How to Upgrade Your ThinkPad 13's SSD

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We loved the ThinkPad 13 for its great keyboard, long battery life and affordable price. Its sluggish SSD, however, could use improvement. Whether you want faster storage or need more space, a replacement SSD can breathe some new life into your laptop.

The ThinkPad 13 uses an M.2 SATA SSD, so make sure to buy that type of SSD when you go shopping for a replacement.

Before you replace the SSD, make sure you have a way to get your data onto the new one. See our guide to cloning and restoring your hard drive. Make sure to back up your data before starting the process.

Here's how to swap the SSD in your ThinkPad 13.

 1. Turn off and close your ThinkPad 13.

How to Upgrade the ThinkPad 13’s SSD

2. Flip over the computer and remove the three screwcaps along the bottom.2 675400

We got them out with a small flathead screwdriver. Place them in a cup or bowl so you don't lose them.

How to Upgrade the ThinkPad 13’s SSD

3. Loosen the 8 screws along the edges of the base and the 1 screw in the center. Use a small Phillips head screwdriver. Note that these screws don't come out.How to Upgrade the ThinkPad 13’s SSD

4. Pry the cover from the laptop. Lenovo recommends starting at the top left and working clockwise. Be patient, and try using a thin tool like a small flathead screwdriver to get the base off. Take care not to scratch your computer, as the warranty likely won't cover that.How to Upgrade the ThinkPad 13’s SSD

5. Place the base to the side and locate the SSD. It's a small, green rectangle screwed into the motherboard. 

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6. Remove the screw holding the M.2 SATA SSD with a small Phillips head screwdriver. Place the screw in your cup or bowl.s2

7. Gently lift the SSD from the motherboard. Put it aside and store it in an anti-static bag.s3

8. Place your new SSD into the housing. Insert it at an angle and lay it flat.s4

9. Replace the screw to secure the new SSD to the motherboard.


10. Place the base back on, be sure that you press all of the latches back into place and tighten all of the screws.How to Upgrade the ThinkPad 13’s SSD

11. Put the screwcaps back on top of the three screws in the front.

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Author Bio
Andrew E. Freedman
Andrew E. Freedman,
Andrew joined in 2015, reviewing computers and keeping up with the latest news. He holds a M.S. in Journalism (Digital Media) from Columbia University. A lover of all things gaming and tech, his previous work has shown up in Kotaku, PCMag and Complex, among others. Follow him on Twitter @FreedmanAE.
Andrew E. Freedman, on