Monday, July 11, 2011

Need To Repair Your Laptop Hinge

If you need to repair your laptop hinge it will usually be because your screen is loose and refuses to remain upright or when the hinges themselves crack or break under the repetitive strain of opening and closing.

This is often caused by the hinges themselves being too rigid or missing base screws. So check your base screws are in place and screwed in securely. When base screws are missing, particularly the main structural screws located in the corners of the base assembly, the load from the hinges isn’t sufficiently transferred across the hinge and base assembly, hence the hinges will have to bear the load and wear prematurely.

A lot of hinges are made of cast metal leaving no room for flexing and bending. The image below shows the cover assembly from a Toshiba Satellite A10 just to give you an idea of what it looks like inside.

The arrow indicates where the problem will normally occur, the teeth on the fixed arm will shear off over time making the screen very loose, these cannot be repaired and involve changing the cover assembly. This is probably the best way to do it as instead of a laptop hinge repair, you get a whole new cover and your laptop ends up looking like a new one.

Cover assemblies are not expensive, just ensure you get the right cover that matches the type of LCD you have. Not all covers are exactly the same because laptop manufacturers don’t always use the same type or model of screen during the assembly of new laptops. The differences will be minor but they can prevent you fitting your LCD back into the new cover mainly due to the placement of screw holes and mountings.

There is no real cost effective way to repair your laptop hinge and if it was a system I was working on I would advise the owner to replace the cover and base screws, I would have to simply say no if I was requested to attempt a plastics repair or modification to something like this. It's too time consuming and would end up costing more in labour time that it would to replace the entire cover.

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