Fixing 17″ iMac Intel with Vertical Lines Problem on LCD Screen
One of my friends has a 17″ iMac that got the common LCD vertical line problem so I offered to take a look at it. To troubleshoot the computer and figure out what device was the issue I took some screenshots and emailed them to a working computer. When viewing the screenshots on a working computer screen they were clear without any vertical lines. This helped prove the case that the problem was with the LCD and not the logic board.
Taking apart the chassis was a little more challenging than I expected but with some help from youtube videos I was able to get the LCD extracted so I could find a part number which was LM171W02 (TL) (B2). I searched the internet for LCD suppliers and didn’t have much luck for an affordable screen. I saw a few new LM171W02 (TL) (B2) 17″ LCD’s for $1000 which doesn’t make any sense considering the iMac is worth half of that.
After scouring the web I finally found a refurbished screen that was in stock and more importantly it cost $260 shipped. The company I found was Code Micro which carries a large supply of replacement LCD’s including an ample amount of LM171W02 (TL) (B2) which came in handy. I called Code Micro to place my order and spoke with Ryan who found the LM171W02 (TL) (B2) LCD in stock so he got one shipped out to me that day. I had to wait 4 days since I opted for more affordable ground shipping. Opening the box I noticed how well packed the screen was. The LCD was double boxed and surrounded by bubble wrap and inside an anti static bag.
I was very excited to fix the iMac so I got right to work. About 15 minutes later I had the new LCD installed and the iMac fully assembled. I got everything plugged in and pressed the power button. Then disappointment struck, the screen didn’t illuminate. I rebooted the iMac a couple of times hoping for the best but I was out of luck. So I disconnected everything and started disassembly. I went thorough and double checked my work making sure all the connections were solid and correct, went back and tried it again. No screen again, ugh.
Since this was a Friday night I had to wait until Monday morning to call Ryan at Code Micro. After a quick chat with Ryan we started the RMA process of advanced replacement meaning the new LCD would ship right away and not rely on shipping the broken one back first. Later that day I had a tracking number for the new screen and a printable label to ship back the broken iMac LCD.
I got the new LCD last night and went right to work. Since the iMac was still disassembled it took me no time at all to get it all together and it was also the fourth time I was assembling the iMac. This time I was in luck and the screen worked on the first try without any vertical lines.
Overall it was pretty easy to replace the screen but it was disappointing getting a busted LCD the first time around. I do have to say Code Micro was very easy to work with and I would buy replacement parts from them again. Even though there was some shipping back and forth they picked up the tab for all of it and were very helpful.