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Removing a Laptop's Keyboard Keys

written by: Steve McFarlane•edited by: Bill Fulks•updated: 5/13/2011

We show you the proper technique to remove keys from your laptop's keyboard.

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    Dell Laptop Keyboard Repair

    While it is possible to clean a laptop computer’s keyboard without removing a single key, removing one or several keys may be necessary if the keyboard is very dirty or defective keys need to be replaced. Here is how to remove a key from a Dell Latitude keyboard the right way.

    While it is true that the mechanisms that hold the keyboard keys in place, and allow them to function, can be easily damaged if they aren’t properly handled, once you learn the proper keyboard key removal technique you shouldn’t have a problem.

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    How to Remove a Keyboard Key on a Dell Latitude

    How to remove a keyboard key on a dell latitude Before you get started it is a good idea to shut down and unplug the computer. There is no need to remove the entire keyboard or even remove its screw; you can remove individual keys right from the keyboard. The process for removing a Dell laptop’s keyboard key is quite simple. Just press down the key you want to remove, get your finger under the top of the key and pull it up and out. You should hear a snap and the key should come loose.

    You may find it more convenient to use a flat head screwdriver to remove the keys, but most fingertips can do the job just fine. There is always a chance that the key plastic hinges will break but you shouldn’t worry about that happening, the keys were designed to be removed using this technique.

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    Keyboard Key Removal Tips

    It is best if you avoid removing the larger keys such as the space bar, enter key, shift keys, backspace and caps lock keys, owing to the fact that the mechanism under these keys are more challenging to reinstall. It you are removing the keys to clean the board, consider using compressed air, a brush or a low power vacuum to clean these keys instead of removing them.

    It is a good idea not to try and remove too many keys at once because it can be pretty challenging and time consuming to fit each one in the right place. A work around is to take a picture of the entire keyboard or make a note where each key goes before you start pulling keys, but this too can be time consuming. But if you really need to remove all the keys, at least you will know what key goes where. An even better work strategy is to remove one row of keys, or just a few keys at a time and then reinstall that row before moving to another set of keys.

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