Negative experience with Cordon electronics (repair) FP3

I have mixed experiences with Cordon, though in the end still quite happy (after having had troubles for 6 months).
I had noticed shortly before the first lockdown that my FP2 battery was draining very fast (probably a defect I had never noticed). I suspected hardware fault and contacted support. Two weeks later my phone stopped working, and lockdown arrived. As everything was closed I had no phone for the time being. Then when Cordon reopened, I sent my phone in, got it back with an exchanged core-module, but… battery was also draining fast again (not as fast though). I did tests with a second FP2 and nailed it down to the core-module again, so they had sent me a defective core-module (probably badly refurbished). I contacted Cordon directly again, and I got my case solved as an emergency case, I got my phone back under a week with yet another core-module (this time really functional). So I’d say the service was good, the defective spare-part was less appreciated.


Yes that seems reasonable to me too.

Must be getting senile, sorry I missed that bit, but nevertheless I have read such things can be down to the network and sim card which Cordon wouldn’t have been able to assess.

So are you saying it’s been rebooting once a day since?

Here’s hoping they can get the phone back to you soon and in a better condition than they received it.

All the best

I’m not sure what the ref to DeepSea was but I’m sure it’s not important. ??

To me this doesn’t sound like any Fairphone was treated in a different way by the repair center as conventional phones despite its modular design. Now what’s that for an option to maybe get it fixed for the costs of a brand new phone or dump the entire device. Quite ridiculous approach from my point of view. If I wanted to only have these two options I would stick to any other brand mobile.


I rather believe they couldn’t finally find the cause and therefore first “tested” to see if you really could realize a misbehave and sent you back the original core module so see if you would get back to them again for this same issue which you did shortly after (did you compare any SN or IMEI numbers?). So then in was clear for them to have it replaced.
Anyway, this all looks to me like unreliable business.

Generally I wonder how come Fairphone did not choose one out of many Fixit repair centers around. One address is in Berlin which has its repair center located in Krakow, they fixed my Pocketbook e-book reader having a memory defect…guess for which costs (out of warranty)… ~ 32€ incl. shipping. That looks reasonable to me. 1/3 of a new FP3 would had been ~ 150€ - the most expensive part the core module is about 209.90€. But having no clue and therefore replacing the entire device looks simply like bad practice and is surely no proper solution when dealing with any Fairphone .

Which kind of tests were these if you like to share?

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Hey @Patrick1, I documented my issues in my first topic, have a look if you wish :slight_smile:

I don’t think so.

  1. The core-module I had, which had battery draining isues was dead when I sent it in, i.e not switching or charging and charging without a battery indicating some sort of hardware failure.
  2. They stated they had changed the core-module, if they state so but don’t do it, it’s a bit problematic.
  3. I checked IMEIs, they were different.
  4. The second core-module had battery drain problems, but not for the same reason (not a kernel wakelock permanently using the CPU), and not as much (2.5%/h instead of ~9%/h in standby).

Ok if it clearly was traceable that part(s) were changed that’s a different point. Anyway your tracking with “top” over some time surely was tiring. Hard to troubleshoot such a tricky issue. Battery drain can have so many causes specifically as phones usually don’t sleep for long time. But depending on OS generally there should be some time of sleep when the device is not actively being used.

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Topic is still alive, i just can agree with the headline.

Presumably you have some experience.
A scenario maybe that you had to send your phone for repairs via Fairphone who then employ Cordon to fix an issue they accept responsibility for.

Knowing the problem and detail may be useful to others, but surely if the problem is still there then it’s Fairphone who are to take the flack not Cordon as we don’t know what Cordon were detailed to do??

It is just the same story. Cordon detects oxidations somewhere, then no warranty ,repair quote 300€. They don´t try to fix it, they don´t check if the oxidation is really the problem.

Imagine being the repair technician. Cleaning oxidation would not result in a reliable repair.
Also if the oxidation is discovered how? There are markers to show water ingress, once that is discovered there are few options.
The technician can test the parts individually and then give you a quote for the non-working part, which is maybe what they did.

Clearly once there is water damage then there’s no chance of using the warranty.

So how could it be fixed, not under warranty and the only reliable option is to replace the defective parts. If that’s the core module, which I imagine is the most sensitive then 300 euros is the cost.

I don’t see how else they could ‘try to fix it’

I used to work on electronics, radar and missiles, so I have some idea of the issues.

It’s an unpleasant shock to get a quote of hundreds of euros but that’s the cost of a guaranteed repair.


Clearly once they don´t detect water damage, they don´t detect water ingress, they detect oxidation. This not the same, but this is an other (un)fairphone story.

If my company wanted sustainability, I would instruct support to always test whether there is a way to save the device. And then to propose, for example: We could clean it and then maybe it will work. Since we want us to have satisfied customers, the trial does not cost anything, of course. Because nothing is worse for a company than dissatisfied customers.

