How to Replace RAM Inside a MacBook®
If you’re a MacBook® computer user looking to add a boost to their machine, one of the cheapest and most efficient upgrades you can add is more RAM (Random-Access Memory). You may be a little nervous about opening up your machine if you haven’t done this before, but it’s not as difficult as you might think. We’ll walk you through how to replace RAM inside a MacBook, including some of the options you have when you’re upgrading and the step-by-step process for replacing the old RAM in your machine.
Fair warning, though; this process will likely void your Apple® warranty, and as always when opening up a computer, there is a chance that other components could be harmed if done incorrectly. Proceed with caution. And feel free to go to an expert if you’re feeling unsure about your abilities!
Should I update my RAM?
We’ve mentioned RAM is an easy and cheaper option to upgrade your laptop, but what does it do exactly? Will it really have an impact on your day-to-day use?
RAM is a short-lived memory device that allows your computer to save short-term data while you are still running the program. What this means is that if the application has enough RAM available it will store data that needs to be accessed quickly when the program is open and it won’t keep pulling it from your hard drive every time.
The results with enough RAM will usually mean you won’t run into any hitches or slowdowns when utilizing your application. RAM tends to be more important for your computer if you use applications that use a lot of RAM such as video games, video editing software or if you have a lot of applications and internet tabs open at the same time.
Remember, though– if your MacBook is over 7 or 8 years old, the RAM upgrade may not be enough to overcome the other older parts in your laptop. Also, not every MacBook is able to upgrade RAM, so confirm with your laptop’s model number on Apple’s website to confirm if your model is capable of upgrading.
What RAM should I upgrade to in my MacBook?
It can be quite confusing when you start searching for purchasing RAM if you’re not sure what you’re looking to get. Names like DDR and different varieties of Mhz for each piece can be mixed and matched on each label, so which one should you buy? First you’re going to want to confirm what the limits of your MacBook are.
To do this, click the Apple logo at the top left corner of your screen, and choose “About This Mac”. On the left side of the screen, look for the Memory tab and click it. “Upgradable Memory” will show under memory slots. It will say either Yes or No to let you know if you are able to upgrade your memory. If you are able to upgrade, you’ll want to next check what your MacBook is capable of upgrading to.
To do this, you can check with Apple’s website if they have your model’s information available. Or, if your model is older and no longer on Apple’s site, you can do a quick online search with your model number to find the laptop’s maximum RAM.
We mentioned DDR and MHz earlier because these will end up being the main two stats you will want to check when doing your search. Make sure when purchasing the new RAM to confirm it has the same DDR and MHz to exactly what was shown because incompatible RAM may potentially harm your system.
How do I replace the RAM in my MacBook?
Now we get into the fun part: opening up your MacBook and getting that old, slow RAM out of there.
- Make sure to turn off your MacBook and unplug it from the power cord as well as any other devices plugged into it.
- Flip the MacBook over and you will see screws lining the bottom. The screws are small and have different sizes, so make sure to keep track of them carefully when removing them. Unscrew all of the screws and remove the plate from the back of your laptop.
- Make sure to discharge yourself before going inside by touching a piece of metal so you don’t accidentally shock your motherboard.
- At this point, you should be able to see the RAM sticks which will look like the ones you are about to put in. You can remove the old RAM by pushing the levers on either side. Locate the notches on the side to lift out and remove the RAM.
- Align the notch on the new RAM stick with the notch in the memory slot of your laptop. Make sure to have the gold side up and push down to insert the new piece.
- Now grab the backplate for the laptop and screw it back in.
- To confirm you installed the RAM correctly, after booting up your MacBook, you can go to the Apple logo again and go to “About this Mac” and check if the new RAM information is showing under the Memory tab.
Congratulations! You’ve now installed a RAM upgrade to your MacBook. It should be smooth sailing from here when using your laptop.
But if you’re still worried that it’s too much for you to handle alone, or you’re not confident you got your RAM inserted properly, don’t hesitate to stop in your local uBreakiFix. One of our friendly technicians will be happy to help you out!
This content is written by the uBreakiFix marketing team and is not endorsed, sponsored, or otherwise authorized by Apple Inc. MacBook®, iCloud®, iPhone®, iPod®, iPad® and Mac® are the trademarks of Apple Inc. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners.