Change the Led's From Your Keyboard

About: I make electronic stuff.Because I Can.

This is another easy but cool project for you to do with your keyboard .
Probably you're tired of the green LED's from your keyboard and you want some other color ? Or you may want a different color for every LED on your keyboard ? This instructable will show you how to change the LED's from a standard computer keyboard.

Step 1: Tools and Materials

The materials you need are the 3mm replacement LED's , nothing else is needed.
The only tools you need are a soldering gun and a screwdriver.

Step 2: Take Everything Apart

The first thing you wanna do is get your screwdriver and start removing all the screws from the keyboard.
After that , put the keyboard on your desk and remove the keys side . Some keyboard use springs for the keys , some other ones (like mine for example) use a plastic layer which acts exactly like a spring . So if you have this layer , remove it (it's transparent and looks like a very large button array) . After removing the keys you will see the main circuit board and two transparent plastic foils full of electrons and circuit patterns . You will have to remove that . To do this , find the metal blade which connects the foils to the main board , and remove the screws from it , and after that gently pull the foils out of the keyboard.Next unscrew the main board , remove any connector and you will end up with only the main board .

Step 3: Change the LED's

Now you can change the LED's . First get your soldering gun , flip the board , and heat up the solder layer of the LED you want to change . Also press the gun on the board , so the LED will get out of it's connectors when the solder heats up.Also remember where the flat side of the LED was before you removed it ! LED's are polarized , so they need to stay in a certain direction in a circuit . You need to remember where the flat side was to know in what position to put the new LED.
Now , get your new LED and cut it's pins to the same length as the original keyboard LED .
Insert your new LED in the old LED's place and then solder it's pins.Remmeber to put it with the flat side in the correct direction !
Do the same for every LED you want to change .

Step 4: Let's Test !

Insert the keyboard cable to the PC .
Now get your modified board and reatach the connector . All the LED's should flash . If they don't , then there is a problem : the LED might be wrong - sided or it's a burned LED . If they all flash correctly , you did it ! .
Now reatach everything , be careful with the two transparent foils !

Step 5: Let's Look at the Finished Product .

Here is how mine looks like .
I hope you liked my instructable !



    • Comfort Food Challenge

      Comfort Food Challenge
    • Cardboard Challenge

      Cardboard Challenge
    • Warm and Fuzzy Contest

      Warm and Fuzzy Contest

    12 Discussions


    8 years ago on Step 5

    But how come do you have four LEDs on your keyboard? Num lock, Caps lock, Scroll lock, and what else? Anyway interesting, I am going to try it out!

    1 reply

    Reply 7 years ago on Introduction

    His fourth button is known as Fn lock, on some models of desktop keyboard the function buttons (F1 through 12) have a dual purpose preforming common functions such as copy and pasting that is usually the default, requiring the function lock to be active in order to use the function keys for their F-number purpose


    8 years ago on Step 3

    Now, I'm not an expert by any means but shouldn't you mention that if you're removing the green leds (2.2v~) and replacing them with red (1.5v) that you'll need a resistor? That difference isn't HUGE but it could make the LED burn out faster.


    9 years ago on Introduction

    I think this was one of the first things I did with LEDs, next is your mouse, then it spreads....

    1 reply

    9 years ago on Step 4

    There is no actual special app , it's just a VB script which i ran and it lighted up the LED's in a sequence , one by eachother.


    9 years ago on Introduction

    It's been a nagging question in the back of my head for some time now, what is the difference between a soldering iron as apposed to a soldering gun?

    2 replies

    The both do the same job , but they're different in shapes . Usually soldering irons stay constantly on when you power them and they have a screwdriver-ish shape . Soldering guns look like guns and heat up only when you press a button . Aditionally , guns can store solder in their tip , while some soldering irons don't.