How To Replace Nintendo Switch Joystick

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The Nintendo Switch is a versatile gaming console that offers a unique portable gaming experience. However, over time, the joystick on the Joy-Con controllers can wear out or become unresponsive, affecting your gaming performance. If you’re experiencing issues with your Nintendo Switch joystick, you may be wondering how to replace it. In this article, we will guide you through the process of replacing the joystick on your Nintendo Switch, providing you with the necessary steps and helpful tips along the way. Whether you’re a seasoned DIY enthusiast or a novice, this guide will ensure that you can easily replace the joystick on your Nintendo Switch, restoring it to its full gaming potential.

Inside This Article

  1. Tools and Materials Needed
  2. Step 1: Remove the Back Cover
  3. Step 2: Disconnecting the Battery
  4. Step 3: Removing the Left Joy-Con
  5. Step 4: Replacing the Joystick
  6. Step 5: Installing the New Joystick
  7. Step 6: Reassembling the Nintendo Switch
  8. Conclusion
  9. FAQs

Tools and Materials Needed

When it comes to replacing the joystick on your Nintendo Switch, having the right tools and materials at hand is essential. Here are the items you’ll need to successfully complete the task:

  1. Tri-wing screwdriver: The Nintendo Switch uses tri-wing screws to hold the Joy-Con in place. Make sure you have a tri-wing screwdriver that is compatible with these types of screws.
  2. Phillips screwdriver: You’ll also need a Phillips screwdriver to remove and reattach the back cover of the Nintendo Switch.
  3. Replacement joystick: Before starting the repair, make sure you have a replacement joystick that is compatible with your Nintendo Switch model.
  4. Tweezers: Tweezers can come in handy for manipulating small components and connectors during the repair process.
  5. Spudger or pry tool: A spudger or pry tool can be used to safely disconnect cables and pry open the back cover of the Nintendo Switch.
  6. Microfiber cloth: It’s a good idea to have a microfiber cloth on hand to clean any dust or debris that may have accumulated inside your Nintendo Switch.
  7. Adhesive: In some cases, you may need adhesive to secure the replacement joystick in place.
  8. Container for screws: To avoid losing any screws during the repair process, it’s helpful to have a small container or magnetic mat to keep them organized.

Gathering these tools and materials before starting the repair will ensure that you have everything you need to successfully replace the joystick on your Nintendo Switch. Once you’re ready, you can move on to the next steps of the repair process.

Step 1: Remove the Back Cover

The first step in replacing the joystick on your Nintendo Switch is to remove the back cover. This will give you access to the internal components of the console. To do this, you will need a small Phillips screwdriver and a plastic pry tool or a thin, flat object like a credit card.

Start by turning off the Nintendo Switch and ensuring that it is not connected to any power source. This is important to avoid any electrical shocks or damage. Now, flip the console over and locate the ten screws on the back cover.

Using the Phillips screwdriver, carefully unscrew all ten screws. Keep these screws in a safe place as you will need them later when reassembling the console. Once the screws are removed, take the plastic pry tool or credit card and gently insert it between the back cover and the console’s frame.

Slowly and gently slide the plastic tool along the edges, releasing the clips that hold the back cover in place. Be cautious not to apply too much force, as you don’t want to damage the plastic or the clips. Continue this process until all the clips have been released.

Once all the clips are loose, gently lift the back cover to remove it completely. It may be helpful to use your fingers to pry it open slightly if it’s stubborn. Remember to be careful not to apply too much force, as you don’t want to accidentally damage any of the internal components.

With the back cover removed, you now have clear access to the internal workings of your Nintendo Switch. Keep the back cover in a safe place and proceed to the next step: disconnecting the battery.

Step 2: Disconnecting the Battery

Before you can safely proceed with replacing the Nintendo Switch joystick, it is crucial to disconnect the battery to avoid any potential electrical mishaps. Follow these steps to disconnect the battery:

  1. Prepare your tools: You will need a small screwdriver, such as a Phillips or tri-wing screwdriver, to open the Nintendo Switch. Make sure you have a clean, well-lit workspace to avoid losing any small components.
  2. Switch off the device: Press and hold the power button on the Nintendo Switch for a few seconds until the power options menu appears. Select “Power Options,” then choose “Turn Off” to shut down the device completely.
  3. Remove the back cover: Flip the Nintendo Switch console over and locate the screws holding the back cover in place. Use the appropriate screwdriver to remove these screws and carefully lift off the back cover.
  4. Locate the battery connector: Inside the Nintendo Switch, you will find the battery connector. It is a small cable that connects the battery to the mainboard. Gently locate this connector, which is usually near the center of the device.
  5. Disconnect the battery connector: Using your fingers or a non-metal tool, carefully unplug the battery connector from the mainboard. Be gentle and apply even pressure to avoid any damage to the connector or cable.
  6. Verify battery disconnection: Once the battery connector is unplugged, double-check that there is no power running to the Nintendo Switch. Attempt to turn on the device by pressing the power button. If it does not turn on, the battery has been successfully disconnected.

