Introduction

The shiny rear half of your iPod case.

Apple designed their new iPods to be very difficult to take apart without destroying major components. Because of the metal faceplate, the metal backing, and the 13 (yes, 13) metal clips holding the case together, this is one of the toughest iPods to disassemble.
  • Apple designed their new iPods to be very difficult to take apart without destroying major components. Because of the metal faceplate, the metal backing, and the 13 (yes, 13) metal clips holding the case together, this is one of the toughest iPods to disassemble.

  • Proceed with caution and the warning that you may significantly damage your iPod beyond its present condition. Also, you may want a few extra pairs of plastic opening tools during installation, as they are easy to ruin when opening the iPod. Have fun!

  • Before opening your iPod, ensure that the hold switch is in the locked position.

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Opening this iPod is challenging. Don't get discouraged if it takes you a few tries before the iPod is opened. One thing to notice is the angle of the plastic opening tool's tip while inserting it into the iPod. Ideally, the angle should be as vertical as possible while still clearing the edge of the rear panel.
  • Opening this iPod is challenging. Don't get discouraged if it takes you a few tries before the iPod is opened. One thing to notice is the angle of the plastic opening tool's tip while inserting it into the iPod. Ideally, the angle should be as vertical as possible while still clearing the edge of the rear panel.

  • Insert a plastic opening tool into the seam between the front and back of the iPod.

I think this must be a 5th gen ipod class and the gap is larger. I have a 6th gen ipod classic, the plastic open tool can't insert in!

The battery(thick) I bought from ifixit has problem: the cable is not same length as the original one. Be carefully.

linhaiyxs - Reply

AWESOME!!!! Couldn't b happier,1 hour and 10 mins to switch out headphone jack (had music through one speaker) and battery since I had it open. Really only had to use plastic spudger,metal spudger and 1.5 inch puddy knife. Plastic separators didn't really help,for 3 bucks I'm not complaining. Already had a 00 screwdriver. All told,$43.00 for parts and I have my 120 gig iPod back.

David Fizur - Reply

Before starting to pry open the case, look closely at the pictures in steps 21 and 23 to better understand the clips to be released and the location of the clips. It will make the probing with the spudger more effective.

Jim Athay - Reply

Insert another plastic opening tool into the seam between the front and back of the iPod, leaving at least 1.5 inches of space between the two tools.
  • Insert another plastic opening tool into the seam between the front and back of the iPod, leaving at least 1.5 inches of space between the two tools.

Stick yer dick in. Yer gonna f it up folks

doug - Reply

At an angle, carefully insert a putty knife about 1/8 inch into the seam between the two opening tools.
  • At an angle, carefully insert a putty knife about 1/8 inch into the seam between the two opening tools.

  • There are thin metal rails running along the inside of the rear panel, so take great care when inserting the putty knife.

  • Once the putty knife has cleared the lip of the rear panel, pivot the putty knife so that it is vertical, and carefully (but firmly) wiggle it straight down into the gap between the opening tools.

The plastic tools are fine for holding the tabs open or for prying open partially open sides, but you're much better off using the metal spudger to open em

parthmukeshbhatt - Reply

I couldn't agree more about the plastic opening tools! The metal spudger worked loads better when it came to actually opening the device. Yes, the metal tool's tip was much sharper than the plastic (and hence, easier to cut your fingers on if your grip slips) but it was substantially more effective in the end. :)

Kimberly Valdovinos -

At my local hardware store they offer stiff and flexible putty knives - which kind is better for this purpose?

anonymous 4032 - Reply

Don’t do this! The putty knife is too wide and will damage the inside of the case. You can see in the photo for step 19 how the metal clip rail has been bent out of shape. You need to use a narrower tool the will fit between the protrusions on the clip rail (which is where the clips actually are). This video shows a better, albeit more dangerous, method using an x-acto knife. I used the method shown in the video but with a #18 chisel blade on the x-acto knife. With the iPod on its back, I inserted the blade with the beveled side down. Then I pried the side out slightly and peeked through the crack with a flashlight to make sure that the blade was positioned between the protrusions, readjusting as necessary. I used multiple knives to prevent released clips from reengaging. Use this technique at your own risk, and wear adequate hand and eye protection as the blades are very sharp and somewhat brittle.

Robert Watkins - Reply

Push with your fingers on the rear panel behind the putty knife to minimize bending. Slowly flex the putty knife, as shown in the picture, to ensure that most of the metal tabs on this side of the iPod are disengaged.
  • Push with your fingers on the rear panel behind the putty knife to minimize bending. Slowly flex the putty knife, as shown in the picture, to ensure that most of the metal tabs on this side of the iPod are disengaged.

