I’ve had annoying palm-rest squeaking on all the Thinkpads I’ve owned, usually when I rest my hands on the rests to begin typing. The creaking would continue as I increased and decreased pressure on the palm-rest whilst typing.

I only recently took my T430 apart to figure out how to stop the creaking. For me, the noise was coming from the right-hand palm-rest, directly next to the fingerprint sensor and above where the smartcard reader blanking piece sits.

There are two solutions. The first works if the creaking comes from the top palm-rest rubbing where it meets the lower half of the laptop’s body.

The palm-rest hangs over the lower half, and rubbing can occur where they meet. The fix here was to follow Lenovo’s dissassembly guide (and all prior steps) to the point where I had removed the top palm-rest. Then I lined the edges of the lower half of the laptop with sellotape. Then replaced the top and used a scalpul to cut away any spare sellotape which hung out between the two halfs.

The second solution (which you might as well do during the first) is to line any plastic edges with plastic grease. This includes all the areas of raised plastic inside the laptop body which may touch the palm-rest. I greased the associated areas on the palm-rest too and smeared the entire area on the inside of the palm-rest with the grease.

I also noticed the SmartCard blanking piece had some slack and that it could move up and down to make a ‘tapping’ noise, despite being screwed in firmly. Padding the blanking piece with some sellotape also worked well here.

Re-assembled the laptop and everything is great.