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Introduction

Use this guide to remove and replace the rear cameras in the iPhone XS Max. The rear camera assembly consists of two individual modules: one wide-angle camera and one telephoto camera. Both modules are replaced as a single unit.

Both iPhone XS and XS Max use the same camera; the part can be swapped freely between the two models.

Note: This guide instructs you to completely detach the display cables and remove the display assembly in order to better access the rear cameras—however, it's possible to remove and replace the rear cameras with the display cables still connected. Advanced readers may skip disconnecting the display in order to save time, as long as the display is properly supported and the display cables are not damaged.

  1. Before you begin, discharge your iPhone battery below 25%. A charged lithium-ion battery can catch fire and/or explode if accidentally punctured. Power off your iPhone before beginning disassembly.
    • Before you begin, discharge your iPhone battery below 25%. A charged lithium-ion battery can catch fire and/or explode if accidentally punctured.

    • Power off your iPhone before beginning disassembly.

    • Remove the two 6.9 mm-long pentalobe screws at the bottom edge of the iPhone.

    • Opening the iPhone's display will compromise its waterproof seals. Have replacement seals ready before you proceed past this step, or take care to avoid liquid exposure if you reassemble your iPhone without replacing the seals.

  2. Heating the lower edge of the iPhone helps soften the adhesive securing the display, making it easier to open.
    • Heating the lower edge of the iPhone helps soften the adhesive securing the display, making it easier to open.

    • Use a hairdryer or heat gun or prepare an iOpener and apply it to the lower edge of the iPhone for about a minute in order to soften up the adhesive underneath.

  3. The next two steps demonstrate the iSclack, a handy tool that we recommend for anyone doing frequent repairs. If you aren't using the iSclack, skip down two steps for an alternate method. If the plastic depth gauge is attached at the center of the iSclack, remove it now—it's not needed for larger iPhones like the XS Max.
    • The next two steps demonstrate the iSclack, a handy tool that we recommend for anyone doing frequent repairs. If you aren't using the iSclack, skip down two steps for an alternate method.

    • If the plastic depth gauge is attached at the center of the iSclack, remove it now—it's not needed for larger iPhones like the XS Max.

    • Position the suction cups near the bottom edge of the iPhone—one on the front, and one on the back.

    • Press both suction cups firmly into place.

    • If your display or back glass is badly cracked, covering it with a layer of clear packing tape may help the suction cups adhere. The iSclack also includes two pieces of tape for this purpose.

  4. Hold onto your iPhone securely and close the handle of the iSclack to slightly separate the screen from the rear case of the phone. Don't try to completely separate the screen; a small opening along the bottom edge is all you need. Insert an opening pick into the gap under the display on the lower edge of the iPhone.
    • Hold onto your iPhone securely and close the handle of the iSclack to slightly separate the screen from the rear case of the phone.

    • Don't try to completely separate the screen; a small opening along the bottom edge is all you need.

    • Insert an opening pick into the gap under the display on the lower edge of the iPhone.

    • Skip the next two steps and continue to step 7.

  5. If you're using a single suction handle, apply it to the bottom edge of the phone, while avoiding the curved portion of the glass. If your display is badly cracked, covering it with a layer of clear packing tape may allow the suction cup to adhere. Alternatively, very strong tape may be used instead of the suction cup. If all else fails, you can superglue the suction cup to the broken screen.
    • If you're using a single suction handle, apply it to the bottom edge of the phone, while avoiding the curved portion of the glass.

    • If your display is badly cracked, covering it with a layer of clear packing tape may allow the suction cup to adhere. Alternatively, very strong tape may be used instead of the suction cup. If all else fails, you can superglue the suction cup to the broken screen.

  6. Pull up on the suction cup with firm, constant pressure to create a slight gap between the front panel and rear case. Insert an opening pick into the gap. The watertight adhesive holding the display in place is very strong; creating this initial gap takes a significant amount of force. If you're having a hard time opening a gap, apply more heat, and gently rock the screen up and down to weaken the adhesive until you create enough of a gap to insert your tool.
    • Pull up on the suction cup with firm, constant pressure to create a slight gap between the front panel and rear case.

    • Insert an opening pick into the gap.

