Since a couple of months the iPhone had an issue, the earpiece speaker was too low, no matter that I had all the volume up it was pretty hard to listen to the one talking on the other side. I started to use the phone with the speaker in order to have conversations but I don’t like that way, mostly because sometimes I can’t properly listen and there is no noise cancelation meaning that if there is plenty of noise is quite probably the other person won’t listen to me right.
So, following the forums “the experts” said that is probably that the earpiece speaker was damaged by water. I remember one day I was cleaning my house with the bluetooth headphones and my iPhone in my bags, and it got sweaty. So quite probably it was water damage, and I had to take the iPhone to the repair.
But to be honest I don’t trust the little repair shops here, I trust one guy but he wasn’t so sure about he could do it, I’m pretty sure he have the skills but maybe he didn’t have time.
So, I ordered the part and got an “Apple repair bundle” that have the screwdriver, some heads, the plastic picks and the suction cup. Having all of that, I just went to ifixit to follow the instructions to replace the part.
At first I was afraid that this would result in more damage than benefit, maybe cracking the screen, or probably breaking the mainboard, but I was able to replace that part. To my surprise… the damaged part was not the earpiece speaker ?
After replacing it I started assembling the iPhone, but I stopped after connecting the screen and the battery, then started the phone and made a small test with the “Voice memos” app: Open the app, record a memo and listed to it in the ear speaker. I wasn’t able to listen to what I was saying.
Then, I review the piece and it was in good shape, so I started to clean the black piece in the screen that protects the speaker. Turns out that it was just dirty, probably my sweat plus the dirt mixed and created a layer in that small holes. I used isopropyl alcohol, a used toothbrush and a hard piece of metal (the flat screwdriver) to scratch it from the inside and brush it from the outside, after it was clean I reassembled the phone and voilà!. Then finished assembling the phone and there it is.