How do you know they didn’t detect water ingress/damage. The two markers on the core module are hidden to a simple module replacement user option so you wouldn’t know. ~ Unless you dismantled the core module housing which then means you’ve voided the warranty.

Can you confirm the bottom module ‘sensor’ was still white when you sent it in?

What is this ‘trial’ that does not cost anything?

You might want to have a look at this article on iFixIT regarding Water Damage. Please read the second part on “Cleaning Circuit Boards” carefully. And then come again with doing this (i.e.; just to begin with: “Completely disassemble your device removing all cables, opening all connectors and remove shields to access under them.”) for free.
Plus, while the cleaning/repair might seem to have been a successful one, the device might fail some time sooner or later due to the water damage/oxidation. And if the repair would be successful, you would still have to tell the customer, that the phone might fail later again, but that the bill now is for 2 working hours plus parts’n’stuff plus tax, postage and packaging, making it as expensive as a new core module (though this is just wild guesswork on my behalf).
No company, especially not a small one can really afford that kind of policy. Even more so, as water damage is in general on the user.


Yes i can. Because they don´t show me the hidden marker.
Because one screw was not removed. I asked the fairphone support if it is necessary to remove this screw. They gave me only a mysterious answer, not no or yes.
And the support didn´t argument with hidden markers, they argument this way:
Dust and moisture entering the device are the most common causes of failures in a phone. Of course, we wanted to prevent that from happening. With careful construction and seals and gaskets in the necessary places, we brought this back to a minimum.

However, it’s still possible for moisture to enter the device, even when not directly in contact with or immersed in water. For example:

  • The device was in a room with high humidity (bathroom with shower on)
  • The device was exposed to a quick temperature change: the device was in a hot room & then in a cold room with air conditioning (the water particles will condense in droplets & cause oxidation)

Since our repair centre has found signs of oxidation, the manufacturing warranty is no longer valid.

Nothing with hidden markers!! Only oxidation no warranty, thats the way they work.

It’s possible they found a marker and correctly interpret that as some oxidation, how much would never be know on the inner parts except with a costly breakdown, which you would have to pay for. That’s why they have the markers, to save work that you won’t want to pay for.

If you have your phone back compare to one image below. If the marker is white then ask how they decided it was oxidised. Note Fairphone only report what Cordon tell them. So try and put the request in polite terms even if you feel upset and angry.

See this post for the user available ‘marker’ and the one two posts above for the other two.

Well, as far as I know, the markers are the tool by which they decide on oxidation.
As @amoun already pointed out, that’s more easy and cost-efficient than taking the phone completely apart.
Yet it might still be possible, that they diagnosed oxidation in your phone by visible signs of this in your phone, without the need to rely on the markers. But, to be honest, I don’t really get the difference; unless the claim is, that the marker is incorrect.

By the way, as I see it, the marker is not exactly hidden, but it is placed in a way, that it is triggered only, when water/dampness will reach the core module as well in a way, that it will most likely cause damage. Placing the marker “on top”, easyly visible at first sight, when opening the back cover, a simple touch with sweaty fingers might be enough to void the warranty. I wouldn’t want that to happen.

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The markers are all white. So they didn´t detect a water damage and no water ingress. They detect just oxidations. And this is the unfair thing, oxidation = out of warranty, no matter what the user did or not did.
Coming to the end of the story: I ordered my phone back, because i noticed the assurance, which i thought i quit, is still valid. So i go to the shop with the fairphone, and checking there again, and how surprise, it works again.
Cordon didn´t check it. If they were are a sustainable working firm, they could have wrote me, there are oxidiations inside, but now it works… .
Imagaine how many working fairphone are going to the dump by this way.

So the topic is still alive.

For me i don´t know what i wish more: That the fairphone stops working again, so that i can go to the assurance again , or that i just have no problems with the phone the next two years.


Yes it would be nice to know how they came to that conclusion, maybe they saw something in which case it would be decent of them to send you a photo of the ‘oxidation’

Have you updated Fairphone on your discovery that all the markers are white ? And so you don’t know how Cordon came to this conclusion as they provided no evidence to you.

I thought that i have wrote enough, but the fairphone support has wrote back again.
They insists that Cordon had openend my damaged screw with a rubber. No doubt, this is possible. But the funny thing is, they must had thightened the damaged screw very strong again with a rubber!!
Perhaps of being sustainable, they didn´t want to loose a single screw. Because they putted new screws in the other holes, i don´t think they were too stingy for new screws.
Now i don´t know what i should think about a repair center, who spend a lot of time to thighten damaged screws strongly with a rubber . What are their goals?

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A few (ideas) that you may like to challenge Fairphone with, else it’s just speculation and it comes down to Fairphone ensuring they can confirm or deny your assumptions. It’s difficult to provide any meaningful response here.

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