iPhone 4 Repair

Fourth generation iPhone. Repair is straightforward, but the front glass and LCD must be replaced as a unit. GSM / 8, 16, or 32 GB capacity / Model A1332 / Black and White.

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iPhone 4 proximity sensor not working after replacing BLACK GSM

I own an iPhone repair store. I have done 100 or more iPhone 4 front glass assemblies. Those first 100 went on without a hitch. Now suddenly, in the last 3 months or so, 70% of my front assembly (screen, digi, LCD) repairs/replacements turn out great as usual, but the proximity sensor doesn't work. And I have ordered good quality glass from 2 of my suppliers.

I test all of the phones before I begin to make sure that they are working prior to my repair. Here is a senario from today.

1. Test prox in customers iphone 4. Works fine.

2. Put mine in and test it. Does not work.

3. put 3 more glass pieces on they do not work.

4. Put customers broken piece back on to test (not broken in proximity area) and it works just fine.

Now I have had this issue in the past and have examined my glass to no end. The prox area of my after market glass is just as dim as the OEM glass. And what's stranger, is that I can put the glass that didn't work on another phone tomorrow, and there is an 80% chance that it'll work.

I have NO idea what is going on. The ONLY thing that I can think of is to get that little piece that separates the ambient light and the prox on the OEM glass and put it in there?

And is a sharpie gonna fix this issue?

I am TOTALLY lost at this point. What can I be doing wrong?

Answer this question I have this problem too

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Okay my brother broke the sensor on my iPhone okay? But mine is a screen sensor. And I said if I put a new glass on It it would probably work and he said it wouldn't...... PLEASE HELP ME!!!!!!!!!!! Btw my right side of my iPhone doesn't work! Whats going on???

by Ariana Raymond

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This is NOT a software issue! The aftermarket screens allow too much light into the proximity sensor.

**THE FIX**

Black electrical tape, cut two small holes with an exacto knife (about the size of a ballpoint pen) exactly large enough to fit over the two sensors. Cut out the holes so you now have a small rectangle with two holes.

Place the rectangle over the proximity sensors and the holes should line up.

Thats it!

Reconnect the "Faulty" screen and... VOILA!

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Cool. Can you explain why this fixes the issue?

by schizm00

Minimizes the light allowed into the sensors! Oem screens have it separated into two in the glass and a small foam surround! The tape replicates this!

by Simon

i can confirmed the tape method, works for me on a red full body conversion , thanks a bunch, time to make $$$

by PhuocDatBich

Thanks for everyone who tried these. I wanted to make sure this wasn't a scam of some sort to mess up my phone even more. I recently changed my black AT&T iPhone 4 black glass to a white one online. The proximity sensor wasn't working. I kept hitting mute and hold with my ear. I did the black electrical tape thing with a razor blade. Made two separate squares that overlapped each other between the sensors to get it raised more like I read on someone else's comments. It worked! Thank God. I tried six or more different times and even ignored this trick earlier because I was skeptical. Well it made a believer out of me. Thanks again everyone for your experienced input.

by rrcontreras

I thought I would message to say that after 5 hours of changing proximity sensors, putting logic board into other chassis's etc that finally came to the conclusion (as everyone said) that it was in fact the aftermarket screen - The reason I originally thought it couldn't be the screens is because I've changed 100's of iPhone 4 screens and never had this issue. What worked for me was trying to mimic the same size proximity light hole as on the the original screen - I put black tape directly on to the aftermarket screen and voila :)

by Michael

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I had the same issue.

My replacement glass doesn't have "that little piece that separates the ambient light and the prox". So i used the idea from Simon's method but instead of using electrical tape i used the black marker, painted on the glass similarly as it done on the original Apple glass. Did it several times so no light come through painted area. After that sensor's windows on replacement glass looks almost exactly as on original glass, and proximity sensor began to work.

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How do you guys usually do it, when you are doing an lcd replacement, always use the scotch tape and black marker trick, or do you first replace the screen and then test if the proximity sensor works? And then if it not works, you have to do a re-assembly again?

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I have an iphone repair store too.

