As in most laptop, components can be replaced or upgraded, most Lenovo Idea-pads and Think-pads are fairly modular. The keyboard is one such component that can be replaced without much grief. If the keyboard of your laptop is damaged or stops responding replacing it can be very economic alternative to laptop replacement. The first question asked before buying a replacement key: is the damage to laptop localized to the keyboard or will the laptop be still inoperable after the keyboard is swapped out? That last thing you want to do is throw money away. It is a good idea to try are remove the keyboard to preform inspection before you purchase the replace keyboard, follow the instructions up to step three before.
Note: If the laptop will not turn on, then keyboard replacement is not the right option. If the laptop turns on and responds to keyboard and mouse/trackpad input then keyboard replacement is probably the way to go. If the keyboard is completely inoperable, but laptop functions fine from mouse/trackpad input keyboard replacement is still a viable option but you should still look into the issue further before the purchase of a new keyboard.
Note: If the keyboard is damaged and the laptop is still able to be turned on
and receives inputs from some of the keys or mouse. Removal of keyboard is recommended to see if there is any other internal damage.
Good candidates for keyboard replacement:
- Physically damaged to keyboard
- The keyboard has suffered liquid damage (and there is no evidence that internals are liquid damaged)
- The has worn out keys that don't respond or have fallen off
Warenty Note: If your laptop is still under warranty you may send it in for this repair, but if it has run out this may be a cheap and less time consuming option too sending the laptop in for repairs as non-warranty repairs are generally more expesive.
Note on buying the keyboard: To find a site to purchase the replacement keyboard search using the model number as well as if it backlit (and what color). To make sure it is right you can measure the dimension and compare with the sites description. Keyboards for the Lenovo y580 run for $30 usd on average for after market sites, it may be more expensive to purchase the keyboard from the manufacturer.
Warning: Do not buy the new keyboard until you can determine that it is the only problem with the laptop, the last thing you want is to end up with a laptop that still doesn't work after the new keyboard is installed.
Note: Before preforming this or any other maintenance to you laptop is important to turn it off and remove the battery.
- #1 Phillips head screw driver, if you can't tell what size your screw diver is it just has to be small enough to fit in the screws on the bottom of the laptop
- A Container to store the screws removed
- New keyboard to install (once you have determined if there has been no irreparable damage to the internal components, done in step 3)
Step 1: Remove Battery and Open Backplate
Remove the battery
- Slide both battery locks into the unlock position, the left lock will need to be help inplace.
- Pull the battery directly out.
Remove the back plate
- Remove the two back plate screws, it is advised to have a container to hold all the screws.
- Slide the back plate off, to do so push the back plate down near on each corner as shown in the image, then slide the back plate down and out.
Note: When removing the screws it is easiest to loosen each screw one by one and then flip the laptop over to catch. Then place the screws in a container so they do not get lost.
Step 2: Remove Keyboard Screws
The keyboard is attached to the laptop by three screws (On the y480 there is only one external screw).
note: Do not worry about the internal screw, the only thing it is holding in place is the keyboard.
- Remove the external screws to the laptop.
- Remove the internal screw, this screw location is not listed in the user repair manual but it must be removed.
Note: All of the screws are the same except the internal keyboard screw which is slightly longer.
Note: If you try to remove the keyboard before all of the keyboard screws are removed you will likely damage the keyboard and possibly the areas where the laptop is attached.
Step 3: Removing the Keyboard(Tricky)
Removing the keyboards is fairly tricky. It is not going to come out easily even after the keyboard screws are removed. Besides the screws the keyboard is held in place by tabs latched all around the edge.
Note: the keyboard base is a metal plate, above that is a plastic key cover, do not pry the keyboard up by the plastic cover. The cover will can rip off easily and it does not attach back, it may appear to back snap in, but it is actual just broken
- To start, try to work under the ridge of the keyboard seam at the middle top as labeled on the image. To do this use finger nails for if careful you can use the head of a flat head screw driver or a razor blade. You will have to apply quite a bit of force.
- Next, holding the keyboard pried up in the middle, work your way down to the edges pry the keyboard up on both sides until resistance is met. This is where two tabs are holding the keyboard in place.
- Lift the keyboard up slowly from this position, it will take a bit of force to do this and it may pop once free.
- Once the top of the keyboard is fully dislodged, the rest is less resistant.
- Slowly lift the keyboard up, it is still connected by two cables.
- Remove both of the cables from there connection to the laptop, do not pull them off of the keyboard.
- Place the keyboard off to the side
Note: At this point you can inspect the laptop inside for signs of damage. Visually scanning the components for physical or liquid damage depending on the source of the damage.
Cleaning: While the laptop is opened up this is a good time to clean it of dust build up. The best way to do this is with a can of compressed air. Computer "duster" is sold at most office supply stores. The important areas to dust are the fans and and place where there is a vent.
Note: When dusting fans try not to blow air into the system, blow in the direction of the fan exhaust, this will ensure the dust is ejected from the system.
Note: It is recommended to dust your computer at least once a year, this will ensure that your laptop does not overheat.
Warning: Do not use a vacuum to clean dust out this can cause static electricity that has a good chance of damaging the laptop components.
Step 4: Installation of New Keyboard
Remember to hold the new keyboard so that is easy to connected the two keyboard cables.
- First attach the new keyboards red tabbed cable, labeled in the image. This cable is the easier of the two, to connect just hold cable by the red tab and insert it into the keyboard connection. Make sure the tab is placed in as far as it can go.
- The next cable is the blue tabbed cable, it a bit harder to install. The easiest way to insert it is to hold the keyboard. Again, hold the blue tab, this time you will have to hold from the top. You will have to try and use your finger to make sure the cable is evenly inserted.
- Now put the bottom of the keyboard in place and lower it into its place
- press around all of the edges making sure it is clicked in and even.
Step 5: Finishing Up
After inserting the new keyboard close the lid and flip it back over to the expose back again.
- Screw the internal keyboard screw back, remember that this screw is the long one. Screw until it fits snug, there is no need to over tighten it.
- Screw the two (or one) external keyboard screws back in.
- After all keyboard screws are in place it is a good idea to flip the keyboard back in and then make sure the keyboard feels secure.
- Slide the back plate back into place
- Screw the two back plate screws back into place
- Put the battery back in, you will have to hold the lock in place
- Make sure the battery locks are set.
Step 6: Concluding Thoughts and Troubleshooting
After the new keyboard is installed and you have determined that it is set in correctly, make sure that is sitting right in its slot. Once you are sure that it is installed correctly power the laptop up and see if the new keyboard is functioning properly.
Note: It is a good idea to test the new keyboard using word or a notepad.
Note: The new keys may feel different depending on how worn out your old keyboard keys were.
If all is well, you will have saved a nice bit of money on more expensive alternatives (new laptop, overpriced professional repairs)
- If the keyboard is still not working it is a good idea to recheck the two cables connections, if it still doesn't work then there are only two option:
- The new keyboard is defective (unlikely even if the unit bought is a "refurbished" one, still it is recommended to buy a new keyboard, the price difference is not great.
- There is likely another underlying issue whether it be damage to the laptop or something wrong with your system (corruption)
Note: If you are not convinced that the simple keyboard replacement will fix the issue, please get a professional opinion.