How do Chinese people refurbish your cell phone?

As of today in 2013, most of the phones in the market are smart phones, and most of the smart phones have big displays, these displays are made with 3 main parts which are LCD module, digitizer and cover lens (top glass). A LCD module is just like your traditional phone display, a digitizer is also easy to be understood, if your digitizer is broken, you will not be able to use the touch function, no more input into your phone,  cover lens (top glass ) is a layer of glass, it usually covers the whole area on the top of your phone. As for the new models of cell phone like iPhone 5 and Samsung Galaxy S3, the LCD module and digitizer are built in one, they are not glued together.

Chinese people like to buy your broken cell phone screens assuming that the LCD module and digitizer are both working fine, only the top glass is cracked, if there is some defects such as bright spot or some kind of cloud, the price will be much less.

How can they do with these broken screens?

Because of these 3 parts (LCD module, digitizer and cover lens) are blued together with a very thick (0.17mm) layer of glue, they can put the screen on top of a heat plate to heat up the glue to soft, and use a small (0.1mm) stainless steel wire to remove the glue. These kinds of device is called LCD seperating machine or LCD/digitizer/glass seperator, it is very simple and very cheap.

The steel wire is moving from left to right, and from right to left automatically, and you can move it manually forward to cut the glue in between digitizer and cover lens, or digitizer and LCD module.

screen removal

After the cutting, you need to manually clean the glue that still remain on the digitizer or LCD.

The second device that I am going to introduce is for applying an OCA which is something like a double-sized adhesive tape. They call this device OCA laminator.

This device is also very simple, they use vacuum to suck LCD on one plate, and the OCA film on another plate, but you need to make 2 molds for your particular model, so that the alignment is perfect.

The one shown below is an OCA laminator for Samsung Galaxy S3. It is also called soft to rigid laminator to apply OCA on top of the digitizer.

OCA laminator


Thirdly and most importantly you want to put your new cover lens on it, you can buy this kind of cover lens from China for a better price.

This machine is quite expensive because you want to create a small vacuum environment for this job, and you don’t want to break the cover lens which is mainly glass so it is hard, not soft. We can just call this machine hard-to-hard laminator or cover lens laminator, or Rigid to Rigid laminator to apply glass on top digitizer.

cover lens laminator

Cover lens laminator is quite expensive.

Lastly, you need to remove the extra clave between cover lens and digitizer. You just put a few pieces of screens that are completed for the 3 steps mentioned above into this kind of oven thing, and after 15 to 20 minutes it automatically stops and you can open it and all the jobs are done.


You can also come to China and get some training before you purchase this series devices, and you can do this refurbishing job too.

You need to invest a little money on these devices and a cleaning room, if you have a lot of broken screens, you can earn the money back in a few days.

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