  • The theory behind this method is, rather than attempting to not bend the rear panel at all, to bend it in a favorable manner that allows you to easily restore it later. Therefore, any bend in the sides of the rear panel should be drawing the lip of the rear panel away from the iPod, rather than pushing out on the curved surface. This method also disengages as many of the side clips as possible.

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Remove the putty knife from the iPod and reinsert it closer to the corner of the iPod, using the same wiggle method as before.
  • Remove the putty knife from the iPod and reinsert it closer to the corner of the iPod, using the same wiggle method as before.

  • If at all possible, do not bend the corner of the rear panel.

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Between the lock slider and headphone jack, insert a plastic opening tool into the seam between the front and back of the iPod.
  • Between the lock slider and headphone jack, insert a plastic opening tool into the seam between the front and back of the iPod.

  • You may find it easier to carefully flex the putty knife downward in order to create more of a gap for the opening tool, but be sure not to bend the corner of the rear panel!

The clip holding this part of the iPod together is different from the others around the iPod and you might want to keep the spudger in place until you've opened the iPod completely.

Karsten - Reply

Near the center of the display, carefully insert a metal spudger into the gap created by the plastic opening tool.
  • Near the center of the display, carefully insert a metal spudger into the gap created by the plastic opening tool.

  • It is easy to create a noticeable bump in the rear panel here that is difficult to repair. When prying the tab free, try to have the metal spudger pivot on the edge of the rear panel rather than bending the rear panel outward.

  • Using the metal spudger, disengage the single clip on the top of the iPod.

This was the most difficult step in opening for me. Place the device on a hard surface and press with increasing force until you feel the clip push down and out of the way.

joe - Reply

Near the other top corner, insert an opening tool into the seam between the front and back of the iPod
  • Near the other top corner, insert an opening tool into the seam between the front and back of the iPod

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On the other side, insert an opening tool into the seam between the front and back of the iPod.
  • On the other side, insert an opening tool into the seam between the front and back of the iPod.

  • You may find it easier to angle the opening tool stuck in the top corner in order to create a sufficient gap.

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Remove the plastic opening tool from the top corner and insert it into the seam between the front and back of the iPod, leaving at least 1.5 inches of space between the two tools (as done on the other side).
  • Remove the plastic opening tool from the top corner and insert it into the seam between the front and back of the iPod, leaving at least 1.5 inches of space between the two tools (as done on the other side).

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Deck the Halls
With tools and Fix Kits
At an angle, carefully insert a putty knife about 1/8 inch into the seam between the two opening tools.
  • At an angle, carefully insert a putty knife about 1/8 inch into the seam between the two opening tools.

  • Again, there are thin metal rails running along the inside of the rear panel, so take great care when inserting the putty knife.

  • Once the putty knife has cleared the lip of the rear panel, angle the putty knife so that it is vertical, and carefully (but firmly) wiggle it straight down into the iPod via the gap between the plastic opening tools.

  • Push with your fingers on the rear panel behind the putty knife to minimize bending. Ever so slightly flex the putty knife to ensure that most of the metal tabs on this side of the iPod are disengaged.

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The metal clips near the corners are notorious for tenaciously gripping the front panel. It is necessary to disengage these clips in order to open the iPod.
  • The metal clips near the corners are notorious for tenaciously gripping the front panel. It is necessary to disengage these clips in order to open the iPod.

  • Carefully insert a metal spudger into the area near the stubborn metal clip.

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Gently wiggle the metal spudger down so that it is all the way in the rear panel.
  • Gently wiggle the metal spudger down so that it is all the way in the rear panel.

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Gently begin to disengage the clip from the front panel.
  • Gently begin to disengage the clip from the front panel.

  • It is easy to create a noticeable bump in the rear panel here that is difficult to repair. When prying the tab free, try to have the metal spudger pivot on the edge of the rear panel rather than bending the rear panel outward.

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Continue to push up on the front panel with the metal spudger until the metal clip releases.
  • Continue to push up on the front panel with the metal spudger until the metal clip releases.

Συνεχίστε να πιέζετε προς τα επάνω το μπροστινό πάνελ με το spudger μέταλλο έως ότου ελευθερωθεί το μεταλλικό κλιπ.

ermiskaspis - Reply

I couldn't have said it better.

mike - Reply

There are two ribbon cables connecting the rear panel to the rest of the iPod. In the following step, be careful not to damage these ribbon cables.
  • There are two ribbon cables connecting the rear panel to the rest of the iPod. In the following step, be careful not to damage these ribbon cables.

