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  • HOW TO: Take Apart the iPhone 3G/3G[S]
    This guide is to help with repairs on the iPhones 3G and 3G[S].

    The steps are virtually the same on both, and I will mention where they differ. I will be working on a 16gb 3G[S] - lets get started.

    Ok first thing - the supplies you will need:
    • Small phillips screwdriver
    • Suction cup w/ pull ring
    • Case opening tool

    I also recommend having a nice clean and clear work space, and to lay the screws and parts out as you pull them to keep them in order and to make sure you don't forget or lose anything when putting the phone back together.

    Now to start work on the phone itself. First thing you will need to do is take out the two small screws at the bottom of the phone. They are on both sides of the dock connector.



    Once both screws are taking out take your suction cup and stick it towards the bottom of the screen by the home button and lift hard enough to pull it up but not to hard to rip it right out of the phone. Now if you don't have a suction cup, no worries you can do the same thing pry putting your pry tool in between the glass and the bezel and prying up gently.

    You will see that the screen is connected to the logic board there are 3 ribbons holding it in place. They are numbered 1, 2, and 3. The first two just pop right out, but ribbon 3 has a latch that will need to be lifted up and the ribbon will slide out. Now the screen is disconnected. If you just need to replace the screen stop here!



    Now that you have the screen disconnected you have can have a look at the guts of the iPhone. (Not too much there for something that is so amazing huh?) Looking at it you will see 8 screws that you can see have a copper circle around them. One of them is hidden under the "do not remove" sticker - if you remove this sticker to get the screw, you have voided warranty. Take out the 8 screws. And pop the last of the numbered ribbons (the only major difference in the whole take apart is that the 3G only has 6 ribbons and 3G[S] has 7).

    3G


    3G[S]


    Once you have taken the screws out and popped the ribbons take the logic board out I find this easiest by pulling from the bottom and lifting up like illustrated below.



    The battery is just glued into place - there is a pull tab to lift. I find that the tab is too weak for the glue so I take my pry tool or a butter knife and gently pry up on the battery til it pops off.



    Next is the dock connector - these are very easy. There are 3 screws; one at the top and 2 down by the bezel just unscrew all 3 and lift it out.



    Now for the hard part: the flex ribbon. There are 10 screws holding it all in place 2 for the power button, 1 for the headphone jack, 3 for the volume toggle, 2 for the mute toggle, and 2 to hold the ribbons in place. Take your time with these and don't get frustrated - they are a pain and at weird angles. Also, the screws are very small and short so try not to lose any.






    Looks pretty empty now:



    You're almost done! All that's left is taking the LCD off the digitizer. There are 6 screws holding them together; 1 at the top and 5 along the side there is tape covering them. Just peel that away to expose them.





    Once all 6 are out what i like to do is at the bottom of the LCD is a little metal tab gently left up on it with you figure nail and just work the LCD out of the digitizer. Take your time not to crack the LCD - too much pressure will cause this.




    And congrats! You have completely taken apart your 3G or 3G[S]. To put back together, read backwards.
    This article was originally published in forum thread: HOW TO: Take Apart the iPhone 3G/3G[S] started by Cowboy View original post
    Comments 21 Comments
    1. Stray's Avatar
      Stray -
      Very nice guide
    1. c0dy's Avatar
      c0dy -
      Man, I'm glad they finally made a guide for this.
    1. Mes's Avatar
      Mes -
      Good work
    1. Cowboy's Avatar
      Cowboy -
      Thanks guys
    1. vantheman169's Avatar
      vantheman169 -
      Quote Originally Posted by c0dy View Post
      Man, I'm glad they finally made a guide for this.
      Nice guide but you act like this is the first one.
    1. ADF's Avatar
      ADF -
      Quote Originally Posted by vantheman169 View Post
      Nice guide but you act like this is the first one.
      He knows it's not... This is the mmi I remember & I like it.
    1. suppup's Avatar
      suppup -
      You get that phone a little wet before?
    1. Cowboy's Avatar
      Cowboy -
      Yup and fixed it lol
    1. iJasonTATE's Avatar
      iJasonTATE -
      Successful! Thanks.
    1. billywockeez's Avatar
      billywockeez -
      dude..that's awesome.. thanks.. now i can fix my 3G on my own
    1. Jabbacks's Avatar
      Jabbacks -
      What is the margin of error on this for first timers?
    1. Cowboy's Avatar
      Cowboy -
      As long as you go slow DVD don't get frustrated then slim
    1. markster777's Avatar
      markster777 -
      hey all
      I have a iphone with cracked glass, but nowhere is there screws to remove at the base like all the other iphones I have repaired
      Can any one help me with this?

      Thank in advance
      Mark
    1. Simon's Avatar
      Simon -
      There aren't even screw holes at the bottom?
    1. Cowboy's Avatar
      Cowboy -
      No screws just pop the screen up then
    1. raduga's Avatar
      raduga -
      Quote Originally Posted by markster777 View Post
      hey all
      I have a iphone with cracked glass, but nowhere is there screws to remove at the base like all the other iphones I have repaired
      Can any one help me with this?

      Thank in advance
      Mark
      Hey,
      what model?
      what rev?

      Or are we supposed to guess?
    1. Cowboy's Avatar
      Cowboy -
      Well it's titled 3G/3GS take apart
    1. Harryafc's Avatar
      Harryafc -
      thanks cowboy!!! just used your tutorial and it worked a charm!!

      heres a little video i made of the process, not sure how useful it is but anyway...

      FIX IPHONE 3G/3GS in 1:30 - YouTube
    1. Cowboy's Avatar
      Cowboy -
      Thanks for the vid
    1. Harryafc's Avatar
      Harryafc -
      I've just done another iPhone rebuild on another 3G and after putting it all back together this part is left over? What /where is this menna go? The phone seems to be working fine otherwise!