Restore an SNES Super Nintendo Controller

Introduction: Restore an SNES Super Nintendo Controller

This instructable will go through the very simple steps to make an SNES controller act like it was new.

Old controllers tend to have some issues, but most commonly, these can be resolved by simply cleaning the contacts and inside of the casing.

I will be posting restoration projects for several retro systems and accessories over the next few days, they are very similar projects because they function the same way.

Items needed:

SNES controller

Rubbing alcohol


Philips screwdriver

Step 1: Opening and Cleaning

Open the controller by using the Philips screwdriver on the 5 screws on the rear of the controller.

If you have done this before with an NES controller, you will see that they are almost exactly the same, except that SNES added the x and y buttons, as well as shoulder keys.

Be careful not to drop the pins holding the shoulder keys in place, they are small and easily misplaced.

Use the Qtips and alcohol to clean the gold metal contacts very thoroughly. You will be surprised at how much grime will come off.

The rubber membranes under the keypad and actual buttons should be VERY gently rubbed to get the dirt off. These tear easily so be careful.

The keypad and buttons get the brunt of the dirt, and they are most easily cleaned by actually just leaving them to soak in a some rubbing alcohol. A few minutes is enough, and they will usually be sparkling after. A Qtip can be used for detailing but is usually not necessary.

After that, you can reseal the controller as it was before and it should work way better.

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