L button stuck (always active) :/

Discussion in '3DS - Console, Accessories and Hardware' started by d0k3, Jul 15, 2015.

  1. d0k3
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    d0k3 3DS Homebrew Legend

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    My L button is always active. No liquid was spilled over it , it didn't fall down and I didn't press the button too hard. I also never opened it or modified it in any way. Plus, there are no visible signs of any problems, the button is not sticky or anything. There where never any problems with the button before. If anything, the feedback from it seems a little weaker than the feedback from the R button, but I think it was like that from the beginning. I also still have warranty. I was playing Luigi's Mansion when suddenly the button wouldn't go off again and it just stayed that way since then.

    So... that seems like somewhat of a common issue, the Nintendo Tech forums (and other places) are full of people with the same or similar problems. One guy there writes:
    Software problem? :/ If there's really a possibility that it could be a software problem, I could just update to 9.2.0 and see if it does anything, but I'm doubting the use of that now.

    Anyways, you might suggest now that I just send it in to Nintendo for repair. But that's a N3DS on 9.0.0, and I don't want some idiot at Nintendo to update it or even worse, replace it with a new one > FW 9.2.0. Add to that that having to uninstall all my legit CIAs and somehow backing up the saves will be bloody annoying as well.

    Sooo... any ideas?
     
    Last edited by d0k3, Jul 16, 2015


  2. loco365

    loco365 GBAtemp Guru

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    BS that it's a software problem, or else more people would experience it. It's definitely a hardware issue, most likely something is stuck, like the spring, and isn't allowing the button to return back to its default position.
     
  3. d0k3
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    d0k3 3DS Homebrew Legend

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    The button does spring back. Just with a little less force than the R button. As I said, I think it was like that from the beginning.
     
  4. loco365

    loco365 GBAtemp Guru

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    The way the button works though, is there's a small rod on the opposite side of the button, and when you press on the button, it pushes the rod and it pushes on a small contact that completes a circuit, which is understood by the system to be the L button. That's probably what's stuck.
     
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  5. link6155

    link6155 GBAtemp Fan

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    Have you taken a look inside your 3DS. If you aren't afraid and are very careful, you might be able to find the problem if you open up the 3DS. One thing to note is that if you can't get the screws out, don't keep trying or else you'll most likely strip the screw. If you strip the screw you're going to have a very bad day.

    If you rather not touch anything, then I guess your only option is to send it in for repair. If it's under warranty they'll cover you.
     
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  6. Dartz150

    Dartz150 GBATemp Official Lolicon Onii-chan™

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    I experienced the same problem but with the DPAD, I opened it, removed the tiny stiker under the silver buttons and removed a black point caused by shock, it's so tiny that you'll need a needle... and the problem still happened.

    In the sdoulder buttons should be the same, and check that the ribbons are correctly atached on their ports.

    In order to not mess with something with wrong procedures or harmfull actions (break apart the ribbons) see this guide here:

    https://es.ifixit.com/Guide/Nintendo+3DS+Left+Shoulder+Button+Replacement/5849

    But as I said, the problem is a random ocurence, it only happens some times, mine didn't get solved by cleaning, after some days, it just was gone by itself suddenly... wasted money on another 3DS just to replace my old one, but on the bright side, I now have two 3DS, one to play and test so many things (hardmoded) and another justo to play gaems LEL.

    CONCLUSION: It's unknown if it is a Software problem or Hardware, and if the second, cleaning the area or replacing does nothing, you just need to have patience and wait for it to go normal after some time.
     
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  7. zoogie

    zoogie simple pimp tool

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    go into a ds game, if its still stuck then definitely a hardware issue. the hid code is completely different for twl firm.

    pretty sure it's hardware anyway.
     
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  8. d0k3
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    d0k3 3DS Homebrew Legend

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    Okay, thank you all!

    The problem with taking it apart is, I might not be successful, and then I will have a broken L button plus no warranty anymore. The problem with sending it in is, I expect one of two things to happen.... they first update it to 9.9.0 in an attempt to "fix it", or (if the repair is expensive) I get a new one, which won't have a good FW version. N3DS's on good FW versions have become somewhat rare, so I don't want to mess that up either. Stuck between a rock and a hard place, I guess :/.

    Can you think of any way to get it unstuck without opening it? Waiting is an option, of course, but I'd rather do something to get it fixed. I also read somewhere else that a toothbrush might help, so I'll try that later.

    Good point! I don't have any DS games lying around, but I'm pretty sure I can borrow one this afternoon.
     
    Last edited by d0k3, Jul 15, 2015
  9. link6155

    link6155 GBAtemp Fan

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    The wise option here is to just send it in a be patient, you'll get your 3DS back in better condition then when you had it before and your problem will be gone. If you choose to open it, you're warranty will be voided (however I don't think they'll know if you put everything back together like it was before) and you may even break your 3DS if you don't know what you're doing.
     
  10. Dartz150

    Dartz150 GBATemp Official Lolicon Onii-chan™

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    Yeah it happens too, in my case launching DS mode still had the button problem, so I know it's the hardware the wrong part. But srsly, the problem gets fixed by itself after sometime, cleaned a lot of times and also I was sure that none of the hardmod wires or any pin was making a short.
     
