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This repair guide was authored by the iFixit staff and hasn’t been endorsed by Google. Learn more about our repair guides here.

Use this guide to replace the left grip sensor and flex cable in your Google Pixel 4.

This procedure requires the removal of the battery and motherboard.

For your safety, discharge your battery below 25% before disassembling your phone. This reduces the risk of a dangerous thermal event if the battery is accidentally damaged during the repair.

This procedure will almost always destructively remove the Pixel 4’s grip sensors. The sensors are strongly adhered to the phone’s midframe and will usually come out in pieces. Before you begin this procedure, be sure to have replacement parts.

Caution: Google warns that disassembly of the front laser assembly could result in hazardous exposure to invisible infrared laser emissions. Read their safety warnings here.

Warning: Do not reuse the battery if it has been deformed or damaged, as doing so is a potential safety hazard. Replace it with a new battery.

  1. Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement, Remove the SIM card tray: step 1, image 1 of 3 Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement, Remove the SIM card tray: step 1, image 2 of 3 Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement, Remove the SIM card tray: step 1, image 3 of 3
    • Insert a SIM eject tool, bit, or a straightened paper clip into the small hole on the SIM card tray on the left edge of the phone.

    • Press firmly to eject the tray.

    • Remove the SIM card tray.

  2. Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement, Heat the back panel glass: step 2, image 1 of 1
    • Prepare an iOpener and apply it to the bottom edge of the back panel for one minute.

    • A hair dryer, heat gun, or hot plate may also be used, but be careful not to overheat the phone—the display and internal battery are both susceptible to heat damage.

  3. Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement, Apply a suction cup: step 3, image 1 of 2 Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement, Apply a suction cup: step 3, image 2 of 2
    • Apply a suction cup to the heated edge of the back panel by pressing down on it to create suction, as close to the edge as possible.

    • If your back glass is badly cracked, covering it with a layer of clear packing tape may allow the suction cup to adhere. Alternatively, very strong tape may be used instead of the suction cup. If all else fails, you can superglue the suction cup to the broken panel.

  4. Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement, Insert an opening pick: step 4, image 1 of 2 Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement, Insert an opening pick: step 4, image 2 of 2
    • Pull up on the suction cup with strong, steady force to create a gap between the back panel and the frame.

    • Depending on the age of your phone, this may be difficult. If you are having trouble, apply more heat to the edge and try again.

    • Insert the point of an opening pick into the gap.

  5. Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement, Begin to slice the adhesive: step 5, image 1 of 3 Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement, Begin to slice the adhesive: step 5, image 2 of 3 Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement, Begin to slice the adhesive: step 5, image 3 of 3
    • Slide the opening pick across the bottom towards the left corner to slice the adhesive.

    • With the pick still inserted, slide it from the bottom left corner over to the bottom right corner to completely slice the bottom side adhesive.

    • Leave the pick inserted in the bottom right corner to prevent the adhesive from re-sealing.

  6. Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement, Slice the lefthand-side adhesive: step 6, image 1 of 1
    • Prepare an iOpener and apply it on the left edge of the phone for one minute.

  7. Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement: step 7, image 1 of 2 Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement: step 7, image 2 of 2
    • Insert a second opening pick underneath the back panel directly over the charge port.

    • Slide the opening pick to the bottom left corner of the phone.

  8. Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement: step 8, image 1 of 2 Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement: step 8, image 2 of 2
    • Slide the opening pick around the bottom left corner and across the left side of the phone to slice the adhesive.

    • The adhesive can be very gummy. Push the pick in and out in a sawing motion to help with slicing.

    • Stop when you reach the top left corner, near the camera, and leave the pick inserted.

  9. Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement, Slice righthand-side adhesive: step 9, image 1 of 1
    • Prepare an iOpener and apply it on the right edge of the phone for one minute.

  10. Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement: step 10, image 1 of 3 Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement: step 10, image 2 of 3 Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement: step 10, image 3 of 3
    • With the first two opening picks still in place, insert a third pick on the lower part of the righthand side.

    • Slide the opening pick up towards the top of the phone, slicing the right side's adhesive.

    • Stop when you reach the top right corner, and leave the pick inserted.

  11. Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement, Slice the top-side adhesive: step 11, image 1 of 2 Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement, Slice the top-side adhesive: step 11, image 2 of 2
    • Slide the third opening pick around the top right corner and across the top side of the phone, slicing the final strip of adhesive.

  12. Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement, Lift up the back panel: step 12, image 1 of 3 Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement, Lift up the back panel: step 12, image 2 of 3 Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement, Lift up the back panel: step 12, image 3 of 3
    • Once you have sliced around the perimeter of the phone, carefully lift the right edge of the back cover, opening it like a book.

    • Do not try to pull the panel all the way off yet, as it is still connected to the phone.

  13. Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement: step 13, image 1 of 2 Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement: step 13, image 2 of 2
    • Continue swinging open the back panel until you can rest it on the left edge the phone, being careful not to put any stress on the attached ribbon cable.

