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Thread: iphone 3gs lcd not turning on?

  1. #1
    Default iphone 3gs lcd not turning on?
    Hi guys. im sure there are a few threads on this around, ive looked at a few of them, but none have helped me. maybe someone else can.

    A friend of mine broke his 3gs awhile back. basically he broke the glass, but was still using the phone for awhile. then one day he came to me for help because someone accidently spilt water on his phone, and it wouldnt work, he had nothing but a white screen. long story short, he ended up buying a new phone and just gave me his to fix and keep.

    so i did a itunes restore (using DFU recovery mode), restoring it to the latest 4.1 firmware. after i did so, it pops right up on itunes, everything looks fine, just theres nothing on the lcd. not even a white screen. BUT i can touch the screen to unlock, dial numbers, etc (you can hear the sound)

    so i ordered parts for it, online via ebay, and got to work. i put the new screen/digitizer in, works like a charm. but the lcd simply refuses to turn on still (this is a brand new lcd ordered as well, by the way, old one ended up breaking)

    ive stripped the entire phone down. double checked everything. there seems to be no water damage or damage of any sorts on the mainboard. ive cleaned the lcd plug port several times, i even did a couple power+home button resets, but just cant seem to get it to work. any ideas? :-\

  2. #2
    Retired Moderator iYeow's Avatar
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    You motherboard has been shorted out, you may need to replace the motherboad as well.

  3. #3
    bummer. thats what i was afraid to hear. looks like ill be putting more money into this thing... grrr....

    are you sure though? because as I mentioned before, everything else works fine. vibrator, silent, home button, power button, os responds to touch screen (unlock sounds, dial sounds, can even make phone calls and talk back n forth, etc) i even plugged into itunes and using the built in app manager thing was able to move the icons around, etc (could move phone app from point a to point b, tap it blindly via touch screen and still launch it) so everything else works great. :-\

    anyways, thanks for the fast response yeow202.

  4. #4
    Retired Moderator iYeow's Avatar
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    If the screen is not powered ON, then you wouldn't be able to tap stuffs that works. So your Screen seems OK but check if there are any bulbs or leds that light up the screen. Check also the voltage to screen light part.
    It is also possible the LCD screen you bought is not compatible with the original.

  5. #5
    iPhone? More like MyPhone
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    Sounds to me like the water damage has done something to the mainboard. Most likely there is damage at the LCD connector that you are not seeing. I see it 100x a month.

    If you ordered a brand new screen and it still doesn't work.. you have 2 possibilities.

    1) The new screen is DOA
    2) Mainboard is damaged

    Do you have a way to test the LCD on another device?


    (Just throwing this out there.. I buy broken iPhone's for parts - IF interested PM me)

  6. #6
    Thanks for the replies guys. unfortunately no i have no way other phone to test it with. i have an iphone 4 that i use as my main phone. the main reason i wanted this one was it was free, and i planned to use it as a backup, and for my girlfriend to play with so she dont steal mine for solitaire or skeeball lol.

    i googled around just to see what i could find and came across a page with some people stating various repair attempts for backlighting issues (not totally related, since my lcd just doesnt turn on at all, but the backlight doesnt work either) and figured since i had nothing to lose, and given suggestions that its the mainboard, i stripped the phone down to the mainboard again, and using a motorized toothbrush and some rubbing alcohol, attempted to "clean" any sort of residue like corrosion, etc, and then drying with a hair dryer (i was careful lol) and then re-assembling. still nothing.

    like i said though the phone works fine. this is gonna sound stupid, but i wanted to try and test it out anyway: i spent the last hour using the phones "screenshot" feature to jailbreak, install cydia, and then install tvout 2 mirror out onto the device. just for fun i want to show you guys some pictures to show you what i mean. i took these with my iphone 4 lol. as you can see, the phone itself works flawlessly. weird. (sorry for the dark and bland shots, its late and dark at time of posting this lol) also, these are all taken from my tv thanks to tvout 2 mirror out, and a tv out cable.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails -img_0189.jpg   -img_0191.jpg   -img_0192.jpg   -img_0193.jpg   -img_0194.jpg  

  7. #7
    IRepairIndy,

    So I took another look like you said. On the LCD plug on the mainboard, theres been this sort of "dark tint" I noticed on the soldering points that I ignored up till now. At first glance it looks fine like maybe it was just darker than the rest, or some sort of film from when the original LCD broke. After "cleaning" the board I mentioned before, the film is still there. So looking at it compared to the rest of the soldering joints on the board I figure It couldn't just be a coincidence since EVERY OTHER point looked fine. Taking a magnifying glass, it looks as thuough part of the solder is gone or burnt? It is just the parts onthere are so small it's freakin hard to tell for sure even with the glass. I'm gonna take a closer look tonight (currently at work, and typing this from my phone) and if so I think I'm gonna attempt to resolder those darker solder points. Yea I know it's damn near impossible, but what have I got to lose? What's an iPhone without a screen? Lol

  8. #8
    iPhone? More like MyPhone
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    Yep man... That's water damage.
    iRepair Indy

  9. #9
    Bummer... There was like no corrosion or moisture anywhere even when he gave it to me lol. I'll post a pic or two of the plug to show what I mean tonight. What u think of my chances fixing it? Lol

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by unvaluablespace View Post
    Bummer... There was like no corrosion or moisture anywhere even when he gave it to me lol. I'll post a pic or two of the plug to show what I mean tonight. What u think of my chances fixing it? Lol
    0%

    lol

    Does the phone happen to be under warranty still?

  11. #11
    Lol nah he got it when the 3gs' first came out. Plus it's obvious its been opened, messed with, etc.

    And LOL@ "0%"

    That's what I figured too... :P

  12. #12
    Sell it on eBay and say for parts and that you don't know what's wrong(even if you do this is eBay) just that it won't turn off and got a little wet, this will help you to get the most money

  13. #13
    Lol hope you guys have a good laugh at this one:

    So I get home, got all ready to attempt the unthinkable, and suddenly when I look at the board everything starts getting smaller than I remembered! Lol!

    But, I went in anyway, plugged in the iron (dumb idea I know) and as it's steaming and heated up, went in real close ready for the kill and it just looked so god awful I gave up before I even tried. "no way in HELL I'm getting that big point inthere!" :P haha without proper tools this is a fail waiting to happen!

    BenderRodriguez,

    Yeah I'm thinking I may do that. Unless I can find a cheap mainboard somewhere down the road. Would be nice to have an extra toy laying around to play with :P

  14. #14
    You could also try your luck with buying a for parts one online just make sure the board works, but in the end you might be paying just a little less then a new iPhone 3GS 8g which is either $99 or $199 I forget

  15. #15
    Retired Moderator iYeow's Avatar
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    The dark spot is definitely a short due to water damage or something else in the component. You can try solder it back and hope the screen lights up.

  16. #16
    With a contract. I already own an iPhone 4. This was just a fun project as a backup and for my girl to have her own "ipod touch" in the meantime lol. Oh well :P

  17. #17
    Retired Moderator iYeow's Avatar
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    Here in Canada, we need a 3 years contract, i bought my 3g one and half year ago and not eligible for upgrade so i went out to Apple store and paid full price for iphone 4 , very pricey tho.

  18. #18
    Quote Originally Posted by iYeow View Post
    Here in Canada, we need a 3 years contract, i bought my 3g one and half year ago and not eligible for upgrade so i went out to Apple store and paid full price for iphone 4 , very pricey tho.
    Ouch that sucks, AT&T is a 2 Year contract for cheaper upgrade

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