How to Open a Dell Computer Case

By Jennifer Claerr

Chances are you will want to upgrade or service your Dell desktop computer at some point during its lifetime. However, the case of a Dell computer opens differently than the cases of other brands of computers. When you try to open the Dell case for the first time, you may not be able to do so. If you're facing this frustration, you are in good company; many other people can't get their Dell computers open, either. Fortunately these computers are simple to open if you have the right instructions.

Step 1

Unplug all cables, including the power cable, from the back of the computer. Move the computer to a clean workspace over an uncarpeted floor.

Step 2

Examine both sides of your Dell computer case carefully. One side has small, protruding feet. Lay the computer down on your workspace on this side.

Step 3

Move to the back of the computer where the connectors are. Look for two recessed buttons on the top and the bottom of the computer. Press these buttons gently with your fingers.

Step 4

Begin to pull the top part of the case upward as you grasp the buttons. The Dell case will swing open on a hinge on the front of the computer. As you begin to lift the case upward, release the buttons. If you continue to depress the buttons as you pull upward, the case will not open.

Step 5

Continue to move the top side of the computer case upward so that it opens like a book. Once the case is fully open, it should remain open on its own.

Step 6

Touch an unpainted part of the interior computer chassis to ground yourself. This will prevent you from shorting out the circuits inside with the static electricity which naturally circulates on your body. Leave the computer case open for as long as you need to work inside. This will reduce the need to open the case multiple times.

Tips & Warnings

  • In some cases, opening the case on your Dell computer may invalidate the warranty. Make sure that your warranty is expired before attempting to do any repairs or upgrades yourself.
  • If you still experience problems after implementing these steps, visit the Dell website to find additional help.
  • Always save your files and turn off your computer before disconnecting it from the power. Turning it off without going through the normal shut down procedure can cause data loss.
  • Do not touch the circuits on your computer's components and cards directly with your fingers. Instead, handle these devices by their edges.