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You always learn from your first experience

by rlburnham

My Problem

My wife's iPad2 GSM tipped over on a tile floor and cracked. Spider cracks covered the entire front surface and went right to the edges of the glass.

My Fix

Having recently successfully replaced an iPhone5 front digitizer, I approached this project a bit over-confident. I found this repair to be quite a bit longer and more challenging. I followed the repair guides which I feel were pretty good. My challenge was that as I worked to pry up the broken digitizer, the glass kept splintering, cracking and coming off in small chips. The underlying adhesive tended to keep the larger pieces in place but tiny shards of glass were flying everywhere - wearing eye protection is a MUST!

My expierience with the iFixit heating "tube" was less than ideal. Though it got hot, it didnt seem to generate quite enough heat for my situation. After finding some other online videos that showed people using heat guns, I got mine out and tried using it and had better results. I was sure to only apply in short bursts so as not to overheat and damage internal components. It did a better job of loosening the adhesive.

I proceded cautiously as I did not want to break anything. Total repair time for me was 3 hours, with 2 of those simply working to get the front digitizer glass off. The last hour was spent carefully reassembling. I had just a little trouble getting the digitizer cable to lie flat and fold properly, but with a little fidgeting, the new glass went into place and looks as good as new.

With this first iPad repair under my belt, I would not hesitate to do another, and am confident the next experience would go more quickly and smoothly. Thanks to iFixIt for great products delivered quickly and at a reasonable price.

My Advice

1) Take your time - be patient and work slowly

2) I spread a large sheet of paper out on your work space - good for catching and seeing small pieces of glass that came away. Avoid working on a carpet, placemat or other fabric surface.

3) Wear eye protection!

4) See point 3 above!

5) Consider gentle use of a heat gun if the iOpener heating pad doesn't work well for you.

6) As noted by others and the guides, be very careful near the WiFi antenna to the right of the home button. Do not pry too deeply when working to release the adhesive.