The LG G4 was released in the US in early June 2015, as always focusing on high-end specifications and a refined fashion sense that makes it stand out in the premium smartphone market. Each version of the phone will have a different model number based on if it is sold by a carrier or sold by LG as a US Unlocked or International model.

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How do I get the phone working for data recovery?

My LG G4 (H810) locked up, died when I pulled the battery and no longer turns on. At this point the phone is over 1 year old and is almost certainly out of warranty (or any "hidden" warranties). Neither AT&T or LG are probably going to help and I am likely limited to OOW repair. I have a 509K* phone, so mine is one of the early ones that are known to fail.

The problem is it will likely cost more to send it to LG for a repair then it will be to find a good IMEI range phone so I'm not going to even bother. However, I have two problems for the price of one dead phone: My data is stuck on a dead phone. What makes it worse is I have photos of the deceased cat I can't get back and giving up on the phone effectively means those are gone for good. To make matters worse, LG won't help with data recovery.

By trying my luck with getting LG to replace the phone, I'm effectively losing irreplaceable data I can never get back. On top of that I have heard that LG refuses to replace dead G4's with replacement phones that are not prone to this problem and often die in a year like the previous phone. I DO NOT want another LG G4 (and don't want to be stuck in this situation a second time).

Since I am in a situation where some data on the phone is irreplaceable, I don't care about the phone. At this point I just want my data back, even if I may not be able to get the phone repaired or replaced. The data is easily worth more then the phone.

The problem with extracting data from the NAND flash directly is I encrypted my phone :(. The encryption REQUIRES I get the board working for data recovery or I will not be able to recover my data. Since I need to repair the board for data recovery, are they are any known faults with these phones that cause these problems? I JUST need the phone to work well enough so that I can recover my data.

EDIT FOR AT&T LG G4 OWNERS

At least in my case, AT&T switched phones without paying off the balance of a dead phone I effectively gave up any rights to repair extensions on to save pictures. On one hand the phone was (nearly) paid off so that may be why. It probably won't be a problem, but I'd be prepared for the worst.

I have checked it months after doing this and it no longer turns on at all, but still charges the battery. YIKES!

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1 Answer

Chosen Solution

This is what I did:

Read me: THIS PROCEDURE WILL NOT REPAIR THE BOARD. This if for data recovery ONLY. Revision 1.0 boards are defective with no option for reliable repair.

CAUTION: If you do this, LG may not work on the phone. Assume the phone is history and you are on your own, but if you still choose to try you’re on your own. However, this may be better then losing your data.

  • Take the back of the phone off and remove the battery. The board needs to be exposed.
  • Heat up the phone’s motherboard up evenly to ensure it has been reflowed. Set the temperature of your hot air station to a tempreature that is less then 183 Celsius or hot to the touch. Heat the board up until it is close to this temperature or you may damage the board and lose your data.
    • A hairdryer can be used, but this may take a while. A hot air station is a better option for someone who can use this option safely.
  • Put the battery back in. The phone will not boot without it.
    • Turn the phone on.
    • If the phone is too hot, it may throttle or shutdown. Throttling is okay, but the phone will do a forced shutdown if it is too hot. More heat may be required depending on how long you waited to try again.
    • If your phone continues to lock up, put a hairdryer on low near the phone to keep it alive until you are done with recovery.
    • Charging will probably be blocked. This is okay since you do not need a charged battery for recovery.
  • Copy the pictures from the phone to your PC. Repeat this procedure as needed if the phone dies while recovering less important data. The phone will never turn on without heat once this procedure is used.

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