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W520- need help removing bezel and buying a fan

W500/510/520 and W700/710 series specific matters only
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Posts: 31
Joined: Sat Oct 06, 2012 4:40 pm
Location: Brooklyn, NY USA

W520- need help removing bezel and buying a fan

#1 Post by helicopter » Sat Nov 04, 2017 6:57 pm

Hello Thinkpadders,

A few months back I was having blue screen problems with a W520 and got good advice from RealBlackStuff and RKawakami.

The system ran in a somewhat stable way for a while, but I'd get an occasional crash related to some kind of driver failure. At the time, I suspected either an nVidia driver problem or an overheating problem.

A few weeks back I got a fan error, which rendered the machine inoperable. I hadn't immediately cleaned the fan, following RealBlackStuff's suggestion, because a stuck screw holding in the keyboard held me up. But now I extracted it. Do I need to replace the fan? Or only clean it?

Either way, I need to remove the bezel. I'm consulting the Hardware manual, which only shows arrows to lift up and out. The bezel isn't really moving. I don't want to break it, and the previous owner already cracked it on the left side under the speaker grill. How to I remove it correctly? (I already removed the battery, the DIMM cover, and the keyboard.)

After that, do I need the whole thermal unit or just the fan? The FRU PN is 04W1576. This is for a W520 4270-CTO. And as I am a completely newbie to this machine, I don't know if I have the workstation model. The pictures of that fan and the switchable graphics fan look similar. I can't really look at it closely until I get the bezel off.

And should I buy new or refurb? I can't find any here
https://www-store.shop.ibm.com/shop/en- ... tail/37117
or here
https://lenovo.encompass.com/item/10643 ... 6/Heatsink

Should I post an ad to our marketplace, or try ebay?


Posts: 31
Joined: Sat Oct 06, 2012 4:40 pm
Location: Brooklyn, NY USA

Re: W520- need help removing bezel and buying a fan

#2 Post by helicopter » Sat Nov 04, 2017 7:42 pm

Brief update- I got the bezel off after realizing there was an additional screw in the main hard drive compartment that must be removed. For what it's worth, that is not properly drawn on p. 76 of the hardware manual. The drawing indicates a 4 mm screw to be removed, but the artist drew it on the outer frame, not in the compartment. Anyway, with that one off, and some gentle prying with a fingernail (and sort of following a youtube video), I got the bezel off. For anyone else doing this, if you're flexing the bezel or bending it upwards, you're doing it wrong. The key is to release the tabs on the edge with gentle prying.

If someone could still help about which fan, new vs. refurb, and a source, I'd appreciate it.

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Re: W520- need help removing bezel and buying a fan

#3 Post by MikalE » Sun Nov 05, 2017 10:15 am

It is illustrated quite well in the T520 hardware manual and I can't imagine it being any different for the W520.

You need to invest in some case separation tools used for this type of work. They are also used to separate tablet and cell phone cases.

Some of them look like large guitar picks of various thicknesses and stiffness. There are a couple of other pry tools that are useful as well. All made of plastic so you don't scratch or mar anything should a slip occur.
T500 T9600 2055-BE9
T510 i5 4384-DV7
T510 i7 4349-A64
T520 i7 4242-4UU(CTO)

T520: i7-2760QM(2.40GHz),16GB, 500GB SSD/500GB 7200 Drive, 1600x900, 1GB NVIDIA, DVDRW, Smartcard, media card, FPR, Win7 Pro64, whitelist BIOS, N 6300 AGN, German KB, BT 4.0.

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