Motorola RAZR V3 repair and housing change guide

This guide will step through the process required to repair a Motorola RAZR V3 “the phone”, including the flex cable and then replacing the housing.

The flex cable can be purchased from eBay for $7 US (including shipping), and the housing can be purchased from eBay for around $16 (including shipping). The flex cable is attached to the keypad circuit, which is automatically included in the purchase. When purchasing the housing, you need to make sure it is NOT a slip on case, skin, pouch, fascia, protector, etc, etc. The housing should include as a minimum the front, middle, back and battery cover. Keypad, hinge, pads, grommets, buttons may even be included, as well as TORX screwdrivers, make sure you buy all what you need. The included contents of my purchased housing were as follows.

The included contents housing contents purchased from eBay

To perform repairs on the phone, you require TORX T5 and T4 drivers, a small flat driver will come in handy as well, also at least 2 hours of spare time.

First a look at my broken phone, besides the obvious fact that it is broken into two separate halves, the hinge is broken and there is normal housing wear.

My broken Motorola RAZR V3

First remove the battery cover, battery and SIM card. Remove 2 TORX T5 screws under the battery cover circled in red. Separate the plastic case via two plastic clips as squared in red.

Remove battery case and battery and then TORX T5 screws

The antenna assembly can be removed by disconnection of the keyboard connector, squared in red. Remove the 4 TORX T4 screws, circled in red. These screws will be required for the new housing.

Disconnect the antenna assembly and remove the 4 TORX screws

Now, if you need to preserve the keypad circuit; it is a little bit more involved. First, lift up the tabs of the metal keypad as circled in red and then pry of the metal keypad. Most likely the keypad circuit will be stuck to the plastic so extreme care is required when removing. It may be easier to reuse this whole part, as it seems all colour housing still have this same silver part.

Lift the metal tabs, as circled to remove the keypad

Following is a photo of the new keypad circuit and the plastic keyboard housing.

The new keypad circuit and the plastic keyboard housing

Remove the backing of the keypad circuit and stick the circuit to the plastic housing. You will need to start from the bottom to allow the connectors to be threaded through the holes.

Stick the keyboard circuit to the plastic housing

A photo of the completed keypad assembly.

The completed keypad assembly

Remove the antenna from the antenna assembly by first removing two black grommets and then unclipping the two plastic clips.

The antenna assembly

Once the circuit board is removed, remove all the following from the plastic housing as these are required in the new housing.

Remove all the following

Insert all the old removed parts into the new housing as follows.

Insert all the old removed parts into the new housing

The change the screen housing, first remove the 4 rubber grommets as circled in red, and then the 4 TORX T5 screws behind.

Remove the 4 rubber grommets and then the 4 TORX T5 screws behind

Once the plastic screen housing is removed, the display circuit is visible. Carefully pry away the circuit from the plastic near all buttons and the backup battery as circled in red. The camera can be removed by lifting the brown tab as squared in red. Move the circuitry to the new housing and then connect the camera.

Carefully pry away the circuit from the plastic near all buttons and the backup battery

To connect the two clamshell halves, the hinge can be retracted in, the hinge is circled in red. This allows the two halves to combine; the hinge should then pop into place securing the two halves.

To connect the two clamshell halves, the hinge can be retracted in

Finally, replace all the finishing touches such as labels, hinge caps and grommets. Photos of the new phone are below.

Final image of the Motorola RAZR V3 with the new housing

Final image of the Motorola RAZR V3 with the new housing

The following repair guide may be of further help
Motorola V3-Razr Repair Manual KS-042050-V1.2.pdf

35 thoughts on “Motorola RAZR V3 repair and housing change guide

  1. I have a v3xx I need to know if I install the lcd flex cable before or after I install the hinges into the housing, the one side of the hinge is not retractable and hard to get in there I do not want to break the new cable. the v3 repair guide helped me ALOT but this is a little different

  2. John, good question.

    It is the same as putting together the two halves.
    You will first need to remove a tiny little screw holding the end cap (this is on the opposite side of where the lanyard can attach).
    Once this screw is removed the cap can be removed exposing the hinge mechanism.
    Push the hinge mechanism and it will dislodge the two halves on that side.
    Once side is dislodged the other side can be removed easily.

