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Latitude D520 Keyboard

Do you have a Dell Latitude D520 with a broken keyboard? One of the disadvantages of notebooks is how their components are so tightly integrated. Of course, you could always plug an external keyboard in, but that kind of defeats the point of having a laptop. While you may be tempted to throw it out and buy a new notebook, you can actually repair it with a new keyboard.

We have replacement Latitude D520 Keyboards in stock and ready to ship. These are tested and guaranteed to work without a hitch.

Why Repair a Latitude D520?

You might wonder why bother repairing it at all. After all, this model is a good few years old now. It all comes down to personal preference. But if you're happy with a laptop, why throw it out because of a minor fault?

The Latitude D520 is still quite a respectable machine, especially if there's a gig or more of RAM in there. This is plenty to run even the latest version of Windows (8.1) and most recent Linux distros. Even if you don't want to use it yourself, maybe you could recycle it by using it as a home media center? Maybe you want to pass it onto one of the kids for his or her first computer?

Putting in a Latitude D520 keyboard isn't such a big deal. Laptops can seem scary when it comes to this, because it's not just a case of plugging something into a USB port. That said, even a tech novice can swap a D520 keyboard without wrecking the machine.

Replacing a Latitude D520 Keyboard

Once you receive your new Latitude D520 keyboard, the first step is to remove your old one.

Start by prizing off the bezel (the plastic above the keyboard) with a flat-head screwdriver. Once it's loose on one side, continue to remove the rest with your fingers. This should reveal a couple of screws that secure the keyboard, so loosen and remove these. Put the screws somewhere safe for later.

You should now be able to lift the keyboard, but be careful here because it's still connected by a ribbon cable. You should hold the top of the keyboard and gently flip it backwards, so the key side is resting on the laptop's palm rest and touchpad.

The ribbon cable should now be obvious, and you'll see it's clipped to the motherboard by a connector. You need to pull the top part of this connector to unclip it. You can now easily remove the ribbon and discard the broken keyboard.

Before fitting the new keyboard, you might want to clean up any dirt or dust that's built up, especially on the cooling fan. This is also a good opportunity to upgrade the RAM, because the internal RAM module will now be accessible.

Once you've cleaned up any dust, take your brand new Latitude D520 keyboard. Rest it upside down on the palm rest in the same position as the old keyboard. Insert the ribbon connector carefully into the motherboard connector, using the notches to align it, and push the clip closed.

Now it's just a case of reversing the earlier steps to get everything back together.

This article was published on Wednesday 29 April, 2015.