Introduction: Fix Your Broken Kindle Keyboard Screen
After falling in love with my new (used) Kindle, I sat on the screen and cracked it. Strictly adhering to my DIY, minimal waste ethos, I found a YouTube video made by the good people at PowerBook Medic with clear instructions to replace the screen instead of dumping the whole Kindle.
It struck me that Instructables had no such guide so I set out to make a step-by-setp for other people with the same problem. I ended up learning an important lesson in the process.
Step 1: Order a New Screen
Where can I get a new screen? What will it cost?
I found no e-ink screens for less than $50. After some careful perusing, I ordered my new e-Ink screen from eBay and it arrived from the kind people of Shenzen in about 2 weeks.
Fifty dollars was worth it to me considering the price of a new Kindle and my desire to fix rather than trash. Everyone will have to evaluate this for themselves because as you will see, the repair process is not for the faint of heart.
Step 2: Tools Required
-Set of Electronic Screw Drivers, both flat head and Phillips
(I highly recommend the Stanley set I use which have spinning tops, magnetic tips, and come with a sturdy case)
-Soft Plastic Pry Tool aka Spudger
Step 3: Begin Disassembly: Pry Off Rear Cover
When you have your new screen I hope you will refer to this instructable for help.
I would also recommend watching the YouTube video made by the PowerBookMedic group which can be found here:
STEP 1: Pry off the plastic rear cover. Best tool for this is a flat head electronic screw driver because the cover fits very tightly in the back of the Kindle; This step requires a surprising amount of force but be courageous because you are not in danger of damaging anything....yet.
Step 4: Remove Battery
STEP 2: You will immediately see the large black battery which has "Amazon.com" labeled on it along with the other disclaimers. This is the first component to remove which is held in place by 2 Phillips screws at the top left.
Step 5: Disconnect 4 Cables and Wires
STEP 3: Disconnect 4 cables and wires that originate from the screen and keyboard and are plugged into the logic board. I have labeled them in the picture with red circles. Also remove the red and black speaker wire with white socket which easily unclips.
Some are held in place with a brown lock bar. The lock bar can be released with the flat head screw driver but is sometimes easiest done with your finger!
Each cable will simply slide out of the socket they are plugged into with a little help.
Step 6: Remove Grounding Mechanism & 3G Card
STEP 4: Remove the 2 screws that hold the small ground piece down and then remove the 2 screws that hold the silver 3G card down. Next, unclip the black cable which is plugged into the 3G card. These are all circled in red in the image.
Step 7: Undo Screws Holding Logic Board
STEP 5: Begin by removing this black component with 4 screws on the corners. Next, look for approximately 12 screws holding the Logic Board to the Mid Board. You will be sure you have removed all of them only when you can lift the Logic Board off. This takes some trial-and-error and some prying.
Step 8: Remove Midboard
STEP 6: Now that the Logic Board is out, the Mid board is exposed and can be removed. This also required some patience and experimentation but can be removed with the (black) speaker module still attached.
The keyboard will likely fall out at this step.
Please pay attention to the rocker knobs for the On/Off switch as well as the Volume because they are not permanently attached and can simply fall out without being noticed! See picture.
Step 9: Replace the Screen!
STEP 7: Congratulations you've taken the Kindle totally apart and you're ready to replace the broken screen with a new one.
You MUST be very careful during this step because the e-Ink screens are surprisingly delicate. The back of the screen is made from a very very thin piece of glass and any torque or torsion will crack it. Normally the case of the Kindle will prevent this kind of damage but when it is out as a separate piece it is extremely vulnerable. Actually the first time I did this procedure, I broke it !!
Step 10: Reassemble
Now that you have replaced the screen, you must do the whole ordeal backwards which will be much easier.
A few things to keep in mind:
Don't forget the Keyboard
Don't forget the Volume rocker
Don't forget the On/Off slide switch
When you put the midboard back onto the screen, BE CAREFUL, please be delicate or it could crack the screen, I can't emphasize this enough or the whole repair will be botched.
Before you screw down the midboard, make sure the Cables are sticking up and clear of their respective holes in the midboard or you won't be able to connect them later.
The lock bars can be replaced onto each of the cables
This is my first Instructable so thank you for reading, hope it can help someone, and look forward to any feedback.