Introduction

If everything in your iPod works except for the controls, you may need a new click wheel. Replacing the click wheel is an inexpensive but delicate repair.

Use a heat gun to soften the adhesive underneath the plastic bezel at the bottom of the iPod. Use a low heat setting and do not hold the heat gun in place for too long to avoid melting the plastic bezel. Use a plastic opening tool to pry the bezel from the case of the iPod and remove it.
  • Use a heat gun to soften the adhesive underneath the plastic bezel at the bottom of the iPod.

  • Use a low heat setting and do not hold the heat gun in place for too long to avoid melting the plastic bezel.

  • Use a plastic opening tool to pry the bezel from the case of the iPod and remove it.

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Unscrew two screws from the metal retainer at the bottom of the iPod: 4.4 mm angled Phillips screw 5.4 mm Phillips screw.
  • Unscrew two screws from the metal retainer at the bottom of the iPod:

    • 4.4 mm angled Phillips screw

    • 5.4 mm Phillips screw.

  • Even if they are loose, the screws may not come out on their own. Be sure not to lose the screws when removing the retainer.

  • Use a plastic opening tool to pry the metal retainer out from the bottom of the iPod and remove it.

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Insert a metal spudger into the slot at the bottom of the iPod just above the dock connector. Use the metal spudger to pry up the bottom edge of the click wheel.
  • Insert a metal spudger into the slot at the bottom of the iPod just above the dock connector.

  • Use the metal spudger to pry up the bottom edge of the click wheel.

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Place a guitar pick between the click wheel and the case of the Nano and remove the metal spudger. Pry up the edges of the click wheel with the guitar pick until the click wheel comes free from the case.
  • Place a guitar pick between the click wheel and the case of the Nano and remove the metal spudger.

  • Pry up the edges of the click wheel with the guitar pick until the click wheel comes free from the case.

  • Do not try to completely remove the click wheel yet, as it is still held in place by a ribbon cable.

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Lift the click wheel out of the way with one hand and use a plastic opening tool to pry the click wheel ribbon cable connector off its socket on the logic board. Remove the click wheel.
  • Lift the click wheel out of the way with one hand and use a plastic opening tool to pry the click wheel ribbon cable connector off its socket on the logic board.

  • Remove the click wheel.

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Conclusion

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

41 other people completed this guide.

David Hodson

Member since: 04/13/2010

123,567 Reputation

138 Guides authored

11 Comments

I just replaced the click wheel on my iPod Nano 5th Gen and I found that this guide could be better. The reason is that the bottom edge of the click wheel is held in place by the same metal bracket that surrounds the connector port at the bottom of the iPod. So, before you remove the click wheel I recommend performing the following three steps:

1. Remove the plastic cover at the bottom of the iPod

2. Unscrew the two screws on either side of the connector port. Of the three screws at the bottom of the iPod, these are the middle and right hand screws as you look at the front of the iPod.

3. Remove the metal bracket that surrounds the connector port of the iPod.

After replacing the click wheel, perform the above three steps in reverse order. Make sure that when the metal bracket is re-inserted that it secures the click wheel and prevents it from falling out as some people have experienced after replacing the click wheel.

slith - Reply

I discovered the same solution after having destroyed one wheel by trying to pry it out without taking out that bottom bezel.That should definitely be the first step in this guide.

garyvirago -

PLEASE READ slith's comment, it's extremely important, or you will not be able to get the click wheel installed. There are notches on the click wheel that have to go in at the top and bottom, but the bottom notch is PART OF THE GREY METAL BRACKET that you take out of the bottom of the iPod. DO NOT re-install the grey bracket at the bottom until you have installed the replacement click wheel, otherwise the wheel will not go in.

Thanks slith, I just wanted to emphasize this because I screwed up quite a few of these click wheels before I read your comment.

no way -

Agreed. I ended up breaking 3 of my six tabs. It works but the wheel isn't quite flush now. Wish I'd looked at the tear down instructions first. That should be at the top of the list as well. This description just isn't at all complete.

mwm1962 - Reply

I agree with the other notes please see step 3 BEFORE 1&2

Keith - Reply

When you have removed the wheel please be carfull NOT to lose the verry small spring from a black plastic part in the center of the board, I DID

Keith - Reply

i agree with that. at step 5 when lifting the click wheel, have a look at the small black bar, placed to the upper edge of the chip. in its center it holds a very small tiny coil spring thats hardly to see and that easily jumps out. better you lift the click wheel in parallel to the ground. if spring jumps off one time, you will never find it again. i guess it has some grounding purpose as it docks on the metal below the logic on the click wheel. also a point to have an eye on at reassembly.

An distege -

Thanks guys for the comments.

I did not understand why it was necessary to remove the bottom bezel and plate since in the teardown guide on this site they just seem to pop the click wheel off. I am guessing that the latter represents the first attempt at this procedure and it was changed (as above) following your very helpful comments. (Although Hot Air gun - really?).

I will also watch for the dreaded small spring - exactly the type of thing that would drive me nuts if discovered loose or lost.

Final part of the procedure would be to separate the click wheel from its cover. Hope this is easy and just involves trying not to break any tabs or messing up the alignment.

PS. Learnt a new word: spudger.

whiteandred - Reply

Hello. I need a purple click wheel for ipod nano 5 with it's plastic cover part. Where can i get it ?

Necmettin - Reply

I did all the steps, replaced the click wheel with a new one, now the buttons are all working again. however, now the scrolling does not work anymore... but it did with the old one. any solution?

bonzinger - Reply

If that plastic piece of that spring comes out where do I put them back in at

bethany Williams - Reply

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