The right way to Repair a Damaged Keyboard


You attempt to sort an e-mail, however nothing occurs. Or maybe you can sort, however both particular letters don’t seem or you find yourself with 15 of the identical letter on the display screen. In the event you’re struggling these or comparable points, you might really feel like all is misplaced and your keyboard is toast.

“Damaged” is a broad time period. Many points can “break” even high-quality keyboards, each on the {hardware} and software program facet. We are able to’t remedy your keyboard woes should you used it like a baseball bat, however we can stroll you thru choices to assist resolve typical points that have an effect on and even stop enter.

Keyboard sorts

Earlier than digging in, decide what sort of keyboard you have got. Many laptop computer keyboards ship with chiclet keys that press towards a rubber dome to finish {an electrical} contact. You’ll additionally discover variations that depend on an X-based scissor design that also makes use of the rubber dome however shortens the important thing journey distance and supplies a snappier really feel. Fashionable laptop computer keyboards usually depend on the latter scissor-switch design.

Earlier MacBook keyboards used Apple’s butterfly design, which resembled a V somewhat than an X. Apple used this design to create thinner MacBooks, however within the course of, it launched a keyboard that was extra liable to gathering mud and particles than scissor-based fashions. Unable to resolve the problems, Apple reverted to scissor-based keys beginning with the 16-inch MacBook Professional in 2019. The issue turned so infamous there may be presently a class-action lawsuit continuing towards Apple from those that had damaged butterfly keyboards on their MacBook Professionals.

Lastly, there are mechanical switches. Keyboards based mostly on these usually have taller, simply detachable keycaps. There aren’t any rubber domes. As a substitute, an enclosed spring and stem actuates your keypress when it touches a contact. Mechanical keyboards are usually loud.

Completely different change sorts can require totally different fix-it strategies, and so they’re often all resilient to totally different cleansing and clearing makes an attempt. However one thing that impacts all keyboards is software program.

Software program fixes

Reboot your PC

Reboot Windows 10

This must be your first step in resolving keyboard points. Generally conflicts come up on the software program facet that trigger the keyboard driver to turn out to be unresponsive, like a battle with one other driver or utility. Rebooting can assist resolve that battle or error.

For MacOS, chances are you’ll must reset the System Administration Controller to resolve the difficulty. Meaning shutting down, eradicating the facility twine, and ready 15 seconds earlier than restarting. For MacBooks, maintain the CTRL + Possibility + Shift keys concurrently, adopted by the Energy button for 10 seconds. Subsequent, launch all keys and press the Energy button.

Replace or reinstall drivers

Device Manager Remove Keyboard

If rebooting doesn’t work, strive updating or reinstalling the motive force. Sometimes, while you join a keyboard, the working system installs a appropriate driver. On laptops, this driver is already put in until you join an exterior keyboard. (Gaming keyboards might have their very own software program that you just obtain from the official web site.)

This driver could also be corrupt, inflicting communication points between your PC and the peripheral.

Right here, you need to replace the motive force to exchange the probably corrupted model or take away it fully and reinstall a contemporary model.

For Home windows:

Step 1: Proper-click on the Begin button and choose Gadget Supervisor on the Energy Consumer menu.

Step 2: Broaden the Keyboards entry and right-click in your gadget.

Step 3: Choose Replace Driver on the pop-up menu and observe the directions. This merely updates the motive force equipped in Home windows.

If this methodology doesn’t repair your difficulty, observe these steps:

Step 1: Proper-click on the Begin button and choose Gadget Supervisor on the Energy Consumer menu.

Step 2: Broaden the Keyboards entry and right-click in your gadget.

Step 3: Choose Uninstall Gadget on the pop-up menu.

Step 4: Click on Motion situated on the Gadget Supervisor toolbar and choose Scan for {Hardware} Modifications on the drop-down menu. This could reinstall your keyboard’s driver.

Be aware: In the event you’re utilizing a keyboard with drivers that must be independently downloaded from the producer, go to their web site for the newest model and run the executable to reinstall it.

Test your area or language settings

Windows 10 Region Settings

Did your area and/or language settings change? Comply with these directions to search out out.

For Home windows:

Step 1: Click on the Begin button, adopted by the gear icon situated on the Begin menu.

Step 2: Choose Time & Language.

Step 3: Choose Area listed on the left and confirm that Home windows is about to your right area.

Step 4: Choose Language listed on the left and confirm that Home windows is about to your right language. Click on the plus signal (+) underneath Most well-liked Languages should you choose a unique language. After putting in, click on Choices to pick out the keyboard sort.

For MacOS:

Step 1: Click on the System Preferences gear icon situated on the Dock.