By following these steps to disconnect the battery, you ensure that you can safely proceed with replacing the joystick of your Nintendo Switch. Having a clear understanding of how to disconnect the battery helps prevent any potential electrical hazards and ensures a smooth replacement process.

Step 3: Removing the Left Joy-Con

Now that you have successfully removed the back cover of your Nintendo Switch and disconnected the battery, it’s time to move on to removing the left Joy-Con. This step is crucial as it allows you to access and replace the joystick with ease.

To begin, locate the small screws on the back of the left Joy-Con. Carefully unscrew them using a screwdriver that fits the size perfectly. Place the screws in a safe place to avoid losing them. Once the screws are removed, gently pry open the plastic casing of the Joy-Con using a plastic opening tool or your fingernail.

As you open up the Joy-Con, you will see the internal components, including the joystick assembly. Take note of its position and orientation as you will need this information later when installing the new joystick. Use a pair of tweezers or a small tool to disconnect the ribbon cable connecting the joystick assembly to the circuit board of the Joy-Con. Be cautious and apply gentle pressure to avoid any damage to the cable or the circuit board.

With the ribbon cable disconnected, you can now remove the entire joystick assembly from the Joy-Con. Hold the assembly firmly and lift it out of its housing. Be careful not to force or damage any other components in the process. Set aside the old joystick assembly and prepare for the next step of replacing it with a new one.

Before moving forward, take a moment to inspect the internal components and the housing of the Joy-Con for any dirt, debris, or residue. If you notice any, carefully clean it using a soft cloth or a cotton swab lightly dampened with isopropyl alcohol. This step ensures optimal performance and longevity of the new joystick assembly.

Congratulations! You have successfully removed the left Joy-Con and are now ready to replace the joystick with a new one. Move on to Step 4 to learn how to install the new joystick and complete the repair process.

Step 4: Replacing the Joystick

Replacing the joystick on your Nintendo Switch is a relatively straightforward process, but it requires some care and attention to detail. Follow these steps to successfully replace the joystick:

1. Start by carefully detaching the ribbon cable that connects the joystick to the Switch’s circuit board. This cable is delicate, so be extra cautious and gentle while removing it.

2. Once the ribbon cable is detached, you can remove the old joystick. Use a small screwdriver or a pair of tweezers to unscrew and lift it out of its socket. Take note of any screws or adhesive that may be securing the joystick in place.

3. Now it’s time to install the new joystick. Carefully align it with the socket, ensuring that the pins on the joystick match up with the holes on the circuit board. Gently press the new joystick into place, making sure it is securely attached.

4. If your new joystick comes with screws or adhesive, use them to secure it in place. Be sure to tighten the screws firmly but not too tight, as you don’t want to damage the circuit board.

5. Once the new joystick is securely in place, it’s time to reconnect the ribbon cable. Carefully plug it back into the appropriate connector on the circuit board, ensuring it is properly aligned. Take your time, as a misaligned cable can cause issues with the joystick’s functionality.

6. With the ribbon cable reconnected, double-check that everything is properly seated and aligned. Then, gently press the cable down to ensure a secure connection.

7. Finally, before reassembling the Nintendo Switch, it’s a good idea to perform a quick functionality test. Power on the Switch and test the new joystick in different directions to ensure it’s working correctly.

That’s it! You have successfully replaced the joystick on your Nintendo Switch. Once you have completed all the necessary steps, you can proceed to reassemble the Switch and enjoy gaming with your newly installed joystick.

Step 5: Installing the New Joystick

Now that you have successfully removed the old joystick from your Nintendo Switch, it’s time to install the new one. Follow these steps to ensure a smooth and proper installation:

1. Start by taking the new joystick out of its packaging and double-checking that it is the correct replacement for your Nintendo Switch model. It should be compatible with your specific Joy-Con controller.

2. Carefully align the new joystick with the opening on the Joy-Con controller. Ensure that the connector pins on the new joystick are properly aligned with the corresponding pins inside the controller.

3. Gently push the new joystick into place, making sure it fits snugly. Be cautious not to apply excessive force, as this could damage the connector or other components of the controller.

4. Once the new joystick is properly inserted, you can secure it in place. Some replacement joysticks come with adhesive already applied, but if not, you can use double-sided tape or a small amount of adhesive specifically designed for electronics to ensure the joystick remains in place.

