Good, Inexpensive Laptop Feet

Posted by on Oct 4, 2009 in Mac Specific, Reviews, Technology | 8 Comments

One of my favorite laptop accessories is/was made by an Oregon company and sold in local Mac Stores. They’re the ever useful and popular Dr. Bodelin’s laptop bumpers. The laptop bumpers raise the back end laptops up by about 1″ or so, dramatically increasing air flow thereby reducing internal and external temperatures. Ultimately, this can extend the life expectancy of a laptop. For $10, it’s a pretty good deal. Anyway, I recently needed a new set of silver laptop feet, so I called the Mac Store closest to me. I was mortified to find that they no longer carried the silver ones and that they only had white or gold. Gold?! Ugh. And white laptop feet on an aluminum MacBook Pro?? The horror. Being somewhat resourceful, I called Dr. Bodelin’s customer service line to see if the silver feet were really gone. Yup, confirmed. Not even a private stash at the company headquarters. Frak.

I did some Googling and found very few alternatives – some looked flimsy, some were bulky, some were plain ugly and they were all way too expensive for what they are – molded plastic nubs.
 

What to do…


Well, I found a very decent solution to my laptop foot woes. Two solutions, actually. I’ll demonstrate them below and you can decide which one you like best. First, a photo to show why laptop feet are a good idea.
 

As you can see here, the MacBook Pro has less than half a millimeter of airspace underneath. It’s part of Apple’s super sleek design, but it naturally restricts significant air flow.
laptop feet

I’ve used two 3M “Self Stick Rubber Pads” under the laptop and right next to the paper-thin feet Apple supplied.
laptop feet

Here you can see the MacBook Pro with the 3M rubber pads – the back is raised by about 1/4″. The pads hold up under moderate heat. Super warm laptops may eventually turn the 3M glue a little gooey. It takes a bit of heat, though. The 3M rubber pads cost $2.50 for 12 – enough for 6 laptops or 6 applications.
laptop feet

 

The solution I went with…


Here you can see a 3M “Command Strip” mini hook. These plastic hooks are clear, strong and easily support the weight of the 17″ MacBook Pro. They also have a somewhat cool shape. The tabs are removable and leave no residue. If you don’t want the little pull tab, it’s super easy to remove with a quick snip with some scissors.
laptop feet
 

The MacBook Pro is lifted by roughly 1/2″, providing extra air flow. The 3M mini hook is strong, gives a very comfortable angle of lift for ergonomic typing, etc. The 3M mini hooks are $3.50 for a set of 6, enough for 3 laptops or 3 applications.
laptop feet

Here are the two 3M packages. I got mine at The Container Store, but they’re available in lots of stores. And not to be too obvious, but #1 is the 3M rubber feet ($2.50) and #2 is the 3M mini hooks ($3.50).
laptop feet
 

8 Comments

  1. Marwan Salfiti
    October 5, 2009

    have had these before, they work well… http://www.bluelounge.com/coolfeet.php

  2. JasonTomczak
    October 5, 2009

    Hey Marwan,

    I checked out the CoolFeet. They certainly look nice (albeit a little bulky), however they cost about 12X the price of the mini hooks that I used ($1.15 per set/laptop).

  3. Marwan Salfiti
    October 5, 2009

    sure, i agree with you that they may be a bit bulky. The good thing about them though, they are applied with a suction cup like seal. So, in essence, you can take them on and off for travel. I do like your solution as well. Unfortunately, all accessories in the Mac space cost around $1 to make and are sold for an average of $15 or more…

  4. Mackeran
    October 13, 2009

    I really like your blog and i respect your work. I’ll be a frequent visitor.

  5. Mike S
    October 26, 2009

    Laptop Smart Feet are better than these because they raise your laptop and provide a cable organizer, http://newpcgadgets.com/products/smartfeet/index.html

  6. John
    August 17, 2010

    Great mod, only problem is when you’re using it on the couch with your lap they tend to dig in being made of firm plastic.

  7. Hamburger
    February 23, 2011

    Those laptop smart feet look like the 3m wall hooks…i use a couple that look exactly like that for my keys in my office.

  8. M
    July 22, 2011

    Hello! I’ve been surfing for a quality website like this one for the last 3 days. You have done an excellent job! Thank you!

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