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coolrat
Serial Port
Posts: 17
Registered: ‎01-26-2012
Location: Atyrau, Kazakhstan
Views: 9,250
Message 1 of 7

Replacing motherboard myself - OR - Repair motherboard

Hi

I posted recently about how smoke began to billow from my trusty Thinkpad W520. It appears that the bluetooth on the system board has burned out.  Although the motherboard was replaced under warranty just one year ago, Lenovo said the warranty had expired and they would not replace the board despite the fact it was seemingly a fire hazard.

Because the harddrives are new SSD, the memory is new and the rest of the system is like new as well, I am thinking about 2 choices:

1) Shipping the computer to one of a motherboard repair service that claims full motherboard repair for $100 USD. One company advertising on ebay is: http://www.ebay.com/itm/Motherboard-Repair-Lenovo-Edge-E420-04W0394-04W0610-E520-04W0398-04W0724-/29...

Can these companies actually repair various motherboard issues for $100? If so, this seems like an excellent option.

2) Replacing the motherboard myself. I've looked online at Ebay and Aliexpress and found a "Lenovo Thinkpad W520 Motherboard Q3 Quadro 2000M 04W2029 04W2031" motherboard. The l cost is about $230 USD.
http://www.ebay.com/itm/New-Orig-IBM-Lenovo-Thinkpad-W520-Motherboard-Q3-Quadro-2000M-04W2029-04W203...

Can I install this into my W520 (Product ID: 427637U Type-Model: 4276-37U) which was originally had a Quadro 1000M video card? It appears that I will have to move over the core i7 processor and perhaps some other components. Is this feasible or is this a crazily complex undertaking?

Once its repaired, I'll use it for occasional work. I'm going to use a desktop computer for most of the majority of my intensive work. I've burnt out two Thinkpads in a row and see that the longevity of notebooks is just not meeting my needs.

Which of the two solutions is the best way to go? Thanks for your suggestions!

Community SeniorMod
Community SeniorMod
Posts: 10,182
Registered: ‎01-01-2010
Location: US
Views: 9,239
Message 2 of 7

Re: Replacing motherboard myself - OR - Repair motherboard

Something doesn't sound right. On that model, the Bluetooth is on a little daughter card at the right front. It connects via USB. I cannot imagine how that could cause your symptoms. Replacing the motherboard is certainly possible if you follow the instructions in the hardware maintenance manual. I have no experience with the repair places you mention, but if you somehow got enough current to the right front of the motherboard to smoke, you would have burned out enough stuff to make a repair unlikely.

Rich


I do not respond to requests for private, one-on-one help. Your questions should be posted in the appropriate forum where they may help others as well.

If a response answers your question, please mark it as the accepted solution.

I am not an employee or agent of Lenovo.
coolrat
Serial Port
Posts: 17
Registered: ‎01-26-2012
Location: Atyrau, Kazakhstan
Views: 9,227
Message 3 of 7

Re: Replacing motherboard myself - OR - Repair motherboard

I'm not sure if the smoking incident burnt out the bluetooth module or not. The computer still works, but bluetooth appears to be entirely gone. I'm not sure if it disappeared with the installation of Windows 10, or if it disappeared after the "smoking" situation.

 

Lenovo told me to take the system to the shop that replaced the motherboard last time. They reported that a resistor on the board is probably faulty and is resulting in the strange crackling sound emanating from the board when I use battery power. They charged $100 for that "service" which essentialy told me nothing new and did nothing about the problem. But so far, the W520 still runs.

 

I'm hoping someone can advice me on whether the motherboard repair shops are reliable enough to actually repair it, or if they too will just take another $100 from me and do nothing.

coolrat
Serial Port
Posts: 17
Registered: ‎01-26-2012
Location: Atyrau, Kazakhstan
Views: 9,188
Message 4 of 7

Re: Replacing motherboard myself - OR - Repair motherboard

Has nobody here replaced their motherboards by themselves? I'm wondering if its going to be impossible or really quite managable.

 

I'm going to look for the 04W2035  motherboard which would allow me to upgrade to a Quadro 2000 M video card.

 

Any advice is much appreciated.

Community SeniorMod
Community SeniorMod
Posts: 10,182
Registered: ‎01-01-2010
Location: US
Views: 9,170
Message 5 of 7

Re: Replacing motherboard myself - OR - Repair motherboard

People here certainly have done it. As far as how hard it is, it is easier when you have done it before. If I do it, it takes me 30 - 40 minutes, but I do that sort of thing a lot. The first time, it took a long time. Here is the manual. Look and see what you think:
https://download.lenovo.com/ibmdl/pub/pc/pccbbs/mobiles_pdf/t520_t520i_w520_hmm_en_0A60078_08.pdf

Rich


I do not respond to requests for private, one-on-one help. Your questions should be posted in the appropriate forum where they may help others as well.

If a response answers your question, please mark it as the accepted solution.

I am not an employee or agent of Lenovo.
coolrat
Serial Port
Posts: 17
Registered: ‎01-26-2012
Location: Atyrau, Kazakhstan
Views: 9,147
Message 6 of 7

Re: Replacing motherboard myself - OR - Repair motherboard

Thanks everyone! I have downloaded the parts manual. I'll look around and if I can find a replacement motherboard for around $200 CAN I'll buy it and get cracking. I watched a Youtube video that shows how to dissemble the W520. Changing the motherboard doesnt' look that hard.

 

Community SuperMod
Community SuperMod
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Message 7 of 7
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Re: Replacing motherboard myself - OR - Repair motherboard

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