Opening notebook Toshiba Satellite Pro SP4270
(Updated Aug 29 2013)
The CPU fan of my old notebook, a 2000 Toshiba Satellite Pro SP4270, stopped working: cpu and motherboard temperatures raised above 70°C and 60°C, while they usually were about 40-45°C and rarely reached 50°C.
The most likely cause is dust on the fan, so I decided to open the notebook to make some cleaning.
- Remove the battery
- Unscrew all the bottom and rear screws; unscrew the screws in the battery compartment; near each screw there's a number which identifies the type of screw; it's a good idea to group the screws with the same number and write down that number, to make the remounting process easier.
- Remove the hard disk from the right side unscrewing the metal safe and pulling the tongue with a little bit of strength: the HDD must unplug from EIDE connector.
- Gently detach the narrow plastic panel near the keyboard with a screwdriver, then unscrew and remove the strip of metal (see 2nd, 3rd and 4th pictures).
- After doing that, remove the keyboard: two openings in the plastic will show the internal hardware and will allow the fingers to reach the keyboard and display plugs.
- Unplug the keyboard cable pulling the little white plastic head by the two shorter sides, just to release the cable; to unplug the display, pull the cables white head (by the two small handles) through the other opening and the two red/black and blue/black cables near the keyboard slot (they're the speaker cables).
- Unscrew the two screws on the plastic cover under the keyboard
- Then remove the upper half of the notebook, the one attached to the display; the motherboard, cd, modem, PCMCIA reader and floppy will be uncovered.
- At this point I unscrewed the fan duct from the motherboard and I used an air compressor to clean it from the dust.
Aug 12 2012
New problem: the display becomes dark when it's opened more than 90 degrees. I opened up the notebook (and I added a few more precise steps in the above description) to see if I could identify the cause of this problem: I didn't find anything visibly wrong, so I just removed the metal lock which was keeping the display cable in place and I moved a little bit the cable; this was just enough to solve the problem! I remounted the metal lock and reassembled the notebook, and now the display works like a charm at all inclinations, no more dark screens.
Aug 29 2013
Same problem of Aug 12 2012, the display becomes dark at some positions, with a barely visible shadow, but now it's worse: moving the cable is not enough, and looking attentively at the cable I see it's ruined; with the notebook opened up and switched on I can even see a few little sparks.
I found on ebay an used replacement cable, I ordered and replaced it. It works, I spent less than 20 euros and I can go on using my 13 years old notebook as a wireless rdp terminal.
Here are the steps to replace the screen cable after opening up the Toshiba SP4270:
- Unhide the frame screws removing the little adhesive covers from the front and sides of the plastic screen frame
- Remove the screws
- Use a flat screwdriver as a lever to lift off the screen frame
- Unscrew the metal junctures which keep together the frame and the base
- Remove the two plastic pieces that cover the hinges; be careful, they're tricky to remove and easy to brake
- Unscrew the electronic card at the bottom of the screen from the plastic screen back cover
- Detach the cable links, one from the card, the other from the connector on the back of the screen
- Replace the cable
- Mount everything back; maybe it's better first to connect all the cables and test if the screen is working ;)