  • Grasp the front panel assembly with one hand and the rear panel with the other.

  • Take a deep breath!

  • Gently (GENTLY) disengage the remaining clips on the rear panel by pulling the tops of the front and rear panels away from each other (think of the bottom of the iPod as a hinge), taking great care not to damage the ribbon cables holding the two halves together.

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Use a spudger to lift the retaining flap holding the connector cable.
  • Use a spudger to lift the retaining flap holding the connector cable.

    • The retaining flap only needs to lift up 2 mm. This is a sensitive connector and too much force can remove it from the logic board.

  • Slide the orange battery ribbon out of its connector.

Be careful here. I screwed up and ruined the iPod's motherboard when trying to reconnect the battery cable.

greekman07 - Reply

very easy tear off battery connection from the logic board,very careful when open that plastic lock.

andraskiss - Reply

Be EXTREMELY careful not to lift too far up and remove the whole piece from the motherboard. You'll never get the pins to line up correctly again without breaking the solder joints and ruining the motherboard if you do. iFixit failed.

bcook -

totally screwed up, pulled out the whole

agnesmadness - Reply

the connector came out with the battery cable ,almost lost it. I did get it back in though.

elsprato13 - Reply

Yeah, this battery connector is extremely fragile if you pry too hard you will lift the whole connector plastic off the board. A really, really bad design from Apple having that type of connector like that. The white plastic part is not secure at all to the logic board so when you pry the tab up, you may lift the whole thing up.

rgarjr - Reply

Had no problem disconnecting the cable, I used a nylon spudger to press the connector down while using a plastic pry tool to pull the cable up, be patient, it might take time.

Tip for reassemble: Use a tweezer to reinsert the cable, again, it might take time.

Luis Soto - Reply

ifixit fail. Be VERY careful pulling up that lever or the whole connector will pop right the !&&* out and you will never, never, NEVER get that sucker back in. Time to buy a new one, %#*!^@.

Jeff White - Reply

Just poke this latch up from behind. It's a little scary, but it literally just popped straight up for me.

Gordon Krupsky - Reply

You MUST put the warning in the instructions not to pull out the connector. Everything worked perfectly, seriously perfectly, until I went to put the battery cable back in and realized I had popped the connector out and it pulled all of the metal prongs out. Without a way to reconnect metal to metal, this basically just killed my ipod. It's trash now. Such a disappointment. Will not be recommending this site until you fix this one instruction.

djbagwell - Reply

Took me a long time to figure it out. The retainer literally pulls up ... straight up, not hinged. The retainer is the (at leeast on mine) grey thingy with a rounded top. I finally got the courage to gently pry it up (2 mm = 1 smidgen) and tthe connector pulled/fell out. Gods know if I'll ever get it back.

Larry Osborne - Reply

I pulled the connector off the motherboard, trying my best to be gentle. The instructions need to be more specific about what to pull and in what direction. The spudger wouldn't grip onto anything and I tried to rock the retainer out, not sure which way it needed to go before releasing. Then, voila, the whole thing came off. That's the end of life for my iPod classic, which I've had since 2008.

David Harbin - Reply

1 use a fine tool to lift the brown tab of the latch vertically up

2 use tweezers to grip the ribbon along its horizontal run then lift out. Don’t grip the last section that bends into the motherboard connector or you might short circuit the battery conductors, which are not insulated for the last 12mm or so

3 make sure the latch is fully up when you want to connect the ribbon of the new battery, as it falls down very easily and stops the new battery ribbon entering the connector

anonymous 2502 - Reply

Place the rear panel next to the iPod, being careful not to strain the orange headphone jack cable.
  • Place the rear panel next to the iPod, being careful not to strain the orange headphone jack cable.

Be careful not to damage the hold switch ribbon there...

Karsten - Reply

Lift the hard drive up with one hand so you can access the headphone jack ribbon beneath.
  • Lift the hard drive up with one hand so you can access the headphone jack ribbon beneath.

  • Use a spudger to flip up the plastic tab holding the headphone jack ribbon in place. The tab will rotate up 90 degrees, releasing the ribbon cable.

  • Slide the orange headphone jack ribbon out of its connector.

  • The rear panel is now free from the iPod.

I don't know if this step is totally necessary. If its not feel free to skip it just be careful to avoid tearing the ribbon.

kevman12 - Reply

I recommend not doing this. I couldn't figure out how to reattach and broke the jack in process. There is no need to do this step, just be careful not to strain this connector.