I am having the same problem.

I have two different aftermarket glass supplier.

70% glass works on replacement. Some of them doesn't work. Then we use other suppliers glass or same suppliers glass. It works. We use Non working glass on another customer. It works most of the time.

It looks like software problem.

Once, none of the glasses didn't work on one of the customers iphone 4. After 4 replacement last try also didn't work. I was hopeless. I put my finger on it many times. No way. I put on my ear no way. I kept on my ear like 20 second. After 20 seconds it shot off. After that it started to working fine all the time.

Software. Software. Software.

What happens (I guess) when we replace the glass software trying to look for background reflections, brightness. Doing some statistics etc. etc.

Software. Software. Software.

Now replacing iphone 4 glass is nightmare nightmare nightmare.

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Totally agree. I will try the 20 second trick. I got a batch of 4 iPhone 4 glass today and thank God ALL 4 worked perfect. Lucky day for me.

by schizm00

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Proximity problem solved.......

I just replaced yesterday one black iphone 4 broken glass. Proximity sensor didn't work. I was going to replace glass again. Before I replace the glass I decided to do a simple restore (4.3.3).

It worked ...............

Soooo it's not a hardware problem. It is software problem.

I guess : When you restore your iphone with a new firmware it measures your glass darkness and backgroud reflections while you restoring the new firmware. It also measures all hardware components. I am sure data kept in some files. When you replace the glass, new glass darkness and reflections are usually different from previous one (sometimes). You think your glass is bad. But your new glass works on other iphones. That explains everything.

If your proximity is not working --> You can simply restore your iphone to 4.3.3 (I just tested once and it worked with custom firmware 4.3.3 created by sn0wbreeze)

I hope it works for everbody.................

I have been working on this weird thing more than 2 months.

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Good to know, and it makes sense. Only problem is, I can't restore customers' iPhones firmware everytime I replace glass. However, out of my last 2 batches of glass (12 total) all have worked. So f me. I am one confused dude.

by schizm00

Craziness. I tested 3 glass and all didn't work today. Did a hard reset (which I had tried only once before) and wallah. FIXED! It HAS to be software. I think you're right.

by schizm00

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I just ried the foam-fix with a DIY foam-frame.

It worked perfect on an iPhone we already assumed to be lost.

My guess:

If the light sensor gets too much light, it doesn't work (o'really :).

But where does it get the light from, when you cover the front?

From the backlight!

The light from the lcd panel diffuses into the light sensor.

So if you take a little bit foam to make a frame around the sensor - just like the thing on eBay linked above

http://tinyurl.com/6w7uutc

this problem is solved.

Wow.

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Guys - the only thing you need for a working proximity sensor is a GOOD QUALITY glass, a working proximity sensor flex cable and the UV filter sticker. We sell the original iPhone 4 proximity UV filter sticker with the black foam from our online store

HERE

You don't need anything else - just those 3.

The most common fault is to lose the UV sticker during installation. Second most common is to use a cheap copy front with a poor light filter at the top.

I'd recommend fault finding in the order:

1) Check for UV sticker

2) Try new front glass

3) Try new proximity sensor flex

It should definetly be working by the end of step 3.

Also to add - on the inside of the phone (the other side of the proximity sensor) is a little black plastic block. this plastic block holds the proximity sensor towards the front of the phone. If this is not placed properly or is missing it can affect the proximity sensor. We also can supply this spacer block

HERE

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OMG This is not an answer!!! Your answer is only for people who have problems with the sensor. This topic is only related to the front glasses which were not good manufactured so the proximity won't work. We are searching for a solution for that specific problem..

by Laurens van Rijn

Where in the original post does it say "we buy really cheap front screens that don't filter the light properly"? The problem doesn't lie purely with the front glass - there are 3 factors to the proximity sensor working not just the glass. This topic is titled: "iPhone 4 proximity sensor not working after replacing BLACK GSM"

by ReekoB

No, you don't read the topic start post. It's somebody who bought really cheap front screens that don't filter the light properly. He wants an answer for it. You give these answers: 1) Check for UV sticker 2) Try new front glass 3) Try new proximity sensor flex These answers you only use when you have problem with the sensor.. And your second answer is really stupid: Try new front glass Thats like: I have my finger broken.. 1. Try new finger 2.

