Some weeks ago I encountered the 1TB HDD in my iMac died a slow death. First I couldn't access the data anymore and then the disk was mounted and unounted once in a while. This resulted in a very annoying click sound every few minutes and it drove me crazy. Now, as I got the right tools for the job, I replaced the broken HDD with a spare 500GB SSD. This is how it worked out.
There aren't a lot tools you need. I strongly recommend watching some videos on how to open the iMac's case. It very depends on the model you have if there a just two or more cables attached to the display. In my case there were four. I managed to disconnect only one cable (from which I don't even know what it is for) to access the HDD which was placed in the middle.
- Torx 10x80 (8) - to unscrew all of the 8 screws for the display mount
- Tweezers (angled) - to hold the screws in place and to avoid that they will be catched by the magnets for the front glass plate
- Tweezers (straight) - to disconnect and re-connect flat cables
- Inbus or any other angled metal tool to pull the display out of the case
- Other screw drivers depending on the mount for the hard disk - usually small Phillips screwdrivers
- 2 Suction cups - to pull the glass plate off the case (held by magnets)
Some pictures of the process
Unmounting the glass plate
I practices that a few days before I did the real job today.
Lifting the display
I recommend a spare screwdriver to keep the display in place
Detaching necessary flat cables
This is the tricky part - be careful!
Removing the old HDD
Placing the new SSD
As I wasn't able to re-use the mounts of the old HDD I just glued the SSD with thick double sided tape - should do the job.
Et voilà - here we go again
I needed to install Macs Fan Control as the SSD doesn't provide a temp sensor like the old HDD did. Just install it and set the HDD fan sensor to manual RPM to keep the machine quiet.