Apple Watch Screen Broke? Here’s How to Fix it
Apple Watch Screen Broke? Here’s How to Fix it
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Apple Watch Screen Broke? Here’s How to Fix it

Apple Watch Screen Broke? Here’s How to Fix it

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It’s frustrating to break the screen on any device—but one of the worst devices to break the screen of may be the Apple Watch. These watches are notoriously difficult to repair and service. If you take the right precautions, however, it’s entirely possible to repair a broken Apple Watch screen right at home.


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How to Fix Apple Watch Screen at Home

There are a few reasons why you might want to fix the screen on your Apple Watch. It may have cracked, popped off of the base of the watch, or even become completely unresponsive. The remedy for most issues with an Apple Watch involves replacing the OLED screen and fused digitizer.

It is possible to reuse an intact digitizer in an Apple Watch that merely has a cracked or popped-off screen, but it isn’t advisable. The digitizer is an extremely delicate component. Removing it is possible, as seen in this YouTube tutorial, but the resulting display will likely have defects.

1. Gather the Right Tools

If you’re wondering how to fix your Apple Watch screen, you’ll be pleased to know that it only requires a few tools. First and foremost, you’ll need to purchase a properly sized Apple Watch replacement screen that includes the OLED screen and the digitizer. Many of these kits already include all the tools you’ll need—but every necessary tool is outlined below for your convenience:

  • Heat applicator, such as a heat gun or hair dryer
  • A sharp and precise blade, such as an X-ACTO. It’s recommended to use a blade with a curved edge
  • A delicate and precise tool, such as a 1mm flathead screwdriver
  • Tweezers
  • Y000 driver, if you’re planning to reinstall the Force Touch sensor (potentially necessary if your watch fails to read touch inputs correctly)
  • An electronics adhesive, such as E6000 adhesive

You’ll need to completely power off your Apple Watch before you continue to the next steps.

2. Heat the Screen Adhesive

After you’ve gathered your tools and powered off your Apple Watch, you’re ready to heat the screen adhesive. Take your heat gun or hair dryer and begin to gently apply heat to the screen of your Apple Watch. It’s necessary to heat the screen until it’s slightly too hot to touch. Warming the adhesive will make it easier to pry off the screen in the next step.

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3. Gently Remove the Screen

removing the apple watch screen by applying pressure with an x acto blade

Once the adhesive is adequately warmed, you’re ready to remove the screen. Apply firm pressure directly down along the seam of the Apple Watch screen using the curved edge of your blade. If you’re using a blade with a straight edge, work carefully to ensure you don’t inadvertently scratch the glass. After the glass lifts, slide the opening pick along every edge of the glass to separate it entirely.

It’s vital to slide the pick along the entire perimeter of the watch screen, as any intact adhesive may hamper your effort to remove the screen. Once you’re finished, gently pry up along the bottom edge of the screen. Work very carefully. Though the location depends on your watch model, there’s a cable or set of cables connected to the display—and it’s vital not to break any cable.

lifting the apple watch screen and revealing the display connectors

Place your Apple Watch on an elevated surface, with the cable side of the watch directly situated alongside the edge. Lift the screen and gently pull it to the side without tilting the screen or attempting to break the cable connection. Allow the screen to hang beside the watch as you proceed through the next steps.

Work very carefully to avoid inadvertently separating the force touch sensor, which extends all around the edges of the screen. Adhesive bonds it to the screen and the body. To keep it intact, separate the force touch sensor by inserting your blade along its upper seam.

4. Uninstall the Apple Watch Battery

Removing the screen will give you complete access to the internal components of your Apple Watch. Depending on your model, you may need to remove a few internal components to connect the new display—starting with the battery. Ease the opening pick into the seam between the watch and the right side of the battery and gently pry it away from the case.

You’ll need to rotate the battery counterclockwise (provided the dial is still on the right, rotate it upwards) to expose the underlying connector. Use a delicate tool (such as a plastic opening tool or a 1mm flathead screwdriver) to gently separate the battery from its connector.