  3. Becky,

    Install the flex cable before installing the hinges into the housing. The hinge will be able to fit around the flex cable.

  4. My Raz is acting funny. Upon turning it on the ‘Ring Style’ screen comes up. I cannot unlock it, use it, or access any functions, just sound effects occur as I rub my finger up and down the keypad. Calls do ring but I cannot answer them. How can I fix this?

    thanks,
    JB

  5. Killer blog! I just switched out the old red face plates and black housing with the new black housing and black face plates for a Razr V3i and it looks great, the install went smooth as silk thanks to your detailed blog.

    Thanks again,
    -NICKK->

  6. Yo, the pictures helped me get it completely apart without killing it. Apon doing so, found the problem. (water in one of the port connectors.) dried it out, used an airduster, and now it works. Thanks!

  7. Wonderful directions! I searched all over the internet until I found your blog with great directions and pictures! Thanks a lot!

  8. Hi, Amazing blog! You are brilliant.

    My hinge is broken and the flex cable thing is ripped. I had text messages saved on the phone that meant the world to me. Is there any way to retrieve those messages? If I go through all of these steps to fix the phone, when I go to power it on again will the data still be there? Could you email me ???

  9. Thanks Thydzik! I’m a gal that’s more into clothes and shoes though, so I don’t have much faith in myself that I can do this tutorial. I’m not very technically skilled. I guess it’s worth a try. Do you think it’s “do-able” for someone that’s never fixed anything in her life.

  10. Hi Robyn,

    Unfortunately, this is one of the harder repair jobs.

    I am assuming the messages you have are saved in the phones memory, will the supplied USB data cable be able to extract them, without having to see anything on the screen?

    Alternatively, you could not worrying about fixing the phone, but just replacing the broken flex cable so you then at least seen the screen to get your text messages. This would be much easier; you essentially just dismantle the phone and not worry so much about putting things all back.

  11. Please let me know if it is possible to interchange the v3 and v3i body kits. The kit with outer shells, chassis, keypad, hinges, etc. I have a v3 that need new covers and keypad but the v3i parts are easier to get.

    Thanks

  12. Greg,

    It doesn’t look like the V3 and the V3i are interchangable.

    Only going by what’s selling on eBay, sellers don’t seem to list both.

    However, there was 2 sellers there were, so maybe it does.

    If you need to find V3 housing, eBay is your friend, a lot more V3 then V3i on there.

    Travis

  13. wondering if you know if the v3t version housing is interchangeable with either the v3 or v3i?

  14. When I flip my phone open the screen doesn’t show anything.

    The phone works fine as I can make and take calls but I can’t see anything on the screen which sucks cuz I can’t text.

    Just wondering if this is a frequent problem and if I can fix it somehow.

    This sucks because I bought it privately and have only had it for like 1 day. :(

  15. Ok that blog was great and very detailed but i have a bigger problem…. So one day a few years back while on the phone with my ex girlfriend we got in to a heated argument over something stupid and like a dumb ass i threw the phone against a gate obviously breaking the phone. Now i thought F**k what did i just do, i managed to find the bottom part of the phone still intact and when i put the battery back in it lite up but i have no clue as to what it’s displaying if anything at all i was wondering if there was any way to buy another TOP HALF of the Motorola v3 razor and connect it with the BOTTOM HALF of the phone i already have. Only problem i see is that the wire that is sticking out of the bottom part of the phone in YOUR picture (3rd Pic up from bottom) is missing on my phone that part ripped off when it hit the gate so i would need another one of those as well. I know it seems like a lost cause but i really would like to get the info on that phone on to my computer if anyone knows how to get this phone working again that would be amazing and a lot of help to me. The phone does not have to be able to make phone calls i just want the info (Pics, Vids, etc…)

