In this post I show how I replaced broken screen on my son’s iPod Touch 4th generation (with camera).
The screen was cracked very badly in many different places making it hard to use.
I have never fixed any iPod before. This was my first iPod related repair.
For this repair you’ll need the following:
1. New iPod Touch 4th generation screen. New replacement screen/glass/digitizer assembly available on eBay.
2. A metal spudger for screen removal.
I wouldn’t have attempted this repair without watching the following iPod Touch screen replacement tutorial:
OK, let’s go through the screen replacement procedure step-by-step:
Power off the device.
I applied some transparent scotch tape on the cracked screen to keep all broken pieces together when the screen is removed.
Start separating the old screen from the bottom cover using a metal spudger.
Carefully insert the spundger between the screen and cover and slowly move it along the side.
You should insert the spundger on the bottom of the iPod (where the home button is located). It’s explained very well in the video I mentioned at the beginning of this post.
Separate the broken screen from the iPod bottom cover.
There are two cables connecting the screen/digitizer assembly to the circuit board:
- the digitizer cable.
- the screen cable.
Here’s a close up picture of the cables.
Cut the digitizer cable (1). The new new digitizer cable comes with the new screen.
When I lifted up the broken screen, the screen cable (2) got disconnected by itself. If it doesn’t disconnect by itself, you can unplug the cable connector using the spundger.
Remove the home button from the cracked screen. You’ll have to transfer this button to the new screen later.
Separate the metal bracket from the cracked screen.
This bracket attaches the screen assembly to the iPod cover. You’ll have to transfer the bracket to the new screen.
Remove all broken glass from the bracket.
Clean up the bracket. I’ll be applying new adhesive to the bracket when it’s ready to be transferred to the new screen.
It’s not necessary to remove the old adhesive if it’s still in good shape and sticky.
I had many pieces of broken glass stuck to the bottom cover.
Lots of broken glass on the top.
and on the bottom.
Remove all broken glass from the bottom cover.
NOTE: it’s very important to remove ALL broken glass pieces from the iPod.
If you forger to remove a piece, you can crack the new screen while installing it back into the iPod.
While looking at the internal iPod components very closely I found a small spring located by the camera module bracket. I’m not sure about the purpose of this spring, but be careful and do not loose it.
I just thought it’s worth mentioning.
Insert the spundger between the metal bracket and camera module and lift it up.
Remove the camera bracket.
Remove eight screws securing the metal plate.
IMPORTANT: keep all screws organized. All screws have different length.
Now we’ll start removing the metal plate.
Insert the spundger between the plate and iPod bottom cover (on the left side from the home button) and carefully lift it up.
Now insert the spundger on the other side of the metal plate. Look the the following picture to see where I inserted the spundger.
NOTE: there is a ribbon cable on the right side of the spundger. Do not damage the cable!
Make sure the cable doesn’t lift up when you remove the metal plate.
Continue removing the metal plate.
There is a shielding foil connecting the metal plate with the camera module.
Unglue the shielding foil from the camera module.
Remove the metal plate.
Remove one screw securing the iPod circuit board.
Carefully lift up the camera module as it shown on the following picture.
Do not try to remove it. Just lift up as it shown.
Now you should be able to lift up and separate the circuit board from the bottom cover.
We’ll have to lift it up just enough to unplug the old digitizer cable and plug in a new one.
Unwrap the shielding foil (this foil attached to the digitizer cable connector).
Lift up the circuit board and unplug the old digitizer cable connector.
Remove the connector.
If you remember, this connector was attached to the cable (1) we cut off in the step 4.
Remove shielding foil from the old digitizer connector.
Transfer shielding foil to the connector on the new screen.
Carefully lift up the circuit board and insert the digitizer connector under the board.
Position the digitizer connector so it’s located right under the connector on the circuit board.
Insert the spundger under the digitizer connector and at the same time apply some pressure on the top of the circuit board.
If both connector positioned correctly you’ll fill a click when the digitizer connector gets connected to the circuit board.
Wrap up the shielding film the way it was before.
Carefully seat the circuit board back in place. You’ll have to guide the digitizer cable so it doesn’t get damaged while you are installing the circuit board.
Position the camera module back in place.
Install one screw securing the circuit board.
In my iPod Touch the front facing camera was very dirty. I cleaned it up with a cotton swab and alcohol.
Install the metal plate back into the iPod.
Attach the shielding film to the camera module.
Install eight screws securing the metal plate.
Position the camera bracket above the camera module.
Push on the bracket until it clicks back in place.
Install the home button on the new screen assembly.
As you remember, I had to clean up the mounting bracket in the steps 7-8.
This bracket has to be glued to the new screen assembly. I didn’t have any special adhesive for that so I used regular double sticky tape.
I applied sticky tape on the bottom side of the bracket and then cut it off (shaping the bracket) with a sharp knife.
Glue the metal bracket to the new screen assembly.
Inspect the iPod case again and remove all broken glass and old adhesive tape (if it’s not sticky anymore).
My screen assembly came with some adhesive tape so I decided to replace the old adhesive on the bottom part of the iPod.
I removed the old adhesive.
And applied new adhesive.
Remove white paper securing the new digitizer.
Lift up the new screen assembly and position it above the iPod.
Now you’ll have to connect the screen cable back to the iPod circuit board.
Do not apply too much pressure. If the connector positioned correctly it has to click back in place relatively easy.
After the screen connector connected back to the circuit board you’ll have to route the digitizer cable.
Here’s how to fold the digitizer cable before installing the screen assembly back in place.
Before you snap the new screen back in place, turn on the iPod the test the screen. Make sure the digitizer works properly.
Finally, snap the new screen back in place. First, align the top side of the screen, make sure it’s seated properly. Second, apply some pressure on the bottom side of the screen until it seated back in place.
I do not claim that my guide is perfect. It was my first iPod Touch 4th generation screen repair but I hope it would be useful for other DIYers.