Have you found the screen of your Apple Watch suddenly popping off? If yes, the only thing in this situation that surrounds your mind is how to fix an Apple Watch screen that pops off.
In this case, you have multiple options in front of you. Your first choice should be the official warranty service. If you have it, then you’re in luck. Or, you can go to the Apple Service Center or any other trusted third-party repair center. But when your budget is limited, you can get your watch back to life through a DIY repair.
So, what should be your choice? Should you opt for a DIY repair? Find all the answers below.
What Causes Apple Watch Screen to Pop off?
Based on our observations, battery defects are the primary factor contributing to the Apple Watch screen pop-off issue. However,there may be other contributing factors. Understanding the root cause is essential for resolving this issue, and we will now briefly explore these potential factors.
Assembling a small device like the Apple Watch requires precise engineering. Rather than using tiny screws, Apple has used adhesive to keep the screen attached to the body.
Since the adhesive is the only material that holds the screen to the watch case, the screen will easily fall off if the adhesive is degraded.
Like any other Li-ion battery, Apple Watch batteries have a fixed number of charge cycles. Apple claims the battery of their watches has a capacity of 1000 complete charge cycles.
So after a certain period, the chemicals inside the battery will start deteriorating. In addition, repeated or uncontrolled charging can also affect internal chemicals.
As a result, the battery starts swelling and pushing the screen outside since it requires more space.
Usually, the screen of Apple Watches doesn’t fall off easily because of minor accidents like dropping from the hand or getting hit from outside.
However, if your watch is too old, there is a good chance of it popping off the screen due to a sudden drop. And once again, it indicates the adhesive is degraded.
Which Apple Watch models have this issue?
Since the introduction of the Apple Watch in April 2015, the company has released 9 series of watches. While the screen pop-off issue has concerned many owners, luckily, it’s not common to all models.
In addition, some Apple Watch Series 2 owners have also experienced the screen pop-off issue.
How To Fix Apple Watch Screen Popping Off?
Fixing an Apple Watch with a popped-off screen depends on several factors. For example, do you have a brand new Apple Watch in your hand? Or is it too old? Besides, the cause of that issue is also a significant factor here. Let’s take a look:
Go For Official Service from Apple
If your watch has an official warranty, you can simply contact Apple and send it to them. They will repair or replace your watch free of charge.
On the other hand, if your Apple Watch is no longer covered by warranty, you can repair it at your nearby Apple Service Center for $50-$60. On certain occasions, Apple may even offer a trade-in option and provide a new watch at a reduced cost.
Generally, Apple Watches come with a 1-year warranty. However, Apple has extended the warranty period to 3 years since the screen pop-off issue has become widespread.
DIY Fix for Apple Watch Screen Popping Off
If your watch has no warranty, and you don’t think spending $50-$60 is a wise option, you can go for a DIY fix. So, if you’re confident enough to repair the watch yourself, follow the steps mentioned below.
Step-1: Determine The Root Cause of the Issue
The crucial part is to find out the root cause of the issue. For this, inspect your watch visually and check whether it has any dents, crimps, or structural damage.
The reason would be evident to you as long as the screen popped off right after a drop. However, if it’s not, check for signs of moisture inside the case or below the screen.
Generally, if your watch pops off due to water, you’ll find fog inside the panel. If everything seems okay, you have to check the battery for any defects that might be the main culprit.
Step-2: Disassemble the Watch
If you don’t find any visual signs of damage or misshaped structure, you have to disassemble your watch. So, start by detaching the band first.
You can easily remove the band by pressing the band release buttons on the bottom side of the watch and then sliding the bands out the side.
To remove the display face, you will need to use a heat gun to loosen the adhesive that is holding it down. Next, use a flat tool to slide under the edge of the glass and then gently pry it up.
After you have lifted it up, you can use a guitar pick or a nylon spudger to separate the glass the rest of the way around. Once the display is lifted, you will need to remove the connector shield with a pair of tweezers.
