M1 Air CPU Damage

While our success rate with logic board repair is quite high, there are times where logic boards are just not repairable. It seems only fair to highlight one of these cases on our blog, as the scenarios do happen once in a while.

We had a MacBook Air brought in that was refusing to power on or charge. The M1 MacBook Air logic board has a few chips that are not replaceable, one of them is the CPU.


Using our trusty USB C Amp meter, we discovered that the MacBook was only pulling 5 volts – a clear sign that something was amiss. After disassembling the Air and removing the logic board, we pinpointed the issue as a short on one of the power rails near the CD3217 area. However, this wasn’t a run-of-the-mill problem with the USB C power controllers; it was something deeper along the power line.

Diagnosing issues on newer MacBook boards can be akin to solving a complex puzzle. As technology evolves, so do the intricacies of repairs. These new MacBook Air boards remind us of the challenges often faced with iPad and iPhone repairs.

The Repair Process

  1. Initial Testing: Using the USB amp meter, we quickly identified a board issue.
  2. Isolation: Removing the logic board, we tested the power rails with a multimeter, identifying the shorted power line.
  3. Investigative Techniques: Employing a benchtop DC power supply and a thermal camera, we injected a small voltage into the shorted line. The PMIC chip, a crucial component known as the Power Management Integrated Circuit, illuminated, indicating a potential short to ground.
  4. Replacement: After confirming the PMIC as the culprit, we delicately replaced it with a donor component and attempted to power cycle the board.

During the repair process, we found there was another issue: the damaged PMIC had damaged the M1 CPU, rendering the MacBook irreparable. We advised the customer to consider either replacing the logic board or investing in a new MacBook altogether.

While not every repair yields success, we firmly believe in exploring every avenue. In this instance, despite the MacBook’s failed board, we saw an opportunity for salvaging other parts. We acquired the device from the customer, salvaging usable parts to breathe new life into other Macs in need of repair.


The journey of this MacBook Air serves as a reminder of the complexities inherent in modern tech repairs. While not every tale concludes with a happily-ever-after, there’s value in every attempt. At our repair center, we’re committed to exhaustively exploring solutions, no matter how challenging the path may be. So, if your MacBook finds itself in a similar plight, remember, there’s hope!