By Sam Goldheart • Difficulty: Moderate
Use this guide to bring life back to your iPhone 5s with a new battery. If your battery is swollen, take appropriate precautions.
This guide instructs you to remove the front panel assembly; this is intended to prevent damage to the display cables. If you feel comfortable supporting the display carefully while peeling the battery out of the iPhone, skip the display removal and go directly to the battery removal steps.
For optimal performance, after completing this guide, calibrate your newly installed battery: Charge it to 100% and keep charging it for at least two more hours. Then use your iPhone until it shuts off due to low battery. Finally, charge it uninterrupted to 100%.
- Power off your iPhone before beginning disassembly.
- Remove the two 3.9 mm Pentalobe screws from either side of Lightning connector.
- If your display glass is cracked, keep further breakage contained and prevent bodily harm during your repair by taping the glass.
- Lay overlapping strips of clear packing tape over the iPhone's display until the whole face is covered.
- Regardless of the tool you use, you need to be sure you pull up the entire display.
- If the glass begins to separate from the plastic, as shown in the first image, slide a plastic opening tool between the plastic frame and the metal phone body to pry the metal clips out of the case.
- Close the handle on the iSclack, opening the suction-cup jaws.
- Place the bottom of your iPhone in between the suction cups, against the plastic depth gauge.
- The top suction cup should rest just above the home button.
- Open the handles to close the jaws of the iSclack. Center the suction cups and press them firmly onto the top and bottom of the iPhone.
- Hold onto your iPhone securely and close the handle of the iSclack to separate the suction cups, pulling the front panel up from the rear case.
- The iSclack is designed to safely open your iPhone just enough to separate the pieces, but not enough to damage the home button cable.
- Skip the next three steps and continue on Step 9.
- If you don't have an iSclack, use a single suction cup to lift the front panel:
- Press a suction cup onto the screen, just above the home button.
- While holding the iPhone down with one hand, pull up on the suction cup to slightly separate the home button end of the front panel from the rear case.
- With a plastic opening tool, gently pry the edges of the rear case down, away from the front panel assembly, while you pull up with the suction cup.
- Pull the plastic nub to release the vacuum seal on the suction cup.
- Remove the suction cup from the screen.
- Open the phone just enough to reveal the metal bracket covering the home button cable.
- Only the phone's original home button assembly will be capable of using the Touch ID functionality. If you rip the cable, installing a new home button will only restore ordinary home button functions, not the Touch ID features.
- Use the tip of a spudger to push the bracket free and remove it with tweezers.
- Use the tip of a spudger to pry the home button cable connector up out of its socket.
- Once the connector has been released, pull the home button end of the assembly away from the rear case, using the top of the phone as a hinge.
- Open the display to about a 90º angle, and lean it against something to keep it propped up while you're working on the phone.
- Add a rubber band to keep the display securely in place while you work. This prevents undue strain on the display cables.
- Remove the two 1.6 mm Phillips #000 screws securing the metal battery connector bracket to the logic board.
- Remove the metal battery connector bracket from the iPhone.
- Use the flat end of a spudger to gently pry the battery connector up from its socket on the logic board.
- Remove the following screws securing the front panel assembly cable bracket to the logic board:
- One 1.7 mm Phillips #000 screw
- One 1.2 mm Phillips #000 screw
- One 1.3 mm Phillips #000 screw
- One more 1.7 mm Phillips #000 screw
- Remove the front panel assembly cable bracket from the logic board.
- Use a spudger or a fingernail to disconnect the front-facing camera and sensor cable.
- Disconnect the LCD cable connector.
- Finally, disconnect the digitizer cable connector.
- Remove the front panel assembly from the rear case.
- Run the tip of a spudger between the battery and the headphone jack to unfold the battery adhesive tab.
- Important: Apply heat to the bottom of the iPhone case using an iOpener or similar heating pad to soften up the battery adhesive strips and make them more flexible, otherwise they will probably break when you pull on them.
- Pull the battery adhesive tab away from the phone.
- Cut the black battery adhesive tab between the two white adhesive strips, separating them.
- Slowly pull one of the battery adhesive strips away from the battery, toward the bottom of the iPhone. Pull the white portion of the strip when possible, the black tab may fall off.
- Pull steadily, maintaining constant tension on the strip as it slips out from between the battery and the rear case. For best results, pull the strip at a 60º angle or less.
- Be careful not to snag it on any of the other internal iPhone components.
- Repeat for the second strip.
- If you removed both strips successfully, skip the next two steps.
- If any of the adhesive strips broke off and the battery remains stuck to the rear case, prepare an iOpener or use a hair dryer to heat the rear case directly behind the battery.
- Alternatively, use a syringe to apply some high concentration isopropyl alcohol (90% or greater) underneath the edges of the battery.
- Flip the iPhone back over and insert a plastic card between the case side of the battery and the rear case.
- Press the card in farther to break up the adhesive behind the battery.
- Thread the floss or string behind the upper battery corners, bring the ends together, wrap them around a folded cloth, and pull evenly.
- Pull the battery out of the rear case.
Compare your new replacement part to the original part—you may need to transfer remaining components or remove adhesive backings from the new part before installing.
To reassemble your device, follow the above steps in reverse order.
Take your e-waste to an R2 or e-Stewards certified recycler.
Repair didn’t go as planned? Check out our Answers community for troubleshooting help.