Laptops have many technician replaceable parts. Check for online documentation before starting and proceed with caution. Mike explores laptop dissection in this video.
- When it comes to hardware, laptops are in many ways identical to desktop systems, and in other ways, very, very different. And in this episode, which I'm going to call laptop hardware troubleshooting, we're going to be breaking down a couple of laptops here, and I want to be talking about some of the components that you might be replacing within a laptop, and then talking about some of the issues that come into play when it comes time to start breaking open one of these things. So, a couple of words of wisdom before we even do anything. Number one, use caution. Laptops are all different on the inside. They are going to have gazillions of little screws. They're going to use double-sided tape, they're going to use single-sided tape, they're going to have tiny little extremely weak connectors for plugging things in, and you need to really take your time and be careful whenever you're dealing with the inside of a laptop. Now, I'm just going to be kind of breaking this laptop down. In fact, I've got another one to show you on a few other things, but normally, when you're going into a laptop, you're going in for a reason. You already have some type of symptom that's pointing towards a particular component, and you're going in, and you want to fix it. So I'm going to be a bit more generic here, I'm just going to be playing Operation and pulling parts apart, but normally when you're working on a laptop, you're going in with a particular goal in mind. Now, before you ever pick up a screwdriver, the first place you need to go is online, and there's a few places I want to talk about. The first place I want to talk about is that all manufacturers provide some degree of maintenance guides for laptops. So it'll, you know, lots of stuff, know where the parts are, that's not terribly interesting, but like this right here. So here are all the internal major components for this particular laptop, and not only is it all the different components, but even part numbers so that if I want to, I can actually call the manufacturer and see if they have them. Now, that's one good thing. The other good thing about these types of guides is that they're usually going to give you some idea of how to remove and replace certain parts, and this is a good example here, it's going to talk about how to replace, for example, your battery, well that's an easy one. Or how to take off a cover, replace a hard drive, there's another one. The other big challenge you run into with laptops is parts. Now, certain parts, like a 2.5" SATA drive is identical no matter where you get it, so you want to avoid buying things like hard drives directly from the OEMs, 'cause they're expensive. Same thing with RAM. All these guys take very standardized RAM, they're going to be SODIMMs, you're going to have to go in there, see what kind of RAM they need, pop one off, take a look at it, it's probably going to be DDR2, DDR3, DDR4, depending on how old of a laptop you're dealing with, but you're going to need parts. So you can get a lot of standard parts, but there's also a lot of non-standard parts. If you've got a broken case, if you've got a broken screen, if you've got a broken touchpad, stuff like that is not standardized. So, where I go to get this stuff, in fact, my first step is always Ebay. I love Ebay, because there's a lot of these exact same systems out there. I'm just going to see if I can find what's out there. So I just did a quick search, and here's spare batteries, spare AC adapters, here's somebody just selling the screen. Even if I have to, a lot of times, be aware, it's cheaper to buy a complete other identical laptop just to pull one part, especially if it's dead. Ebay sells tons and tons of dead laptops. Pick one just because you need the fan out of it or something like that, when somebody'll probably sell it to you for 30 bucks. It's a pretty good deal. All right. So, with all this in mind, there's a couple of tools I have around. I like power screwdrivers (screwdriver whirs) just 'cause I'm lazy. I've got an iFixit Toolkit. Again, I make no money from iFixit. I just like these guys. And the other thing I'm going to be doing is I've got a piece of tape right here, and it's just regular old one-sided tape, and I've got it tacked down a little bit. The reason I do that is because there are going to be a gazillion screws, and I have to have some form of organization, and the tape is nothing more than a place for me to drop screws, so as I'm taking things apart, I know what I'm doing, roughly. Also, by putting them in an order, it gives me a rough idea as to first in, first out kind of a thing. (guitar music)
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