  16. Is it possible to take the guts ( board that has and runs the software)… out of a V3 T mobil phone, and switch it to a nicer case that might be an ATT phone and have everything work, as if it is a T mobil phone? or do you have to take the entire casing off the t mobil phone and replace it with the one from the Att phone? Thanks for your help

    actually more specifically can you do this is a T mobil phone and an aftermarket hong kong special generic? Thanks again for your help.

    PS. I really admire your organized mind and the way you laid this out, especially the clear pictures.

  17. T-Mobile V3 phones are called “V3t”. I tried to change the battery cover from a V3t onto a V3m( a verizon phone) and they aren’t even the same size. The cover is longer on the “t” and the “tab” that slides under the main case is in a different position and a different configuration. I guess what I am saying is even if you get a complete case and cover set they still won’t have the correct index points on the “guts” of the phone to make the battery cover fit. The verizon battery cover has 2 flat spades that hold the cover on at the top. The t-mobile has only one. It seems to me that someone went to a lot of work, tooling, to make these parts useless to other versions. Seems stupid to me but that’s corporate thinking at it’s best. Don’t try the parts swap, it won’t work!

  18. Do you have a guide with pictures like this one showing how to take apart and assemble a flex cable to a motorola w490?

  19. My v3 was smashed when I fell on some ice. I think the circuit board survived, but the rest needs replacing. This was locked for at&t which I no longer have their service. Two questions:
    1. If repaired, can I retrieve phonebook & photos while not active with provider?
    2. Can this phone be unlocked and reassigned to net10 service?

  20. Hello Travis
    Thanks for your very informative blog. I have a motorola flip phone which as broken in two. I can see the cable poking out at both ends. I would like the screen to work so I can access my numbers and photos. Any ideas ?

  21. Back in 2007, I purchased a brand new Motorola Razr V3 Cell Phone in the United States. Today I was replacing the housing for the Motorola Razr V3 with a new housing that I purchased online from China. While I was replacing the whole housing, everything fits perfectly EXCEPT THE HINGE SLOT AREA. The China made Motorola V3 housing hinge slot is much BIGGER than The U.S. Motorola V3 housing hinge slot. Therefore, the China made housing does not allow the phone to spring flip back as if there is no resistance.

  22. my Motorola razr v3xx can’t open, the screen is blackout but the keypads & vibrations are performing after i click on button…i dont know what is the problem of it.

  23. My phone when turned on, consistently goes to a black screen that has 2 paragraphs about ready to program.
    After 5 or 10 start ups like that, then, it will go to the Motorola screen and start like it should.
    It seems like the on switch is not working properly.
    Is there a fix?
    d

  24. Hi I’m have a problem with my inner screen. I can see the calls coming in on the outer screen but when I flip open the phone the screen is blank. I need to retrieve all my information from the phone itself. Nothing was ever saved to the SIM card. How or what do I need to do or buy so I can get all my information off the phone and saved to the SIM card. PLEASE HELP ME! :)

  25. Please does anyone know if I can change a V3xx housing with a v3i housing? It’s practicly impossible to find a V3xx housing anywhere!
    Thanks.

  26. My razr doesn’t charge, or hold a full charge. After reinstalling the battery, it will show full charge, but quickly go to two bars. The battery was replaced last year. I’ve tried different chargers with no effect. It is an older model, don’t remember the exact type. Do I need to get another phone?

  27. Really great and clear instruction. I have been googling about detaching and attaching the two halves. Now got to know how it is done..
    Thanks a ton..!!

  28. just got my new phone and I love it but the front cover screen is scratched. If I buy a new hard cover will in include the screen and is it easy to fit?

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