Replacing Philips screws with Torx?

First of all, for those having tinkered, how easy is it to remove the screws the first time that you open the Fairphone up ?

The threads on Philips screws tend to wear out after some use, and I don’t see an option to replace any lost screws on Fairphone’s website. Are there the schematics to replace the screws, should I opt for the more hardy Torx variety ?

Screws are notoriously complex beasts.

Well I’ve worked on radio electronics for 60 years and have never had a screw thread wear out.
What happens more often is that the head engagement may burr if the driver slips due to low pressure or a seized thread.

There are posts about getting more screws if you search :slight_smile:


Big fan of Torx myself, but honestly I wouldn’t bother replacing the screws.
I just opened my FP4 for the first time (to answer your other question) and I didn’t have any problems whatsoever, screw quality seems great and my PH#00 screw driver fit perfectly.

Just make sure to get a high quality screw driver, I’m very happy with both Wiha and Wera drivers and the iFixit ones are generally very good too.
And get a spudger or guitar pick to remove those little connectors, those worry me way more than the screws.

Here’s some more information regarding screws used by Fairphone:


Looks like I have my answer, but still unsure about the specifics to the screws.

I saw that schematics aren’t available for the chipsets, but what of the screws, do they follow a common design e.g.

??? The post above details, the screws that hold the modules in place.

Just read through the other threads, everything’s in there :point_down:



This makes no sense, the drive of the screw has nothing to do with the strength.
And if you were to take 10.9 or 12.9 hardness, you’re more likely to break the threads from the phone, which will be more expensive than the “reasonable tool” already mentioned. :wink:

PS: Do you check every day whether everything is still there in the phone? :thinking: :joy:

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Not sure about that, one should always be careful not to tighten the screws too loosely or too strong. Ideally use a torque measuring or limiting screwdriver, but of course that’s too expensive for occasional users. Apart from the PH drive slots, the blue screw securing glue is another thing that could wear out after several disassemblies.

So depending on how often I will have to exchange modules, or remove them for cleaning, I might actually consider replacing the screws and then go for Torx drive (or at least PZ drive), and apply new screw securing glue as well. But for the non-technical user, all this is certainly too much hassle.

Not sure why PH is still so commonplace, can only be cost reasons, and why not go for the cheapest solution if it works for initial assembly. Ironically, PH drive was invented as a simple torque limiting mechanism, so the slipping of the screwdriver is actually intentional :upside_down_face: though not really sustainable.

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With any luck and care on your part, not often. I’ve only opened my FP3 once, to get it started, and have never had to unscrew anything. :slightly_smiling_face:
FP2 is a different matter.

I’d say, only replace the screws the day you have to remove them in the first place.

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Indeed, that’s my plan.

Come to think of it: It would be feasible to equip FP angels with replacement (torx?) screws, securing glue, torque-limiting screwdrivers and other equipment and material. Such a kit wouldn’t be so expensive, and Fairphone would do a great service to everyone if at least in major cities a few angels would have such equipment… let me dream :wink:

As OldRoutard: My FP3 is near two years old and haven’t touched a screw. My daughters FP3 fell in the toilet and was dismantled some 16 months ago but screws haven’t been touched since.

If the screws are tightened ‘too strong’ then the inserts, which I think are made of brass, may wear, but I doubt that too.

By the way in the FP3 the individual modules, bottom, camera, top etc. are held together by Torx headed screws but the modules are held in place by the Phillips 00



Just take a ziplock bag :wink:
Do you disassemble the whole engine from the car or do you change the oil?
And if (I think) my FP is dirty “inside”, then I open the back, take out the battery and knock it 3 times on the table,… done and “clean” :+1:

PS: Seems like a mixture of troll and voodoo :thinking:

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The Einhell BT-PP 160 has a max. torque of 0.2 Nm. It can be grabbed for €19,99 here (DE, hagebau). With spares on offer, e.g. here (apparently no English version), that is a ‘buy once use a long time’ investment.

Is 0.2 Nm OK for the FPs? What is their tolerable torque range?

A question you may want to direct to rather that other users :slight_smile:

Done. Thanks for the hint!


Let us know what they say! In the meantime you can check this table:

The recommended torque depends on the screw material and it’s strength class (Festigkeitsklasse). For M1.6, it ranges from 0.05 Nm to 0.29 Nm. For M1.4 it will be even lower, probably ranging from 0.035 Nm to 0.18 Nm. So I’m afraid that using a 0.2 Nm screwdriver will kill these screws, for any material…

Of course, the thread material in the phone parts is also important, and determines which screw material and strength class should be used. I hope that the FP support will tell you this info as well.


Good source! Thanks!

Note that it covers oiled screws (“unbehandelte, ölgeschmierte Schrauben mit einem Reibungsbeiwert von 0,125”). I’d think that means less friction than unoiled and therefore requiring a lower torque.

And of course y’all shall know what FP replies.

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The torque will be the same on driving, but as the oil degrades it will provide a tighter grip than a dry fit, with caveat that there’s no rust.

Here’s the official answer, Johann from FP support (emphasis mine):

Torque 0.2 Nm may be enough to connect a component, but we recommend aiming for 0.6-0.7 Nm.

Reader, if you find an affordable torque controlled screwdriver (manual or electrical) that has the recommended range, please let us know!

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