by Laurens van Rijn

No - your question is more comparable to: The 17 inch tyre on my car is bald and needs replacing. I've purchased a 16 inch tyre as a replacement because it was 5% cheaper but it doesn't fit, how can I bodge it to try and make it fit. If you manage to verify that it's the screen that's faulty then send it back to your supplier for refund or replacement. Maybe find a new supplier and pay a couple $$ more for a better quality screen. The electrical tape and pen tricks aren't answers and in my opinion - are not even an option if the repair is for a customer, that's poor. They may work sometimes but you'll waste more time trying these tricks compared to following my 1, 2, 3 above with good quality parts. If you don't agree with my answer please continue to buy cheap screens and try and 'fix' them with electrical tape and a pen.

by ReekoB

This has gotten out of hand! If you actually read the comments already in this thread, we have since established that this has NOTHING to do with the screen you are using! As stated above, the light emitted from the LCD is causing the problem. This proven by the fact that all newer iPhone 4, and more importantly iPhone 4S now have a foam insulator around the sensor from factory. On the iPhone 4, the foam is too compressed to work correctly after the original screen is removed. Replacing with a "Genuine" screen doesn't solve the issue of the gap that has now appeared allowing in light. If you remove a 4S screen, you can clearly see this foam. Installing a new screen without it will almost always give the sensor failure. This is solved, as stated time and time again, either by employing the tape trick, or inserting a new foam insulator! This fills the gap, stopping any light from the LCD affecting the sensor.

by Simon

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I cut two pieces of black insulation tape with a small square hole in, one over each sensor with a little overlap, worked spot on. Next time I'll do this as a matter of course, I fit these a lot and it takes a bit of effort to do it twice! Lesson learnt

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I use this fix works 90% of the time.

http://youtu.be/pTVPrxkNWhk

Also check if your still have tiny piece of foam strip btw the proximity sensors on the frame.

Some people said using black electrical tape works for them as well

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We have a lot of repair shops that buy from us and I have heard all of these methods working on certain iPhones. I think it really depends on the iPhone. There is another method not mentioned here of the little lens that you put over the sensor before you install the new screen. We have them for less than $5 and they will fix the problem. I would try all of the free fixes first but if that doesnt work you can find the iPhone 4 Sensor repair lens here.

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I too have had this same problem (3 screens, two different manufacturers, 3 proximity sensors, the two different model numbers) where the sensor just wouldn't work.

Tried restoring, didn't work.

SOLUTION: Black marker over area for sensors on underside of screen.

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hi guys , This is NOT a software issue !!!!!!

Very easy Fix = first open your screen , this link = http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iNM90pb-X...

then you can use a thin colored plastic layer, cut it to fit the sensor and glue it to the sensor , this image = http://www.iimmgg.com/image/0db8ed363bf3...

then replace your screen , this link = http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E2r1sOML2...

Well Done .. its working 100 % tested on 3 iphons

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see here, the proximity sensor lens might solve it

http://goo.gl/HlqcF

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@Richard Kerr, I have ordered these proximity lens at your place. This is only the solution when the lens is missing on the proximity sensor. But what to do when its already in its place. @Deano193, This is when missing the proximity lens, it's not there from out factory on the sensor flex. You need to take it from the old sensor flex.. I think we need more foam so the sensor wont take the light from the backlight. But where to find the foam? And what does iphonefix.com sells? They don't ship abroad :( So I cannot test it.

by Laurens van Rijn

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This may seem like an odd solution, but I recently found this image on a Chinese Parts Suppliers Website.

I have re-written message on image as original made little sense.

Block Image

Personally I have not tested this as a verified fix, but to me it makes sense.

The sensor may be seeing the white surrounding it and is reading the sensor as open all the time.

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I would just like to add something as I have spent the best part of three days trying to sort through this one. I have tried all sorts of things from strips of insulating tape cut and placed over the sensor to colouring in the window on the glass. I couldn't work it out, each time I put the phone back together, the proximity sensor still didn't work.