Step 2: Choose Language & Area (flag icon).

Step 3: Confirm your area or click on the blue up or down arrows to vary.

Step 4: Confirm your most popular language. If it’s incorrect, click on the plus signal (+) so as to add one other language.

Test your enter settings

Control Panel Keyboard Properties

Perhaps your keyboard is appearing bizarre attributable to incorrect repeat and delay settings. Right here’s how one can regulate these settings:

For Home windows:

Step 1: Sort “management panel” within the search subject and choose the ensuing app.

Step 2: Click on {Hardware} and Sound, adopted by Gadgets and Printers.

Step 3: Proper-click in your keyboard and choose Keyboard Settings on the pop-up menu.

Step 4: One other pop-up window will seem with the Pace tab loaded by default. Modify the Repeat Delay setting to see if that resolves your difficulty.

If Step 4 doesn’t work, do the next:

Step 1: Sort “management panel” within the search subject and choose the ensuing app.

Step 2: Click on Ease of Entry, adopted by Ease of Entry Heart.

Step 3: Scroll down and choose Make the Keyboard Simpler to Use.

Step 4: Uncheck Activate Sticky Keys and Activate Filter Keys if both is presently checked.

Step 5: Click on ApplyOK to avoid wasting these settings.

For MacOS:

Step 1: Click on the Apple emblem within the prime left nook, adopted by System Preferences within the drop-down menu. Alternatively, you possibly can click on the gear icon situated on the Dock.

Step 2: Click on Keyboard.

Step 3: Modify the delay and repeat settings to see if that resolves your difficulty.

Uninstall apps and packages

An app or program operating within the background might trigger your keyboard points. If it put in drivers, they could intervene along with your keyboard too. Decide when your keyboard started appearing unusually and take away any software program that you just put in previous to the misbehavior. For example, should you put in desktop software program that manages a brand new keyboard, however you’re nonetheless operating software program for an older keyboard, the 2 might battle.

{Hardware} fixes

Test the connection

For exterior keyboards, the issue could also be a bodily connection. Does the cable have a brief, inflicting erratic conduct in Home windows and MacOS? Is there gunk collected within the USB connector? Is the connector broken? Is your PC’s USB port broken? These components will trigger points.

One methodology you possibly can strive is to disconnect and reconnect the keyboard to the identical port. If this doesn’t repair the difficulty, join the keyboard to a unique port. The present USB port might undergo software program or {hardware} points that require a separate investigation and repair.

One other approach to check the keyboard is to plug it into one other PC. If it’s misbehaving on that gadget, then the difficulty is on the keyboard facet. If not, then it’s the unique mother or father PC.

Test for energetic options

Cooler Master MK850
Cooler Grasp

There are keyboards you should buy that embody particular options you toggle on with a key press. For example, Cooler Grasp’s MK850 consists of Aimpad expertise that provides gamepad-like analog controls to the WASD keys. If this characteristic is by accident toggled on, each phrase you sort consists of extra letters, like Q, E, and Z. Your issues may stem from comparable options.

Equally, some keyboards allow you to quickly flip off helpful keys, just like the Home windows key. Make certain these aren’t toggled off in the event that they’re supplying you with hassle.

Test the batteries (wi-fi)

Wireless Keyboard Batteries
Kevin Parrish/Digital Tendencies

In the event you’re utilizing a wi-fi keyboard, test the batteries to see in the event that they’re useless. A low battery stage will trigger connection points in case your keyboard depends on Bluetooth. For a keyboard with a built-in rechargeable battery, plug it into your PC or an influence provide for a recharge if it’s useless.

Re-pair your keyboard (Bluetooth)

Windows 10 Remove Bluetooth Device

For Bluetooth-based keyboards, there could also be a problem with the connection. Eradicating and re-adding the gadget might clear up any points related to the Bluetooth change.

For Home windows:

Step 1: Click on the Begin button and choose the gear icon on the Begin Menu.

Step 2: Choose Gadgets.

Step 3: The Bluetooth & Different Gadgets panel opens by default. Choose your Bluetooth keyboard and click on the Take away Gadget button.

Step 4: Click on the plus signal (+) subsequent to Add Bluetooth or Different Gadget and reconnect your Bluetooth keyboard. Comply with the pairing directions.

On MacOS:

Step 1: Click on the Apple emblem within the prime left nook and choose System Preferences within the drop-down menu. Alternatively, you possibly can click on the gear icon situated on the Dock.

Step 2: Click on the Bluetooth icon.

Step 3: Choose your Bluetooth keyboard, adopted by the X button to take away it.

Step 4: Pair your Bluetooth keyboard once more.