    • The watertight adhesive holding the display in place is very strong; creating this initial gap takes a significant amount of force. If you're having a hard time opening a gap, apply more heat, and gently rock the screen up and down to weaken the adhesive until you create enough of a gap to insert your tool.

  7. Slide the opening pick around the lower left corner and up the left edge of the iPhone, slicing through the adhesive holding the display in place. Don't insert the opening pick too far into the iPhone, or you may cause damage to internal components. Don't insert the opening pick too far into the iPhone, or you may cause damage to internal components.
    • Slide the opening pick around the lower left corner and up the left edge of the iPhone, slicing through the adhesive holding the display in place.

    • Don't insert the opening pick too far into the iPhone, or you may cause damage to internal components.

  8. Re-insert your pick at the bottom edge of the iPhone, and slide it up the right side to continue separating the adhesive. Don't insert the pick very far, or you may damage the display cables along this side of the iPhone. Insert it only a few millimeters, or about the width of the display bezel. Don't insert the pick very far, or you may damage the display cables along this side of the iPhone. Insert it only a few millimeters, or about the width of the display bezel.
    • Re-insert your pick at the bottom edge of the iPhone, and slide it up the right side to continue separating the adhesive.

    • Don't insert the pick very far, or you may damage the display cables along this side of the iPhone. Insert it only a few millimeters, or about the width of the display bezel.

  9. The top edge of the display is secured with both glue and clips. Slide the opening pick around the top corner of the display, while gently pulling or wiggling the display down in the direction of the Lightning port. The clips will break if you use too much force. Work carefully and be patient.
    • The top edge of the display is secured with both glue and clips.

    • Slide the opening pick around the top corner of the display, while gently pulling or wiggling the display down in the direction of the Lightning port.

    • The clips will break if you use too much force. Work carefully and be patient.

    • Again, don't insert the pick more than a few millimeters—about the width of the display bezel—or you may damage the front panel sensor array.

    • Slide the pick to the opposite corner and cut any remaining adhesive securing the display.

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  11. Pull on the small nub on the suction cup to remove it from the front panel.
    • Pull on the small nub on the suction cup to remove it from the front panel.

    • If you used an iSclack and it's still affixed to the iPhone, remove it now.

  12. Open the iPhone by swinging the display up from the left side, like the back cover of a book. Don't try to fully separate the display yet, as several fragile ribbon cables still connect it to the iPhone's logic board. Lean the display against something to keep it propped up while you're working on the phone.
    • Open the iPhone by swinging the display up from the left side, like the back cover of a book.

    • Don't try to fully separate the display yet, as several fragile ribbon cables still connect it to the iPhone's logic board.

    • Lean the display against something to keep it propped up while you're working on the phone.

    • During reassembly, lay the display in position, align the clips along the top edge, and carefully press the top edge into place before snapping the rest of the display down. If it doesn't click easily into place, check the condition of the clips around the perimeter of the display and make sure they aren't bent.

    • Remove four Y000 screws securing the logic board cover bracket, of the following lengths:

    • Two 1.1 mm screws

    • One 1.5 mm screw

    • One 3.7 mm screw

    • Throughout this repair, keep track of each screw and make sure it goes back exactly where it came from to avoid damaging your iPhone.

  13. Remove the bracket.
    • Remove the bracket.

    • The bracket may be lightly adhered in place. Lift gently but firmly to separate it.

    • During reassembly, this is a good point to power on your iPhone and test all functions before you seal the display in place. Be sure to power your iPhone back down completely before you continue working.

  14. Use a spudger or a clean fingernail to pry the battery connector up from its socket on the logic board. Try not to damage the black silicone seal surrounding this and other board connections. These seals provide extra protection against water and dust intrusion.
    • Use a spudger or a clean fingernail to pry the battery connector up from its socket on the logic board.

    • Try not to damage the black silicone seal surrounding this and other board connections. These seals provide extra protection against water and dust intrusion.

    • Bend the connector slightly away from the logic board to prevent it from accidentally making contact with the socket and providing power to the phone during your repair.

