How to Reconnect a Laptop Ribbon Cable

By Chris Hoke

The term "ribbon cable" refers to any cable with wires that run parallel on a flat plane down the length of the cable. Ribbon cables are typically used to connect internal components in laptops to save space. These laptop ribbon cables are usually hardwired into one component and connect to the motherboard or other components with a small connector clip. These can be tricky to use and you should take care not to damage the tiny plastic components that secure the clip in place.

Things You'll Need

  • Small flat-bladed screwdriver

Step 1

Clean the end of the ribbon cable to ensure it is free from dust and will make a clean contact with the connector clip.

Step 2

Grip the edges of the connector clip and gently pull it out or up, depending on the type of connector clip, to separate the connector clip from its base. If you can not grip the connector clip edges, use the tip of the flat-bladed screwdriver to gently nudge each side of the clip away from the base. The connector clip is now open. Do not attempt to completely remove the clip from the base, as this will break the clip.

Step 3

Insert the end of the flat ribbon cable, with the exposed metal side facing down, into the slot between the connector clip and the base. Insert the cable straight and as far into the connector clip as it can go.

Step 4

Hold the ribbon cable in place with one hand and use the other hand to close the connector clip by pushing it down or in toward the base. It should snap into place, immobilizing the cable.