Finally I worked it out and hopefully this will help other people as well.

We repair, refurbish and sell used iPhones http://www.reo-technology.co.uk and had come across this problem a few times in the early days of our business but recently, using better quality digitizers, we hadn't seen this for a while. I did however, as part of a promotional gimmick buy a pretty Blue front and back to customise a phone.

As I said, in the early days I had tried loads of different things, many suggested through this website and many others to try and work out this problem. Some say software issues, some say hardware. OK to clear this up, my logical guess it's a hardware problem that the software can't adjust to. It may well be that the clever software only works in a certain range, I'm not sure. What I do know is it's the sensor that can't cope with the variations on the different glass digitizer fronts. These vary from supplier to supplier, some work and some don't. During the many dismantling procedures in trying to get my customised blue phone to work, I tried one of my standard white digitizers and it worked perfectly so I knew it wasn't the sensor at fault. It's the quality of the window that lets Infrared light pass through it that can determine if it works or not.

Here is a simple diagram of how the sensor works:

Block Image

The IR emitter sends out the signal and when you cheek or ear gets in the way it reflects back to the receiver and tells the screen to turn off.

I had tried all sorts and then I read an article about putting a little UV filter over the sensor and how it worked 100% so I decided to order one from eBay. When it arrived, it was much smaller than I imagined. When I looked closer, I realised this was already fitted to the iphone I was trying to get working. I had thought that I was buying some little add-on when in fact these are fitted in front of the receiver anyway. Now I really was confused.

Having stripped this phone down for the 6th time (the screws are starting to look a little worn out now), I though I'll stick this new little filter over the top of the old one. If this is what is recommended, I couldn't see that information clearly written down on any of the websites or anywhere on eBay where people are selling these. But as the phone was in bits, I thought I would try it. Below is some images to help understand what I am trying to explain.

Block Image

As you can see from the pictures, it's quite small and only fits over the right bit of the sensor (which I assume is the receiver).

Top Left - Filter removed (This is standard as it leaves the factory)

Top Right - Filter fitted with extra filter to the right

Bottom Left - Filter

Bottom Right - Sensor with two filters fitted.

Bottom line is, this worked so now my iPhone with pretty blue front and back works as it should.

Block Image

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Okay, so we still get this problem sometimes.

We have like 200 pieces of the filter with the foam on it.

We saw some similar problems between the phones:

There are 5 different versions.

See the IMEI number (the first numbers)

0124, 0125, 0126, 0127, 0128

The strange thing, is that all versions have this UV filter with foam already installed, only the 0127 never has!

So @Chris, you say: Top Left - Filter removed (This is standard as it leaves the factory)

You're IMEI starts with 0127! Because other iPhone 4's always have this filter standard from factory!

Still have sometimes the problem after repair that the sensor is not working, when we just replace the complete flex with a new uv lens filter, it works 9 of the 10 times.

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Wow lots of theories,

What about this problem,

The sensor didnt work anymore after a screen replacement. I replaced the sensor flex. No Result

Checked for the foam, it was still there, put a layer of tape on top of it. No Result

Replaced the OEM front with a original Apple from a working iPhone.

No Result.

Any ideas, this problem is so strange!

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Thx u for all if no way u get success there us only obe way left change the sensior jec with heat gun

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Add another masking tape and sharpie worked proponent. It takes some doing, but it works. I imagine foam or electrical tape will work as well, it appears to be about preventing the backlight from leaking onto the sensor.

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Finally , I had to replace the sensor aswell as use the tapetrick. The one that worked for me was the one with scoth tape and a marker. tried all the other stuff here, but the tape stuff worked, and finally this is not a software issue, i tried the mainboard in an other phone , an the the proxi sensor and rest worked fine , and swapped back again, then it was just as bad. So that proves its not a software issue. Softwaregeeks ! Why i had to change the sensor was probably caused by the cracked screen. Took me all together at least 3 hrs. 2 different screens and a new prxsensor. (and some scoth tape.)

