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Apple's mainstream 2020 iPhone was released October 23rd and comes with a 6.1" OLED display, a dual 12 MP camera system, and in five available colors. Successor to the iPhone 11.

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Can I clean the Ambient Light Sensor with ispropryl?

Coworker brought in his wife’s iPhone 12 that was having issues with the screen being super dim randomly after it boots. Figure it’s probably the ambient light sensor and sure enough find the tiniest spot of patina on one of the contact points on the back of the display where a drop of water got in (trying to explain to people that’s enough to kill something is a struggle though)

I’m not interested in fussing around with transferring components over to a new flex to keep Face ID (because reasons) so he’s just getting a Self Repair display and I’m going to do it for him since his wife wants to make sure Face ID stays intact.

In the mean time. The ALS works sometimes, if it feels like it. I’m figuring there’s some corrosion or something somewhere I can’t see because my microscope is at home. How risky is it to try and clean the ALS up with some isopropyl. Is that going to murder it more?

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Hi @flannelist

As long as there is no power connected to the device it should be OK to gently clean with IPA 99%+.

Just don't use too much at a time and also allow plenty of time to dry (evaporate) before reconnecting the power to the board.

IPA is like any liquid (except distilled water), it will conduct electricity to a degree especially when still wet, but unlike most it leaves no residues once it has evaporated.

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Those ambient light sensors are one of the few bits I haven’t actually taken apart enough to know whether or not its going to harm the components. I tend to treat isopropyl as pretty safe for this sort of thing but I know it isn’t always. If it was my phone I would’ve just murdered it and called it a day.

I think when we get the replacement screen from Apple, I’m going to give him however much Apple was going to give him in return credit so I can just keep the screen. The display itself is still perfectly good. And then see if I can fix it just for fun. I haven’t done any soldering on those flexes yet. Just home buttons.


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Alisha C will be eternally grateful.
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