Worn out hinges on a laptop will prevent the LCD screen from staying in an upright and viewable position. Over time, the hinges in a laptop may become cracked, damaged or worn and need to be replaced. On some laptops, replacing the screen hinges can prove to be quite a chore. However, Dell laptops are easy to work on, and you can replace the hinges on one in about an hour.
- Skill level:
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Things you need
- Phillips #2 screwdriver
- Flathead screwdriver
- Anti-static wrist strap
- Replacement hinges from Dell
Shut down the computer and remove the AC adaptor. Remove other cables connected to the Inspiron notebook. Turn the computer over so that it is facing bottom side up.
Remove the battery pack from the Inspiron laptop. Remove the slot cover retaining screw for the hard drive. Slide the hard drive out of the laptop.
Remove the keyboard edge cover at the base of the LCD screen with a scribe or flathead screwdriver. Remove the retaining screws above the top row of keys that secure the keyboard.
Lift up on the keyboard slightly so that you can access the ribbon cable underneath. Disconnect the keyboard ribbon cable from the motherboard by pulling the cable connector out of the slot. Remove the keyboard and set it aside.
Close the LCD screen on the Inspiron laptop. With the front of laptop facing you, press in on the hinge covers on either side of the LCD screen. Then, pull them up a little to disengage the hinge covers from the case.
Open the LCD display screen all the way (180 degrees or completely flat). Raise the centre hinge cover a little, so you can reach the flex-cable connector underneath. Pull the connector tab for the flex-cable out from the connector on the motherboard.
Lift up on the LCD display screen to remove it from the laptop. Set the LCD screen a flat work surface. Use a scribe to remove the six rubber grommets on the edge of the display screen to reveal the captive screws. Remove the screws with a Phillips screwdriver.
Pry the screen bezel apart gently with the flathead screwdriver or scribe. Start at the bottom of the screen and work your way up along the side of the screen. Separate the screen bezel just enough so that you can access the hinges for the LCD display.
Slide the defective hinges out of the slot inside the LCD screen bezel. Insert the new hinges and slide them into place. (Note: On some Inspiron notebooks, you may need to separate the two pieces of the screen bezel completely to access the hinges.)
Press the two parts of the screen bezel back together. Insert the captive screws and tighten them. Re-insert the rubber grommets and press them firmly into place.
Reconnect the LCD display flex-cable to the motherboard connector. Slide the hinges back into their slots on the case.
Reconnect the keyboard ribbon cable to the motherboard. Reinsert the keyboard into its tray. Reinsert and tighten the keyboard captive screws above the top row of keys.
Replace the centre hinge cover. Close the laptop screen. Press the outer hinge covers until the snap into place.
Replace the hard drive and battery. Turn the computer back over and reconnect the AC adaptor. Open the notebook, power it on and boot normally.
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