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Released October 26, 2018. Models A1984, A2105, A2106, A2108. Available as GSM or CDMA / eSIM, nano-SIM or dual-SIM / 64, 128, or 256 GB / Black, White, Blue, Yellow, Coral, or Red. (Pronounced "iPhone 10 R.")

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microphone may be broken, what to do

Hi everyone,

I have an iPhone XR, on which I had the bad idea of trying to use an air compressor to clean it. It seems that I have broken the microphone situated at the bottom.

But … it doesn’t seem to be completely broken, here’s what’s happening:

When I have a call, the person here’s a lot of static noise, but sometimes also my voice, and sometimes the voice is clear enough and there is less static. Does it mean it can still be salvaged/repaired? If so, does any of you know how I could do that?

Thank you in advance to anyone who will take the time to answer me and give me some advice/guidance.

Warm regards,
Charlie

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Hi Charlie,

The two microphones on your XR are built into the lightning port connector assembly, and are definitely replaceable. While there isn't an iFixit guide for that on the XR (I know, I had to write the one on the X), there's a French site called SOSav that does have a decent guide for the lightning connector. You'll have to do a little mental translation on it, as the machine translation calls Phillips screws "cruciform" screws, and it calls flex cables "tablecloths", but outside of those little idiosyncrasies, the guides are generally well written and complete.

Here's the guide you'll need.

Charge connector iPhone XR repair - Free guide - SOSav

You can buy the part right here on iFixit if you want, and it even comes in the correct color to match your phone.

iPhone XR Lightning Connector Assembly - iFixit Store

If you decide to give it a shot, be sure to stay in touch if you have any questions and we'll do what we can to help. While I personally haven't worked on a XR, I've authored several guides for the X, so I have a pretty good idea of how those phones go together.

Best of luck with your repair!

iPhone XR Lightning Connector Assembly Image

Product

iPhone XR Lightning Connector Assembly

$29.99

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Hi Jerry,

Thank you so much for taking the time to give such a detailed answer.

I happen to be French, so it shouldn’t be a problem for me to understand that guide :-)

Still before attempting this kind of repair, I’d like to point out something again: the microphone seems to work sometimes. No later than this morning (it’s noon in France), I tried a call that worked almost perfectly, and then another later that didn’t. Can the microphone be truly broken and still work that well sometimes? Or is it something that can be cleaned one ‘restored’ one way or another.

Anyway, thank you again for your kind help, and I will stay in touch in case I find either a solution to fix it or attempt a repair with a new part.

Warm regards,

Charlie

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On most recent iPhones the microphone(s) are mounted on the flex cable connected to the charging port. Keep in mind that this is just a guess, but it appears to me that the blast of compressed air likely damaged the connection between the mic and the flex cable. Since the microphones are sandwiched in between other parts, I think pressure on them is generally maintaining an electrical connection, but it's loose enough that it can work it's way loose at times and lose the connection.

If the microphone was mounted on a regular circuit board, I would say there's a pretty good chance it could be repaired by resoldering it down. Unfortunately, flex cables are notoriously difficult to solder, so while it might be possible to repair, I personally wouldn't attempt it when it's relatively inexpensive to simply replace it and guarantee I won't have any problems in the future.

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@charliewengain, Oh yeah, I wanted to mention something I have found when doing iPhone repairs that would help you if you decide to replace your lighting cable.

The SOSav guide instructs you to pull out the battery adhesive tabs in Step 11. I would argue that you should go ahead and remove the lower speaker and the taptic engine first before trying to remove the battery adhesive.

The reason behind this is that the battery is butted up against those two parts, so when you are trying to pull the adhesive out, it is going to be rubbing against the bottom of the battery, then rubbing against the taptic engine/speaker again. I've found that adhesive removal works best when you can keep the angle as flat as possible, which you can't do with those parts in place.

In addition, should the tape snap off while you're pulling it out, with those parts out of the way you have a chance to grab the end of the tape again before it gets pulled back under the battery (which has happened to me).

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Hi @dadibrokeit, thank you so much again for taking the time to answer me, and to give those very detailed explanations.

I will proceed with the attempt of repairing, and report back here when it’s done.

Thank you!!!!

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Needs a charging port replacement, blowing compressed air in has probably damaged the microphone or cracked the solder holding it on. Probably why it works intermittently. Loads of how to’s on YouTube

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Hi @strongbow, thank you for answering and helping, it’s greatly appreciated!

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Charlie Wengain will be eternally grateful.
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