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Introduction

Use this guide to remove or replace the touchpad on a Microsoft Surface Laptop 3 (15").

  1. Flip the laptop over and place it on your work surface, feet facing up. Flip the laptop over and place it on your work surface, feet facing up.
    • Flip the laptop over and place it on your work surface, feet facing up.

  2. The feet on the bottom of the laptop are meant to be removed with the pointed end of a spudger. Each foot has a hidden indent that will simplify removal.
    • The feet on the bottom of the laptop are meant to be removed with the pointed end of a spudger.

    • Each foot has a hidden indent that will simplify removal.

    • To make sure the spudger is in the indent, insert it at the nearest long edge, pushing parallel to the short edges of the laptop, as shown.

    • Note that the two feet near the rear (screen) edge are different than the two front feet.

  3. Insert the pointed end of a spudger underneath one of the two rear feet, at its rear edge. Push the spudger underneath the foot and pry up to release it. The two rear feet are secured with some light adhesive.
    • Insert the pointed end of a spudger underneath one of the two rear feet, at its rear edge.

    • Push the spudger underneath the foot and pry up to release it.

    • The two rear feet are secured with some light adhesive.

    • Repeat to remove the second rear foot.

  4. Insert the pointed end of a spudger underneath one of the two front feet, at its front edge. Push the spudger underneath the foot and pry up to release it. The two front feet are secured with plastic clips as well as light adhesive.
    • Insert the pointed end of a spudger underneath one of the two front feet, at its front edge.

    • Push the spudger underneath the foot and pry up to release it.

    • The two front feet are secured with plastic clips as well as light adhesive.

    • Repeat to remove the second front foot.

  5. During reassembly: Note that the front and rear feet are different.
    • During reassembly:

    • Note that the front and rear feet are different.

    • Note that the front feet are directional and only clip in one way.

  6. In place of reusing old, worn out feet on your device, 8 mm rubber furniture pads can be a good substitute. Peel a pad away from its backing, align it over a foot cavity, and press to secure. Peel a pad away from its backing, align it over a foot cavity, and press to secure.
    • In place of reusing old, worn out feet on your device, 8 mm rubber furniture pads can be a good substitute.

    • Peel a pad away from its backing, align it over a foot cavity, and press to secure.

    • Use a T5 Torx driver to remove the four 3 mm screws in the foot cavities securing the upper case to the device.

    • Throughout this repair, keep track of each screw and make sure it goes back exactly where it came from to avoid damaging your laptop.

    • During reassembly, don't over-tighten these screws—they strip easily.

  7. Flip the device over. Open the display as far as it will go. Open the display as far as it will go.
    • Flip the device over.

    • Open the display as far as it will go.

  8. The upper case is secured in place by magnets. Grip the top edge of upper case above the keyboard and lift straight up to release it. Don't try to completely remove the upper case just yet, as it's still connected to the rest of the laptop.
    • The upper case is secured in place by magnets.

    • Grip the top edge of upper case above the keyboard and lift straight up to release it.

    • Don't try to completely remove the upper case just yet, as it's still connected to the rest of the laptop.

    • Lift the front edge of the upper case up and away from the laptop, taking care to not strain the keyboard and touchpad ribbon cable underneath.

    • During reassembly, lower the upper case onto the lower case until the magnets snap into place and it lays flat.

    • Check that the upper case sits flush around the entire perimeter. Any gaps between the upper and lower case near the display could cause damage to the display as it closes.

  9. The keyboard and touchpad ribbon cable is secured in place by a magnet connector. On some models, this connector is surrounded by black tape. Insert the flat end of a spudger underneath one edge of the ribbon cable connector, and pry up to release it.
    • The keyboard and touchpad ribbon cable is secured in place by a magnet connector.

    • On some models, this connector is surrounded by black tape.

    • Insert the flat end of a spudger underneath one edge of the ribbon cable connector, and pry up to release it.

    • Remove the ribbon cable from the motherboard.

  10. Remove the upper case. Set the upper case onto a clean surface, keyboard-side down.
    • Remove the upper case.

    • Set the upper case onto a clean surface, keyboard-side down.

    • Ensure the ribbon cable lays flat, and isn't twisted or stressed.

  11. Use a pair of tweezers to remove the two pieces of metallic tape covering the top edge of the touchpad cover.
    • Use a pair of tweezers to remove the two pieces of metallic tape covering the top edge of the touchpad cover.

  12. Use a T3 Torx driver to remove the eight 2 mm screws securing the touchpad cover.
    • Use a T3 Torx driver to remove the eight 2 mm screws securing the touchpad cover.

  13. Use a pair of tweezers to remove the touchpad cover. Use a pair of tweezers to remove the touchpad cover.
    • Use a pair of tweezers to remove the touchpad cover.

  14. Use an opening tool to pry up the shield covering the touchpad connectors. Try not to deform the shield too much—you will need to reinstall it during reassembly. Remove the shield.
    • Use an opening tool to pry up the shield covering the touchpad connectors.

    • Try not to deform the shield too much—you will need to reinstall it during reassembly.

    • Remove the shield.

  15. Use the pointed end of a spudger to lift up the small locking flap on the first ribbon cable's ZIF connector. Use the pointed end of a spudger to lift up the small locking flap on the first ribbon cable's ZIF connector.
    • Use the pointed end of a spudger to lift up the small locking flap on the first ribbon cable's ZIF connector.

  16. Use the pointed end of a spudger to lift up the small locking flaps on the second and third ribbon cables. Use the pointed end of a spudger to lift up the small locking flaps on the second and third ribbon cables.
    • Use the pointed end of a spudger to lift up the small locking flaps on the second and third ribbon cables.

  17. Use a pair of tweezers to slide the first ribbon cable out of its connector. When possible, pull on pull-tabs, not the cables themselves.
    • Use a pair of tweezers to slide the first ribbon cable out of its connector.

    • When possible, pull on pull-tabs, not the cables themselves.

  18. Use a pair of tweezers to slide the second and third ribbon cables out of their connectors. Set the second ribbon cable—the keyboard and touchpad cable—aside for now.
    • Use a pair of tweezers to slide the second and third ribbon cables out of their connectors.

    • Set the second ribbon cable—the keyboard and touchpad cable—aside for now.

  19. Use a T5 Torx driver to remove the six 2.9 mm screws securing the touchpad.
    • Use a T5 Torx driver to remove the six 2.9 mm screws securing the touchpad.

  20. Lift up the upper case and hold it above the work surface. Push the touchpad up through the case and towards the keyboard, freeing it from its front tab. Remove the touchpad.
    • Lift up the upper case and hold it above the work surface.

    • Push the touchpad up through the case and towards the keyboard, freeing it from its front tab.

    • Remove the touchpad.

    • During reassembly, when lowering the touchpad into place, make sure not to pinch any of the ribbon cables.

Conclusion

Compare your new replacement part to the original part—you may need to transfer remaining components or remove adhesive backings from the new part before installing.

To reassemble your device, follow the above steps in reverse order.

Take your e-waste to an R2 or e-Stewards certified recycler.

Repair didn’t go as planned? Try some basic troubleshooting or search our Answers community for help.

Carsten Frauenheim

Member since: 03/10/2020

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