Need help.. How can I open my sansa fuze mp3-player?

Hello everybody,

unfortunately I was a bit clumsy. I spilled orange juice on my sansa fuze mp3-player and now I could not move the small wheel anymore :frowning: . Everything else (the electronic) is okay, but now I have to clean it. 

I would be very glad if someone could explain to me how I could open it… I tried but up to now I failed.

Thanks in advance,


This may help. But Be Warned if you open it and it goes bad later SanDisk may see that and decide not to honor the Warranty.

You could also try, (and here I must say I have never tried this personally,) giving the bottom half of the player a dip in distilled water, then working the wheel around so it frees up, maybe using a soft toothbrush or a little paintbrush to get any chunks out of the cracks, and then another dip to wash away any stuff that got loosened, and finally shaking the player to get as much water out as possible, then using a dry cloth, then pop it into a bag of uncooked rice for at least 2 days.  The rice should absorb the moisture remaining.

Whatever you do, do not try to turn it on while there is moisture inside.

Good luck.

I’m so much obliged!:slight_smile: And I am so glad that you both answered so quickly .

My father and I needed 3 hours to repair my mp3 player. Most notably helpful have been the pictures of this homepage.

Main difficulty was to assembly the whole thing again;)

I wish you a good weekend!


Ok so I spilled coke and the wheel moves but it’s sticky…is there a way to pop out the wheel?

Irineo_guerra wrote:
Ok so I spilled coke and the wheel moves but it’s sticky…is there a way to pop out the wheel?

Click on the link on Conversionbox’s post above, aka: the Accepted Solution. It will take you to disassembly inrtuctions and photos.

Irineo_guerra wrote:
Ok so I spilled coke and the wheel moves but it's there a way to pop out the wheel?

Click on the link on Conversionbox's post above, aka (also known as) the Accepted Solution. It will take you to disassembly inrtuctions and photos.


That guide was written very poorly. There are lots of pictures, but none of them actually illustrate the mechanics of disassembly. The text is worthless, completely lacking in details needed to for a safe disassembly. Someone more literate needs to write another guide.

“Pry open and pop the clips.”

Pop a zit, kid.

This is a bear. The Fuze isn’t made to be taken apart, not by an owner. In fact, don’t do it–not unless you’ve got the right tools and experience with electronics. The hardest part of all is putting the device back together; specifically, getting the control wheel’s ribbon cable back into its socket AND keeping it there.

There are TWELVE plastic clips holding the front and back of the Fuze together: eight along the sides, two along the top, and two very frail ones along the bottom. It takes a good deal of force to pry the clips free of their sockets, and it’s a downright harrowing experience. The two clips along the bottom of the device will likely break during disassembly.

I used a small electronics screwdriver and a LOT of patience. Wedge the screwdriver into the seam between the front and back of the device, then twist gently. Try to pop one or two clips apart at a time.

“Remove ribbon cable from face plate. Lift the face off and flip the brown ribbon release flap on the connection.”

Huh? Brown ribbon release flap on the connection?

This is what happens when teenagers try to write instructions.

After cracking the case apart, you’ll find the front and back halves still joined by an amber ribbon cable, without much play in it. Put a finger or side of a pencil against the inside curve of that ribbon and give a little push down, toward the bottom of the device. The cable will slip out of the socket mounted to the back of the device. I wonder how you get it back in…

I’m not changing a battery. I need to get to the wheel. It won’t turn. There must be something inside, gumming things up.

There’s a piece of black tape covering the wheel. Starting along the bottom, carefully lift the tape up, toward the screen cover. Do not remove it completely–leave it attached by the grounding strap. Under the tape, a thin metal plate covers the wheel assembly. The plate is secured by three tiny Philips bolts. The metal backing of the wheel assembly is secured with two more Philips bolts.

These bolts are extremely small and easy to lose. Be careful.

There is a plastic ring edged with black tape surrounding the wheel. I pried this ring free and and cleaned it with alcohol and a cotton swab.

The smallest speck of gunk can jamb your Fuze control wheel. Below the wheel is a thin sheet of white plastic. I needed to clean the bottom of the wheel along its periphery, where it comes in contact with the white plastic sheet. I edged a slip of dry paper towel between the wheel and the white plastic. I moistened the paper towel with a swab wet with alcohol, then spun the wheel around. This cleaned and freed the wheel almost immediately. Be sure to clean the wheel surfaces thoroughly before reassembling the device.

This is where things get dicey.

I found that you have to reinsert the ribbon cable BEFORE you screw the control wheel back into place. Otherwise, you’ll never have the leverage needed to get the ribbon cable in its socket. And it’s not hard to accidentally pop the cable free while trying to screw the control wheel back in place. You have to be very careful and patient.

I happened to have a very small but sturdy set of surgical tweezers I could use to work the control wheel’s ribbon cable back into its socket. I don’t know if regular grooming tweezers would have worked. There’s just so little space to work in.

With the ribbon cable back in its socket, I put the plastic ring back around the wheel. I bolted the wheel assembly in place. I bolted the grounding plate on top of the wheel assembly. I carefully put the black tape back into place.

I noticed the device doesn’t snap closed as tightly as it was before I messed with it. Others have found the device in a similar shape after working on it. As mentioned above, this thing isn’t meant to be disassmbled by owners. Don’t do it unless you absolutely have to, or just don’t care if you ruin your device.

The Fuze seems to work, the wheel turns more freely.

Next time, I’ll just buy another. They’re cheap. Taking it apart and putting it back together is nothing short of a royal pain.

That someone could be you.

Actually, I didn’t look at the guide until after my previous post. If you can’t follow something that clear, with all those well-focused pictures, perhaps home electronics repair is not for you. PBC = Printed Circuit Board but except for that bit of dyslexia it’s probably better written than most service manuals.

“The Fuze isn’t made to be taken apart, not by an owner.” I think that’s the point. It’s probably why most portable electronics are generally replaced rather than repaired. A lot of ingenuity goes into packing that little Fuze case with all those electronics and connections. If it were more owner-accessible, no doubt it would have to be considerably larger.

Rather than take the whole thing apart (which could ruin your device, just like it did mine), or risk frying the electronics with water, you could perhaps clean the thing using a method I found in some other post. Basically what you do is get a piece of cloth, such as a towel, get it wet, and place the Fuze on it, facing down. The water *should* seep into the device, and clear away the gunk. Some people have apparently reported that doing this as many as two or three times has helped make the thing work a little better. Of course, there is no guarantee.

Good luck, all :wink: