What to do when N64 Games won't Save?
How to Change Your Nintendo 64 Cartridge Battery?
These are both very common questions with the Nintendo 64 console.
So let's start with the basics.....
Which N64 games have batteries? Do Nintendo 64 games have batteries?
Not all do, but the ones mentioned in the list below do, they use a specific CR2032 single battery with solder pins. Not a regular coin battery.
Some N64 carts use a battery to power the save game chip called SRAM (Static RAM) when not being played. Like the Controller Pak, these games will eventually need to have their save game batteries replaced. N64 games requiring batteries are not that common as other technology was invented to save games, but here’s the list of games that use an internal save game battery.
List of N64 games that use a battery
- 1080 Snowboarding
- Dezaemon 3D (JPN, 768Kbit)
- F-Zero X
- Harvest Moon 64
- Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time, The
- Major League Baseball featuring Ken Griffey Jr.
- Mario Golf
- New Tetris, The
- Ogre Battle 64: Person of Lordly Caliber
- Pocket Monsters Stadium (JPN)
- Resident Evil 2
- Super Smash Bros.
- WCW/NWO Revenge
- WWF: Wrestlemania 2000
Animal Crossing (JPN) uses a battery for the real time clock (RTC) chip.
What are the batteries for in the N64 cartridges?
The batteries inside an N64 cart are to save the game onto a chip and hold the memory while the console is powered off.
What type of battery is in the N64 cartridge?
CR2032 but specifically with solder tabs to connect to the board. The exact ones you need are available here
How long does an N64 save game battery last?
Your n64 cartridge battery life is approximately 15-20 years depending on the quality of the battery.
Nintendo 64 replacement battery
For the replacement battery you'll need a CR2032 battery with tabs for soldering. This is a direct replacement for the N64 cartridge battery. You’ll also need a 3.8mm security screwdriver, commonly called a Game Bit screwdriver.
How to Change Your Nintendo 64 Cartridge Game Save Battery?
You may be wondering how to change your Nintendo 64 cartridge battery, and if it’s difficult? Well, we can confidently say no it’s not too hard and can be done with just some basic tools and knowhow.
Nintendo 64 Game Cartridge Battery Replacement tools list
- CR2032 tabbed battery with solder in pins
- Gamebit screwdriver 3.8mm
- Soldering iron
- Desolder pump or braid
- Solder leaded 60/40
- A steady hand and some time
Open the N64 cartridge
You'll need a 3.8mm Gamebit security screwdriver to open the cartridge. Use it to remove the two screws on the back and open the case.
Remove the metal RF shield
Use a small Phillips screwdriver to remove the small screws at the bottom of this casing.
Locate the battery
The battery is located on the same side of the cartridge as the microchips.
Take a look at the date code if your battery has one, some are original and from 1998 era (98-12 is December 1998).
No wonder they’re flat now and don’t save games.
Desolder the battery tabs
Locate the two large tabs on the other side of the board sticking up from the battery. Heat each up with your soldering iron and use your solder sucker to desolder them.
Solder in the new battery
Your replacement battery has one wide tab and one narrow tab. This makes orientation easier as the battery is not reversible. Solder the new battery in place.
NOTE: The positive + tab is the one on top of the battery.
As always, assembly is the reverse of disassembly. You're ready to play!
N64 cartridge battery step by step replacement guide
If you need some guidance on how to replace your N64 save game battery, watch this tutorial https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=flqv2p9QIOc
If you prefer us to swap the battery for you, just order this service