It isn’t as easy to acquire laptop replacement parts as it is to acquire desktop ones, largely because laptop parts aren’t as easily replaceable. Although laptops have the obvious edge over desktops when it comes to portability, the latter trumps the former in upgradability and overall price.
It is, however, possible to replace hard drives, video cards, and even motherboards on laptops; although these are only applicable to computer companies which offer such services to their laptops. Even then, laptop parts are significantly more expensive than their desktop counterparts, so there’s that too. Still, there are a few laptop parts which can be replaced relatively cheaply and easily: LCD screens, keyboards, and batteries.
Let’s begin with LCD screens. A lot of us have had this happen to us at one point or another, especially to people who are clumsy by nature, like me. While not the most common of laptop damages reported, it does garner the most complaints, since among the three, this is particularly the most complicated. The complications, however, stem from the fact that most consumers replace their busted LCD screens with just about any other LCD screen they see available on eBay, as long as said screens match their required dimensions.
While this could work in some cases, more often than not, incompatibility issues ensue. A good rule of thumb is to buy only exact model replacement parts straight from the laptop’s manufacturer. While this could set you back for quite a pretty penny, it does save you from all the hassle involved with incompatibility.
If you don’t have the cash for an exact replacement, then your best bet would be to scour the net for forums that inform consumers which LCD screens are cross-compatible with which laptops. You see, computer companies purposefully hide compatibility information in order to lure consumers to buy replacement parts straight from them at higher-than-actual prices; and it is up to the few watchdog denizens of the World Wide Web to see that budget-conscious consumers have an alternative. It’s just a matter of knowing where to look.
Another common laptop part that gets damaged a lot is the keyboard. The bane of every coffee-drinking, Starbucks-haunting writer-in-the-making (or wannabe, for the more cynical of you out there), damaged keyboards are most often caused by accidental spills. Lucky for you, incompatibility issues are virtually nonexistent (of course), as long as you get the right dimensions and take note of the placement of certain keys. Still, just like LCD screens, replacing keyboards require a bit of repair know-how, since you’ll have to unscrew quite a few, um, screws to get the job done.
What don’t need much unscrewing are battery replacements. Any idiot technically-challenged gadget user can replace batteries on his own. However – and as is the wont of these computer companies – many laptop batteries come in specific shapes which force consumers to once again turn to the original manufacturers to purchase their replacement batteries.
Again, as long as you have the cash, it’s a good idea to just go directly to the original manufacturers to acquire your laptop parts. Otherwise, you better put in some time to learn your way around the internet to find the best places to get these parts at lower prices.
Or, you know, you could always switch to desktops.
Hathem Brand has been writing about technology both professionally and freelance, dabbling in everything from laptops to e-recycling to future tech and whatnot. His passion for writing began with contributions to the local paper, which then moved on to a stint as the editor-in-chief of his high school journal. He transformed this passion into a career, working for various local