About 4 months ago, I wrote about finding our new Samsung Galaxy S3 smart phones for $42 each at Sam’s Club with a new contract. Yay! But about a month ago, I dropped my phone and it cracked the front glass a little. Oops. Then I dropped it again…double oops. Anyway, my phone definitely needed a new screen…
So, the first little drop was just a short one out of my pocket and onto a parking lot when I was getting out of my car. It left spider-web type cracks in just a tiny part of the bottom left of the glass and one long crack across the screen. But it didn’t affect how it worked. I called 4 different phone repair shops around me here in Houston and received screen repair quotes of $140-$180. Uh, no.
I went online, read a bunch of customer feedback reviews, and bought a $20 screen replacement kit on Amazon. I also bought two $10 cases that got great reviews for protection against basic falls.
But I dropped my phone again a couple of weeks ago before actually using the case (yeah, yeah, I know…). Anyway, that added another spider-web crack area towards the top of the screen. My phone still continued to work, but I knew it was time to use the replacement kit.
The Replacement Process
When I first received the replacement kit, I honestly took one look at the How To video and thought that I was going to have to buy a new phone for sure since I stink at anything that requires that much patience. But my friend, Ivy, has way steadier hands than me and she let me bribe her to help (yay for wine!).
We sat down this past Sunday and I gathered everything we needed and took out the phone’s battery before we started. We ended up needing the replacement kit that came with a few plastic tools, some packing tape, a hairdryer, a box cutter, tweezers, and lens cleaning spray (and WD-40, but the cleaning spray was all we used).
We used a few strips of the tape over the front of the broken screen so it wouldn’t shatter, a hair dryer to heat up the phone to loosen the adhesive, the box cutter to get between the screen and the adhesive, the guitar pick in the tool kit to leverage the screen off, and the tweezers and cleaning spray for cleaning off the junk before putting on the new screen.
Grow a Pair
Last thing, you will want balls of steel if you ever do this. We had to work patiently to get the old screen off without hurting the rest of the phone, but the screen kept cracking, shattering, and just generally died a really gruesome death (see the pics below). Ivy and I thought we had ruined the whole phone for sure for the whole 30-45 minutes that it took to get the old screen off. We only continued out of stubbornness (and we wanted to see what it would look like if we ever finished).
Surprisingly, it looked great once we finally peeled the old screen off completely, and it just took 15-20 minutes of cleaning to get it prepped for the new adhesive screen part. Ivy placed that on with her steady hands and then we just stuck on the new screen. I also immediately put back in the battery and stuck the whole thing into my new case, lol.
In just over an hour, I had what looked like a brand new phone. All of my buttons and the screen itself are working just like before. This literally saved me $120. Totally worth the hour!
Have you ever just cracked your smart phone screen? Would you try using a replacement kit like this?