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tried all the above,none worked,decided to take screen off, reassemble without screen,after this i connected screen externally,made a phone call and put finger over pair of sensors,still not working so the next step is to replace sensor cable.

UPDATE,

replaced flex cable, uv filter, foam surround used 2 one on top of other,genuine used but in excellent condition screen,

exactly the same useless,

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Hello a few days ago I changed a flex cable because of the power button I also transferred the uv filter from the old cable/sensor to the new but it doesn't work the sensor is ok ( when I hold a cam on the phone while it is calling some number I can see the blue shine of the sensor)

The sensor next to the uv sensor has it also any filter??

Would a new filter be a solution to this problem???

I didn't try the tape or marker method , should I?

Would a iPhone 4s filter wok on 4 ???

Thank's to all of you guys!!!

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I am totally more confused than b4. but i tried a very simple thing, I got a bit of pasta and stuck it up my nose , and it still doesn't work so fk it i aint eating pasta again

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Hi, i'have replaced the power button-sensor flex.

After replacment sensor doesn't work.

I tried another flex. Not work.

I tried to change the glass. Not work.

Any ideas?

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Yes. I have an idea:

Read the comments above. Alle of them. As soon as you tried everything mentioned here you can almost be sure your logicboard is broken.

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okay well, i have an iPhone 4 with sprint. i have had it for not that long. i dropped it once before and it cracked once in two places. ever since then on one corner (at the top of the phone) some pieces of the glass have been coming off and it had a minor twitching. the other day i dropped it in my kitchen and it cracked again.. this time something is all messed up..idk what it is, but it doesnt do anything when i touch it, like when i try to side open open the front lock screen it doesnt do it.. it juss stays still.. is there anything i can do to fix it or is it time to get a new phone???

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Loads of theories on this problem indeed. I have experienced it myself quite a few times. Most of the time after replacing the iphone 4 proximity flex. I suspect the flex cables I bought from ebay were of poor quality several times.

Can anyone give me a link where to buy the proximity flex cables of good quality? Preferrably in Belgium or the Netherlands.

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replacing your sensor doenst work,

just what i do is use some paper tape and make it black with a marker and put it on top of the sensor,

When playing around with darkening the sensor always do a reset on the phone before testing!I had a situation that after the adjusting it didnt worked. then reset the phone and it was there again!

already fixed a few of them this way!

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I have just added a thin strip of electric tape between to two sensors. Usually worked, but not always. Another trip is to compare membrane shade to original. The real problem is not having a sure method every time. Don't have time to keep replacing screens or trying this or that.

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I have been buying "original" cables with this sensor now for some time, and only just started connecting the fact that the light sensor (not the proximity sensor) has been blacked out with a black permanent marker. They tend to work with all of my replacement screens, sometimes without the foam spacer/UV filter that goes over the proximity sensor.

So, recently what I've done when the new screens don't work with the sensor right, is blacked out the light sensor (just one dab) then tested, and it always works, but sometimes I first have to remove the UV filter. In fact more often. Overall it has fixed it 100% so far! (aprox 10/10).

Much easier than applying a foam spacer!

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Hi everybody,

after many weeks of searching a solution, i've solved the problem.

That's what i've done:

- made the UV sticker installed on the proximity sensor (the right one)

black with a permanent marker

- put another UV sticker on the installed one on the proximity sensor. Than made it black with a permanent marker.

- put an UV sticker on the light sensor (left one). Than made it black with a permanent marker.

- put an adhesive foam like this on both the sensor

Now the proximity sensor works again!

Hope this helps the community

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I think this is much too complicated. Try my solution. It has worked like 20/20 times now.

by spacec0w

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spacec0w, i've tried your solution but it didn't work for me

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I should have mentioned that all of my screens I use now are original replacements. I don't know how often my solution works with copy screens.

by spacec0w

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Blacken the middle of the sensor or just cover a black tape on the sensor.

http://www.ecever.com/blog/iphone-4-prox...

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If you want to cheat this fix, instead of pulling the phone apart, lift your plastic screen protector, (If u have one on) and place a stroke from a whitebord marker over the position of the sensors on the digitiser itself, lay the screen protector back down - fixed.

great for personal use, however if onselling a more permanent fix as above may be required.