  11. d0k3
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    d0k3 3DS Homebrew Legend

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    Yeah, the main problem with sending it in is that I am almost sure I will get an updated 3DS back. I'm also using it as development system, and for that use case, a system update effectively means a brick (and not better condition ;)).

    Sure, I won't rush things. It's just annoying as hell. Tomorrow I have a long trip and I hoped that I could pass some time with the 3DS. I'm also sure that there is no 'hard' cause to this problem.
     
  12. videogamefanatic

    videogamefanatic Member

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    Blow hard into the side of the button. The exact same problem used to be pretty common with the DSi and that fixes it.
     
  13. mech

    mech ♥️♥️♥️♥️♥️♥️♥️♥️

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    get some compressed air in it.
     
  14. d0k3
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    d0k3 3DS Homebrew Legend

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    Already tried blowing into the side of the of the button. Also the thing with the toothbrush. Didn't help, though. Next up is getting a can of compressed air, but I have my doubts wether this helps.

    I have also observed that all the other shoulder buttons (R, ZR, ZL) make a loud clicking sound, while the clicking sound from the L button is somehow 'muffled'. I doubt that this could be a software issue. If I could better understand how the L button works, I might come up with a solution. Any chance there's a good picture of that somewhere?
     
  15. link6155

    link6155 GBAtemp Fan

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    The circuit of the buttons will vary between 3DS models, but they all work pretty much the same:
    [​IMG]
    The plastic part that you press has a tiny little nub inside which will press the black button on the circuit. When I say 'tiny' I mean extremely small (about 1mm in width). There's a lot of room for errors if you drop your 3DS, get stuff stuck in the button, or put too much strain on the button. I dropped my New 3DS XL and now the shoulder R should button didn't register sometimes. I fixed this by putting tape between the plastic part of the shoulder button and the main 3DS body, but I doubt that'll solve your issue. It's hard to say what's the cause of your issue unless you take a look at it yourself.
     
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  16. d0k3
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    d0k3 3DS Homebrew Legend

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    Thank you! The black button in that circuit is also resposnible for the clicking sound, correct?

    On the matter of sending it in I found this:
    Sounds plausible. And, so much about getting the same FW version back. Now, a used 9.0.0 N3DS, even with an unresponsive L button, is worth more more than a brand new >9.2.0 N3DS at least where I live, so I guess sending it in is out of the question now. Still hoping that I won't have to open it, though.
     
  17. link6155

    link6155 GBAtemp Fan

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    Yes the black button is what makes the button "click".
     
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  18. d0k3
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    d0k3 3DS Homebrew Legend

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    Okay, some new info (after I now understand how these buttons work).
    • The feedback from the L button is normal, but the click sound is missing (I only hear the button snapping back).
    • If I slowly tilt the N3DS and put my ear onto the L button, it sounds like a small part is moving around in there.
    Judging from the two points above, it sounds like the tiny nub (that's designed to push the tiny button inside) broke from the L button. Can't be the reason, though, cause then the L button would be unpressed all the time. I guess the tiny button inside somehow got stuck then. No idea about the small moving part though - that may be perfectly okay.

    Also, with how things are with warranty repairs, I guess I don't have any choice but to open it. I'll get professional help, though. More later, but if you've still got any ideas, everything you could add is greatly appreciated.
     
    Last edited by d0k3, Jul 16, 2015
  19. link6155

    link6155 GBAtemp Fan

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    Use top notch screwdrivers, don't go for the cheap packs. The screws on the 3DS are very tight, it is very easy to strip them if you are not careful or are impatient. If you do end up stripping the screw even the slightest, you probably should stop. If you try to force it, you'll end up stripping the screw completely and you'll have to drill a hole to destroy the screw (very dangerous and will void your warranty guaranteed). Seeking professional will make it less likely you'll screw up your 3DS.

    A Nintendo representative told me there is some kind of special seal that gets broken when you open up your 3DS, but I think that's a bunch of BS after I have looked inside myself.
     
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  20. SmileCitrus

    SmileCitrus GBAtemp Regular

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    I don't have an N3DS, but the shoulder buttons on the N3DSXL are more or less the same as on the old 3DS. On the old 3DS they can get stuck if the connector is not seated properly or if, as you described, the little nub is stuck. On old 3DS consoles either issue can usually be fixed by cleaning the button (or connector if necessary) with a toothbrush and a bit of isopropyl alcohol. Although I haven't yet come across an N3DS with this problem, I'm sure the solution is more or less the same.

    I'm not sure if the N3DS is the same as the XL, but opening the N3DSXL is slightly counter-intuitive since you must begin lifting the back part of the housing off starting from the rear (the side where the shoulder buttons are) so that you can detach the shoulder buttons from their connectors using a fingernail before lifting the back part of the housing off completely.

    [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]

    I would first try cleaning the shoulder button with a toothbrush and testing. If that doesn't help you can try to actually pull the little nub out of the shoulder button to clean beneath, but this is a bit risky since you could damage it while prying it out. Though the ribbon cables are different, the buttons themselves look to be exactly the same as the old 3DS, so I suppose if the little rubber nub were to get damaged you could possibly take one from the shoulder button of an o3DS.
     
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