How to Install Ribbon Cable

Ribbon cables, also known as multi-wire planar cables, are flat cables with a number of cords that are permanently attached to one another. Despite the fact that they are generally considered obsolete these days, you may still find them in some televisions, laptops, gaming systems, and printers from time to time. Although replacing a ribbon cable appears to be a straightforward process, you may need to attach a new connector if the cable does not slide directly into a clip on your electronic device as is the case with some models. Also, make certain that the new ribbon cable is installed in the same direction and in the same manner as the old ribbon cable.

Method 1 Getting Ready to Install a Replacement

1. Purchase a replacement ribbon cable that is specifically designed for your electronic device. You will need to purchase a replacement ribbon cable from the manufacturer of your television, printer, or computer because ribbon cables are not universally available. Calculate your cable size by measuring the width of the cable; you can then match the colour or pattern of the cable itself to find a matching cable.

Ribbon cables are not particularly common these days, though they can be found in some sleeker electronic devices, such as gaming systems and flat-screen televisions, because they save space in the process. When working with an older printer, television, or some other electronic device, you may not be able to locate an appropriate replacement ribbon.

A replacement ribbon cable shouldn’t cost more than $15 in most instances.

Ribbon cables are all installed in the same way, but the cables themselves are available in a wide range of sizes and shapes, making them extremely versatile. If you want to replace the ribbon cable on your specific device, you cannot use a third-party cable to do so. It is necessary that it comes from the original manufacturer.

2. Make certain that your replacement cable includes any connectors that may be required. See how far the old ribbon cable has gotten at the end of it. The use of a connector is not necessary if the cable is locked directly into the flat clip. If the cable is going to slide into a plastic or metal piece that will connect to the clip, make sure to purchase a ribbon cord that has the connector you require. Only the original manufacturer’s replacement should be used.

Because there are thousands of these connectors available, it is critical to obtain a replacement that is identical to the original from the manufacturer. These connectors, which are typically 1–3 in (2.5–7.6 cm) long rectangular pieces, are used to connect cables to ports.

The majority of replacement cables will include the connector you require. It is also possible that it will be pre-installed on the cable. However, in some cases, you will be required to perform the installation yourself.

3. Make a note of the orientation of the old cable to make the installation process as simple as possible. Ribbon cables have a distinctive appearance that distinguishes them from one another, but there is usually something on the cable that indicates which way the cable should be installed. Find a coloured strip or a symbol near the top of the cable that indicates which side is up to determine which side is down. Alternatively, if there is nothing on the cable, pay close attention to the order of the coloured cords to ensure that your new ribbon cable is installed in the same manner.

A printed “up” or an arrow will be present on some cables to indicate the direction and orientation in which the cable should be placed during installation.

Orientation is not necessary if your old ribbon cable is a single solid colour and has no orientation markings. These older cables can be installed in either an upside-down or a right-side-up configuration. You don’t have to be concerned about getting oriented.

Method 2 Connecting a Standard Ribbon Cable

1. To remove the old cable, lift the cable clip with your hand and flip it up. When it comes to connecting the ribbon cable to the electronic, there is a horizontal strip of plastic with small rivets sticking out of it that connects the two ends of the cable together. This is the cable clip that you’re looking for. Make a gentle upward pull with the tip of your index finger while holding the rivets in place with your other index finger. To unlock the clip, apply light pressure to it and gently pull it out. Remove the old cable by sliding it out of the clip.

Specifically, this procedure applies only to ribbon cables that do not have a connector at one end. There is no connector if the end of the cable itself does not have a rectangular piece of plastic or metal on it, as is the case with most other cables.

Warning: Do not attempt to unlock the ribbon cable with a screwdriver or other tool. Otherwise, you may end up snapping the clip off your finger. You simply need to take your time and carefully remove it by hand.

2. Slide the new ribbon underneath the cable clip to complete the installation. To instal your replacement ribbon cable, first turn it so that it is facing the same direction as the old cable and that the colours are arranged in the same manner as the old cable. Lower the end of the cable underneath the clip while the clip is still unlocked and the clip is unlocked. By utilising the horizontal slot that is located near the base of the panel that the clip has been attached to, the cable can be slid through the base of the clip.

Normally, this is a fairly simple process. Simply by looking at the base of the clip, you can see the opening through which the cable will slide in.

3. Push the ribbon cable against the guide on the opposite side until it is flush with the guide. To insert the cable through the clip, push it through until the cable’s tip pops out the other side. Continue to slide the cable through until it reaches the small vertical lip on the other side. In this case, the cable will be guided by this line, and the end of the cable will rest flush against the lip. Make any necessary adjustments to the cable until the end of the ribbon cable is aligned with the guide line.

