force does it typically take?

Kitty - Antwoord

Is this how I get the firmware unlock bypassed by removing temporarily starting up with out it and then re apply and it’s gone or no??

Styles Ruger - Antwoord

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