How does a laptop hinge break?

how-does-a-laptop-hinge-break

We often get asked ‘how does a laptop hinge break?’ It can break because of wear and tear or the accumulation of dust and dirt.

What is a laptop hinge?

A laptop hinge is the part of a laptop that allows for it to open and close while also staying intact to provide easy access. Hinges come in various designs, but most originate from a scissor-like design where two interlocking plates (and usually bolts) allow for smooth movement. As such, hinges are designed for rotational movement; however, there are some computers that utilise hinges that enable vertical or lateral movement as well. Laptop hinges can be found on both sides of a display to provide support and allow for 360 degree rotation. This simple piece makes sure your computer stays connected and keeps its screen safe while providing mobility too.

A laptop hinge is a fragile and often overlooked part of the machine, and as such it can become damaged or broken. There are many ways in which a laptop hinge can break.

Rough handling

The most common causes of this type of damage to laptops include rough handling, particularly from being dropped or jolted from an uneven surface. Putting pressure on the lid of a closed laptop, for example by placing it on your lap with weight resting on the lid over time, has been known to cause hinges to fail prematurely – especially if you have a heavy bottom!

Dust or dirt

Other causes include dirt or dust entering the workings through vents or gaps around the screen base – so regular cleaning is advised to keep air flowing freely inside your notebook.

Opening up to often

You should also avoid opening up the display too often or firmly, which can lead to the plastic cracking or snapping off around the hinges.

new-laptop

How to fix laptop hinge?

Repairs are possible using just a screwdriver, but due to the difficulty of removing some screws it may be necessary for you to replace your laptop’s entire display assembly – typically this costs upwards of $200 at an authorised repair centre.

If your laptop does suffer from broken hinges its best if you avoid trying to open the lid, which could exacerbate the problem. Repair-experts say that you should immediately contact your computer’s manufacturer for an assessment on repair or replacement options.

If however your hinge is merely creaking and things aren’t as bad as they first appear it may be possible to fix the problem yourself. A drop of oil between moving parts often does the trick, followed by some gentle tweaking to tighten any loose bolts around the hinge. An application of sewing machine oil will often work wonders but if it doesn’t then you can purchase specialist laptop lubricant from most computer shops that will solve most problems with broken hinges or keyboard issues too.

One final piece of advice is not to leave your laptop running on a soft surface such as a sofa where vibrations can cause problems with the delicate inner workings.

How does it happen to a Apple MacBook?

One of the most popular laptop models is the MacBook Pro, which has been around for over five years now. Little has changed about the basic design of this model as well as many other laptops from Apple. The changes that have been made are good ones, such as making it lighter and thinner, but there is one part that continues to make this laptop stand out: its hinges. They keep your screen in place and can hold up a lot of weight compared to other brands’ hinges. These hinges help steady the computer when being carried or transported from one place to another, especially because they hold onto the screen so tightly. Unfortunately, these sturdy hinges have a downside .

If you’ve owned your Macbook for a few years, it’s likely that at some point the laptop hinge will break. The hinge is made up of two pieces, one attached to each side of the screen. These two pieces are held tightly together by way of metal rods and screws. Inside the hinge are two strong springs that hold tension on both ends of the hinge, keeping it taut between the upper part of the base unit and the display.

When these parts are forced open too much or when they are bent or ripped off their hinges, they lose tension and cannot fulfill their purpose anymore. This causes the top part of your computer to flop loosely down onto your desk or table if you’re working with it elevated in some way, which can cause a variety of problems from broken screens to wasted parts.

In most cases, hinges break because their metal is simply too thin when compared to the force they have been called upon to endure. This may be due in part to manufacturers who cut costs at the expense of durability. In other cases, however, particularly laptop hinge breaks after being dropped or hit with some considerable force by accident, it’s not so much an issue of weak design as it is faulty components in the hinge mechanism itself that contribute to its failure. For example, a small piece of plastic may snap inside the hinge and no longer be able to hold tension on one side of the screen; this means that every time you open your all the way there’s nothing but air between your screen and keyboard.

In other cases, excessive dust accumulation over time may cause the laptop hinge break from opening and closing the laptop repeatedly. In this case it’s not so much a faulty mechanism as it is too much dirt in the way of proper operation. In some cases laptops have been known to “break” when people sit on them by accident; usually there was nothing wrong with the hinge, but rather an excess build up of pressure caused a latch somewhere in the device to give out.

Author:
I am a computer engineer holding a bachelor's degree in Computer Science, complemented by a Master's in Business Administration from University of Strathclyde, Scotland. I currently work as a Senior IT Consultant in Melbourne, Australia. With over 15 years of...