How to Replace a Cracked Screen on a GPS

by Si Kingston

You can replace a cracked GPS screen, but you can't repair it. If your GPS is under warranty, you can contact the manufacturer directly about sending the unit back to have the screen replaced. If the device is not under warranty, you can still contact the manufacturer about replacing the screen. The company will charge a fee to replace your GPS screen if you don't have a warranty that covers that type of repair. You can also replace the GPS screen yourself, but be aware that replacing your GPS screen can void your warranty.

Purchase a new GPS LCD screen. There are many sources online that sell GPS screens (see Resources). Look for compatible unit information next to each replacement screen online before purchasing it to make sure it matches your GPS model.

Power off the GPS and remove any peripheral cables from the device.

Remove the screws from the cover. The number of screws varies depending on the GPS; there may be two to four screws located on the bottom or rear of the GPS. You will need a mini Philips screwdriver (like those found in computer repair kits) to loosen the screws.

Remove any further screws holding down the internal antenna.

Wedge a flat-head screwdriver or another pry tool in between the front and back case of the GPS. Use the pry tool to pull the front and back cover apart. Once open, you may notice that the back cover contains a battery or other component, and the front cover houses the motherboard which is over the screen.

Touch a piece of metal, such as a metal tool or metal door knob, with your hand to demagnetize yourself. This prevents the motherboard from being destroyed by any static electricity in your body.

Remove any screws holding the motherboard to the front of the case. Then move the motherboard out of the way when it is loose enough. The motherboard will still have wires connected to different components that are embedded in the front of the GPS case.

Disengage any wires that are connecting the motherboard to the front case components such as the SD card or phono/audio jack. There is typically a lever that must be pushed to disengage these wires.

Pull the screen's ribbon cable connection from the motherboard. Be careful, the ribbon cable is delicate. Discard the old, cracked screen. You can now insert your new screen into the front cover of the GPS. Reconnect all of the ribbon cables and wires that you disconnected to remove the motherboard, and close the GPS case back with the required screws.

Items you will need

About the Author

Si Kingston has been an online content contributor since 2004, with work appearing on websites such as MadeMan. She is a professional screenwriter and young-adult novelist and was awarded the Marion-Hood Boesworth Award for Young Fiction in 2008. Kingston holds a Bachelor of Arts in English from Mills College.

Photo Credits

  • photo_camera gps image by AlcelVision from Fotolia.com