Fix the Earpiece of Your Motorola V551 Phone.

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Intro: Fix the Earpiece of Your Motorola V551 Phone.

The earpiece of the V551 is reportedly flakey and tends to loose volume over time. Here is a cheap way to fix this issue if you are comfortable taking apart your phone.

**Please do _NOT_ do this Instructable if you are uncomfortable with small pieces, taking apart your expensive toys, or willfully voiding any warranty you might have still had. Make sure to fully read through the instructions first so you know what you're getting yourself into. I can, in no way, be held responsible for any loss or damages incurred by anyone attempting to follow these instructions.**

Step 1: My Phone Is Going Bad...

My V551 was loosing volume, but it did so very slowly. In fact, I only figured out something was going wrong when I realized I was holding the phone to my ear very tightly to hear anything. If you have trouble hearing conversations or end up with sore forearms from trying jamming the phone into your head so you can hear, this may be the fix you need.

Tools needed:
Assortment of jeweler's screwdrivers (Flat blade and maybe some very small torx)
Electrical tape
Rubbing alcohol (optional)
Q-Tip (optional)


Once again, just so we're clear:
**Please do _NOT_ do this Instructable if you are uncomfortable with small pieces, taking apart your expensive toys, or willfully voiding any warranty you might have still had. Make sure to fully read through the instructions first so you know what you're getting yourself into. I can, in no way, be held responsible for any loss or damages incurred by anyone attempting to follow these instructions.**

Step 2: Beauty Plugs

These 4 spots around the display of your phone are just aesthetic covers for the screws which hold on the back shell. They are held in place with a sticky substance that will allow you to reapply these plugs when you put your phone back together.
Pry them out with a jeweler's screwdriver or safety pin. The rubbery material that they are made out of is quite soft though, so take care not to cut them up badly when you take them out. Save the plugs for later.

Step 3: Take Off Your Top!!

Using a torx driver if you have one, or very carefully with a small flat blade jeweler's screwdriver, remove the four screws.

Once the screws are removed _carefully_ pry the blue cover off the phone. I started at the top edge and used two screwdrivers to work my way around the edge of the phone. Once you have unsnapped about half of the cover it will be much easier to remove the rest.

Step 4: The Crux

Now again brandishing your safety pin or other small object, carefully pry the metal cover off your phone. There are 4 places it clips to the plastic body and each will need to be released separately in order to remove the cover.

Good lighting and patience are a must.

Step 5: The Problem Spot

Pulling back on the tab of brown flexible circuit board reveals the problem connection. The pads on this circuit board are supposed to connect through the flexible rubber conductor to the speaker. Apparently they aren't or you wouldn't have read these instructions so far.

At this point you may want to use a small amount of rubbing alcohol on a Q-Tip to clean both the pads and the conductive strip. I know the pads are gold plated... but it couldn't hurt.

Step 6: The Secret Ingredient

Now take a few strips of electrical tape and layer them up. Two layers was thick enough for my phone. Cut out a small chunk of the layered tape and position it on the back side of the flexible circuit board, above where the pads are located (see picture).

Step 7: The End

Now reassemble everything just the way you took it apart.

The electrical tape you installed will cause those metal divots to press the flexible circuit board more firmly against the flexible conductor. This should result in a much improved audible signal.

Good luck!, and say Hi to Aunt Ginny!

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    49 Discussions

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    Steve_53

    9 years ago on Introduction

    Excellent! I am so glad I found this instructable. I lifted the zebra connector off of the speaker and cleaned those contacts too. The wife is now happy (she didn't want a new phone!).

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    iectyx3c

    9 years ago on Introduction

    5 stars, this instructable is great.

    I used a wooden pointy toothpick to pop the rubbery plugs.
    This way the plugs were not damaged.

    Then I stuck the plugs onto a piece of tape to keep them from rolling away.
    .
    I used a T-6 torx bit. But I also found that a 1/16 inch wide flat blade screwdriver works fine.

    I used a 1/8 wide flat blade screw driver to press in on the four plastic side clips and then pried gently.