JOSHUAEGILLESPI - Reply

This is probably the most difficult part because the jack is so tiny and it's not obvious that it contains a "flip up" retainer. A very difficult step.

robertdraznik - Reply

How do I get that little 90° clip to stay back down with the new ribbon in it

Nar -

How do I get the little clip to stay down holds the year Jack ribbon to the motherboard

Nar -

I just pulled. The thing flipped up automaticly 90° degrees.

tellmiger - Reply

Now to repair the damage caused by liberating the internal parts of the iPod Classic! It is highly likely that at least one of the metal clips in the lower case has been bent upward. These clips must all be pointing downward in order to reinstall the rear panel.
  • Now to repair the damage caused by liberating the internal parts of the iPod Classic! It is highly likely that at least one of the metal clips in the lower case has been bent upward. These clips must all be pointing downward in order to reinstall the rear panel.

Right, I thought the way that this was phrased is a tad confusing. Basically, once you've separated the front and back panel, insure all the prong-like-clips around the sides of the back panel are all down - not sticking up after opening the ipod. I skipped the step because it was confusingly put. I ended up successfully swapping the battery, however when I went to put the ipod panels back together, they wouldn't clip back properly. This made it very fiddly. Anyway, hope that helps.

Joe Parkes - Reply

Take the broad, flat side of the metal spudger and push the clip down, taking care not to tear the thin metal rail from the rear panel. Alternatively a pair of flat pin nosed pliers can be used to reduce risk of slipping and damaging the headphone jack.
  • Take the broad, flat side of the metal spudger and push the clip down, taking care not to tear the thin metal rail from the rear panel. Alternatively a pair of flat pin nosed pliers can be used to reduce risk of slipping and damaging the headphone jack.

  • Be careful not to damage any of the headphone jack parts while shaping these clips!

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On a clean, hard surface, lay the rear panel on its side. Carefully but firmly push down on it, rolling the entire lip side back into its proper spot.
  • On a clean, hard surface, lay the rear panel on its side. Carefully but firmly push down on it, rolling the entire lip side back into its proper spot.

  • It may be necessary to do this multiple times in order to achieve optimal straightness on the sides. It is better to have the edges of the case pushed in slightly too far rather than not far enough, because the reseating of the front panel will bend the rear panel into its correct alignment.

  • Now that the rear panel is back to a beautiful condition, you can move on to repairing the iPod!

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The battery is attached to the rear panel with adhesive. Be careful not to tear the orange headphone jack or hold button ribbon cables when removing the battery.
  • The battery is attached to the rear panel with adhesive. Be careful not to tear the orange headphone jack or hold button ribbon cables when removing the battery.

  • Use a spudger to lift the battery and the attached orange cable out of the iPod. If you have a 160 GB iPod, the battery will be thicker than the one pictured.

Just wanted to say THANK YOU to whoever made this tutorial!! Kinda unclear in some areas, but I got it! Thanks so much!!!

shaunlovesyou - Reply

I just want to say that with out this tutorial I could never have taken my iPod apart the biggest help was the addition of the putty knife. It took about 30min cause I took it slow. My iPod is charging and seems to be working thank you

PMM - Reply

dont do this, as u see, any one can edit it, it's like wikipedia, not reliable.

sophia - Reply

I do this and my ipod works now!

loquetraoul -

Thanks for this. It worked for me without any hitches. Your presentation, products and packaging are all first rate.

trippcarey - Reply

All very easy to do. Ive just "frankensteined" a 100Gb classic and working all fine. Very simple and clear instructions.

Been using iFixit for almost 10 years in my data recovery company and always been informative in getting Macs opened easily and with great results

michael earl - Reply

Within the first minute, I pushed a plastic opener through the flesh of my opposite index finger. Within the second minute I peeled back about 3/16" of my index finger nail. Within the third minute I broke the tips off of first one and then the other of the supplied plastic openers. On the fourth minute, I threw the entire kit -- brand new replacement battery included -- in the trash. Thanks for absolutely nothing!! Ken Queale

K Queale - Reply

Sounds like you're just clumsy...

bjoernskytte -

Absolute waste of money. I have been working on it for an hour and half. Blue tools wore out the first 1/2hour

Dave Sherman - Reply

My hold button ribbon was in the battery glue and tore when I pried the battery loose. I 'm going to try to replace that part with luck that will be all I have to do.

elsprato13 - Reply

There are several hard tasks in this process and this step was hard for me. Took me a while to detach the battery without damaging the cables. But with some patience I succeeded.

Great guide, by the way.

