iPod Nano 1st Generation Battery Replacement

Featured Guide

Featured Guide

This guide has been found to be exceptionally cool by the iFixit staff.

iPod Nano 1st Generation Battery Replacement.

Battery not lasting long? Swap it out (requires soldering).

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Edit Step 1 Rear Panel  ¶ 

  • Before opening your iPod, ensure that the hold switch is in the locked position.

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Edit Step 2  ¶ 

  • The rear panel is secured to the front case by eleven clips permanently attached to the rear panel. These clips lock onto small tabs machined into the front case.

  • To free the tabs, they must be pushed down and away from the iPod's case. Note the location of all tabs on the rear panel. When using an iPod opening tool to free the rear panel, be sure to work the tool at the location of these clips.

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Edit Step 3  ¶ 

  • Opening the iPod can be challenging. Don't get discouraged if it takes you a few tries before the iPod is opened.

  • Insert the large iPod opening tool into the seam between the front case and rear panel of the iPod, below the dock connector. Run the tool back and forth to create an opening. The tool's edge should point toward the rear panel to prevent any accidental scratching of the aluminum front case.

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Edit Step 4  ¶ 

  • Insert a small iPod opening tool into the seam on the Hold button side of the iPod, with the edge of the tool pointing toward the rear panel.

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Edit Step 5  ¶ 

  • The large iPod opening tool is no longer needed to gain access to the left side of the iPod.

  • Gently enlarge the existing gap by pressing/wiggling the small iPod opening tool into the gap near each of the two tabs attached to the rear case, pushing the clips toward the center of the iPod until both have been freed.

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Edit Step 6  ¶ 

  • Repeat the same procedure listed in the previous step to free the five clips along the headphone jack side of the iPod.

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Edit Step 7  ¶ 

  • After ensuring all tabs are free, separate the two halves of the iPod.

  • The rear panel is now free from the iPod.

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Edit Step 8 Battery & Logic Board  ¶ 

  • Remove any kapton tape over the screws, if necessary.

  • Remove the following 3 screws:

    • Two 3 mm Phillips screws near the dock connector.

    • One 4 mm Phillips screw along the edge of the logic board.

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Edit Step 9  ¶ 

  • Peel up the ground strap connecting the battery to the logic board.

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Edit Step 10  ¶ 

  • Insert the flat end of a spudger between the battery and the headphone jack side of the front case to pry the battery up off the adhesive securing it to the front case.

  • Rotate the battery out of the iPod and lay it next to the iPod. The battery is still soldered to the logic board by three wires, so don't remove it entirely.

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Edit Step 11  ¶ 

  • Gently lift up on the dock connector end of the logic board to ensure the logic board is free.

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Edit Step 12  ¶ 

  • Grasp the end of the logic board near the battery connector with one hand, and hold onto the rest of the iPod with your other hand.

  • Make sure the logic board is lifted slightly above the white plastic notch on the battery side of the board. This notch prevents the board from sliding out in the next step.

  • Slide the logic board out of its holding brackets on the rear of the display.

  • The logic board is still connected to the iPod by two ribbon cables.

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Edit Step 13  ¶ 

  • Disconnecting the following two ribbon cables may be challenging. To prevent straining the cables or connectors, you can only separate the two halves of the iPod about 1/2 inch during the process.

  • Use a spudger to flip up the black plastic tab holding the orange display ribbon in place. The black tab will rotate up 90 degrees, releasing the ribbon cable.

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Edit Step 14  ¶ 

  • Use a spudger to slide the display ribbon out of its connector.

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Edit Step 15  ¶ 

  • Use a spudger to flip up the black plastic tab holding the orange click wheel ribbon in place. The black tab will rotate up 90 degrees, releasing the ribbon cable.

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Edit Step 16  ¶ 

  • Use a spudger to slide the click wheel ribbon out of its connector.

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Edit Step 17  ¶ 

  • The logic board and battery are now free from the iPod.

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Edit Step 18 Battery  ¶ 

  • Peel the orange kapton tape covering the battery leads.

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Edit Step 19  ¶ 

  • The next few steps require a soldering iron.

  • The ends of the battery leads are fed through small holes in the logic board and held in place by a small amount of solder.

  • Begin by heating the exposed end of the white battery lead with the tip of a soldering iron while simultaneously pulling the lead away from the connection, using tweezers to grasp the lead by the insulation.

  • De-solder the remaining leads, following the procedure illustrated above.

  • Due to the delicate nature of electronic components, it is imperative to limit the amount of heat transferred from the soldering iron to the logic board. An easy way to accomplish this is to pull on the battery lead with light, continuous tension, while the soldering iron heats up the connection. In order to avoid damage, lift the solder tip off the connection as soon as the solder melts and the lead slides out.

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Edit Step 20  ¶ 

  • If present, remove the small piece of shrink tube protecting the new battery's positive lead.

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Edit Step 21  ¶ 

  • To aid in soldering the new battery, be sure the solder pad holes are clear of solder. This way, you can insert the new battery leads and solder them in place.

  • To open the solder holes, open a safety pin and push it against the solder blocking the hole. At the same time, heat the same solder pad from the other side of the logic board. Opening the holes completely will require repeating this procedure several times from alternating sides of the logic board.

  • These holes are extremely small, so the safety pin will probably be too large to pass all the way through. Do not insert the entire pin through the hole -- only the tip of the pin.

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Edit Step 22  ¶ 

  • Place the logic board flat on a table with the gold ground contacts (shown in orange) facing up.

  • Using a pair of tweezers, insert the stripped ends of the battery leads into their respective holes.

