iPad Air Screen Replacement: What are my options?
The 1st generation of iPad Air was released in November of 2013. With its thin design and lightweight, those on-the-go quickly adopted the iPad Air. With the ability to easily tote the tablet from point A to point B, it’s no wonder the Apple iPad Air is prone to wear and tear, especially cracked screens.
If a shattered screen is preventing you from enjoying all the great features your iPad Air has to offer, you’ve come to the right place! CPR is here to offer you everything from tips to prevent screen damage to a step-by-step iPad Air screen replacement guide.
Tips to Prevent iPad Air Screen Damage
The best way to prevent iPad Air screen damage is to be proactive. Protecting your iPad Air is inexpensive and easy with accessories such as cases, tempered glass, and sleeves. Learn more about protection for your iPad Air below.
- iPad Air Cases: There are a number of durable iPad Air cases on the market that can prevent cracked screens and broken LCD on your iPad. Be sure to look for a case that is dust, water, and shock resistant. The experts at CPR recommend iPad Air cases by Speck, OtterBox, and LifeProof.
- Tempered Glass: Tempered glass screen protectors are a simple, affordable way to protect your iPad Air display from cracks and scratches. Contact a CPR near you for a quick, inexpensive tempered glass installation.
By equipping your tablet with necessary protection, you can significantly reduce your chances of needing an iPad Air screen replacement.
iPad Air Screen Repair Costs
iPad Air screen repairs can be an expensive, timely service. Weigh your options to ensure you decide on the service with the best price and fastest service.
Because Apple’s One-Year Limited Warranty does not cover accidental damage, you will be forced to pay out of pocket to have your iPad Air screen repaired. The out-of-warranty cost for an iPad Air screen repair from Apple is $249 plus a $6.95 shipping fee. According to Apple’s iPad service center site, your iPad repair should take 3-5 days if you ship the device to Apple.
CPR Cell Phone Repair is an electronics repair franchise with over 300+ locations around the world. With over a decade of experience in the industry, CPR technicians are experts in smartphone and tablet repairs. At CPR, you can expect to pay around $120.00 to repair your iPad Air. A majority of CPR stores are even capable of providing same day screen replacement services.
If you’re interested in performing the screen replacement yourself, you may buy the iPad Air Screen replacement kit from iFixIt for approximately $49.95. The kit includes a new iPad Air front glass, an iOpener, opening picks, a spudger, and more.
How to Perform an iPad Air Screen Replacement: A DIY Guide
With a number of delicate cables and buttons attached to the front screen, iPad Air screen replacement is no task for the weary. If you’re up to the complicated task of replacing an iPad Air screen yourself, utilize CPR’s do-it-yourself guide! NOTE: By opening your iPad, you may cause further damage to the tablet that is not covered under the Apple warranty.
Tools You’ll Need:
- Heat gun or iOpener
- Metal Prying Tool
- Opening Picks
- Phillips #00 Screwdriver
Tips Before You Begin:
- If your iPad Air is severely cracked, it may be in your best interest to place packing tape over the affected portions of your broken screen to ensure the screen does not crack further during the repair.
- Follow the below steps very carefully as there are many internal components that may be damaged if not removed properly.
- Consider wearing gloves while performing the repair to protect your hands from the glass and prevent fingerprints on the new screen and LCD.
Steps to Replace Your iPad Air Screen:
- Power off the device.
- Using the heat gun or iOpener, heat the left front edge of the iPad to soften the adhesive.
- Once you have sufficiently heated the left edge, carefully wedge the spudger or metal prying tool underneath the glass screen.
- Carefully slide the spudger or metal prying tool along the edge of the glass, which will release the adhesive as you go.
- Insert several opening picks along the left edge of the glass to prevent the glass from re-adhering to the adhesive.
- Now, apply heat as needed to the top the iPad.
- Slide an opening pick around the left corner and across the top of the iPad to separate the adhesive from the top of the glass. NOTE: To avoid getting adhesive on the lens of your camera, do not slide the opening pick over the front-facing camera. Instead, very lightly insert only the tip of the pick along the camera portion of the edge.
- Reinsert the pick once you get past the front-facing camera and continue sliding the pick along the edge until you reach the top right corner.