Luis Soto - Reply

I have been trying unsuccessfully to get into my ipod to replace the duff battery for a long while. Now, armed with your instructions and the right tools I have done it! (not without considerable frustration with those pesky clips I might add). The plastic spudgers are useless by the way. It took a while to work out how to release the battery ribbon cable and larger picture of the clip action would help. I too found the battery glued to the ribbon cable beneath it. Perseverance, patience and a steady handed are a must for this one. Well done and thank you!

Colin Kaye - Reply

Use one hand to hold the orange ribbon cables in place, and peel up the black tape securing the cables to the rear panel with your other hand.
  • Use one hand to hold the orange ribbon cables in place, and peel up the black tape securing the cables to the rear panel with your other hand.

I saw some YouTube videos where they were able to reuse the black tape on the new backplate, so I took some time to carefully remove it, without success. However, since I was replacing my iPod 7th Gen with a 240GB disk (thicker than the original), the new thicker back plate did not need the tape since the cables are separated form the case.

Luis Soto - Reply

Remove the two black Phillips screws securing the headphone jack to the rear panel.
  • Remove the two black Phillips screws securing the headphone jack to the rear panel.

  • These are SMALL! Be sure you have a size 00 screwdriver on hand

One tip when reassembling. These screws are very tiny and difficult to handle even with magnetized drivers, so I used the PH000 tip of the iFixIt kit to pick the screws and screw the first turns. Then switch to a PH00 to tighten them. Actually, using a PH00 of a cheaper set I bought to open the iPod, worked better since the length of the screwdriver was shorter than the case.

Luis Soto - Reply

You can also use a Phillips 000 for these. I also accidentally picked up the wrong screwdriver and got one out with a Phillips 0, but I think there's a definite risk of stripping your screws if you're not careful with this one.

Gordon Krupsky - Reply

When re-assembling, if you dip the tip of the screwdriver a couple of mm into a pot of vaseline, then place the screw onto the tip, it will hold the screw nicely in place until you tighten the screw (ie it will stick to the tip without dropping off)

anonymous 2502 - Reply

Remove the following two screws:
  • Remove the following two screws:

    • One black Phillips screw securing the hold switch near the corner of the iPod.

    • One silver Phillips screw securing the other side of the hold switch.

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Lift the hold switch free from its housing on the rear panel. Don't remove the hold switch completely at this time, because it is connected to the same cable as the headphone jack.
  • Lift the hold switch free from its housing on the rear panel. Don't remove the hold switch completely at this time, because it is connected to the same cable as the headphone jack.

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Slide the headphone jack out of its housing on the rear panel.
  • Slide the headphone jack out of its housing on the rear panel.

  • Lift the headphone jack and hold switch assembly out of the iPod.

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If you're just trying to remove the rear panel, you can skip Steps 30 and 31. If your replacement headphone jack includes the white plastic hold switch, simply reinstall the replacement headphone jack. When replacing the hold switch assembly note the locating pin near the hole the silver screw position, concentrate on locating that and the rest falls into place. Once it's all screwed in remember to peal the backing tape off the contact pad just along from the jack.
  • If you're just trying to remove the rear panel, you can skip Steps 30 and 31.

  • If your replacement headphone jack includes the white plastic hold switch, simply reinstall the replacement headphone jack. When replacing the hold switch assembly note the locating pin near the hole the silver screw position, concentrate on locating that and the rest falls into place. Once it's all screwed in remember to peal the backing tape off the contact pad just along from the jack.

  • If your replacement part does not include the plastic hold switch, follow the next steps to transfer the plastic hold switch to your new headphone jack.

  • Remove the single Phillips screw nearest to the hold switch.

  • Lift the plastic portion of the Hold switch away from the orange ribbon cable.

  • Ensure that the black notch lines up with the gray slider during reassembly of the switch (see picture 2).

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Use the small iPod opening tool to carefully peel the orange ribbon cable and attached black Hold switch up from the metal backing.
  • Use the small iPod opening tool to carefully peel the orange ribbon cable and attached black Hold switch up from the metal backing.

  • When re-attaching the replacement Hold switch, make sure the two small posts on the back of the switch are aligned with the two holes in the metal backing.

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Rear panel remains.
  • Rear panel remains.

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Conclusion

To reassemble your device, follow these instructions in reverse order.

28 other people completed this guide.

iRobot

Member since: 09/24/2009

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726 Guides authored

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Thanks!

Can I swap rear panel fat to slim? I mean I have 6/7’th gen 120 Gb with slim SSD and what to close it with rear panel from 6’th gen 80 Gb - for 3 mm less width. So question: Is this 80Gb-iPod’s rear panel is compatible to my 120Gb-iPod?

Alex - Reply

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