    • During reassembly, this is a good point to power on your phone and test all functions before re-sealing the back panel. Be sure to power your phone back down completely before you continue working.

    • Remove the five T3 Torx screws securing the battery connector shield:

    • Four 4.0 mm screws

    • One 2.1 mm screw

    • Throughout this repair, keep track of each screw and make sure it goes back exactly where it came from.

  14. Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement: step 15, image 1 of 2 Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement: step 15, image 2 of 2
    • Use a pair of tweezers to remove the battery connector shield.

  15. Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement: step 16, image 1 of 2 Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement: step 16, image 2 of 2
    • Whenever you use the spudger near the battery, be very careful not to puncture the battery.

    • Using the pointed end of a spudger, pry the battery connector straight up from the motherboard to disconnect the battery.

    • To re-attach press connectors like this one, carefully align and press down on one side until it clicks into place, then repeat on the other side. Do not press down on the middle. If the connector is misaligned, the pins can bend, causing permanent damage.

  16. Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement: step 17, image 1 of 2 Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement: step 17, image 2 of 2
    • Using the flat end of a spudger, gently fold the battery cable over so it doesn't accidentally make contact during the rest of your repairs.

  17. Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement, Disconnect the back panel connector: step 18, image 1 of 1
    • Use a T3 Torx driver to remove the two 4 mm screws securing the back panel connector cover.

  18. Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement: step 19, image 1 of 2 Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement: step 19, image 2 of 2
    • Use a pair of tweezers to remove the back panel connector cover.

  19. Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement: step 20, image 1 of 2 Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement: step 20, image 2 of 2
    • Using the pointed end of a spudger, pry up and disconnect the back panel connector.

  20. Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement, Remove the back panel: step 21, image 1 of 1
    • Remove the back panel.

    • Before you install a replacement back panel, be sure to remove all adhesive residue from the phone frame. Use an opening tool and high-concentration isopropyl alcohol to scrape and clean the surface.

    • If you are re-using the back panel, be sure to clean off any adhesive and apply new back panel adhesive.

    • If you are installing a replacement back panel, be sure compare it with the original part.

  21. Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement, Remove the adhesive strips: step 22, image 1 of 3 Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement, Remove the adhesive strips: step 22, image 2 of 3 Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement, Remove the adhesive strips: step 22, image 3 of 3
    • Pull on the yellow pull tab of the adhesive strip with steady force.

    • If the adhesive becomes hard to pull, you can roll it around a spudger and continue pulling.

    • Continue firmly pulling up on the adhesive strip with constant force. If you're using a spudger, spin it every so often to keep the exposed section of the pull tab as short as possible.

    • This may take a lot of force.

    • These adhesive pull tabs are very prone to snapping in half during this process. Pull as slowly as possible.

    • If the adhesive pull tabs are not stretching, you can fill a plastic dropper or syringe with high concentration isopropyl alcohol and apply a few drops under the left edge of the battery. Give the alcohol a minute to weaken the battery adhesive.

    • Continue this process for each of the three pull tabs, until all are either out or have snapped in half.

  22. Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement, Remove the battery: step 23, image 1 of 2 Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement, Remove the battery: step 23, image 2 of 2
    • If the battery tabs snapped during removal, insert an opening pick on the upper right edge of the battery, slicing the adhesive underneath.

    • Even if you successfully removed all three adhesive pull tabs, using an opening pick to dislodge the battery may be helpful.

    • Don't insert the opening pick on or anywhere below the grip sensor cable, as the pick can damage the charge port flex cable located underneath the battery.

    • Do not reuse the battery if it has been deformed or damaged, as doing so is a potential safety hazard. Replace it with a new battery.

    • Lift the battery up and away from the phone to remove it. You may need to peel the battery away from any leftover adhesive tabs.

    • If there's any alcohol solution remaining in the phone, carefully wipe it off with a lint-free cloth or allow it to air dry before installing your battery.

    • To install a replacement battery:

    • If you're using stretch release adhesive, apply them onto the battery. Otherwise, apply some double-sided tape, or pre-cut adhesive strips in the phone's battery well, being careful not to cover the charge port flex cable. Peel away any tape liners to expose the adhesive.

    • Temporarily re-connect the battery's connector to the motherboard socket. This ensures that the battery is properly positioned.

    • Lay the battery in place and press firmly.

    • Disconnect the battery connector from its motherboard socket and resume re-assembly.

  23. Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement, Remove the screws securing the camera connector cover: step 25, image 1 of 1
    • Use a T3 Torx driver to remove the four 4 mm screws securing the camera connector cover.

  24. Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement: step 26, image 1 of 3 Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement: step 26, image 2 of 3 Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement: step 26, image 3 of 3
    • Using a pair of tweezers, tilt the camera cover up and slide it out of the retaining slot on the upper right corner of the phone to remove.

  25. Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement, Disconnect the camera and sensor connectors: step 27, image 1 of 3 Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement, Disconnect the camera and sensor connectors: step 27, image 2 of 3 Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement, Disconnect the camera and sensor connectors: step 27, image 3 of 3
    • Using the pointed end of a spudger, pry the camera and sensor connectors straight up from the motherboard.

