Hardware Repair Primer!

WARNING: This guide and the hardware tutorials on the site are as correct and as easy to follow as I could make them, but I can’t be held responsible if something goes wrong due to user incompetence. Any opening of your laptops case might void your warranty and leave your unit beyond repair. The risk is yours… if your brave, desperate or stupid enough to take it πŸ˜‰

Even though the Sony VAIO laptops are quite well designed, the build quality certainly isn’t the best. The thread on the screws have been known to strip when removing or replacing and plastic has been known to bend or break. Take great care when opening anything electrical and don’t rush it. If you only have 30 minutes to spare before going to work etc., then wait until you have more time to do it. Leave yourself at least 4 hours for the more complicated repairs πŸ™‚

If your trying to open the case or remove some of the plastic covers, don’t use too much pressure on just the one spot. Try to prise the plastic lightly from a couple of different places at the same time.

If you need to remove any cables, check how they are attached first before just yanking them out. Some have clips that you need to push down on before pulling, some are very frail which could mean that they break when you try to remove them. Only remove them if your sure that you really need to and always pull the wire from as close to the port as possible.

The first thing that you should do before even thinking about taking your laptop apart is remove the power supply, the battery and any PCIE/USB devices that you’ve added to it. These will only get in the way and make your job twice as hard.

Two things that you really need to watch out for when opening up your VAIO, are the wireless switch on the front of the unit and the PCIE cover on the right side. Both of these can easily fall out when opening up the laptop and probably will.

If your memory’s not the best (like mine), you can always take photo’s with a digital camera or your camera phone as you go along. This will make it easier to back track when putting it all back together. If you have a video recorder or some other way of making small movies, why not just record the whole thing? Better than failing to get it back together correctly πŸ˜‰

Tools that I use…

Multi-head screwdriver,
Electrical tape or double sided tape,
Small flash light,
Pen or pencil,
A4 sheets of white paper,
Container to hold any loose parts,
Digital camera,
A couple of extra flat head screw drivers for gently prizing open the case.

One of the best things to have in your toolkit (as always), is a packet of baby wipes to remove dust and stains from the inside of the laptop as you work. Don’t use the wipes on the screen or on the circuit boards though, they could melt the thin plastic or interfere with the electronics.

The tiny screws from inside your VAIO’s case are very easy to loose or get mixed up. A good rule of thumb to follow so that doesn’t happen is to get a piece of blank white paper, attach either some doubled up electrical tape or some double sided tape to the paper and stick your screws on to that. Having some tape laid flat with the smooth side facing up from the paper is an ideal way to keep those sticky screw covers safe without them drying out too much and becoming unusable too.

Screws

Another couple of good rules to follow, is to demagnetize yourself by touching a radiator before getting too close to any electronic circuit (such as your motherboard) or to work with a demagnetizing strip attached to your wrist. If you have a big table to work from, try and find a rubber mat to cover it with. This will help to keep the amount of static electricity down to a minimum.

If you’ve done all of the things on this page, you should now be ready to start your repairs.

Good Luck πŸ˜€

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2 thoughts on “Hardware Repair Primer!

  1. Pingback: Removing the keyboard.. « Ubuntu-FS

  2. Cool, I finally stumbled to a site about this! I was daydreaming about it this morning (well technically evening dreaming as it was evening time ) and now I discover this site. Coincidence alright. Might be checking back!

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