Apple's Anti-Reflective Coating Repair Program Still in Effect for Some MacBooks With New Mail-In Policy

In an internal memo obtained by MacRumors, Apple recently informed its network of Apple Authorized Service Providers that mail-in repair is now required for Mac notebooks with anti-reflective coating issues in the United States.

mac anti reflective coating issue
The new policy went into effect January 4, 2021 and means that customers who take an eligible 12-inch MacBook or MacBook Pro exhibiting this issue to an Apple Authorized Service Provider will have their notebook mailed to a centralized Apple depot for the repair to be completed, likely resulting in longer waiting times in most cases. It is unclear if the policy applies to any countries outside of the United States at this time.

Apple launched an internal "quality program" in October 2015 after some 12-inch MacBook and MacBook Pro users experienced issues with the anti-reflective coating wearing off or delaminating on Retina displays. Apple has never publicly announced the repair program on its website, opting instead to handle the matter internally.

Apple continues to authorize free display repairs for eligible Mac notebooks for up to four years after the original purchase date. At this point, it is likely that only select 2016 and 2017 models of the 12-inch MacBook and MacBook Pro still fall within that four-year window, depending on the purchase date. 2018 or newer models of the MacBook Pro and all MacBook Air models have never qualified for the program.

To initiate a Mac repair, visit the Get Support page on Apple's website. Apple has previously said that customers who already paid for a repair related to this issue may be eligible for a refund, which can be initiated by contacting Apple's support.

Top Rated Comments

velocityg4 Avatar
1 week ago
I just made a baking soda paste and scoured off the horrible looking anti-reflective coating. Now the glass looks pristine. It takes a while but it works. Don't press too hard or use too much water. Be prepared for a thorough cleanup afterward.
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
ArmCortexA8 Avatar
1 week ago


Only use a lightly moistened microfiber cleaning cloth and don't use keyboard covers with the screen closed. I've never experienced this ever. I've been on Macs exclusively for the past 25+ years. I had a 2014 AIR, 2017 MBP, 2018 MBP and now my 2019 16". Much of this issue comes from people using solvents to clean the screen.

You need to be careful not to make assumptions relating to maintenance abuse of Apple hardware. No one should be making blanket accusations of using solvents to clean any screen. Most people look after their expensive Apple hardware. I never used anything chemical-based and yet I have had to go through this process around three times on the same MacBook Pro hardware. The AR coating is the issue and the way it's applied during manufacturing. Once the coating breaks it degrades quickly of its own accord. This is a manufacturing defect of which the consumer cannot be blamed and is not responsible for.
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Maconplasma Avatar
1 week ago


You need to be careful not to make assumptions relating to maintenance abuse of Apple hardware. No one should be making blanket accusations of using solvents to clean any screen.

Firstly I wasn't making assumptions. Many people on this forum have stated that solvents have been the issue. Secondly don't speak to me that way as if you're scolding me. ?
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)
CrazedVW Avatar
1 week ago


Stating a fact is not shifting blame. But taking responsibility is something some people should try for once. SMH.

I don't doubt there are some folks that caused the issue by using other things to clean the screen. But there are plenty of folks like myself that have followed Apple's own advice on using only water and a cloth and still experienced the issue on multiple devices. (Based on reading through quite a few posts on various forums over the years.) This isn't my fault or anyone else's that followed Apple's instructions on cleaning the screen. It's a manufacturing defect plain and simple.
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Maconplasma Avatar
1 week ago


What kind of terrible mess is this?

The article explains it.
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)
peneaux Avatar
1 week ago


I just made a baking soda paste and scoured off the horrible looking anti-reflective coating. Now the glass looks pristine. It takes a while but it works. Don't press too hard or use too much water. Be prepared for a thorough cleanup afterward.

I have a small stain in my screen but if it was big or covering a lot of areas like many people do, I would definitely do the baking soda method. They should put that information in the article.
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)

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