The Apple iPhone 5s was announced on September 10, 2013. Repair of this device is similar to the previous models, and requires screwdrivers and prying tools. Available as GSM or CDMA / 16, 32, or 64 GB / Silver, Gold, and Space Gray.

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Dr Frankenstein Here With Questions on a Dead 5s

Dr Frankenstein Here With Questions on a Dead 5s

I have extensive experience with repairing numerous Android devices. Until now no experience with Iphones.

I was recently given an 5s which I will refer to as.... Free 5s

Free 5s had been thrown across a parking lot in a fit of rage.

Free 5s ended up with two very badly bent corners and of course a shattered LCD display assembly.

Before I received Free 5s the father of the spoiled little brat that tossed the phone had cut off the ribbon cables that attached the shattered LCD display. leaving about 3/4" remaining from the main board connectors. Any remnants if the screen are gone The battery cable was also cut and the battery is not included.

The Pentalobe screws are still intact holding a very small part of the plastic frame and a bit of shattered glass

I ran the IMEI from the back of the Free 5s case and the number comes back clear and is not iCloud locked.

I know all is a gamble from here on but one has to be willing to take chances when attempting repairs on cellphones.

I know I can get my hands on many iCloud locked 5s's with good displays and cases.

I am 100% confident I can do the parts swap-out. It is more cost effective to purchase a locked 5s rather than buying all the needed replacement parts. My ideal and most simple approach would be to simply swap put the main board between the two phones.

If I purchase such a "Locked" 5s, from here on I will refer to that phone as...... Doner 5s.

I do have a couple of questions that the answers to I have not been able to locate.

First question.... Regarding the 5s Touch Id Home button.... Since I don't have the original Free 5s home button I will be using the Doner 5s button. I understand that the replacement home button will not function (touch Id) with the Free 5s main board. If I re-set Free 5s back to defaults will the Doner 5s button work but without the Touch Id feature.

Second Question... Free 5s is a CDMA phone locked to the Verizon Network. (Not a problem) If the Donor 5s is a GMS phone will the Donor 5s antennas work with the Free 5s main board? From what I've seen regarding replacement cell antennas there does not seem to be any reference to either GSM or CDMA.

Any help on the subject will be Greatly Appreciated.

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You don't need to swap the board. Just put a new or "donor" battery and display assembly in the "free" 5S. Yeah, I could see it being cheaper, buying a locked or bricked 5S. Depends on the price though. Also I don't like to skimp on parts. So it would likely be cheaper buying a "donor" phone.

One thing I see happening is, you put the new battery and display assembly on and you won't have the lock code, which you could get past, but you won't have the Apple ID and password. Whoch is impossible to get passed. Which will leave the phone useless to you.

No, the difference between cdma and GSM days are past. As far as parts. That ended back with the iPhone 4 series

If you get the passcodes and info here's. Some guides and links to parts. Since you're not super familiar with iPhones

iPhone 5s Battery Replacement

iPhone 5s Display Assembly Replacement

iPhone 5s Replacement Battery

iPhone 5s LCD Screen and Digitizer

iPhone 5s LCD Screen and Digitizer Image
iPhone 5s Replacement Battery Image
iPhone 5s Battery Image


iPhone 5s Battery Replacement

Difficulty: Moderate30 minutes - 1 hour

iPhone 5s Display Assembly Image


iPhone 5s Display Assembly Replacement

Difficulty: Moderate30 minutes - 1 hour

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Thanks for your reply.

The reason I wanted to swap out the main board is because the Free 5s case has two very badly deformed corners and attempts to straighten them would most likely result in breakage.

Checking with Apple iCloud Lock (

The IMEI checks out as having iCloud Lock Off.

Not sure about any on the phone password locks. I read that by re-setting the phone back to factory defaults it would delete all data and passwords. Is this not the case?

The IMEI is clear and can be activated with PagePlus Cellular on their CDMA Verizon network.

Still not clear on the 5sTouch Id Home Button. Will the donor Home button function correctly except without the Touch Id feature? And... does this pose any problems?

Thanks Again


Yes the home button will work without touch as long as you update the software to the latest. Otherwise you will get error 53.


If the phone does not have the latest firmware and the Home button does not work and I get error 53, then how would I be able to do an upgrade?


No, it shouldn't work that way. It used to. If you reset the phone, it'll return you to a screen with most of the Apple ID blocked out with *s. Also it'll ask you for the password. Which I'm guessing you don't have. So even though it's not Apple ID locked, it'll still be locked, without the password. The Touch ID will never function again, without the original home button. Yes the home button will function, as a home button. Not so sure about error 53. I heard Apple did away with that. I've been a little busy with other aspects of my life and have been a bit out of the game


Thanks Guys...

All of this BS is the main reason I've never been a fan of Apple and iPhones.

I've got a solid lead on a suitable donor phone and will most likely pick it up. Won't hurt to simply plug in the donor display assembly and see what happens. If password locked I might be able to get password info from the original owner. If all else fails I have no doubt that I will be able to sell and recover any monies I have so far invested.


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