    • Insert the black lead into the hole nearest the hold switch (shown in red).

    • Insert the red lead into the center hole.

    • Insert the white lead into the hole furthest from the hold switch.

  • To keep the leads in place, it may be helpful to first bend them 90 degrees, and then insert them into the holes.

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Edit Step 23  ¶ 

  • Flip the logic board and battery over so the bare ends of the battery leads are facing up.

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Edit Step 24  ¶ 

  • In this step, you will solder the battery leads to the solder pads on the logic board.

  • Excess heat transferred to the logic board while soldering may result in electronic component damage. As a rule of thumb, hold the tip of the soldering iron against the joint just long enough to melt the solder, then quickly remove it.

  • Solder the connection by momentarily placing the tip of the soldering iron against the connection, melting solder into the connection, and quickly removing both the solder and the tip of the soldering iron from the connection. The solder should flow around the new battery lead, solidly connecting it to the pad on the logic board.

  • Solder the other two battery leads in the same fashion, taking care not to bridge any of the connections together.

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Edit Step 25  ¶ 

  • Rotate the battery toward the logic board and place it flat in its void, bending the cables as necessary.

To reassemble your device, follow these instructions in reverse order.

For more information, check out the iPod Nano 1st Generation device page.

Required Tools


$2.95 · 50+ In stock

Phillips #00 Screwdriver

$5.95 · 50+ In stock

Soldering Station

$24.95 · 50+ In stock

Lead-Free Solder

$4.95 · 50+ In stock


$6.95 · 50+ In stock

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Comments Comments are onturn off

I skipped steps 8,9,11-17, and 21.

Step 19> when un-soldering the old battery wires, make sure to leave solder on the pads and in the holes.

I replaced steps 22-24 with Step 22-24> Very carefully and precisely:

-Place the black lead onto the pad nearest the hold switch (shown in red) with the end of wire pointing away from the battery.

-Place the red lead onto the center pad with the end of wire pointing away from the battery.

-Place the white lead onto the pad furthest from the hold switch with the end of wire pointing away from the battery.

Gently hold each wire in place on the pad while applying the soldering iron taking care not to touch the wire to any other pad or trace (note black wire). When the wire sinks into the solder, remove heat. Hold wire until solder has set.

Do step 25 and charge battery. Much simpler and less risk.

abeheide, · Reply

I thought this was a bit difficult, mainly the initial separation and the soldering. I think one of those headsets with magnifying glasses would have been super helpful.

kissaj, · Reply

For all newbies, make sure that your soldering spots are neat and clean. Your workplace must be clean! Too hasty repair...and you'll reassemble your Pod once again.

Thanks for the neat repair guide! Much appreciated!" Now I can enjoy my "new Pod" for another 8years at least! No that's what I call environmental awareness! (built in 2005)

Uwe von Ditfurth, · Reply

Turn on the notes and READ thru all the steps and the notes, especially the ones involving the ribbon cables.

patjmccarthy, · Reply

Note that the 4mm screw has slightly wider pitch; you'll need this when putting the unit back together.

daisystanton, · Reply

The battery ground strap does not have to be replaced. It works fine without it.

henrymf, · Reply

Both ribbon cables were especially difficult to put back in. I can't say I succeeded in getting the nano to work again. If you can avoid detaching the cables, do it. If you're replacing the clickwheel, there's no way of avoiding it unfortunately.

patjmccarthy, · Reply

A little tip if you are replacing the screen: Reconnect this ribbon cable from the new screen BEFORE affixing the screen to the adhesive! It will make it much easier. Also be sure that the little black things are UP before trying to put the ribbon in, and make sure you put them DOWN before closing up! The black things on the receptacle "lock" the cable in place, so it is important that you have it STRAIGHT or it wont work. Good luck!

Schovelbuddy, · Reply

Getting the display ribbon back in place is the most difficult maneuver in the whole fix. I actually broke the black plastic tab in half while trying to close it back down, (be very gentle with it!). Managed to put the broken half back in(tweezers and patience) and get that ribbon in and put it back down. This battery replacement was the most difficult/tedious repair I have ever done. Don't do it unless you are brave and stubborn.

checheconleche, · Reply

You can leave out this steps with disconnecting the two cables.

Without disconnecting the two cables, one can separate the two pieces only 1/2 inch. This is enough to work carefully with the soldering iron and change the battery.

It's a little bit difficult to work with the needle to open the three holes after removing the old battery - but you can do it.

From the reading of the other notes it seems to me easier than to disconnect the two cables

cguenther, · Reply

Don't do this unless you have to. Getting this ribbon back in is nearly impossible.

daisystanton, · Reply

Quote from daisystanton:

Don't do this unless you have to. Getting this ribbon back in is nearly impossible.

Try using tweezers or medical clamps to reach in that tight spot. Use these tools to also connect the click wheel ribbon back to the logic board.

rsharich, · Reply

Stamp tweezers worked great for the ribbon cable! (Search eBay or Amazon, or your local hobby store.) This would be a useful tool for iFixIt to add to their inventory.

Michael Lance,

yeah i just finished puting in a brand new display but it only goes white - no text or anything just white.

any tips?

Mabrew, · Reply

Quote from Mabrew:

yeah i just finished puting in a brand new display but it only goes white - no text or anything just white.

any tips?

Did you ever fix it from white?

katie, · Reply

I wish I had read this thread before trying to remove the ribbons. I was unable to successfully restore these connections after installing the battery. Now my ipod, previously sick, is now dead.

gregkotis, · Reply

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