Repair laptop, smartphone, tablet yourself, my experiences

So now it’s happened, when I tried to change the battery of an iPhone 8, the thing was ruined afterwards. What about the reparability of hardware?

Basically ever since I’ve had computers and technical equipment, I’ve been tinkering with things. Usually successfully. The first computers were of necessity screwed together from old parts, because the parts were not only expensive but also hard to get.

Later, I changed the processor of a notebook. Phones got new batteries, including the iPhone. All in all, nothing ever broke and the devices continued to run for a long time afterwards. Even if it wasn’t always economical, like with my netbook, which got a new display for a lot of money. In the end, ambition prevailed for me.

Repairability today

Now, unfortunately, reparability has become more difficult in recent years. The devices are more compact. Whereas I used to be able to simply plug in a new battery for a notebook, it is now permanently installed. With a Thinkpad, I have to fumble off the base plate, which is still reasonably easy. The Microsoft Surface, on the other hand, is glued together and the repair instructions do not bode well for the ambitious hobbyist.

The situation is similar with the phones. The Nokia 5110 had the battery on the outside, later models could be disassembled and the battery was easy to change.

In the meantime, most devices are stuck together, as I painfully experienced with an iPhone 8. I only wanted to change the battery, but when I pulled off the display I damaged a ribbon cable. The phone was a total loss. Yet the iPhone is still a pioneer in terms of sustainability. Not only are there lots of instructions that explain every step of the disassembly process, but there are also lots of service providers who take care of the repair of smartphones for you.

I don’t consider myself to be completely unskilled technically, but in the end I lack the practice for each model. Appropriate instructions or tools or not.

Overall, technology has become more compact, so we do have waterproof smartphones, which then come at the price of a glued case.

Spare parts and instructions

But it’s not all bad. Anyone looking for the right spare parts for repair will quickly find what they are looking for today. Just like the instructions mentioned above, which are available on various websites.

Even special spare parts are no longer a problem. Many things are available new from dealers, otherwise second-hand on eBay. So it was no problem to find a suitable display for my netbook after the device sailed to the ground.

Provided there are not too many instructions, I will then also write a suitable blog article on the topic so that others can also benefit from my experience.


In general, technology used to be easier to repair. The broken iPhone 8 in particular made me think about leaving these very delicate things in the hands of a service provider who simply has more experience with them.

On the other hand, we consumers also have some control over which devices we buy. Easily repairable appliances are still available, you just have to pay attention when buying and check the reparability and supply of spare parts.

The more people ultimately attach importance to this and decide accordingly, the more the manufacturers are also encouraged to pay attention to this themselves with their products.

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