Replacing components in your laptop can easily become a frustrating affair whether you’re a veteran technician or a first time DIY-er. We’ve learned a lot through our years of experience working with laptops and laptop components. This article will outline some of the best tips and tricks we know to make replacing an LCD screen (or inverter board for that matter) as smooth as possible.
The Fastest Route isn’t Always the Best Route
Your first step in many cases will be to remove the 4-6 screws securing the LCD bezel / frame to the cover panel. This can be pretty straight forward on a lot of models. On some models the two bottom screws are at an angle that makes it very hard to reach. If you have a model like this you have 2 options.
- Option 1: Try to use a screwdriver at an angle to get at those pesky screws.
- Option 2: Remove the entire LCD assembly to make it easier to remove the screws.
For many people it would seem the first option is the best way to go because it is the quickest. Unfortunately, what you may not realize is that trying to take the shortcut and get these screws at an angle can set you back hours if you are not careful. Many times these screws are of lower quality and are over-tightened. These screws will strip very easily. If you should happen to strip one or both screws by accident you will not only need to find a replacement screw of the appropriate size, but you will also have to use option 2 to get at the proper angle to drill the screw heads off and proceed with your replacement anyways.
Slow and Steady Wins the Race
When performing the LCD installation removing the LCD bezel can result in major headaches. The frame is usually secured by several screws and/or plastic snaps that go around the entire panel. If you rush this portion of the installation you can cause a lot of damage. The LCD bezel is usually made of a brittle plastic and the snaps are prone to breaking and can cause irreversible damage. Here are some tips on how to separate the bezel from the back cover without damaging either panel:
- Use a soft flat edged tool like a spudger (A non-conductive 6″ nylon tool) to pry the two panels apart.
- Slow down! Take your time and make sure you are not forcing any of the plastic snaps or bending the bezel itself in any way.
- If you find yourself applying a lot of force to remove the bezel you may have missed a screw. Go back and double-check to make sure you got all of the screws from around the bezel. Sometimes a screw will be hidden under rubber pads or plastic covers that you may have missed.
If you can remove the bezel without causing any damage you’ve performed the most challenging portion of the installation process.
Check, Double Check and Triple Check
After you’ve replaced your LCD panel you should always perform a double and triple check to make sure all your components (Hinges, Brackets etc.) are in place and secured properly. Similarly you should perform checks to make sure you have put all the screws in their original place and have not left any behind. Finally you should check to make sure all cable connections are secure before moving forward to test to make sure the replacement was a success. The last thing you want to do is put the entire assembly together only to find that you missed several screws or forgot to connect a cable and have to redo the entire process. I hope these tips come in handy and save you some time and energy!