- Leave the pick in the top right corner of the tablet to keep the glass from re-adhering.
- Apply heat as needed to the right edge of the iPad Air.
- Insert another opening pick into the right edge of the iPad.
- Slide the pick down the edge of the iPad stopping when you get about 4.5-inches from the bottom of the screen. NOTE: Sliding the pick any further could disrupt the display cables.
- Leave the opening pick right where you stopped sliding it.
- Apply heat as needed to the bottom of the iPad Air.
- Using the lower left pick, slice the adhesive along the lower left corner of the iPad. Stop once you’ve reached the lower left corner and leave the pick where it is. NOTE: Moving the pick any further could cause damage to the antennas, which are located at the bottom left-hand side of the tablet.
- Using a new opening pick, very gently slice over the antenna, stopping before you reach the home button. NOTE: If you need to re-slice the adhesive in this section, remove the pick and re-insert it at the left edge slicing towards the center of the tablet.
- Leave the pick to the left of the home button.
- Insert a new pick to the right of the prior pick.
- Using just the tip of the new pick, very gently slice the adhesive from the home button and right antenna. NOTE: If you need to re-slice the adhesive in this section, remove the pick and re-insert it at the right edge slicing towards the center of the tablet.
- Apply heat again the right side of the tablet to soften the adhesive.
- Softly twist the upper and lower left side picks to lift the glass.
- Continue lifting the glass until you reach the display cable on the bottom right side of the iPad.
- Once you have released the glass from the left, top and bottom edges, use a pick to cut the adhesive along the right side of the tablet being careful to avoid the display cables.
- With the screen open, let the glass rest (still attached) to the right of the tablet.
- Using the heat gun or iOpener, apply heat to the home button which should be attached to your cracked screen.
- Gently insert your metal prying tool underneath the home button’s housing.
- Gently peel the home button cable off the original screen.
- Push on the home button from the opposite side of the screen to release it.
- Next, you’ll need to remove the LCD. Using your Phillips #00 screwdriver, remove the four screws located at the four corners of the LCD. NOTE: The two screws at the top of the LCD may be covered by black tape.
- Once the screws are removed, gently pull up on the LCD being careful not to disturb the flex cables it is attached to.
- Propping the LCD upwards, unscrew the three screws holding the metal casing in place at the bottom right-hand corner of the tablet. This metal casing houses the plugs for the home button cable, digitizer, and LCD.
- Using your plastic spudger, pull up on the metal casing. The LCD cable is stuck to the metal casing, so this cable will unplug as you remove the meta casing.
- Next, unplug the two digitizer cables from their ports with the plastic spudger.
- Completely remove the home button cable from the cracked screen so that it does not tear.
- On the shattered screen, you will now need to remove the camera bracket and the small ring around the home button using the heat gun and the metal prying tool.
- Scrape any leftover adhesive or glass from the tablet.
- Reinstall the camera bracket and home button the replacement glass screen.
- Reinstall the home button cable and bracket over the home button. NOTE: The remaining adhesive on the home button cable should be just enough for it to stick to the new screen.
- Reinstall the camera bracket.
- Place the new adhesive around the perimeter of the iPad (do not place the adhesive on the new glass screen).
- Slide the home button cable back into its port. Gently flip down the tab on the port to lock it into place.
- Snap the two digitizer cables into their ports.
- Snap the LCD cable back into place over the other ports.
- Reinstall the metal casing with three screws.
- Lay the LCD screen back into its place.
- Reinstall the four screws at each corner of the LCD.
- Prepare the new adhesive.
- Ensure no fingerprints or dust appear on the LCD screen or the inside of the glass screen.
- Remove the plastic protective seal on the interior of the glass screen.
- Seal the glass screen by applying pressure along the edges where there is adhesive.
As you can see, iPad Air screen replacement is a very laborious, intricate process. With so many internal components and connections, it can be difficult to replace your screen properly. If after looking at what’s involved in the repair process you think you may need some help, rely on CPR. Our technicians have years of experience performing iPad Air repairs and specialize in screen replacements. For a free estimate on your iPad Air screen replacement, contact your nearest Cell Phone Repair store today!