How to Repair or Replace broken Smartphone LCD

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We’ve all been there; we’ve all been careless enough to witness our smartphones break, shatter, and even worse, just become a brick.  Maybe we’re not careless because it ages but still, a lot of us have experienced a broken screen or a broken LCD.

Having to pay for the replacement of this is too much of a cost.  I bet that once you read this, you will be confident enough to do it on your own.  So, how do you replace or repair a broken screen or LCD of a smartphone?

Broken phone screen
Image credit: Flickr

Know the problem first

So the first step in repairing anything is that you first have to know what the problem is.  You can’t just go dissecting your phone not knowing what’s wrong because you’ll end up breaking it more so you really have to know what’s wrong with it.

The Screen

You will know if the only thing that’s broken is the screen when you see cracks along the face of your phone but it does not affect how you use it; if it has cracks but you can still pass the touch test, if you can still type properly, use it accordingly then you wouldn’t have a big problem


If your phone has spots, or if the touch doesn’t seem to be going right, then the problem is not with the screen alone anymore.  The digitizer is the layer in which it is the one responsible for converting analog signals into digital signals; the way you see your devices flow naturally, that’s what the digitizer is.  In the simplest terms, the digitizer is the one that senses your touch on a touch screen device.  It is the one that covers the LCD; the layer above it.

You need to be careful because in order to replace the LCD or the Digitizer, you have to carefully detach the one from another.  However, it is not that bad to just replace the whole display, if possible.

Materials: For screen (glass only) (No LCD & Digitizer)

  • Screen replacement – available at Lazada (aff link)
  • Screen protector – available at Lazada (aff link)
  • Heat gun or blow dryer
  • Glass or surface cleaner
  • Precision tools
  • Flat opening tools or guitar pick
  • Paper towels


1. Remove the battery, micro SD card and sim card.

2. Place the screen protector so that the shards would not scatter when you try to carefully open the screen.

3. Use the heat gun or blow dryer to heat the screen with the protector; make sure to heat the surface evenly. This can take you 3-5 minutes.

4. Start at the top corner part of the phone because starting at the bottom may require you to be extra careful because you might damage the receptors for the home and back buttons.

5. Open the screen by using precision tools and/or flat opening tools to carefully lift the screen up from the phone.

6. It’s better to have someone hold the heat source for you. The heat source should be targeted to where you are currently trying to detach the screen.

7. Do steps 4-6 carefully until you’ve removed the screen completely. *Remove the screen from top to bottom to avoid disturbance in the receptors of the home and back buttons.

8. The glue from the tape of the screen to the display is a LOT. Try and remove the glue but leave glue on the 4 corners of the display.

9. Clean the screen display by using the guitar pick wrapped in the paper towel and use glass or surface cleaner or rubbing alcohol to do the job.

10. Place the replacement on the screen. To be more precise and accurate, try to use a suction cup to avoid displacement.

11. Check if everything is working.

Materials: For replacement of whole display

  • The replacement (LCD, Digitizer, or the whole display) – available at Lazada (aff link)
  • Precision tools
  • Flat opening tool
  • Small cup
  • Double-sided tape
  • Heat gun or blow dryer


1. Remove the battery, sim card, and micro SD card.

2. Unscrew all of the screws. Make sure you do not lose any screw because each one is important.  Place the screw on the small cup to avoid losing them.

3. Take off all the connectors. There is one black screw at the bottom (where the sim card and micro SD card slot are located); unscrew it.

4. Carefully heat up the screen and run the opening tool along the edge to remove the screen. Be careful on detaching the bottom part of the screen because you may disrupt the receptors of the home and back buttons.  Start removing from top to bottom.

5. After detaching the glass, go and heat up the lcd and run the opening tool again along the edges.

6. If you are replacing the whole screen display, you can go ahead and do what you can to remove it but

  • If you are replacing just the LCD or the digitizer, carefully remove it to avoid breakage.

7. Scrape off the remaining felt paper or residue of the double-adhesive or glue if you are replacing the whole screen but

  • If you are replacing only the digitizer or LCD
    • If the LCD, carefully detach the digitizer and attach the replacement LCD to it. Scrape off the remains of glue and felt paper that’s covering the surface.
    • If the digitizer, carefully detach it from the LCD and attach the replacement to the LCD.
  • Test it before permanently sticking everything back in place. ALWAYS REMEMBER TO TEST IT OUT FIRST.

Video Tutorial (Screen Glass only)

Video credit to YouTube Channel Ron I

Disclaimer: Some of the links above with the mark (aff link) is an affiliate link, this means when you buy through that link, I receive a small commission without additional charge to you.

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