Smith & Wesson Bodyguard 380 Laser Batteries

The Insight laser on my Smith & Wesson Bodyguard 380 fizzled out.  I have had the gun for several years now.  I function check the laser periodically, like most of my gear, since the Bodyguard is my often carried back-up gun on duty.  I turned the laser on and it produced a weak light.  Then it shut down entirely.  No problem.  Or so I thought.

I fetched my original S&W box and owner’s manual.  There is a tiny Allen wrench in the blue box.  I mean it is super small hex key.  It is nothing you would normally have on your workbench.  The key is specific to adjusting, and also removing, the Insight laser in the receiver of this gun.

After consulting the manual, I unloaded the firearm, field stripped it, and attacked the laser assembly.  There is a small set screw that holds the laser body down in the forward portion of the receiver.  The screw does not come out, which is nice since you will not lose it.  Run the screw out with the Allen wrench.  When it is sticking up a bit, use the firearm’s takedown lever to gently pry up the screw head.  This will pull the laser assembly up and out of the receiver.

When I did this on my gun, I found that the batteries, battery tray, and entire laser were covered in wet red rust and battery acid!  Oh, shizz!  You know me, I’m really OCD about my gear.  I freaked out, thinking the Insight laser was toast.  It wasn’t.  I meticulously cleaned up the laser and receiver, installed two fresh Energizer 357’s, and the red light fired right up.  Whew.

I immediately went to check the batteries in the three Crimson Trace Lasergrips on my revolvers and the ArmaLaser TR1 on my Kel-Tec.  All were just fine.  While I had the Bodyguard 380 apart, I cleaned it (yeah, it was already clean) and lubed it.  I also adjusted the laser down just a quarter turn so it was again dead on at 7 yards.

I’ll tuck the Bodyguard 380 into the holster in my ballistic vest in about an hour when I go to work, happy in the knowledge that it is again ready for immediate action.


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19 Responses to Smith & Wesson Bodyguard 380 Laser Batteries

  1. Pingback: Update to LAPD Smith & Wesson Bodyguard 380 Review |

  2. Robert says:

    Great articles, I was wondering what holster do you use under your vest for the BG380

    • Randall says:


      I have one of those Uncle Mike’s nylon holsters that threads into the ballistic vest straps. I want to make a custom kydex version for myself one of these days…


  3. R A says:

    Great helpful descriptions and even greater photos, Randall. Cudos. We can see actually what area you’re describing in the text. Wondering (3rd from last pic) if once the batts are visualized by lifting the cover, if one could use some surgical hemostats or mosquito forceps and pull out/replace the batts. It would appear to negate the need to recalibrate/align the laser since it and it’s housing are not removed. Just a thought.? The clamps/hemostats/forceps are available at Radio Shack/Harbor Freight/Tool Town type stores pretty cheap. It looks like there’s enough area to grab on to from your picture. Your review/report on the BG 380 has been most helpful. Good to know there are no feed issues with it even with heavy use…unlike my KelTec.
    Thank you for your contribution. Be safe.

  4. My 380 bodyguard laser will not work, I changed the batteries, but it did no good, tried more new batteries and it still did not work. Does anyone know where you can get the insight lasor? Tried Smith & Wesson website, & many other places, but could not find them listed.

  5. Thanks Randall,
    Will let you know when I find out.

  6. mslady269 says:

    Thanks for posting this. My laser is weak and I need to swap the batteries. I love visual aids and these are great.

  7. I called the manufacturer and they looked it up and quoted me a price of $173.00. They said if it was less than a year old that they would replace it free, but we had to pay postage there and back, plus all other things that might occur.

  8. Jules Stein says:

    Could you post a picture of the alignment of the batteries in the laser.I cannot locate the how the positive and negative sides are placed.

    • Randall says:


      If you look closely at the second to last photo, you can see the batteries oriented with the positive (or flat side) on the left side of the battery tray with the laser diode facing away from you. That should git ‘er done!


  9. Chris norris says:

    Thanks for posting – especially with the detailed photos !! Very helpful in getting my laser out and batteries replaced.

  10. dan ammann says:

    I donot have the allen wrench to remove the laser assem. bought the gun used. do you know what size the allen wrench is ? or where I can buy one ? thanks. DAN

  11. Jhoward says:

    Just a heads up for anyone reading this – I contacted SW and told them politely how disappointed I was in laser and how it was falling apart – cheap orange stick in switches- they asked my address and send me a brand new much much better one with much better red buttons on side to turn it on and off free. My gun was a few years old already – didn’t matter

  12. Julio felix says:

    How much would a 380 body guard street value price be worth with the laser dead and just the clip?

  13. Brian says:

    I have the same gun but had two insight lasers go bad. Smith and Wesson sent me a replacement laser that was a Crimson Trace. It is working just fine but due for a battery change soon. My only other issue is that the retaining screw stripped out the frame where it secures so I have electrical tape holding it till I get brave enough to mail the gun to Smith and Wesson for a proper repair. I believe one insight laser had cleaning oil enter it causing failure and the other….I have no idea. It just stopped working.

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