How to Fix the L Button on a PSP
By Michael J. Scott
Updated September 22, 2017
Items you will need
Small Phillips screwdriver
Replacement "L" button
Safe PSP opening tool
Sony's handheld gaming console, the PlayStation Portable (PSP), allows you take your gaming on the go. Unfortunately this often means it is subjected to significant wear and tear as well. The PSP has two shoulder buttons along the top of the device, designated as the "L" and "R" buttons. These shoulder buttons are used in a variety of games, particularly first- and third-person shooters. Consequently they take quite a beating over time. If you find that your "L" button is cracked, broken or unresponsive, the solution is to open up your PSP and replace it. This guide is based on the newer PSP 3000, but the procedure is similar for the older PSP 1000 and PSP 2000 models.
Purchase a safe PSP opening tool and a replacement "L" button. Unfortunately, most online retailers only sell two packs of "L" and "R" buttons. Of course this means you have a replacement "R" button if that breaks later. Refer to the resources for online PSP parts retailers.
Press the release switch on the left side of the PSP and remove the battery cover. Use your fingers to pry out the battery. Scrape off the Sony warning label inside the battery bay.
Remove the four screws on the back panel of the PSP. There are two in the battery bay and two along the right side of the device.
Remove the two screws on the sides of the PSP's USB port. Remove the single screw on the bottom of the PSP.
Use your PSP soft opening tool to carefully pry the faceplate off your PSP. Set the faceplate face down on the table. You will use it later to protect your LCD screen.
Push the menu bar, located along the bottom of the LCD screen, to the right to disengage the release tab on the LCD screen.
Put on a pair of latex gloves to prevent leaving fingerprints on the LCD. Lift up the top of the LCD screen and gently pivot it toward you. When the screen is perpendicular to the PSP, disconnect the screen cables from the logic board. Lift the screen out of the PSP and place it face down on the faceplate to protect it.
Locate the "L" button in the top, left corner of the PSP. Remove the single screw that holds it in place.
Use tweezers to remove the white plastic bracket connected to the "L" button. Lift the "L" button out of the PSP.
Open your new "L" button and insert it into the PSP. Replace the white plastic bracket and retaining screw.
Reassemble your PSP by following previous steps in reverse order.
Keep in mind, opening your PSP will void your Sony warranty. If your PSP breaks while still under warranty, send it back to Sony for repair.
Michael Scott is a freelance writer and professor of justice studies at Westminster College in Salt Lake City, Utah, and is a former prosecutor. Scott has a J.D. from Emory University and is a member of the Utah State Bar. He has been freelancing since June 2009, and his articles have been published on eHow.com and Travels.com.