Authorized Apple repair dealers have confirmed for MacCentral that a known problem with the eject mechanism on G4 PowerBook DVD drives is a misalignment issue, but not one local dealers can fix onsite. The problem will require the PowerBook be returned to an AppleCare Repair Center, but owners will go without a laptop until it’s return.
“Apple is fully aware of the problem and is accepting units for repair,” one east coast dealer told MacCentral. “Unfortunately, while Apple will let us take in G4 PowerBooks for repair as an Apple Authorized Service Provider (AASP), we are not authorized for repairs other than the keyboard, battery and other software issues.”
The dealer said Apple is estimating the time it will take to ship out, repair the problem and return the laptop at five to seven days, contrary to other published reports. The repair is covered under the products one-year warranty.
While the dealer agreed that the strategy in Apple repairing problems is an effort to ensure repair consistency, he also admitted the problem is not one he can fix. “The DVD drive is enclosed and will require it be taken apart for realignment,” he said.
A recently-posted Tech Info Library document discusses procedures users can take in getting DVDs to eject from the drive, such as using the eject key (F12) and using the emergency eject button, but one Texas-based dealer told MacCentral Friday he has documented the problem on two G4 PowerBooks and that the eject key and button did not solve the problem in every instance.
“This problem is much more serious than just emergency ejecting,” the Texas dealer commented. “It is going to probably require a small hardware changout on each drive, but I can’t be sure of that. Apple techs I talked to said they are trying to decide what needs to be done now to fix the problem and assure it won’t happen in the future.”