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the Paperclip fix or the DIY sticker.

Last night i have been trying to repair a proximity sensor and reading here a lot!,

until late, and finally i did it. i found out a similar, cheap and easy way to repair it.

i have just done another one and are both working fine. very very easy going have a look.

take any camera (this was not working using an ipads 3 camera dont know why?) and have a look to check if there is a white light coming out from IR sensor while doing a call, probably it will. if there is not light check the conector or try another flex.remeber dont test with an ipad camera, didnt worked for me :) remeber sensor is on, only while doing a call. you can use an app called " sensor monitor" its free on the app store, is perfect if you dont have the carrier sim and the phone is network locked. this app is spacially for hardware testing, i have read it probably before someone post it? cant remember, very usefull app ;)

ok the repair: once you have taken apart the screen, you can see the sensors,

take black tape, cut a small scuare, about a bit bigger to the size to cover them, to be sure they are completely covered. dont put yet the tape on the phone.

now take a for example paper clip and bend it (like the one you use to take sim out), this is how i have done it and works, burn the extreme of the paper clip with a lighter. once the extreme part of the paper clip is hot (red) place in the tape and let the heat from the metal make a little hole. make very smal rounds with your hand just to make it a bit bigger. make the same close to this one, and now you have a small black sticker with two hole.

place this small scuare tape with these 2 holes over the sensors.

put the screen back and test it.

Hope it works for all of you too!

next ill try to put the tape on the glass to check if it works the same without having to open.

great place iFixit.

Update

i have been doing a lot of proximity sensors repairs with tape and 2 holes.

now im using a soldering iron to make the holes in stead of the clip.

if you can see the white ir light above the earspeaker,

using anocher iphone camera then the problem is that ir sensor gets to much light.

last night i have been working on an iphone 4 that proximity sensor was working fine without the screen mounted (testing with long orange flex),

but it was not working with the tape and 2 holes and screen mounted.

this screen it was a little scrached on the glass near the area from proximity sensor.

Finally i fix it covering with tape the ir light hole. only the ir light, not the sensor itself.

i mounted the screen and proximity sensor was working.

if you can see the white light from ir sensor (remember using a camera), then the problem is that receiver gets to much light.

i covered the ir light and sensor is working.

have fun.

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I have the same issue with my iphone. Still haven't tried the sharpy pen method. Also checking the sensor with a camera is a good idea thou I'm afraid I might not see no light. Strange thing is this guy on you tube was trying so hard to show how he had fixed it and you could see the light from the sensor on the screen very clearly made me giggle.

Update

Sucess my light approximity finally works. So the tape didn't work for me I though of using some foam because I wanted it like the original. Foam did work but I had to place it in the middle of the two sensors.A vertical strip note it has to touch the front of the screen or it won't work so make sure the foam is bigger then any old one there. I'm shocked it worked for me as I have a 4s screen on an iphone 4 I got of ebay.yeh I had to change the bazel front. For more info see link.

http://www.ifixit.com/Answers/View/53075...

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Electrical tape with 2 holes cut out works for me 99% of the time and I do plenty of iPhones

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if you can see the white light from the ir then the problem is that the ir sensor wets too much light from backlicht screen. the tape is a good solution.

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I have tried a few things none have worked came close as I could see the ir on camera aswell as without. Only have the Sharpy method left I got a feeling this one will work. My light sensor works too so my screen changes brightness automatically.

--UPDATE--

Sucess my light approximity finally works. So the tape didn't work for me I though of using some foam because I wanted it like the original. Foam did work but I had to place it in the middle of the two sensors.A vertical strip note it has to touch the front of the screen or it won't work so make sure the foam is bigger then any old one there. I'm shocked it worked for me as I have a 4s screen on an iphone 4 I got of ebay.yeh I had to change the bazel front. For more info see link.

http://www.ifixit.com/Answers/View/53075...

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http://www.priorparts.com/blog/iphone-4-...

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schizm00 will be eternally grateful.

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