  15. Remove the three Y000 screws securing the display connector bracket: Two 1.1 mm screws
    • Remove the three Y000 screws securing the display connector bracket:

    • Two 1.1 mm screws

    • One 1.5 mm screw

  16. Remove the bracket.
    • Remove the bracket.

  17. Use the point of a spudger or a fingernail to disconnect the front panel sensor assembly connector. Use the point of a spudger or a fingernail to disconnect the front panel sensor assembly connector.
    • Use the point of a spudger or a fingernail to disconnect the front panel sensor assembly connector.

  18. Use a spudger or a fingernail to disconnect the OLED panel cable connector. To re-attach press connectors like this one, carefully align and press down on one side until it clicks into place, then repeat on the other side. Do not press down on the middle. If the connector is misaligned, the pins can bend, causing permanent damage.
    • Use a spudger or a fingernail to disconnect the OLED panel cable connector.

    • To re-attach press connectors like this one, carefully align and press down on one side until it clicks into place, then repeat on the other side. Do not press down on the middle. If the connector is misaligned, the pins can bend, causing permanent damage.

  19. Use a spudger or fingernail to pry the digitizer cable connector up from its socket. If any part of your screen doesn't respond to touch after your repair, disconnect the battery and then re-seat this connector, making sure it clicks fully into place and that there's no dust or other obstruction in the socket.
    • Use a spudger or fingernail to pry the digitizer cable connector up from its socket.

    • If any part of your screen doesn't respond to touch after your repair, disconnect the battery and then re-seat this connector, making sure it clicks fully into place and that there's no dust or other obstruction in the socket.

  20. The front panel sensor assembly flex cable is lightly adhered in place. Carefully lift the cable until the adhesive separates. Carefully lift the cable until the adhesive separates.
    • The front panel sensor assembly flex cable is lightly adhered in place.

    • Carefully lift the cable until the adhesive separates.

  21. Remove the display assembly.
  22. Remove the two 1.8 mm Phillips screws securing the rear camera cover. Remove the two 1.8 mm Phillips screws securing the rear camera cover.
    • Remove the two 1.8 mm Phillips screws securing the rear camera cover.

  23. Lift the camera cover from the edge closest to the battery, and remove it. To reinstall the camera cover, follow the images exactly in reverse: first, lower the outside edge until the two protruding tabs on the cover are slotted securely into the bracket on the outer edge of the camera module. Then, hinge the cover closed. If the two tabs are not seated correctly, the cover will not lay flat.
    • Lift the camera cover from the edge closest to the battery, and remove it.

    • To reinstall the camera cover, follow the images exactly in reverse: first, lower the outside edge until the two protruding tabs on the cover are slotted securely into the bracket on the outer edge of the camera module. Then, hinge the cover closed.

    • If the two tabs are not seated correctly, the cover will not lay flat.

  24. Use an iFixit opening tool or a fingernail to disconnect the two camera cable connectors by prying them straight up from their sockets. Use an iFixit opening tool or a fingernail to disconnect the two camera cable connectors by prying them straight up from their sockets. Use an iFixit opening tool or a fingernail to disconnect the two camera cable connectors by prying them straight up from their sockets.
    • Use an iFixit opening tool or a fingernail to disconnect the two camera cable connectors by prying them straight up from their sockets.

  25. Insert both tips of your tweezers or a pointed pry tool at the bottom right corner of the camera, between the camera assembly and the iPhone's frame. Gently pry up to lever the camera out of the iPhone.
    • Insert both tips of your tweezers or a pointed pry tool at the bottom right corner of the camera, between the camera assembly and the iPhone's frame.

    • Gently pry up to lever the camera out of the iPhone.

    • The camera assembly is not glued down, but it is firmly press-fit into place. A spudger or plastic pry tool may not be strong enough to lever it out.

  26. Remove the rear-facing camera assembly.
    • Remove the rear-facing camera assembly.

Conclusion

Compare your new replacement part to the original part—you may need to transfer remaining components or remove adhesive backings from the new part before installing.

To reassemble your device, follow the above steps in reverse order.

Take your e-waste to an R2 or e-Stewards certified recycler.

Repair didn’t go as planned? Check out our Answers community for troubleshooting help.

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Jeff Suovanen

Member since: 08/06/2013

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One Comment

Hi I was wondering if the rear facing camera class is broken is there a way to replace the glass?

hughes - Reply

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