How To Remove A Hard Drive From HP Pavilion 17 Laptop; Getting Handy With Your Machines

by John Sanderson
How to Remove a Hard Drive From HP Pavilion 17 Laptop

HP has been one of the biggest computer hardware manufacturers on the planet for decades now. They kept up their reputation even when users embraced laptops, and HP brought quality and style to their users.

When thinking about style, superior performance, and quality laptops, it doesn’t get any better than HP’s Pavilion 17 laptop. 

This is a work-tested laptop that will work well for you from purchase, but you might need to remove the hard disk for your reasons. Here is a guide on how you would go about it;

How to Remove a Hard Drive from HP Pavilion 17

The specifics of removing a hard drive differ between laptop models, so you need to be clear about the model you use to be safe. 

A hard drive is a sensitive part of a laptop since it carries all the data and is surrounded by essential components.

You will therefore need to be extra careful when dealing with the hard disk. Make sure your hands are dry, and you have a clean workspace before you begin the extraction. Here is a guide on how to remove the hard drive;

  1. It would be best if you prepared the laptop by disconnecting it from the mains power cable. Eject the CD drive and remove any DVD you have in there. Even if it is empty, leave it ejected since it will be helpful later on.
  2. Flip the laptop over and remove the battery. This is important to ensure there is no current in the components as you remove the hard drive. A current could cause damage to the parts if you touch them in the wrong way.
  3. There is a screw that holds the optical drive; you need to take it out to release the optical drive. Pull it out through the CD ROM compartment and keep the parts and screws in a safe place.
  4. Remove all the screws in the back of the laptop and get access to the laptop’s interior. Remove the side covers that you can remove without a screw since they cover up screws that you need to remove.
  5. After removing all the outer screws, turn the laptop over and open it up to expose the keyboard. Use a flat, firm object to get in between the keyboards and the rest of the laptop body and separate them, then remove the keyboard.
  6. Be careful while removing the keyboard since there is a cable that connects it to the motherboard. Slowly lift the keyboard to get access to this cable, disconnect it and any other from the motherboard before taking the keyboard out.
  7. At this point, you should have a clear sight of the hard disk and all its connectors. You have to be careful since the connectors can get damaged, and they are expensive to repair.
  8. Raise the locking bar on your motherboard’s USB board to release the hard drive connector. Carefully disconnect the ribbon cable that goes to your hard drive from the motherboard.
  9. Lift the locking bar on the hard drive’s adapter cable and carefully unplug it from the motherboard. 
  10. Raise the right edge of the hard disk drive assembly using your fingers or any hard object that can fit in the space. Take the hard drive out and put it in a static dissipative bag. 

Magnetic fields and static energy can damage hard drives; thus, you must be careful where you keep them. On the same note, disconnect all the power sources and keep your hands dry.

If you leave any traces of liquid in the motherboard, they could cause a short circuit when you reconnect the computer. 

The screws and cables are hard to find if you drop them, so you should keep them all in a small container or on a magnet to keep them from rolling away. 

How To Install A New Hard Drive In An HP Pavilion 17 Laptop

A laptop cannot work without a hard drive, so you need to know how to put the drive back in after removing it. 

You could be taking it out to replace it with a better one, or the initial one was damaged. It is vital to keep your hands clean and dry before you go into this process. In any case, this is how you put a hard drive back into your laptop;

  1. Take the hard disk out of its box or static dissipative bag and insert it into the notches in the base enclosure of your laptop. Push the hard disk in to make sure it gets to the bottom of the chamber to allow the covers to fit.
  2. Plug the hard disk adapter ribbon cable into the hard drive connector port in the motherboard and lower the locking bar to hold the cable in place.
  3. Insert the USB board ribbon adapter into the USB connector on your motherboard and lower the locking bar to hold it in. If you fail to use the locking bars, the cable might get disconnected while it is in use, and you will have to open up the laptop all over again.
  4. Start replacing the parts you removed, starting with the keyboard. Plug in all the cables that go into the keyboard and carefully fit it in place before applying some pressure to get it well situated.
  5. Close the laptop and flip it over. Insert the optical drive and make sure it is correctly placed before moving on. 
  6. Put back all the screws you had removed and tighten them as much as you can. Don’t tighten them too hard since it could damage the screws or laptop by cracking the areas around it.
  7. Replace the rear corner covers and press them into place before putting the battery back in place. You can turn the laptop on to check if it works before locking it up completely to save your time if you have to reopen it.

Things That Can Permanently Destroy Your Hard Drive

The problem with a hard drive getting damaged beyond repair is not getting a replacement; it is data loss. 

You need to know what can damage your hard drive so you can prevent it from happening. You can buy another hard disk, but you will lose all the work you had on your old drive if you hadn’t backed it up. Here are some things that could damage your hard drive;

  • Overheating is caused by having inadequate cooling systems on your laptop. The high temperatures will damage the hard disk drive of your computer, and it will stop working after some time.
  • Software issues, especially viruses that corrupt the data in your drive. They could cause redundancy and malfunctions that will render the hard disk drive useless.
  • Regular Operating System change and installation could lead to reduced efficiency of your hard drive. This is because of the constant formatting associated with OS change.
  • Improper shutdown of the laptop and fluctuating power supply will cause data loss and problems with your hard disk.
  • Physical damage caused by dropping the drive or having magnets or other disruptive materials around it could cause a hard drive to stop working.
  • Touching the circuit side of your hard disk with your hands can cause it to develop problems over time.

Warning Signs Of A Failing Hard Drive

If your hard drive fails, you will lose all the data in it. You, therefore, need to be prepared for that eventuality and have a backup plan, especially if you think the hard drive is failing. Here are some signs that indicate impending hard drive failure;

  • Frequent crashes like BSODs and random self-reboots are signs of a problem with your hard disk.
  • Taking too much loading time to open a small-sized file that would typically take a short time.
  • Unusual sounds like clicking and grinding sounds indicate a problem, especially if they are sounds you didn’t hear when the laptop was new.
  • Missing files that you didn’t delete or change location or the file is present, but it cannot open. If this happens, you should start creating backups and prepare to change the hard drive before it fails on you.
  • Suppose the computer doesn’t recognize your drive. Most people think that this is a problem with the computer, but it is always the hard drive that got damaged, so it works incorrectly.


The HP Pavilion 17 is a fantastic laptop that is easy to open up. You need to be careful when dealing with the screws since they are hard to find should you drop them while working. 

Keep all the screws in one place and keep your hands dry as you work. 

When replacing the hard drive, make sure all the connectors are held down by the locking bars. They will come off if the bars are not engaged. Try to keep any static electricity or electric current away from the hard disk to avoid damaging it.

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