Apple has developed a way to replace the new MacBook Air’s battery without swapping out the entire top of the keyboard, MacRumors reports based on Apple’s internal service guide for the device. That’s slightly more environmentally friendly than the situation on other modern MacBooks, which have so much glue inside the frame that the entire thing would have to be replaced in the event that the old battery needed to be changed.
Apple will now give Genius workers and authorized service providers the tools needed to remove the glue from the battery, without affecting anything else. After removal, the workers will add glue strips to attach a new battery. According to the same service guide MacRumors saw, technicians will also be able to replace trackpads without swapping out more of the laptop’s case. We’ve reached out to Apple to confirm this report.
It’s so difficult to remove the battery from a modern MacBook or MacBook Pro that iFixit had to develop a chemical solvent that can dissolve the industrial grade glue Apple uses to adhere the entire device together. (Typically, you would heat up glue to remove it, but since it’s attached to the battery, that would be… dangerous.) Using iFixit’s repair kit also voids Apple’s warranty. The previous generation MacBook Air didn’t have this problem, as the battery was attached by screws.
Not only will this make repairs easier, but it’s also good for the environment. Apple has been emphasizing how its latest devices have bodies that are 100 percent made out of recycled aluminum. Making the latest MacBook Air with parts that are easier to replace is in line with that eco-friendly thinking, as that’s less overall metal sent to the scrapyard.