In some cases, removing the battery isn’t necessary. The Apple Watch Series 3 repaired in this article houses its display connector under the Taptic Engine cover rather than under the battery. The internal structure of many early Apple Watch models is similar.

Don’t insert the opening pick too far inside the watch, or you risk damaging the system board.

5. Disconnect the Display and Digitizer Cables

reconnecting the display cable connectors inside an apple watch

Once you’ve removed the battery, you’re ready to disconnect the display itself. Lift the screen towards the dial and rotate it such that the lower surface of the glass display faces left. Use a delicate tool to gently release the metal bracket that holds the display and digitizer cables in place, lifting it up toward the screen.

Use the tweezers to hold the bracket in place while you use a miniature 1mm screwdriver to open it. Pull the cover of the bracket toward the display using the tweezers, then carefully disconnect the display and digitizer connectors.

6. Remove the Force Touch Sensor

The force touch sensor should still be in place at this point—but if it was inadvertently damaged, you’ll need to remove it completely. You’ll need to use a Y000 screwdriver to remove the screw holding the force touch sensor connector in place. Next, use a delicate tool to gently push the cable connector outward and disconnect it.

Loosen the force touch sensor adhesive with heat, then use your blade to gently pry the force touch sensor from the case. You can remove any remaining adhesive by applying heat or wiping it away using a delicate cloth dampened with rubbing alcohol.

7. Install the New Force Touch Sensor

applying adhesive before installing the force touch sensor

After you’ve removed all the glue, you’re ready to install the new force touch sensor. Place the force touch sensor face down and use the tweezers to peel away the protective liner. Carefully align the force touch sensor with the case and apply it face down, such that it adheres in perfect alignment with the watch.

Use a tool to apply pressure along the seam of the force touch sensor to ensure it’s perfectly adhered. Finally, gently slide the force touch sensor connector into place using tweezers. Gently press it into the connection socket. Use the Y000 screwdriver to replace the screw meant to hold the connector in place.

installing the new force touch sensor in the apple watch

8. Reconnect the Display and Digitizer Cables

Next, you’re ready to install your new screen. Lay the display over the watch with the bottom face exposed, such that the display and digitizer cables are directly aligned with the connector socket. Push both connectors in place, then tilt the bracket cover such that it lays over the connectors. Gently apply pressure to the top of the bracket until it clicks into place.

9. Reinstall the Apple Watch Battery

Just as the old screen was previously situated, carefully flip the screen toward the left side of the Apple Watch (opposite the dial) and allow it to hang beside the watch as you work. Retrieve the Apple Watch battery and align its cable with the connector socket. Use tweezers to press the cable into place, then gently rotate the battery clockwise (toward yourself) to align it in place.

You’ll need to apply a gentle adhesive (such as an electronics adhesive tab, Tesa 61395, liquid E6000 adhesive, or a peel-n-stick adhesive) before continuing—but first, you must verify that the watch works. Attempt to power the Apple Watch on. If the display is fully functional, proceed to the final steps—otherwise, you should check the cables and components to determine why the display output or touch/crown input isn’t working.

10. Apply the New Screen

Finally, you’re ready to replace the screen. Ensure that the display and digitizer cables aren’t tugged or torn as you move it into position. Once the screen is centered, press down firmly until it’s fixed in place. Wrap rubber bands around the display in both directions and allow the watch to sit for 15 to 30 minutes until the adhesive has fully bonded.

You can find more Apple Watch fixes on iFixit.

Enjoy Your Newly Fixed Apple Watch

If you’re wondering how to replace an iWatch screen or how much is it to fix an Apple Watch screen, you’re probably stricken by how complex and expensive the process seems to be. Rest assured—by following the steps above, you can restore your Apple Watch to full function in just a few hours.

SOURCE : www.makeuseof.com

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