Before ripping open your iPhone, it’s necessary to exhaust all mild fixes. If the screen is cracked the problem is readily apparent, but if a gate or button stops working, there are ever a few fixes worth trying that do not involve screwdrivers. Read more about, what are iPhone Problems, iPhone Repair in Los Angeles, and How to Fix Them on Your Own.
Finally, if you have never removed a wire before it is a bad idea for fixing your iPhone to be your first DIY microelectronics project — maybe start with something that won’t destroy a $1000 phone. I have enough experience messing around with the interiors of electronic devices (like putting a Raspberry Pi into an amp) that I’m comfortable taking apart my iPhone – but if you are not in the same position, doing it yourself probably won’t be worth it. Happily, the skills you need are simple to learn — you can even do it with YouTube.
WHAT YOU NEED TO FIX AN IPHONE
Apple’s devices are very nicely manufactured. You are not expected to be ready to open them and play throughout with the insides; the rusty Phillips head screwdriver in your toolbox is not going to be able to deal with the screws on your iPhone and prying open the screen with a knife is just a bad idea. To fix your iPhone correctly, you’ll need special tools.
To start, you’ll need a set of essential prying tools and electronics screwdrivers. These are cheap and work for most customer electronics, not just iPhones. I used this 23 piece set from Amazon.co.uk.
You can use the necessary tools to open an iPhone, but an iSclack Opening Tool is a real way to do it without damaging anything. You can get one from iFixit or iParts4U.
You will also need a clean, static electricity free workspace. An anti-static mat on your kitchen table is enough.
Where to Get Tools and Parts
Just as a regular screwdriver cannot open an iPhone, you can’t just pull up a replacement screen in your neighborhood appliance store. You need to get the ingredients from dedicated retailers.
If you are in the US, iFixit is the best spot to get parts. They have also started an EU store which is much good depending.
If you are in the UK, iParts4U is a great store to use and offers free performance on larger orders. Both shops stock all the most popular iPhone components.
WHAT CAN AND CAN’T BE FIXED
A lot of current iPhone problems can be fixed yourself: dead batteries, cracked screens, stuck home buttons, broken ports, failing microphones, crapped out cameras, and disconnected speakers can all be fixed with parts you can find online.
The main thing that can’t be fixed is damage to the iPhone’s logic board. There’s no way to swap the RAM or CPU if they start to go, so if the logic board is gone, you will need a new phone.
If your iPhone still turns on and usually runs then you can fix whatever other problems there are. If it won’t do that or continually crashes after a drop or spill, it’s best used as a paperweight. Fortunately, this is unique.
Even something that might seem unfixable like water damage can be repaired as long as the deduction board is unharmed. Water enters first through the speaker grill and ports, damaging those components. If it doesn’t penetrate deeper, replacing them should be enough to get your phone back running.
WHERE TO FIND GUIDES
Cutting open your phone and fiddling around with the interiors trying to fix it is a method for tears. Before starting you need to hunt down the right director for the problem you have.
Google is always a right place to start, particularly for non-invasive fixes. Google was where I turned to work and fix my iPhone’s problem before replacing any parts. Some of the advice in this guide to Google search will help you get relevant results.
If Google isn’t turning up any simple fixes, or you try them, and it does nothing, then you’ll need a guide on how to open and repair your phone. The best place to find them is iFixit: they have guides on how to improve every example of iPhone released.
Some people might prefer to get by watching a video rather than reading a guide. YouTube has a load of great improvement videos. I’d recommend reading the guide then searching YouTube for a video to watch someone go through the process than understanding the written guide while you repair your own iPhone.
Repairing your iPhone yourself is surprisingly simple. If you are happy with basic electronics, it is well within your grip. The choice to do it is a little confusing. You can make a combination of things and, on newer iPhones, buying the parts yourself may not be much lower than getting it officially repaired, especially once you factor in the costs of specialized tools you will likely only use once.
If you choose to do it yourself, you will need those specific tools and replacement parts to ensure you don’t damage your iPhone. Luckily, these are simple to get online and are useful for repairing most consumer electronics.
Whatever you do, don’t dive in and start messing around with your iPhone’s insides without a guide. The best place to find a complete one is iFixit though YouTube is also good. Have you ever repaired your own iPhone? How did it go? Let us know in the comments.