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SNES battery replacement for games that won’t save

Like a 1up for your SNES cartridge.
howchoo   (467)
September 20, 2023
7 minutes


You'll Need 7

What you'll need
Solder x 1
Flux x 1
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It’s never too late to replay your favorite Super Nintendo games. But it has been a while since these games were new. You may find your save file isn’t working and new save files aren’t saving on the SNES cartridge. This is likely due to an old battery. Failing batteries won’t necessarily affect the gameplay—but they will affect save data.

In this guide, we’ll go over how to replace old Super Nintendo batteries so you can continue saving your progress into the future.

Removing the existing battery will eliminate all current save data. Proceed with caution.

Which SNES games use a battery?

Not every SNES game uses a battery. The cartridges that have them use the power to store save data and unlockable content. You can find a complete list of SNES games that use a battery on DKoldies.

Note: This guide is only for SNES games, visit this guide to change a NES cartridge battery.

1 – Unscrew the SNES cartridge

Use a 3.8mm SNES security bit screwdriver to remove the screws from the cartridge. The cartridge shell should easily separate. There are two screws used during this step.

2 – Remove the board from the SNES cartridge shell

There are no tabs holding the board in place, it rests inside the cartridge. Lift the board from the shell.

3 – Desolder the old battery

Flip the board over so the battery is facing down.

Use a soldering iron to heat the old solder that holds the current battery in place. Remove the melted solder with a solder sucker. When enough has been removed, the battery can be wiggled loose.

4 – Fit the new battery into place

Fit the new battery inside the SNES battery slot.

You’ll need a this CR2032 battery with pre-soldered tabs for this step. Be sure to line up the positive and negative ends properly. Use the images in this guide for reference.

I’m using a CR2025, which will technically work, except that it has slightly different tabs that will need to be clipped. We had some left over after replacing a Game Boy cartridge battery.

🛈 You cannot use just any CR2032. It must have pre-soldered tabs. Soldering to a battery can cause it to explode.

5 – Solder the new battery to the SNES board

Flip over the board and solder the new battery into place. I always recommend using a bit of flux when soldering.

6 – Screw the shell together

Using the 3.8mm SNES security bit, screw the cartridge shell back together. There are two screws used during this step.

7 – Test the finished product

Who’s up for some NBA Live ’97?

It’s time to test your progress. Load up your SNES game and play enough to warrant a save. Our goal is to create new save data on the cartridge. After you save the game, restart the SNES and see if it loads.

Congratulations! You’ve added a few more years to the life of your SNES game.


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