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Follow this guide to replace a damaged or faulty headphone jack and game card reader in the Nintendo Switch game console.

The Switch uses JIS screws, but you can use a Phillips screwdriver in a pinch. Be very careful not to strip the screws. iFixit's Phillips bits are designed to be cross-compatible with JIS-style screws.

Note: Removing the heat sink will make it easier to remove the headphone jack and game card reader, but it’s not required. If you remove the heat sink, be sure to clean off the thermal paste from both components—as well as the CPU—and reapply new paste before you install the shield plate and heat sink.

When you remove the shield plate, you’ll need to replace the thermal compound between the plate and the heatsink. Since normal thermal paste isn’t designed to bridge large gaps, the closest replacement is K5 Pro viscous thermal paste.

Note: This guide, and the part we sell, are compatible with the original Nintendo Switch model released in 2017, as well as the newer refreshed model released in 2019 (model numbers HAC-001 and HAC-001(-01), respectively).

  1. Before you begin this repair, make sure the device is completely powered off. Press and hold down the small round button on the back of the Joy Con controller. While you hold down the button, slide  the controller upward.
    • Before you begin this repair, make sure the device is completely powered off.

    • Press and hold down the small round button on the back of the Joy Con controller.

    • While you hold down the button, slide the controller upward.

  2. Continue sliding the Joy Con upward until it's completely removed from the console. Repeat this same process for the other Joy Con. Repeat this same process for the other Joy Con.
    • Continue sliding the Joy Con upward until it's completely removed from the console.

    • Repeat this same process for the other Joy Con.

    • Use a Y00 screwdriver to remove the four 6.3 mm-long screws securing the rear panel.

    • Throughout this repair, keep track of each screw and make sure it goes back exactly where it came from.

  3. Use a JIS 000 driver or an official iFixit PH 000 driver to remove the following screws securing the rear panel: One 2.5 mm-long screw on the top edge of the device
    • Use a JIS 000 driver or an official iFixit PH 000 driver to remove the following screws securing the rear panel:

    • One 2.5 mm-long screw on the top edge of the device

    • Two 2.5 mm-long screws on the bottom edge of the device

    • To prevent these tight screws from stripping, apply firm downward force, work slowly and try another JIS 000 or PH 000 driver if the screws won't come out.

  4. Use a JIS 000 screwdriver or an official iFixit PH 000 driver to remove the two 3.8 mm center screws on the sides of the device (one on each side). Use a JIS 000 screwdriver or an official iFixit PH 000 driver to remove the two 3.8 mm center screws on the sides of the device (one on each side).
    • Use a JIS 000 screwdriver or an official iFixit PH 000 driver to remove the two 3.8 mm center screws on the sides of the device (one on each side).

  5. Use your finger to flip up the kickstand on the back of the device. If there's a microSD card in the microSD card slot, remove it now before you continue to the next step.
    • Use your finger to flip up the kickstand on the back of the device.

    • If there's a microSD card in the microSD card slot, remove it now before you continue to the next step.

  6. Use a JIS 000 screwdriver or an official iFixit PH 000 driver to remove the 1.6 mm screw in the kickstand well.
    • Use a JIS 000 screwdriver or an official iFixit PH 000 driver to remove the 1.6 mm screw in the kickstand well.

    • Close the kickstand.

  7. Open the game card cartridge flap. The game card cartridge flap attaches to the other half of the plastic shell, preventing you from completely lifting up the rear panel if it's closed. Lift the rear panel up from the bottom of the device and remove it.
    • Open the game card cartridge flap.

    • The game card cartridge flap attaches to the other half of the plastic shell, preventing you from completely lifting up the rear panel if it's closed.

    • Lift the rear panel up from the bottom of the device and remove it.

  8. Use a JIS 000 screwdriver or an official iFixit PH 000 driver to remove the 3.1 mm screw securing the microSD card reader to the device.
    • Use a JIS 000 screwdriver or an official iFixit PH 000 driver to remove the 3.1 mm screw securing the microSD card reader to the device.

  9. Use your fingers or a pair of tweezers to lift the microSD card reader straight up from the device to disconnect and remove it. During reassembly, make sure the press connector underneath the foam pad is firmly connected to the motherboard. It may help to remove the foam pad before reinstalling the card reader.
    • Use your fingers or a pair of tweezers to lift the microSD card reader straight up from the device to disconnect and remove it.

    • During reassembly, make sure the press connector underneath the foam pad is firmly connected to the motherboard. It may help to remove the foam pad before reinstalling the card reader.

  10. Use a JIS 000 screwdriver or an official iFixit PH 000 driver to remove the six 3 mm screws securing the shield plate to the device.
    • Use a JIS 000 screwdriver or an official iFixit PH 000 driver to remove the six 3 mm screws securing the shield plate to the device.

  11. Use your fingers or a pair of tweezers to peel back the piece of foam on the top edge of the device near the fan exhaust port. If the foam doesn't easily peel away, don't force it as it might end up tearing. Carefully peel at different spots to pull back the foam.
    • Use your fingers or a pair of tweezers to peel back the piece of foam on the top edge of the device near the fan exhaust port.

    • If the foam doesn't easily peel away, don't force it as it might end up tearing. Carefully peel at different spots to pull back the foam.

