The keyboard is an essential feature on your laptop and PC.
However, we can be clumsy as humans, spilling drinks or accidentally damaging our laptop keyboards.
Can we remove and replace keycaps once we damage them?
Here’s What You Need To Know About Removing Laptop Keys
Removing and replacing laptop keys is quite easy. However, you must do it with care to avoid causing more damage to your laptop and sometimes, physical injury to yourself or others.
Depending on your laptop brand, removing and replacing keycaps can void your laptop warranty. Before removing or replacing a keycap, ensure it doesn’t work. You can explore other options as well, getting help from a technician, buying keycaps from laptopkeys.com or replacing your entire keyboard.
Table of Contents
How Do You Take The Keys Off A Laptop?
Taking keycaps off the keyboard of a laptop is quite easy. Here’s how to do it:
- First, turn off your laptop and detach the battery. If possible, remove the keyboard from your laptop.
- Get a keypuller tool, flathead screwdriver, a thin car key or a knife with a flat tip.
- Ensure your laptop or keyboard is on a flat, well-lit and stable surface,
- Hold down the keycap you want to remove. Doing this creates a small gap that fits the tip of the screwdriver or knife.
- Pry the knife or flat head upwards to remove the keycap.
- You can further remove the key retainer for cleaning or replace the problematic key.
- Repeat these steps on any other keys you want to remove, if any.
A quick caveat: You can take any key off your laptop keyboard, but we advise against it. If you remove and replace your keys frequently, they may malfunction.
Take extra caution with your keyboard. Avoid spilling liquids that may force you to remove keys on your keyboard to dry and clean them.
Is It Safe To Remove Keys From The Keyboard?
If you take proper precautions before removing any keycaps from your keyboard, you should be fine. It also depends on your skills and the tools at your disposal.
All laptop parts connect directly to each other. Attempting to remove keycaps without proper tools or techniques will cost you more than just your keyboard.
The force from attempted prying may damage your motherboard, screen, hard drive or other moving parts.
Often, the best way to service or repair your laptop keyboard is to take it to your local computer repair shop or a technician.
Does Removing Your Laptop Keys Void The Warranty?
Removing keycaps from your laptop keyboard may void your warranty, depending on your laptop brand. For Apple laptops this is certainly the case. Warranties differ from brand to brand, so check the terms of your warranty before removing keycaps from your keyboard.
It may be against warranty terms to tamper with the keycaps on your keyboard. Some warranty contracts may view this as unauthorized modifications, while others perceive it as misuse or abuse.
However, if you can remove your laptop keys leaving no traces, then go ahead. It’s no mean feat, especially with Apple devices.
If an Apple technician finds any evidence of tampering or modification on your MacBook, they will not cover your device under its warranty.
If your warranty has already expired, then removing keycaps won’t void anything.
Why Do Some Keys on My Laptop Keyboard Not Work?
Mechanical damage is the most common cause of the failure of keys on a keyboard. This failure may result from the impact of a fall, spill, dust, or age.
There are other reasons some keys may not work.
The Function Key Is Off, or Damaged
For you to execute some commands, you must simultaneously press the Function key with certain keys on your keyboard. On those occasions, press it.
In case the Function key has mechanical damage, unlock it, replace it or clean it to restore its use.
A Dirty Keyboard or Faulty Circuit Board Can Cause Keys To Stop Working
Cleaning your keyboard keycaps with a blower or replacing it with a new one often solves this problem.
Keys on the Numerical Pad May Not Work if the Num Lock Key Is Off
Accidentally pressing this key will make you assume this keypad is faulty. To use the number keypad, press the Num Lock key to activate them. Ensure the Numlock LED indicator is on before testing the keys.
Not All Keys Are Useful in Every Program on Your Laptop
Some keys aren’t required to run essential programs on your laptop. For this reason, some keys will not work when certain programs are running. However, test them on other programs to ensure that they’re working.
Do Laptop Keys Pop-Off?
Laptop keys rarely pop off, at least not without some external force. With proper care and handling, all keycaps remain attached to your laptop keyboard.
However, you can pry them off carefully using appropriate tools. Besides that, banging your keyboard, dropping your laptop from a high place or scraping it will cause keycaps to pop off.
Spilling drinks may cause short circuits on your keyboard, burning some keys and also popping others off.
Can You Replace Your Laptop Keys If It’s Damaged?
If you damage your keycaps, you can replace them yourself or take your laptop to a technician for help.
Laptop keyboards have three key components: the keycap, key retainer and keypad.
If the keycap is loose, pressing it down often fixes this problem. If the key is still loose, you can remove it and replace it altogether. On some keyboards, it may mean removing and replacing all three components at once.
Follow these steps to fix loose keys on your laptop keyboard:
- First, check the positioning of the retainer hooks to know their direction. It will direct you on how to place the retainer. Also, ensure the retainer is flexible.
- Place the keypad on top of the retainer.
- Now, place the keycap on the retainer and press it down hard until you hear a soft click.
- Test the keycap by pressing it repeatedly or opening a program that uses it.
If you have any broken keys:
- Visit LaptopKeys.com and find a key for your laptop. They have an assortment of keycaps to choose from for your laptop.
- Seek help from your manufacturer. Also, you can always find a high-quality keyboard replacement, or are lucky enough to find the specific keys you want.
- Take keys that you rarely use and use them as replacements. For example, many laptops have at least two ALT keys. Use one to replace a letter or number.
- Visit your local computer shop and ask the technician for help. Many local repair shops stock parts from stalled laptops. You can rip a key off an old laptop and use it as a replacement.
Can One Laptop Key Be Replaced?
You can replace a single key on your laptop keyboard. However, if the circuit board caused the malfunction, you’ll need to purchase a replacement.
Where Can I Find A Replacement For A Laptop Key?
The most common place to find replacement keys is the laptopkeys.com website. You can also reach out to your laptop manufacturer or a local computer repair shop in your area.
Many manufacturers do not sell single keycap units. In that case, you’ll have to purchase a full keyboard replacement, often at an affordable price.
Your local computer repair shop is another gold mine. Many of these shops have abandoned laptops with similar keycap designs as yours. For a small fee, you can ask the technician to find you similar keycaps. Treat such replacements as short-term remedies for much bigger problems.
Another excellent option is to interchange keys on your keyboard. You can use idle keycaps on your keyboard to replace the most essential ones. Use this as a last option.
How Much Does It Cost To Replace Laptop Keys?
It will cost you less than $5 to replace your keycaps at Laptopkeys.com. They’re by far the cheapest option at your disposal. They have keys from a vast variety of brands, making them one of the most resourceful repair sites in the market.
You will, however, spend more money at a professional’s shop. Some technicians will charge you upwards of $100 to get your laptop back to normal.
If you’re trying to avoid these costs, use the steps above to learn how to it by yourself.
Is It Worth Repairing Your Laptop Keys?
Most times, replacing your whole keyboard will solve all your typing problems. However, if the condition of your keycaps is redeemable, repair your keyboard. It’s a much cheaper and more effective way of handling it.
Replacing loose or broken keys will save you plenty of time and money. You can also opt for an external keyboard, though you may have to part with up to $60 for that.
If you’re careful about fixing your laptop keys, your keyboard will be as good as new in no time.
If your keyboard is fully functional, it’s much easier to replace keys than to buy a replacement. Unless you can’t stand the look of your laptop keyboard with a broken key, replace the broken keycaps. Get the help of a technician if you can’t do it yourself.