Nintendo DS lite repair

My daughter brought me her DS lite the other day and it was not working.  The charge light would not come on when plugged in and the green power light would not turn on either.  The DS lite was dead for sure.

My first thought was a possible defective battery however I quickly ruled that out with a second battery out of a working DS lite.

DS Lite

A quick search on the internet revealed quite a few websites on how to dismantle and repair a DS lite.  I was quite surprised to read that my problem is a rather common issue (blown fuses).

I am not going into great detail on how to disassemble a DS lite.  A simple search on google will give you detailed instructions on how to disassemble.  I think I even found a youtube video.

DS lite back

Flip the DS  Lite over to reveal the bottom side.  Unscrew the battery cover with a small phillips screwdriver and gently pry out the battery with a flat tool such as a regular screw driver.  There are eight more screws to remove to get inside the DS lite.  Six screws have an odd driver called a “tri wing“. It’s similar to a phillips except it has only three prongs. I used a small flat screwdriver that fit in the tri wing head and was able to easily remove the screws.  I should buy the proper tool since they are cheap.

DS motherboard

Once the cover is off, you can see the motherboard which is full of small components. I have read on other sites that the two fuses F1 and F2 are a common culprit. They often blow out and you can easily solder a jumper across them to bypass them. You can buy them as well but they are so tiny I would not even bother.

DS Lite Fuse Location

The fuses are located on the right side of the motherboard. They are little green looking square parts that I highlighted in RED as shown. You can check these with a multimeter set to the OHM setting. Each side of the fuse has a little metal tab you can use to test it with the red and black probes on the multimeter. If they show a short (reading of ZERO), then they are okay. If they show a open circuit (anything other than ZERO) then they are bad and you need to use a small soldering pin and repair or jumper the fuse with some solder. If you have no idea what a multimeter is or a solder pin is then you probably should not be poking around in your DS lite. Repairing (jumpering) the fuses is very easy and is explained very well on this website.

Another view of the fuses

Here is another view of the fuses. You can clearly see the metal tabs on the sides that you touch with the multimeter probes. A Multimeter or OHM meter is the only way to test a fuse like this that I know of. You can buy one cheap at Amazon.com

I checked my fuses and they were both okay. I was not sure what else could be wrong so I started examining the motherboard for damage. I was surprised to find that there was a part missing! There is supposed to be an “Inductor” right below the power switch in the upper left corner of the motherboard.

Missing Part on Motherboard

I have read on other sites that this part can break off if you drop your DS lite on a hard surface. That must have happened. Well now where is it? It should still be inside the DS lite rattling around somewhere because there is no way for it to fall out. I actually found it stuck on the top edge of the DS by the cartridge slot.

Missing Part (inductor)

Re-solder part back onto motherboard

I used tweezers to hold the part back on while carefully soldering each end back on. This part has no polarity so it does not matter which way to put it on. I use a low wattage solder pin with a sharp point to solder small parts like this. It only took a few minutes.

I now re-assembled the DS Lite and tried it out. To my surprise it turned on and was working perfectly.

I gave it back to my daughter and it’s still working perfect days later. That’s it. It’s not too hard to repair these Gameboys if you take your time and look closely for the obvious.

Working DS Lite

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