How to take apart a BlackBerry Z10

By Simon Sage on 19 Aug 2013 04:54 pm EDT

If you've got a busted screen on your BlackBerry Z10 and you've got the nerves to disassemble it yourself, here's a really great how-to video. It goes through the whole rigamarole of which screws to loosen first and what to pry off (and more importantly, what not to). It's really well-lit, the slower parts are time-lapsed, instructions are made clear through subtitles, and, oddly, it has a not terrible soundtrack. 

Keep in mind that you'll need the right tools to do all of this, namely a pentalobe screwdriver and a prybar. A pair of fine tweezers would be handy too. I've done this kind of disassembly a few times, and though it's a ton of fun, it's also a little bit nervewracking. The bit around 12:39 in this video actually made me wince a bit. When doing it yourself, having concise instructions like these is really helpful. Hit up the source link below for a full step by step and remember this is only for advanced users that know what they're getting in to. 

Have any of you guys taken apart your phone before? What did you need to fix? Let us know in the comments!

Reader comments

How to take apart a BlackBerry Z10


The question is, will I be able to put it back together?
If its anything like the TV remotes when I was a kid, no. I will lose screws and it will just be awful...

I have replaced whole cover in 8520, keyboard and ball (three times) in 9000. Service has fixed screen one of my PlayBooks and USB port in 9860. Z10 LE is at least for now without big scratches, and always in leather case.

How about how to replace a speaker. When I get/make calls speaker is not quite right. Tinney or fuzzy.

Posted via CB10

It's not really pentalobe, it's T1, pentalobe kind of works, but you risk wrecking the screw head.

Posted via CB10

I did this. Busted the screen in the process. Those orange ribbon cables are delicate.

Once the new screen arrived, though, it was great. Not super difficult or anything. Just need to be more careful than I was.

Then I swapped it all back to black and got the red skin from DBrand. Kinda miss my white Z10 though. I'm too finicky, I should probably just get a second one. =P

"In vino veritas, in aqua sanitas."


I had to watch it with the sound muted. Other than that it's an interesting video.

Sent from my sexy white hot Z10 in Sin City ;-)

I was always told if it ain't broke, don't fix it. Anyhow a replacement screen for a Q10 at the repair shop is around 100 bucks Canadian.

BlackBerry will survive in the Corporate and Government Sectors! My Z10 is so much better than an iphone!

There is a little black sticker over one if the screws. I assume that removing this is a sign of tampering, and a voided warranty.

"In vino veritas, in aqua sanitas."

Are you sure about that 12:39 time stamp? I didn't see anything nervewracking there. All he's doing is feeding a cable through a hole.....

Haven't watched the video, but that's the part where I'm pretty sure I broke my screen. The ribbon cable tears really easily, and even the smallest nick will render it useless.

"In vino veritas, in aqua sanitas."

Changed case for 3 8520s. Changed trackpad for another 8520. Serviced trackball for an older model. Changed keyboard for 2 others. Changed a screen once.

Posted via CB10

Took apart couple of devices watching u tube videos...they aren't bad...just use caution...most of them don't tell you everything...couple significant details are left out...I would say on you'll have to improvise.
Don't need to take apart my zed (yet), but I hope this video is comprehensive.
My 50 cents

...forever BlackBerry...

We successfully combined a Z10 with a busted display and another that took a swim in a salt water swimming pool. The display is hardest to remove because I guess they're T1 screws (very small). We didn't have the right bit, but we were able to swap the main board and that was enough to get it working. I think these phone manufacturers should get Liquipel to waterproof all their phones.

Posted via CB10

I had to scour ebay for torx smaller than a 5, got a whole set now. Haven't taken apart my Z yet. Have disassembled many curves to fix screens, keyboards, trackpads but mostly cause people wanted a different color. Repaired a storm that got smashed in a car tailgate. Replaced the Flex cable in my torch.

Always nerve-wracking but worthwhile.

Posted via CB10

Just this weekend I replaced the screen/digitizer on a colleague's Z10. You can swap the screen without taking out the camera and microphones. Just get to the stage where you have removed the motherboard (camera comes with it), take out 7 screws, and use a hair dryer or heat gun to soften the glue on the edge of the screen, pry, and voila! Start at the top of the screen as there are plastic tabs on the bottom of the screen so you have to pull the top up first. In total, the job to tear down and replace took maybe 15 minutes. But etradesupply's price for the screen looks good. I paid more on Amazon. Be careful to check the part number on the back of the broken screen so you order the right one.

The video is good, but the music is horrible, especially that sermon at the beginning. Thank the Lord for MUTE!

Posted via CB10

How about timing, only yesterday I decided to do some major gardening and while unloading my truck I had a fight with a wasp and both myself and my z10 ended up worse off, I fell backwards off the truck and landed on my phone. Now I'm stiff as an old man and looking at £100 for a new screen and digitizer. :D life is good.

Note there are more than one version of the screen, in the UK I need version 2.

I had to take apart my Palm IIIc a couple times, years ago. Like most things it WAS nerve-wracking at first, but the second (and third) times were easier. I didn't have useful video like this either, so it should be fairly easy, relatively speaking. I just hope I don't have to do it though.

Posted via CB10

A mate dropped his brand new 9900 into a sink of water, in my house, I took it apart straight away and left it in a tub of dried rice while I ordered a keyboard and touch pad, still going strong, I have fixed loads of Blackberry's using vids, nice find.

Posted via CB10

I forgot to take my Z10 out of my shorts last night and my wife was wondering what the clonking noise was from the washing machine.... Well - a bag of rice and carefully disassembling and blowing dry all the parts and letting them sit for a but under a light caused it to actually start up so I could make a backup. Thanks to my co-worker who has more patience than I do.

Weirdest thing happened to my wives z10 screen. I put the z10 face down on the table. Apparently in a small puddle of olive oil. The screen leached it up creating bubbles and a blue haze in the touch screen.

I found a similar tutorial and swapped screens tonight.

Had to find some of those tiny torx bits. Princess Auto is the place. $12.99 for a mini driver set.

I used guitar picks to pry the case apart. (comically one pick an ancient Guitar Hero 3 pick that was a Magmic Games promo item that has "Text RIM to 14333" on it)

I went through this tear down twice. The first time I attempted to clean the oil off the original screen/case and see if that solved it. It did not. Second time I swapped screens.

The ribbon cables are delicate. I found the best way to safely feed them through was by leaving the screen face down and slowly working the case up off of them while keeping your index finger on the top edge of the ribbon cable to prevent it from being tugged by the case.

The red zed is all back together and working fine now.

Posted via CB10

"Now folks, let us un-box the phone, open the phone case, put the stuff back backwards, void the BB warranty. No problems."

Great stuff! This is essentially what brought me to CrackBerry. Years ago i had to replace the track ball on my pearl after a particularly buttery serving of toast. Butter and pearls don't mix!! I have been here ever since. I won't open my Z10 until I have to!