    For me, the metal backing popped right off on the two phones I fixed.
    It also snapped back on with very little pressure.

    The two gold pads lie on top of the rubbery gray and black zebra connector on the earpiece.

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    usedtruck93

    9 years ago on Introduction

    I thought this phone was a gonner. I took me approx 1 hour to repair which is less time than I would have spent buying a new one; not to mention the cost. You are fantastic. Keep up the good work.

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    warwick30

    9 years ago on Step 7

    Thank you VERY much. I was about to ditch my phone and would have had to sign up for a new 3 year contract to get another one. You have saved me a bundle. Great instructions; easy to follow. Sound now as loud as new. You are a saint!

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    OKflyboy

    9 years ago on Introduction

    Awesome! I just tried this on my phone and it works great again!! Thanks!

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    martlego

    9 years ago on Introduction

    Thumbs up gangsta! My mom now has a "new" phone (*with bluetooth please*) that works like a charm!

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    1safetyguy

    10 years ago on Introduction

    Fantastic!! Your directions were easy to follow, and the fixed worked just as stated. You saved me from buying a new phone; maybe this one will work for another 3.5 years! Even though it is pretty much a POS phone like most Motos! You get a major "ATTABOY"!

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    rlheure1

    10 years ago on Step 7

    Bravo.....my phone lasted over 3 years before I had the disappearing handpiece volume. You fix was easy to follow and worked great! Thanks

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    bcontres

    10 years ago on Introduction

    By simply following the instructions as indicated, I was able to remedy the lack of hearing on my phone. I had to set myself back by $6 or so by purchasing a Kobalt Srewdriver set #239384 at Lowes. But that's ok. Why? Cause my next job is to change the face plate on my phone that gets great reception which has all features necessary to keep me satisfied. Best of all, this phone is durable (can take a good drop or two) and gets great reception. I saved over $1000.00 by not buying another phone and locking into a 2 year contract. Thanks guys. Consider this a job well done!

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    yarb1934

    10 years ago on Step 7

    This Site is Priceless for the info that is available, My V551 Cell started to have problems with the ear piece, I went to Rogers to have it repaired I was told to scrap the Phone,with that answer I turned to Google and found your site now the problem is resolved and the sound is better than when the phone was new,Thanks a million regards Frank

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    rk62

    10 years ago on Step 7

    Thank you very much. Instructions were excellent. I thought I was going to have to get a new phone, which meant locking into another 2 year contract to get the good price. I only use it as a basic phone and the new lower priced offerings seemed so flimsy. If anyone is considering a new phone for this reason, do yourself a favor and at least attempt this. It is not very technical and for the cost of a miniature tool set at Radio Shack, you will have a working phone and a tool set.

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    schmag

    10 years ago on Step 6

    I also used 3 pieces to be on the safe side. Worked like a charm. Thank you "wdautrem"! Much appreciated.

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    wdautrem

    10 years ago on Introduction

    Thank you everyone for all the positive feedback! Maybe some day I'll get some free time to post more Instructables...

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    905guy

    10 years ago on Introduction

    This solution worked great for me also. Was about to buy a new phone before I found this site. Thanks.

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    HELINTX

    10 years ago on Step 7

    I had no sound coming out of my earpiece. I tried your fix and now its as loud as can be!! Thankyou very much!!!!!

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    Hoopajoo

    10 years ago on Introduction

    Wdautrem, YOU ARE A GENIUS! This worked spectacularly on mine. The phone was given to me by a friend when he upgraded because I wanted a cheap little throw-around digital camera (doesn't get much cheaper than free). He mentioned the volume issue but it never bothered me since I'm not using it as a cellphone. When I saw your Instructable, the Obsesive-Compulsive in me that wants everything in good working order took over. Capital!

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    bcool

    11 years ago on Step 3

    A torx #5 is the right size. I found a nice little set at Lowe's (for US$5.92) that has a driver with 8 different size bits stored in the handle from a #4 on up to a #16.