Have you been able to successfully dismantle and reassemble previous versions of smartphones? That’s quite impressive, and if it was the S5, the odds are in your favor that you could succeed with the S6. If it was any previous version, you might stand a chance, but it’s gotten harder. Obviously these aren’t the plastic phones of yesteryear.
With the sleek and sexy metal and glass comes screens that can crack due to the slight pressure in the wrong place, held together by strong adhesive. While technically the battery might be removable, no one is suggesting that it’s going to be easy, and if they are you shouldn’t listen to them.
Yes, they make it look easy on YouTube, but like watching someone ski on television does not suddenly make you an Olympic skier, YouTube videos do not transfer the experience that these people have through the screen. However, if you are here, maybe you are up for a challenge.
If you are here because you are frustrated with the cost of repairs, we can empathize. There are probably a lot of us feeling like we could really use a million dollars right now. And when repairs cost more than what you initially paid for the phone, the idea of doing it yourself seems noble and enticing. Consider this though–if you bought your phone in a contract you probably received it at a discounted rate. The trade-off was your provider knowing they would receive money from you over time.
Tearing down an expensive phone is not necessarily going to save you money; it’s often quite the opposite. It’s also not for amateurs, nor even the faint of heart. But if you are a seasoned techie with knowledge, experience, attention to detail, and patience, you might just succeed at something average smartphone users won’t. Plus, you’ll get to appreciate a cool design and great parts.
If you are considering this because you need a screen replacement, read the article below.
Must Read: DIY Screen Replacement for Samsung Galaxy S6
Otherwise, get ready to learn how to open or teardown Samsung Galaxy S6.
What Will I Need to Get Started?
You won’t be able to break into this phone with your bare hands. Well, you might, but break will be the operative word. So what tools will you need to open Galaxy S6?
Antistatic wrist straps, gloves, and mat
Even though some get by without it, these items are highly advisable.
SIM Card Ejector Tool or Pointed Tweezers
Avoid damage to your SIM card and/or its tray
Small, but Heavy-Duty Screen Suction Cup Tool
To help you remove the screen
Hair Dryer or Heat Gun
To loosen adhesive. As a female, I have a hair dryer handy, but the heat gun will most likely be safer and easier.
Prying and/or Picking Tools
For parts of the housing shell where adhesive is present.
To prevent shocks and scratches
Or Just Buy a Kit
They can be super cheap and contain most, if not all, of these items.
Let’s Get Started!
You have your tools and you are ready to go, right? Start using your inner reserves of patience now. Remember, you want to do this the right way the first time. Any other way could be costly.
You think the parts on the exterior of your device are sensitive? The inner parts are even more so—you will need to prepare yourself well, set aside some time, and always remember to be gentle with delicate parts. This is how you take apart Galaxy S6.
Step 1:Prepare Workspace
- Take care to avoid shocks.
- Remove all liquids from the site of operations.
- Use only ESD-safe tools.
- Remove anything that could fall on your phone’s vulnerable innermost parts.
- Set up your space so that you have a temporary home for all of the small parts. You don’t want to lose these.
- You might thank yourself later if you document each step you take.
Step 2: Remove SIM Tray
- Ensure the S6 is turned off!
- Eject the SIM card tray by inserting an ejector tool into the hole of the SIM card slot. Do not use very much pressure.
- Use the pointed tweezers and/or an ejector tool to remove the SIM card tray away from the phone.
Step 3: Dismantle Battery Door
- Heat the adhesive around the back cover with the hair dryer or heat gun. You may not see the adhesive, but it’s there and it is good at doing its job.
- Pull the cover up and off with your screen suction cup tool.
- This can require repeated attempts, but don’t let take out your frustration on the phone. That’s how things get broken. Instead, apply more heat.
- Use pressure with your suction cup only on the middle section of the panel.
- Once a gap is visible, insert the prying/picking tool to help you gain leverage.
- Guide and slide the tool around all sides of the battery door.
- Separate the battery door, but always remember to never force anything!
- Pull up on the rear cover while pressing down on the rest on the rest of the phone to separate the two.
Step 4: Separate Rear Housing
- Unscrew each and every one of the 13 screws securing the housing and put them in a safe place. You do not want to have to search for them on the floor or in nooks and crannies latter.
- Warm the LCD assembly gradually with the hair dryer or heat gun.
- With the assistance of your trusty suction cup, detach the rear housing from the LCD assembly.
- The biggest danger involved with this step is damaging the wireless charging chip connected to the battery before you even realize what is happening. Take care!
Step 5: Remove Buttons
- Release each flex piece attached to the corresponding Power and Volume buttons.
- Remove the Power button.
- Remove the Volume button.
- Note: The Power and Volume button are actually interchangeable with one another.
Step 6: Set the Charging Chip Free
- Carefully, using your tweezers, raise the flex ribbons located on each side of the rear housing.
- Remember, you have to reassemble this, so use care. It might also be wise to take photos of everything you do along the way to help yourself when you must do the reverse.
Step 7: Release Motherboard
- Pull upward on the front facing camera connector, LCD assembly connector, battery connector, home button flex connector, and ear speaker connector with your pic/prying tool and/or spudger.
- The connectors mostly function as a plug to a socket; therefore, you may find the flat end of the spudger useful to disconnect the two.
- Pry up the motherboard, but do not fully disconnect.
- It is still attached by a ribbon cable connector.
- Turn the motherboard upside down and ever so gently, jimmy the connector.
Step 8: Bye-Bye Battery
- Carefully lever the battery upward with the spudger tool or pic/prying tool.
- Keep the tool flat and do not bend the battery.
- How are you feeling now about the assertion that this is a removeable battery?
- Do not reconnect the battery again until the LCD assembly is put back into place.
- The phone could turn on inadvertently, which can cause problems.
Step 9: Small Parts
- Release the small stuff.
- Using tweezers, lift the front facing camera out.
- With caution, so as not to break the flex ribbon, remove the ear speaker.
- Pry up and release the vibrating motor.
Step 10: Camera and Cables
- Remove the camera and cables.
- Release the rear-facing camera.
- Remove Bluetooth connector with the pointed end of the spudger.
- Disconnect the Wi-Fi cable.
- Treat them all like a baby.
Step 11: Charging Port Assembly
- Unfasten the earphone jack screw.
- Break out the hair dryer or heat gun to heat the LCD assembly in order to release the front housing.
- Liberate the front housing.
- Lift each navigation sticker.
Step 12: Home Button
- All that is left is to release the Home button, leaving its flex attached.
- Hoist the connector on the back side using the flat side of the spudger.
- Raise the Home button out.
- Finished! Are you keeping the champagne on ice?
Step 13: Congratulate Yourself!
If you have made it through with all of the parts and your sanity still intact, you deserve gold stars, cookies, a pat on the back, and perhaps a job in tech or surgery. There’s still the reassembly, though…
At this point you might be wondering if putting the phone back together will be as difficult as the teardown. To answer your question, yes. The teardown is easy compared to putting things back together again in such a manner that they are still operable. While it is essentially doing everything in reverse–and if you documented everything you did you will find it easier–ensuring that everything goes back into its right place and in the correct alignment won’t be easy.
These are intricate parts, and reassembly is an even more intricate process than what you just did. Hopefully, you kept this mind and were up for the challenge before you disassembled it. Or you are independently wealthy and have an inquisitive mind. If so, take the time to admire the parts and features the engineers managed to pack into this phone before you start the reassembly.
Tell us how your teardown adventure went in the comments section below. If you are still having difficulty with one or several of the steps, tell us about your troubles.