Monday, March 14, 2011

How to Repair a GameBoy Color Game

This article is a photo enhanced how-to guide for repairing GameBoy games with a dead save. If you recently turned on a old game for the first time this decade, only to find that all your childhood progress had been deleted, then it was probably because the save battery died.

First you need to gather up some supplies. You'll need the following:

Small needlenose pliers (or a screwdriver that fits the weird screw on the back of the cartridge)
Electrical tape
One CR2025 watch battery
A soldering iron and solder (optional)
A knife

First, open up your batteries. It can be any 2025 battery. They usually come in two packs, but you only need one.

Next you'll need to remove the 6-point star screw on the back of the cartridge. If you have a special screwdriver for it, great; if not, find some really small needlenose pliers.

Once the screw is out, pull up on the top of the cartidge and slide it open. It should look something like this.

Now you'll need to pry the metal conductor tabs off of the current battery. It takes a little work because the metal is actually stamped into the metal of the battery, two times each on top and bottom. Pry away with a small knife or similar item, and it doesn't matter too much if you bend the strips.

It'll look like this after you remove the battery.

The positive side of the new battery should face up, but it may vary from company to company, so make sure yours is the same. Once the old battery is out, get out one of your new batteries and set it to the side. Now peel off a strip of electric tape about 4 inches long and cut off about 1/4 inch of the long side of the tape. (My measurements may be a little off.)

Now wrap the smaller piece of tape around the very edge of the new battery and cut off any excess.

Now place it back in between the connectors, positive side up.

From here, you can go one of two ways. You can either try to solder the connectors back onto the new battery (as seen here):

Or you can just roll up some electrical tape and use that to keep pressure between the battery and the plastic casing. I tried to solder it (and so did my brother) but it was taking forever and the tape worked fine. Just roll up a few inches, with the sticky part facing outward and place it on top of the battery connector as shown.

After that you just need to replace the top of the case by sliding it back into place. Of course, this won't return any lost saved games but it does allow you to save new ones. Good luck and happy gaming!


  1. Really good info, I'll have to try it out on my copy of Pokemon Red!

  2. Hum, kind of makes me want to go find all my old games and see if this happened, might be a fun project.

  3. Book marked. I'll need this.

  4. Great post, I still have my pirate gameboy color cart aroud here somewhere.

  5. wow this should come in handy!!

  6. tyvm
    gonna try this out on my copy of pokemon blue

  7. This will come in handy sometime :)

  8. Yay!
    Old gameboy colour and pokemon blue, here i come!

  9. very nice tutorial man, very enlightening

  10. Holy crap how ironic I just had to do this about two weeks ago myself. AFAIK only silver and gold have a real problem since the timer draws more juice I guess. My blue red and yellow are all still working fine.
    My fixit-
    Just a warning- solder is a better seal but if you don't know waht you are doing it is hard to solder a smooth surface and the heat might make the battery go boom.

  11. I really had no idea about this. I hadn't even come close to imagining that they had batteries there.