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Microsoft Surface Laptop 3 Proves Easy to Open in iFixit Teardown

(Image credit: iFixit)

When Microsoft unveiled the Surface Laptop 3 (opens in new tab), it made a claim that it was easy to upgrade. At its unveiling, Surface head Panos Panay made it look as easy as pulling the deck and keyboard off the laptop. It ends up, thanks to a teardown from iFixit (opens in new tab), that it's not quite that easy, but it's close.

The repair site gave the Surface Laptop 3 a repairability score of 5 out of 10, a massive jump from the first two Surface Laptops, which each received 0 points.

The basics are that you remove four Torx Plus screws located under the laptop's feet and then you can pry off the top cover, which is held to the rest of the chassis with magnets and a flex cable.

Unsurprisingly, the RAM is soldered down, but as Microsoft has previously explained, the SSD (opens in new tab) is replaceable. It's a 2230 M.2 NVMe drive (opens in new tab), which is shorter than most M.2 SSDs (opens in new tab) currently on the market. But it's held down with a single Torx screw, so that's easy enough to swap.

But Microsoft has warned that the SSD is not user replaceable, and that only a "skilled technician" should swap out an SSD. That suggests that you may void your warranty by opening up the machine. But if you're handy and have the tools, it looks like adding a larger SSD wouldn't be too difficult.

(Image credit: iFixit)

For more, including detailed photos of the motherboard and information on removing more parts like the display, check out iFixit's full teardown (opens in new tab).

Andrew E. Freedman
Andrew E. Freedman

Andrew E. Freedman is a senior editor at Tom's Hardware focusing on laptops, desktops and gaming. He also keeps up with the latest news. A lover of all things gaming and tech, his previous work has shown up in Tom's Guide, Laptop Mag, Kotaku, PCMag and Complex, among others. Follow him on Twitter: @FreedmanAE