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The iPhone 4 has miraculously few moving parts. A benefit of almost exclusively operating from a touchscreen. The front of the device only has a single button, but like all buttons, it is subject to failure.
Lots of failure apparently. A stuck or sticky Home Button is the third most common failure on an iPhone, behind a dead battery and a broken panel. Thankfully, there is no reason to deal with a stubborn button. You can replace your home button cheaply and easily.
April 7, 2015
The home button was unresponsive and after 6 months of AssistiveTouch, I was fed up!
Let me first say that the repair was successful without any hiccups.
However, I was NOT prepared for the gruelling 2 hours that this repair took. This experience is a brilliant test of patience; you may discover some things about yourself!
The instructions were thorough and exact, but there's no set of instructions that can make this process easy. Don't pretend you're a tech wizard and internally say "I got this" as you order. Heed the warnings on the page; this repair is DIFFICULT and TIME CONSUMING.
The new home button is as good as new. It gives a crisp click and commands your current app to minimise as smoothly as the sun sets (but way faster).
1. Get yourself a piece of A4 paper and section off and label each set of screws and parts: keep them together and in order! (THERE ARE A CRAP LOAD OF SCREWS, AND MOST ARE OF VARYING SIZES)
2. Persist. Be strong my friend, you can do this. If you feel like giving up and throwing your phone out the window, plough on. If you feel like crying, plough on. Soon your home button will be as good as new.
February 6, 2015
The volume button and mute switch did not work, after a fall
I replaced the ribbon cable that linked them to the motherboard
Bring a lamp with magnifying glass
January 19, 2015
Shattered screen, broken home button
The screen works great and I have no complaints there. The home button, however, is clearly not an OEM replacement. It is about 1mm lower than the screen and it's loose. I had to put a ring of paper underneath it to raise it up and keep it from rattling around.
Maybe order your home button replacement from somewhere else, but I've never had a problem with iFixIt's screens.
November 22, 2014
Daughter's iPhone, she told me the home button was kaput, buying a new iPhone5 so I could have it gratis.
All went well using "Farnsworth glasses" (eyesight not the same as when I was 20 y.o.) One screw and a tiny bracket left over. Didn't worry much because over the years I'd reconstructed many a car motor with a few nuts and bolts left over with no deleterious effects on the motor...
WRONG!! A few hours later I found I had a weak wi-fi signal unless I was really close to the source. Turns out said bracket needs to be installed to make a connection between the wi-fi antenna and the mother board.
On went the Farnsworth glasses to undo some of the work I'd done and insert the missing bracket. However in reinserting the attaching screws of the wi-fi antenna I mixed them up and tried to insert a long screw into a short screw hole. The damage done was not obvious until I urned on the phone.
Right where the battery charge icon is on the screen I've now got a black splotch. I'm now ordering a replacement Display Assy.
Beware the wrong screw.
My advice: get a small ice cube mould from the fridge and put all your screws into the cube shapes in some sort of recognisable representation of where they came from, such as left to right and top to bottom. Ice cube moulds are inexpensive and you can buy a few of them if you run out of room.
November 5, 2014
The home button and rear facing camera were not working. The rear facing camera would take one picture and everything would freeze up, requiring the phone to be rebooted. The home button required frequent presses before being detected. I want to use the camera in some "little robot" projects I'm working on, so the camera was essential.
The rear-facing camera was a cinch. The home button was a bit more involved. I didn't have to peel the metal frame off the case, but pretty much everything else comes apart. It did take nearly an hour to get it all apart, replaced and reassembled. It took a long time to boot, I assume because the battery had been disconnected, and I was sure I had bricked it. Surprise - it's back in service and ready to be attached to the next project!
I used a magnetic parts mat and indelible marker to label each screw as it came out. Rule one - you must do this or you will never get the right screws back in the right places! The mat saved me a couple times when I dropped parts. It catches them, rather than letting them bounce away. Rule two - don't do this over carpet - if you drop one of these screws, it's gone. :)
November 4, 2014
The rear cover was shattered
Everything went pretty smooth at the start. The pentalobe screwdriver worked awesomely, even though the screws were a little stripped.
The ifixit back cover is really nice.
When I tried to slip it into position, it just wouldn't come down all the way. I tried several times until I gave up and installed the old shattered cover.
A few hours later I tried again without success. I just left it on the table and after 15 minutes, my wife come with the cover perfectly in place!
She told me she pushed the new cover with the table... I'm really glad she did it, even though I didn't know how she really did.
The new cover needs more force to get into place than the original... just be sure not to damage it.
November 1, 2014
Home button was not operating right
I found it very difficult, main reason being that the iFixit-supplied home button is not quite exactly the same outline ath the original part. The flex cable does not fit right in the opening. As a result, this step (first step of the assembly) which is already, by far, the most challenging, is nearly impossible. (I just would like to see the lady of the video performing this step, not only the disassembly...) The rest of the procedure (23 steps) went quite smoothly
iFixit : Fix the design of this part , Please !!
Fellow repaimen: be very careful to lay down all screws, step by step, on a white sheet of pper where you can note to which step they belong
October 30, 2014
After replacing the display and screen, I found that the home button was broken. ordered it and it came in a few days.
Dismantling the entire iPhone was easier - since I already did it twice. This time I followed the directions, and as easy as pie!! Replaced the button, completed the project in a short time and it works!
As I have mentioned in another project - take your time - follow iFixit's direction.
October 23, 2014
My daughter is in university and uses her iPhone a lot. One day the button on the front of the phone quit and she found it very difficult to use it. She decided to upgrade to a new phone and wanted to give her old phone to her mother, so I decided to try to fix it.
I had seen your site before and decided to give the repair a try. I watched the videos on replacing the button, then ordered all the parts I thought I would need. The order process was seamless and the order was delivered on time. The iPhone 4 was very easy to dismantle and following the step by step images and video on your site, I had little problem. The reassembly process was a little more difficult as some of the parts and screws are very small and I didn't want to damage anything. The whole process only took about one and a half hours. Would I do it again? Defiantly!
My advice for anyone trying to replace the button on an iPhone is remove all distractions and be very patient as it is very fiddly and it will take longer that you think. One other piece of advice I could offer is to get a small parts tray to keep the screws and parts separated.
October 20, 2014
The home button didn't respond anymore so I thought I'd fix that and get at least one more year out of my beautiful iPhone 4.
All went fine except putting the motherboard back in. You have to get the screen and digitizer cable through this narrow hole, and the digitiser cable kept buckling. I think I broke one of the wires in there while fiddling about with that, and now a small 'column' at the left of the screen doesn't respond anymore. It's not as bad as a broken button but it is annoying because now I can't type my iCloud password anymore in landscape mode, which is the only mode you can type your password in. So if something breaks in the software and I have to type my password I'm screwed.
Be very careful with the two cables I mentioned. The rest of the repair process is not so hard.