This may seem strange, but if there isn’t a guideline, simply push the cable to the other side and allow it to rest wherever it is most comfortable. A ribbon cable is installed with pins on the clip that puncture the cords and allow an electrical connection to be made. The clip can theoretically be installed on any portion of the ribbon cable.

4. To complete the ribbon cable attachment, close the cable clip with your hand. Place your index and middle fingers on the rivets that you used to pry the cable clip free. Reduce the height of the rivets so that they are closer to the side on which they originally rested. Gently press the clip into place with your fingers until it clicks into place. The pins underneath the clip will puncture the ribbon cable, resulting in an electrical connection being established between the cable and the electronic component beneath the clip.

5. Install the other end of the cable with a clip or a new panel on the other side of the room. Most of the time, all you have to do is connect the cable to another cable clip on your electronic device to complete the task. Repeat these steps to attach the other end of the clip by popping the second clip up and sliding the other end of the cable into the slot before closing the clip. If the cable connects to another panel or electronic device, attach the clip before screwing or assembling the new portion of the device to prevent it from being accidentally disconnected.

This cable is typically found running from the screen to the motherboard of a television. These cables, which are found on computers, are responsible for connecting the screen and keyboard to the motherboard. In most cases, these repairs do not necessitate the installation of new components.

On a printer or gaming system, the ribbon clip is frequently used to connect two panels together in order to power up the system’s power buttons. Before screwing in or assembling the device, use your clips to secure both ends of the cable to the device.

Method 3 Attaching a Ribbon Cable with a Connector

1. Remove the old connector from the port by prying it out with your fingers. It is possible to remove a piece of thin plastic that has been wrapped around the connector and clip by sliding it off by hand or using a small screwdriver. Once you’ve done that, try pulling the connector away from the clip that holds it to your electronic. If it is a little stuck, do not try to pry it out. As an alternative, pull the ribbon out of the connector while leaving the actual connector attached to the clip.. Remove the old cable from the connector or clip by sliding it out.

If the connector is unable to be removed from the port, do not rip it. The cable is actually unlocked by pressing a button or prying a cover out of the connector itself in some cases, which is built into the machine itself.

If you are unable to remove the connector from your television, printer, gaming system, or motherboard, consult the user manual for the device.

2. If the connector on the end of the cable is not preassembled, crimp it on with a pliers. To add a new connector to the cable, take the two halves of the connector and slide them over the end of it so that it sticks out 14–12 in (0.64–1.27 cm) past the connector, depending on the length of the cable. Draw a straight line between the edges of the two halves, making the sides flush with one another. Then, using your fingers, squeeze the two halves together to drive the connector pins through the cords in the cable and into the connector.

The pins that protrude from the connector’s end must be oriented so that they are not in contact with the main body of the ribbon cable. On the two halves of the connector, there is frequently a small arrow pointing in the direction in which the connector should be oriented.

The connector is comprised of two halves that are held together by pegs. It is possible to push the two pieces together to attach them to the ribbon cable so long as the two halves are lined up over the cable and the pins are protruding.

Tip: You shouldn’t need any special tools to complete this task, but if you’re having trouble getting the two halves of the connector to click together, you can squeeze them together with pliers or channel locks.

3. Insert the new ribbon cable into the connector, or attach the connector to the ribbon cable with the connector itself. If the connector is still in the clip, make sure the new ribbon cable is oriented so that it will slide into the existing connector. Adjust it so that the colours and pins correspond to those of the old cable. Allowing the cable to gently slide into the connector until it clicks is recommended. After removing the old connector by sliding it into the cable clip so that the prongs on the cable clip slide into the connector, replace the old connector with a new one.

The connector should click into the clip when it’s being attached, if you’re doing so correctly.

If you slide the ribbon cable into the connector, simply align the end of the ribbon cable with the bottom of the connector and slide the cable back into the clip to complete the installation procedure.

4. Attach the other end of the cable to a clip or a second connector if you have one available. If there is a connector on the other end of the ribbon cable connection, you can simply repeat these steps to connect the other end of the cable to the computer. It is possible to attach a second connector without using a second connector. Simply lift the cable clip with your hand and slide the bare ribbon cable underneath it. You may be required to replace a panel or an electrical component depending on the nature of the repair you are performing.

In a computer, you’re most likely connecting the ribbon cable that runs from the motherboard to your keyboard or monitor. Each end will be equipped with its own connector.

You will most likely need to screw two panels together on your gaming device or printer to complete the installation of the cable on your device.

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