changing laptop keyboard, wisdom of

Hello again,

I have a 3.5 year old HP ZD8000 laptop. Lately the power button has been getting stuck and several of the keys on the keyboard stick. For various reasons these problems are tolerable (i’ve switched to using a plug-in keyboard for one, i prefer that) but i was recently cruising ebay and noticed that replacement parts for the keyboard and button bar were relatively cheap. Looking around, I found these instructions for how I would install the new pieces:
http://answers.yahoo.com/question/index?qid=20070720143621AAgIyqi

Is there any particular reason why this would be a really bad idea? I’m used to opening up desktops and doing all manner of things to them, but i’ve never cracked the case on a laptop before. Any words of wisdom?

I am not a computer repair pro, but I have replaced keyboards on Toshibas, Compaqs, and Dells with no problems at all. Takes about 4 minutes.

As Rhubarb intimates, generally it is quite easy and low risk. But I’d try to find the official HP instructions on their site - there’s a broken link to them on that page so you’ll have to search hp.com . Probably it will come with diagrams which will help a whole lot.

If you are someone who is fairly handy at tinkering with small parts and you know how to be safe around static sensitive components, then swapping out a laptop keyboard usually isn’t that bad.

Before you go and spend any money, though, take the keyboard out and run it through the dishwasher. Don’t use soap, make sure you turn off the heat drying cycle, and make sure you let it dry out for a couple of days before putting it back in the laptop. If your keyboard just has a case of the keyboard cruds and isn’t actually worn out, this will fix it.

Thanks for all the advice; I think I will go forward with the replacement. I’d try the dishwasher trick first, but I don’t have one of those :smiley:

Laptop keyboards are usually quite easy to replace. Generally, you either have to pop off a trim piece at the top of the keyboard, remove two or three screws, and the thing lifts out, or you flip the lapotop over, and take out the battery to get at the screws.

THe key is to have the directions so you don’t accidentally take out the wrong screw and have something fall away loose inside the laptop, and to have the right sized (small!) tools so you don’t destroy the screw heads.