Introduction: Nikon AW120 Battery Door Repair
My Nikon AW120, super awesome, waterproof camera, battery door was difficult to open.
This camera has a round knob with a button. My knob was very hard to turn. I could hardly rotate it to unlock and open the door.
I tried to use some floss to clean it up...it didn't work.
I couldn't find much help online about this problem so I documented the repair.
Step 1: Collect Tools and Supplies
Ok, so let's start with a disclamer...
This repair involves repairing your $200 camera. there is a chance that you could make things worse. Be careful and perform this at your own risk.
You will need a very small screwdriver. like the kind you use for glasses. I only had a small flathead but all of the screws were Phillips. My flathead worked fine as screwdriver and pry tool.
I also found my problem and had to use some alcohol for clean up. To apply the Alcohol I used q-tips and an old toothbrush.
Also needed some school glue later in this project.
Step 2: Remove the Battery Door Hinge Cover
The battery door hinge has a cover.
This cover wraps around the hinge corner.
Remove the black screw near the hinge.
I used my small screwdriver to lightly pry the cover off.
start on the end of the cover near the center of the bottom of the camera.
The cover is secured with a small piece of double sided tape.
The hinge side of the cover clips to the hinge. Open the battery door and use your screwdriver to pop the cover from the hinge.
It should now come off.
Step 3: Remove Battery Door
Now that you have the cover off, you can see the second door hinge screw. (the first was the black one you pulled to get the cover off)
Yeah! The door is off. OK I hope you have a good place for those screws. And a good work table with a lot of light.
Step 4: Disassemble the Door.
Now that you have the door off, you need to disassemble it.
First, we need to remove the yellow and gray seal. carefully. Use the small flathead again.
Gently pry between the gray pad and the metal plate.
The yellow and gray are all one pad. They are secured to the metal plate with this double sided tape. The pad does have two locating pins to keep it in the proper place.
Second, remove the metal plate. there are three screws that hold this in place. pull all three.
Third, once you remove the metal plate, you will see the plastic lever that locks the door shut. This lifts off.
Fourth, Now you see a clear disc. Pull the two screws that are in this disc. They are longer than your other screws.
Fifth, the knob and button should come out.
Step 5: Clean Up
Alright, I had my suspicions but this is when I confirmed my problem. I found a sticky residue. Looks like soda or juice made it in there. I blame the kids.
I used the Alcohol and a q-tip to clean the knob and door. The toothbrush was also helpful.
Step 6: Get the Door Back Together
OK, so nothing really new from this point further.
Once clean, you gotta get the knob, button, and clear disc back on the door.
One the long sides of the door rolls around to the front of the camera. The other ends flat.
Hold the button and knob to the outside of the door. Place the double sided arrow to the flat side. Lay it on the work table.
The clear disc is directional. There are two screw holes and two alignment pins. Use your screwdriver to spin the button out of the way. Lock the pins of the clear disc into the knob. Drop the long screws back into the disc.
Once this is done. check the operation of the knob. It should have 90° of travel. The dots should stop on the flat side of the door. The button will pop up only when the knob is in the locked position.
If all is good, place the lock lever back in place. It will only work one way.
Now install the metal plate with three screws. The black one goes near the hinge.
Check operation again. the lock lever should pop out when the knob is in the closed position.
Remove the double sided tape residue from the metal plate.
Spread a thin layer of glue on the metal plate. This is to secure the yellow and gray pad.
Place the pad onto the metal plate using the alignment pins.
Press the pad to remove any excessive glue that squeezes out.
Step 7: Install the Door and Cover to the Camera.
This is the easy part...
Install the door and install the silver screw.
Install the door hinge cover.
Install the Black screw.
Test door operation.
Step 8: Some Notes...
So the yellow and gray pad is to seal the battery compartment from water. the Elmers will not hold up to the water, but pressure will hold it in place until you open the door. If you use this camera for under water photos, you may need to find replacement tape or use a waterproof glue. I didn't want to use something that was too strong in case I needed to get it apart again. I had Elmers on hand.
The hinge cover sat ok without replacing the tape. If this comes loose you may need to use something to hold it to the camera better.
Thinking about it after all this, Knowing it was soda, and this is a waterproof camera, I could have submerged the whole camera in warm water. But if I worked the knob back and forth I could have gotten water into the battery compartment.
6 years ago
great step-by-step ! Unfortunately I'm trying to open my AW120 because I need to clean the protection in front of the lense (water intrusion...) and I can't find the tip to open it... Maybe you have an idea?
Thanks a lot,
7 years ago
I think this will not work on mine ;). It fell on a working table saw blade
Reply 7 years ago
so it's waterproof, not sawproof, got it. good to know!