How to Remove the HTC Thunderbolt's Back Cover

01
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Getting the HTC Thunderbolt Cover Off

Photo by Jason Hidalgo

Thunder, thunder, thunderbolt … Hooooo!

Boy, that was a terrible pun. Fortunately, I ain’t a comedian. (As for those who didn’t get the pun, well, you really aren’t missing much.)

Anywho, it’s time for yet another battery cover tutorial, this time for Verizon’s HTC Thunderbolt. If the Thunderbolt looks suspiciously familiar, that’s because it’s kinda’ like the brother of Sprint’s EVO 4G and AT&T’s HTC Inspire. Yes, that would be the same HTC Inspire that inspired me to take in more calcium after I nearly broke my nails trying to open its cover.

Although the Thunderbolt is still kind of persnickety to open, I had a bit of an easier time with this one. Or maybe my nails just got stronger. hey, it could be worse. At least this HTC phone has back cover you can remove unlike the newer HTC One M8 and M9, which both feature a unibody design. Good luck changing the battery on those suckers.

Anywho, start by getting a nail into that upper slot for prying leverage just like in the photo (yikes, looks like somebody needs to slather some moisturizer on his hands...). If your index finger has just about the same paper cup-crushing power as Mr. Burns from the Simpson’s, then feel free to use your thumbs. Make sure to use both hands for extra leverage.

02
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Loosen the Cover from the Side

Photo by Jason Hidalgo

Now like your bright future, I’m pretty sure there are a host of possibilities for where you can go from this point. But the Thunderbolt I used seemed to naturally open up on the sides much easier. So who am I to oppose nature’s calling, right? (Snicker)

So basically just work your way around the phone and loosen the sides then down the bottom.

03
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The Exposed Back of the HTC Thunderbolt

Photo by Jason Hidalgo

Voila. Your phone is now just about as exposed as a congressman with an ill-advised photo on Craigslist. Stay classy, people.

From this point, you’ll be able to remove the battery, MicroSD card and 4G SIM card. The first order of business is to remove the battery since it’s blocking the other two.

04
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Removing the HTC Thunderbolt Battery

Photo by Jason Hidalgo

To remove the battery, you’ve got to start from the bottom. You know, kinda’ like my career... Just get one of your nails under there and then pull up. In case you're looking, Amazon has replacement batteries for the device.

05
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Removing the MicroSD Card of a Verizon Thunderbolt

Photo by Jason Hidalgo

Unless you’ve got the vision of a mole, you should be able to find the MicroSD card slot, no problem. Fortunately, I still remember the lessons from my HTC Inspire tutorial at this point. That is, to take out the card, don’t try to pull and pry, OK? It’s actually spring loaded, so just push it in and it’ll click out. That’ll teach those who say that I never learn...

06
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Removing the 4G SiM Card of a Verizon Thunderbolt

Photo by Jason Hidalgo

The SIM card tray, on the other hand, is something that you’ll have to pry out a bit. Just get your nails on the metal side thingamajig (yep, that's the best explanation my English minor self can come up with) that sort of extends upward. Pull back on that and the SIM card tray will slide out.

07
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Taking Out the SIM Card from the SIM Tray

Photo by Jason Hidalgo

With the tightly fitting SIM card tray out, you’re likely thinking, “How the heck do I get the card itself out?” Fortunately, this is another trick that I learned while working on the HTC Inspire. All you do is flip the phone upside down and the SIM card will fall out. Just be sure to have your hand placed right below to catch it so you don’t feel like an idiot because your card does a J-Lo and hits on the floor.

08
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Putting Back the HTC Thunderbolt Cover

Photo by Jason Hidalgo

To put everything back, just do everything in reverse order with the battery going last. Just make sure to align the battery connectors properly so it fits right in. (Why yes, I'm actually running out of puns and snarky comments.)

09
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Getting a Secure Fit With the HTC Thunderbolt Cover

Photo by Jason Hidalgo

For this step, I basically aligned the battery from the bottom and started pressing from the sides up. Be warned that the bottom part may need, um, a bit of encouragement to fit properly. If it sticks out like a sore thumb, just press on it until it clicks in all nice and smooth.

10
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Getting the HTC Thunderbolt Cover Back in Place

Photo by Jason Hidalgo

Finally, just make sure to press on the sides and any other gap that’s sticking out. If you’ve got any gaps that look like Michael Strahan’s front teeth, then that means that part of the cover still isn’t secured quite properly. Once you’ve got a smooth line going all around, then that means you’re all good to go.

Jason Hidalgo is About.com’s Portable Electronics expert. Yes, he is easily amused. Follow him on Twitter @jasonhidalgo and be amused, too.