Yesterday I realized that that my late-2009 Macbook White (A1342) does not display red colors. Sometimes it works correctly when I turn on the computer. Then, after a few seconds, red color starts flickering (in large rectangles and lines), then goes out completely. The screen becomes bluish, and everything that should be red seems black. I've attached a photo.

It's strange that sometimes it just starts working correctly again after some time, even if I don't touch it.

The computer was turned off for 2-3 days, because I've bought another computer and didn't need the old one. Before that, it was working fine and the display had never got any problem.

I've tried to format the disc and reinstall OS X Yosemite, but it didn't help.

Is this definitely a hardware problem? Have you ever had the same issue? Do you have any idea what is causing it?

Maybe, can I repair it by myself? (I'm not afraid of disassembling the machine if it's not hard to repair. E.g if a connector has just got disconnected or something like that.)

Thanks for any help and relevant information!

Update: I've had it turned on for about ~1 hour and now it works again. Is it probably oxidation of the connector?

Update 2: I've tried to knock, press, and move the lid in many ways, but couldn't reproduce the problem.

Update 3: It suddenly happened again! Then I started a program which spins up CPU usage to 100%. Then the display started working fine again in less than a minute! Managed to get it working in this way twice. Is it probably some kind of oxidation of the connector?

In this image you can see that the red iTunes icon on the dock is almost black

  • 1
    You are on the right track with the plug/connector. Try (gently) knocking on the lid, to see if you can create the problem.
    – Ruskes
    Nov 22, 2014 at 19:28
  • Well, I've just tried that. I've updated the question with my comments. Nov 22, 2014 at 19:36
  • The Heat does it, when you increase the heat inside your system with 100% CPU load the connection starts working.
    – Ruskes
    Nov 22, 2014 at 19:43
  • I suspect the same. Maybe it would help if I disassemble it and clean (or at least move/reconnect) the main connector of display? Nov 22, 2014 at 19:54
  • 1
    It would not hurt, but if you have any external display (including TV) try it first with that to make sure it is not your build in display. And lets see if it is your Video card vs standard.
    – Ruskes
    Nov 22, 2014 at 20:22

1 Answer 1


Let me summarize the troubleshooting steps.

Before disassembling:

1- Run the Apple Hardware test to see if it comes up with anything.

2- As far I know you have a NVIDIA graphics car. Run without it to test.

3- Connect a external monitor to test if the internal display is failing.

4- Open up the computer and unplug/plug the Video cable few times to clean the contacts. Or replace the Cable following the instructions here.

  • Thanks for the advice! I'll try to run hardware test. Can you explain the 2nd point? How do I run it without the graphics card? Nov 23, 2014 at 10:34
  • Is your system dual graphics ?
    – Ruskes
    Nov 23, 2014 at 17:40
  • No, it isn't. If everything goes well, I'll try it with an external monitor soon. Nov 24, 2014 at 18:13
  • In case you want to venture inside here is how ifixit.com/Teardown/MacBook+Unibody+Model+A1342+Teardown/1239
    – Ruskes
    Nov 24, 2014 at 18:33
  • Thanks, I'll make use of it if I try to disassemble! I hope my minidisplayport-VGA adapter arrives soon. Nov 25, 2014 at 11:27

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