5. After applying the adhesive, press down gently on the joystick to ensure a strong bond is formed between the joystick and the Joy-Con controller. Allow the adhesive to dry according to the manufacturer’s instructions before proceeding to the next step.

6. Finally, reconnect the ribbon cable of the replacement joystick to the Joy-Con controller. Carefully align the pins on the cable with the connector inside the controller, and gently press it into place until it is secure.

That’s it! You have successfully installed the new joystick in your Nintendo Switch Joy-Con controller. Before proceeding, make sure to double-check that all connections are secure and components are properly aligned.

Step 6: Reassembling the Nintendo Switch

Now that you have successfully replaced the joystick of your Nintendo Switch, it’s time to reassemble the console and get it back up and running. Follow these steps carefully to ensure everything is put back together properly:

  1. Replace the Battery: Begin by reconnecting the battery connector to the motherboard. Make sure it is securely fastened and in the correct orientation.
  2. Reattach the Left Joy-Con: Carefully slot the left joy-con back into its place on the console. Ensure it is aligned correctly and fully inserted until it locks into place.
  3. Connect the Back Cover: Align the back cover with the console and gently press it down until it clicks into place. Make sure all the clips are securely fastened.
  4. Test the Joystick: Before fully reassembling the Nintendo Switch, it’s a good idea to test the joystick to ensure it is functioning properly. Turn on the console and check for any erratic movement or unresponsiveness. If everything is working as expected, proceed to the next step.
  5. Tighten the Screws: Use the screwdriver to carefully tighten all the screws on the back cover. Ensure they are all snug but not overtightened.
  6. Power On the Nintendo Switch: Once the console is fully reassembled, power it on and check if all the buttons and the newly replaced joystick are working correctly. Navigate through the menus and test the joystick in different games to confirm its functionality.

By following these steps to reassemble your Nintendo Switch, you can enjoy a fully functional console with a newly replaced joystick. Remember to take your time and be gentle throughout the process to avoid any damage to the console or its components.


Replacing the joystick on your Nintendo Switch can be a simple and cost-effective solution to fix any issues you may be experiencing with your console. Whether it’s drifting, unresponsiveness, or general wear and tear, a new joystick can bring your gaming experience back to life.

By following the step-by-step guide provided in this article, you can safely and efficiently replace the joystick on your Nintendo Switch. Remember to gather the necessary tools, take your time, and carefully disconnect and reconnect any cables. If you’re unsure or uncomfortable with the process, it’s best to seek professional help or contact Nintendo support.

With a new joystick, you can enjoy smooth and precise control over your gaming adventures once again. So don’t let joystick issues hold you back from fully immersing yourself in the world of Nintendo Switch gaming – replacing the joystick is easier than you might think!


1. How do I know if my Nintendo Switch joystick needs to be replaced?

If you notice that your Nintendo Switch joystick is unresponsive, drifting, or sticking in one direction, it may be a sign that it needs to be replaced. You may also experience issues with input lag or the joystick not registering your movements accurately. If you’ve tried troubleshooting and recalibrating the joystick but the problems persist, it’s likely time for a replacement.

2. Can I replace the Nintendo Switch joystick myself?

Yes, it is possible to replace the Nintendo Switch joystick yourself. However, it does require some technical know-how and precision. You will need to disassemble the Joy-Con controller, carefully remove the old joystick, and install the new one. It’s recommended that you have the necessary tools and follow a step-by-step guide or video tutorial to ensure a successful replacement.

3. Where can I buy a replacement Nintendo Switch joystick?

You can purchase replacement Nintendo Switch joysticks from various online retailers and electronics stores. Popular options include Amazon, eBay, Best Buy, and GameStop. Make sure to check the compatibility of the replacement joystick with your specific Joy-Con model before making a purchase.

4. Are there any alternative solutions to replacing the Nintendo Switch joystick?

In some cases, you may be able to fix minor issues with the Nintendo Switch joystick without having to replace it entirely. One possible solution is to clean the joystick mechanism, as dust or debris can sometimes cause problems. You can use compressed air or a small brush to carefully remove any dirt or particles. Additionally, recalibrating the joystick through the system settings might help resolve certain issues.

5. Is it better to replace the entire Joy-Con controller or just the joystick?

If only the joystick is the issue, it’s generally more cost-effective to replace just the joystick rather than the entire Joy-Con controller. However, if there are multiple issues or damage to other components, it might be worth considering a full replacement. Assess the overall condition of your Joy-Con and consult with an expert if you’re unsure about the best course of action.