Clear your keyboard

Mechanical Keyboard No Keycap
Kevin Parrish/Digital Tendencies

Be aware: Earlier than any bodily cleansing, be sure to unplug the keyboard and/or take away its batteries.

Dust and dirt are doubtless your largest adversaries concerning keyboard efficiency. There’s no escaping mud, meals particles, falling hair, nostril projectiles, and extra that assault our keyboards every day.

Mechanical keyboards are doubtless simpler to scrub as a result of you possibly can take away the keycaps. On this situation, unplug the keyboard out of your PC, take it outdoors, and use a can of compressed air angled at 75 levels to evict the troublesome trash. For cussed particles, take away keycaps and use compressed air once more. The objective is to verify there’s no particles stopping the change stem from springing into motion.

Chiclet- and scissor switch-based keyboards are tougher to scrub, particularly on laptops. Once more, you need to use compressed air to blast away any particles that will stop a full connection between the keycap and the highest membrane layer. Gunk caked between the keycaps and keyboard physique may additionally stop keys from transferring correctly.

Different cleansing strategies embody utilizing a mushy toothbrush, a microfiber material, or a swab dampened with heat water. Don’t use cleaners, and by no means spray immediately on the keyboard, particularly on a laptop computer.

Take a look at keyboard with out laptop computer battery

Laptop battery

The issue is probably not your keyboard in any respect, however the laptop computer’s battery. A great check is to fully shut down the gadget, take away the battery if attainable, join the exterior energy provide, and reboot. If the keyboard works with out points, then the battery might have points supplying a gentle present and wish a alternative supplied by the OEM.

Change damaged keys

Mechanical Keyboard No Keycap
Kevin Parrish/Digital Tendencies

Affect and put on and tear on keyboards can result in damaged (or lacking) keys. For mechanical and membrane keyboards, keys are comparatively straightforward to exchange. retains quite a lot of common keys in inventory from many alternative manufacturers to search out what you’re in search of. Particular person manufacturers like Razer and Das Keyboard additionally provide their very own units of alternative keys immediately, which can be helpful if you wish to improve your keys whereas additionally getting replacements. Many keys are straightforward to take away by gently popping them off, however flatter keyboards might have specialised instruments or skilled assist to exchange broken keys.

Change change (mechanical)

Changing a defective keyboard change isn’t as straightforward as it might appear. If a bit bit about electronics and are comfy utilizing a soldering iron and solder remover, you are able to do it at house. You could run right into a state of affairs the place you want a particular instrument, equivalent to a change puller. It’s a good suggestion to discover a tutorial on YouTube that applies to the precise keyboard you’re engaged on. That means, you may get some perception into what obstacles chances are you’ll face, as this can be a troublesome job to do properly.

Some mechanical keyboards, just like the Dygma Elevate or the Logitech G Professional X, have snap-in switches, which could be a nice possibility should you routinely end up with a damaged keyboard. These keyboards will let you take away the faulty change simply by pulling the keycap up. You’ll have to analyze correct protocol to confirm if it’s important to break your keyboard down earlier than or after you’re taking the switches out.

Repairing or changing a membrane

If you’re utilizing a conventional keyboard design that’s not mechanical, it could have a membrane, which softens the keypresses and helps ship an digital sign to the panel on the base of the keyboard. Membranes are designed to be sturdy, however corrosion and different issues can harm them: This results in caught keys, an unresponsive keyboard, and comparable issues.

In the event you suspect that the membrane has been broken, it’s time to take the keyboard apart, take away all of the keys, and study the complete membrane layer. Generally, grime and buildup on the membrane is conserving it from working correctly, and an intensive, cautious cleansing will remedy your issues.

Changing a membrane is a unique story. Membranes are usually screwed in place, and whereas they are often eliminated with a bit work, discovering a alternative model is troublesome, as they don’t seem to be at all times offered individually. It’s finest to search out the precise mannequin of your keyboard and seek for parts on the producer’s website or test eBay to see if anybody is promoting a membrane for it. Examine costs — it could be extra reasonably priced to buy a brand new keyboard fully.

Use a unique keyboard

If nothing else appears to work, disconnect or unplug the keyboard that isn’t working and take a look at a unique one. You could even need to strive a unique USB port to make sure you’re ranging from scratch. If the issue persists, then you’ll have to do a extra in-depth troubleshooting course of as a result of the difficulty may not be the keyboard in any respect. 

You’ll have to avoid wasting important knowledge to an exterior arduous drive or web-based storage and fully wipe your laptop to revive it to manufacturing unit settings In the event you can’t discover a resolution after attempting the whole lot we’ve introduced right here, you would possibly need to go to a pc restore store to assist diagnose and repair the issue.

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