Then gently unplug the LCD and digitizer connectors, and the display face can be removed.
Except for the battery, there are no other components in the Apple Watch that can be removed or replaced.
Step-3: Look for Signs of Moisture and Damage
After disassembling the watch, if you find any sign of moisture, gently wipe off the case and the face using a soft cloth and isopropyl alcohol.
Besides, you can use a hot air blower at a mild temperature to eliminate the moisture content.
Step-4 Take the Battery Out
Assuming that everything seems okay except for the battery, it’s time to check the battery.
So, as you have disassembled the watch, use a small flat tool to gently lift the battery. It’s a mild adhesive holding it down in place.
Once the battery is loose, you can flip it over and unplug the battery cable to take it out. Now you can easily see that the battery has been extended a bit.
So, go underneath the force touch sensor and clean up underneath. Underneath that force touch sensor, there is a sticker. You have to take it out.
Step-5: Install the New Battery
Now it’s time to attach the new battery. Before this, you have to clean the sticky area with isopropyl alcohol. Next, start putting sensors and connectors as they were.
After that, simply connect the new battery to the connector and place it inside the battery chamber. Don’t forget to keep the sticky part of the battery upside down.
Step-6: Apply New Adhesive and Reassemble
Here, you’re ready to reattach the face of your Apple Watch. Wait a minute? Have you removed the old adhesive? If not, clean it up.
You can simply scrape off the old adhesive using a plastic tool or tweezers. Once you have removed the old adhesive, clean the area again. This will ensure there is no residue.
It’s time for a new adhesive. Use tweezers to peel the outer ring off of one of the adhesive strip pads. Make sure you get both the double-sided adhesive and the brown backing paper.
But be sure you don’t bend, fold, or stretch the adhesive tape, as this will make it too thick to seal the screen. Now we can lay the adhesive on the watch. The guide will tell you to lay the adhesive tape down on the force touch sensor.
You can use your plastic opening tool to press around the brown backing paper to secure the adhesive around the entire perimeter. The adhesive is done. Now you can reassemble the watch.
How much does it cost to fix an Apple Watch screen popping off?
Once again, it depends on the cause of the issue. If it’s due to accidental damage, then you have no option but to contact Apple.
However, if it’s due to dried or degraded adhesive, you can fix it for $7-$10. If the battery price is included, the total cost can be $18-20.
But if you want to go to a professional, the total cost can be up to $79. While taking this service from the Apple Service Center may cost you $60-$65.
Is it safe to fix the Apple Watch screen popping off at home?
The Apple Watch is a delicate piece of technology that requires precision and expertise to handle properly.
However, an individual with expertise in replacing screens on smart devices may prefer to undertake the device repair independently.
There are limited circumstances where opting for home repair is suitable. Firstly, it is necessary to have confidence in your ability to fix smart device screens on your own.
This entails possessing prior experience in screen repairs or having the patience to acquire the necessary skills.
We have tried our best to input every piece of necessary information here, yet it won’t be surprising if you still have some other queries in mind. For this, we structured the following FAQ section.
What to do if the Apple Watch case is broken?
In such instances, the sole solution to this problem would be to either replace the case or repair any damage that may have caused the screen to pop off.
Is it worth buying a new Apple Watch if the screen pops off?
Sometimes purchasing a new Apple Watch could be the most favorable choice, particularly if your old one is too old. Moreover, it might be opportune to consider upgrading your device.
What causes an Apple Watch battery to swell?
As lithium-ion batteries age, it is common for them to experience swelling. This occurrence is not considered unusual. However, it is important to note that if your watch is no longer covered by warranty, normal aging is no longer eligible for coverage.
If you find yourself facing the issue of your Apple Watch screen popping off, it is essential to take immediate action to prevent further damage. By following the steps outlined here, you can resolve this issue effectively.
Additionally, it is crucial to handle your Apple Watch carefully and avoid exposing it to extreme temperatures or unnecessary pressure to prevent the recurrence of this problem.