  12. Insert a spudger underneath the shield plate along the edge of the device. Pry up to lift the shield plate and remove it from the device. You may feel a bit of resistance. This is normal, since the shield plate is slightly bonded to the heat sink with thermal paste.
    • Insert a spudger underneath the shield plate along the edge of the device.

    • Pry up to lift the shield plate and remove it from the device.

    • You may feel a bit of resistance. This is normal, since the shield plate is slightly bonded to the heat sink with thermal paste.

    • A thick pink thermal compound bridges the gap between the shield plate and the copper heat sink underneath. Whenever the shield plate is removed, refer to our thermal paste guide to remove the old thermal compound and replace it with an appropriate compound, such as K5 Pro, during reassembly.

  13. Use the point of a spudger to pry the battery connector straight up and out of its socket on the motherboard. Use the point of a spudger to pry the battery connector straight up and out of its socket on the motherboard.
    • Use the point of a spudger to pry the battery connector straight up and out of its socket on the motherboard.

  14. Use a JIS 000 screwdriver or an official iFixit PH 000 driver to remove the three 3 mm screws securing the heat sink to the motherboard.
    • Use a JIS 000 screwdriver or an official iFixit PH 000 driver to remove the three 3 mm screws securing the heat sink to the motherboard.

    • Carefully peel the two foam pieces stuck over both the heatsink and the fan away from the fan.

    • The foam only needs to be peeled back enough to clear the fan.

    • The foam is really delicate and tears easily. Use the following technique to peel the foam:

    • Insert the point of a spudger underneath the part of the foam that isn't stuck against anything,

    • Press the top of the foam with your finger to hold it in place.

    • Roll the spudger tip underneath the foam all the way to the other end of the foam to release it.

  15. Use a spudger or your fingers to lift the heatsink up and off the motherboard to remove it. You may feel a bit of resistance. This is normal, since the heat sink is slightly bonded to the CPU with thermal paste. Clean off the old thermal paste from the heat sink and CPU using high-concentration (90% or higher) isopropyl alcohol and a microfiber cloth. Apply new thermal paste to the CPU before reassembly.
    • Use a spudger or your fingers to lift the heatsink up and off the motherboard to remove it.

    • You may feel a bit of resistance. This is normal, since the heat sink is slightly bonded to the CPU with thermal paste.

    • Clean off the old thermal paste from the heat sink and CPU using high-concentration (90% or higher) isopropyl alcohol and a microfiber cloth. Apply new thermal paste to the CPU before reassembly.

  16. Use an opening tool or your fingernail to flip up the small, hinged locking flap on the digitizer cable's ZIF connector. Use an opening tool or your fingernail to flip up the small, hinged locking flap on the digitizer cable's ZIF connector.
    • Use an opening tool or your fingernail to flip up the small, hinged locking flap on the digitizer cable's ZIF connector.

  17. Use a pair of tweezers to slide the digitizer cable horizontally out of its connector on the game card reader board. Use a pair of tweezers to slide the digitizer cable horizontally out of its connector on the game card reader board.
    • Use a pair of tweezers to slide the digitizer cable horizontally out of its connector on the game card reader board.

  18. Use the point of a spudger to pry the headphone jack and game card reader connector straight up to disconnect it from the motherboard. Use the point of a spudger to pry the headphone jack and game card reader connector straight up to disconnect it from the motherboard.
    • Use the point of a spudger to pry the headphone jack and game card reader connector straight up to disconnect it from the motherboard.

  19. Use a JIS 000 screwdriver or an official iFixit PH 000 driver to remove the three 3.1 mm screws securing the headphone jack and game card reader board to the device.
    • Use a JIS 000 screwdriver or an official iFixit PH 000 driver to remove the three 3.1 mm screws securing the headphone jack and game card reader board to the device.

  20. Use a pair of tweezers or your fingers to remove the headphone jack bracket. Use a pair of tweezers or your fingers to remove the headphone jack bracket.
    • Use a pair of tweezers or your fingers to remove the headphone jack bracket.

  21. Use a pair of tweezers or your fingers to remove the headphone jack and game card reader board. Use a pair of tweezers or your fingers to remove the headphone jack and game card reader board.
    • Use a pair of tweezers or your fingers to remove the headphone jack and game card reader board.

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Compare your new replacement part to the original part. You may need to transfer remaining components or remove adhesive backings from the new part before installing.

To reassemble your device, follow these instructions in reverse order.

If your new game card reader doesn’t work after you boot up the device, turn it back off and disconnect and reconnect the battery connector.

Take your e-waste to an R2 or e-Stewards certified recycler.

Repair didn’t go as planned? Try some basic troubleshooting, or ask our Nintendo Switch Answers community for help.

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Craig Lloyd

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iFixit crwdns2886886:0iFixitcrwdne2886886:0

Community

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After changing the board out, I don’t have touch on the screen, put the original PCB back in the console and i have touch again, so its not that I did any damage to the flexes or ZIF connector. Any one have any ideas?

Griffin - crwdns2853112:0crwdne2853112:0

Hey man, did you ever figure this out? I have the exact same issue. My touchscreen is no longer working.

Uncle Jessy -

Seems there are different kinds of card slots, European, American and Japanese, Installing for example an Eurean version into an American version wil result in a not working touchscreen , i think it`s a software issue as the cardslot had same parts, if anyone finds a workaround please let us know

Eric Boer (De pspdokter) -

Nintendo does not like aftermarket replacement part. Get original second hand and will be ok

mfijak -

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