In this post I will show how to disassemble a HP Pavilion dv7t-3000 series notebook.
This guide should work for HP Pavilion dv7-2000 and dv7-3000 series too.
I’m taking it apart because the notebook gets very hot while running games and other multiple programs. It happens because the cooling module is clogged with dust and has to be cleaned up.
I will clean up the CPU heatsink and replace thermal grease on the CPU (processor) and GPU (video chip). This procedure requires complete disassembly.
If your HP Pavilion dv7 doesn’t look like one in this guide, I have some other disassembly guides. Check out links to related models I post at the end of the guide.
Before you start, make sure the computer is turned off and unplugged from the AC adapter.
Also, make sure to organize all removed screws. There will be lots of them. Make notes where these screws go. This will help you during the reassembly process tremendously.
Unlock and remove the battery.
Loosen screws securing two service doors on the bottom.
Remove both service doors.
Now you can access the hard drive, both memory modules and CMOS battery.
Some other HP Pavilion dv7-2000 and dv7-3000 series notebooks might have a second hard drive and TV tuner card installed here.
Lift up the hard drive assembly.
The hard drive connected to the motherboard via a cable.
Carefully lift up the hard drive cable connector by the black belt and unplug it from the motherboard.
Remove one screw securing the DVD optical drive.
Pull the optical drive from the notebook and remove it.
Remove six screws (red) securing the speaker cover.
Remove three screws (green) securing the keyboard.
Lift up the speaker cover and separate it from the top cover.
Be careful, there are cables connecting the speaker cover to the motherboard.
Move the speaker cable towards the display just enough to access keyboard screws. We’ll be removing the speaker cover completely in the step 16.
Remove four screws securing the keyboard.
Lift up the keyboard and move it towards the display.
Now you can access the keyboard cable connector located on the motherboard.
In order to remove the cable, it’s necessary to unlock the connector first.
Lift up the left side of the retainer (brown tab) with your fingernail.
The retainer will open up at a 90 degree angle.
It must remain connected to the white base.
On the following picture the connector shown in the unlocked position.
Now you can pull keyboard cable from the connector.
Remove the keyboard.
Disconnect the power button cable and media board cable from the motherboard.
Simply pull the cable from the connector. This connector doesn’t have any locking tab.
Remove the speaker cover.
Disconnect the speaker assembly cable from the motherboard.
Remove the speaker assembly.
Disconnect two antenna cables from the wireless card.
Pull both antenna cables though the opening between the laptop case and motherboard.
Disconnect the web camera cable from the motherboard.
Un-route both wireless antenna cables and web camera cable from the path on the case.
Disconnect the video cable connector from the motherboard.
Lift it up by the black belt located on the top of the connector and unplug from the motherboard.
Remove four screws securing display hinges (two screws per hinge).
Lift up and remove the display assembly.
Remove eight screws securing the mounting bracket.
There are two more screws on the right side. They are not shown on the picture.
Remove the mounting bracket.
Remove all remaining screws from the notebook bottom.
Don’t forget two screws located in the DVD drive bay.
Remove two screws securing the wireless card. Pull the wireless card from the slot.
It’s necessary to remove the wireless card in order to remove the motherboard.
Remove five screws securing the palmrest assembly.
Disconnect the Bluetooth cable and trackpad cable from the motherboard.
Start separating the palmrest assembly from the base.
Remove the palmrest assembly.
Here’s the bottom side of the palmrest assembly. If you need to replace the trackpad, it can be accessed here.
Remove three screws securing the motherboard.
Disconnect four cables on the right side of the motherboard.
Remove two screws from the extension port on the side.
Start removing the motherboard as it shown on the picture.
Remove the motherboard from the bottom case.
The cooling module (heatsink and fan) can be accessed on the other side of the motherboard.
Disconnect the cooling fan cable from the motherboard.
Loosen six screws securing the heatsink assembly.
Loosen them in the order written on the heatsink, you’ll see an number located by each screw.
Lift up and separate the cooling module from the motherboard.
Thermal grease on the CPU and GPU chips looked dry. I’ll be replacing it with new thermal grease.
Apply new thermal grease on both chips.
Clean up old thermal grease from the heatsink. Use paper towel and 90-99% alcohol.
DO NOT REMOVE thermal pads. Do not replace thermal pads with thermal grease. Leave thermal pads as is, you’ll be reusing them.
Do not touch thermal pads, make sure they are clean.
In order to clean up the heatsink and cooling fan we’ll have to separate the fan from the heatsink.
Remove four screws securing the cooling fan.
Separate the heatsink from the fan.
Now you can clean up both parts properly.
If your fan makes noise, it’s time to replace it.