  26. Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement: step 28, image 1 of 2 Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement: step 28, image 2 of 2
    • Disconnect the additional sensor connector.

  27. Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement, Remove the front-facing camera and sensor assembly: step 29, image 1 of 1
    • Use a T3 Torx driver to remove the two 2.4 mm screws securing the front camera and sensor assembly.

  28. Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement: step 30, image 1 of 2 Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement: step 30, image 2 of 2
    • Use a pair of tweezers to remove the front camera and sensor assembly.

  29. Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement, Remove the vibration motor cover: step 31, image 1 of 1
    • Remove the three T3 Torx screws securing the vibration motor cover:

    • One 4.2 mm screw

    • One 4.4 mm shouldered screw

  30. Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement: step 32, image 1 of 2 Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement: step 32, image 2 of 2
    • Use a pair of tweezers to remove the vibration motor shield.

  31. Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement, Disconnect the motherboard press connectors: step 33, image 1 of 3 Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement, Disconnect the motherboard press connectors: step 33, image 2 of 3 Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement, Disconnect the motherboard press connectors: step 33, image 3 of 3
    • Use the pointed end of a spudger to disconnect the two rear-facing camera connectors from the motherboard.

    • Disconnect the side buttons connector from the motherboard.

  32. Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement: step 34, image 1 of 2 Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement: step 34, image 2 of 2
    • Disconnect the earpiece speaker connector from the motherboard.

  33. Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement: step 35, image 1 of 3 Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement: step 35, image 2 of 3 Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement: step 35, image 3 of 3
    • Disconnect the left grip sensor connector from the motherboard.

    • Disconnect the charge port connector from the motherboard.

  34. Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement: step 36, image 1 of 2 Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement: step 36, image 2 of 2
    • Disconnect the right grip sensor connector from the motherboard.

    • Disconnect the display connector from the motherboard.

  35. Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement: step 37, image 1 of 2 Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement: step 37, image 2 of 2
    • Use a pair of tweezers to disconnect the antenna connector from the charging assembly by pulling it straight up from the motherboard.

  36. Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement: step 38, image 1 of 2 Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement: step 38, image 2 of 2
    • Disconnect the bottom microphone connector from the motherboard.

  37. Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement, Remove the motherboard: step 39, image 1 of 3 Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement, Remove the motherboard: step 39, image 2 of 3 Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement, Remove the motherboard: step 39, image 3 of 3
    • Slowly lift out the motherboard, being careful not to snag any ribbon cable connectors.

    • The rear-facing camera module connectors loop around the motherboard, and the camera module is not secured to the phone, so it may lift out with the motherboard during this step.

    • Completely remove the motherboard.

    • When reinstalling the motherboard, check that no ribbon cable connectors are caught underneath.

  38. Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement, Remove the rear-facing camera module: step 40, image 1 of 2 Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement, Remove the rear-facing camera module: step 40, image 2 of 2
    • Use a pair of tweezers to remove the rear-facing camera module.

  39. Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement, Remove the left grip sensor: step 41, image 1 of 3 Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement, Remove the left grip sensor: step 41, image 2 of 3 Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement, Remove the left grip sensor: step 41, image 3 of 3
    • Use a pair of tweezers to tilt the grey plastic grip sensor guard away from the edge of the frame.

    • Pull the guard straight up off of the phone's frame. It is secured with some light adhesive.

  40. Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement: step 42, image 1 of 2 Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement: step 42, image 2 of 2
    • Use a pair of tweezers to peel the grip sensor flex cable off of the phone's frame. It is secured with some light adhesive.

  41. Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement: step 43, image 1 of 2 Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement: step 43, image 2 of 2
    • Continue peeling the flex cable until it is no longer adhered to the back side of the phone.

  42. Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement: step 44, image 1 of 3 Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement: step 44, image 2 of 3 Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement: step 44, image 3 of 3
    • Use a pair of tweezers to peel away the grip sensor from the inside edge of the phone's frame.

    • This process is destructive, so proceed with caution, and have a replacement part ready.

    • Continue to peel away the grip sensor until it is no longer adhered to the inside frame.

  43. Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement: step 45, image 1 of 3 Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement: step 45, image 2 of 3 Google Pixel 4 Left Grip Sensor Replacement: step 45, image 3 of 3
    • With the grip sensor peeled away from the inside edge, completely remove it from behind the side button assembly.

    • Your grip sensor may come out in multiple pieces, so make sure there's nothing left behind.

    • Remove any leftover adhesive before reinstalling a new grip sensor.

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Compare your new replacement part to the original part—you may need to transfer remaining components or remove adhesive backings from the new part before installing.

To reassemble your device, follow the above steps in reverse order.

Take your e-waste to an R2 or e-Stewards certified recycler.

Repair didn’t go as planned? Try some basic troubleshooting, or ask our Answers community for help.

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Carsten Frauenheim

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Community

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why you still need to remove the motherboard?

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