September 19th, 2022
Why you should repair your phone vs buying a new one
Whether you have glitchy software or a cracked screen, we all eventually face the same dilemma: Should I repair or replace my phone?
It’s an important question, because phones are an important part of our lives. They’re our camera, calendar, entertainment center, work hub, and more. They’re also expensive, so when your device isn’t working properly—and new models entice you with flashy features—it can be hard to know whether a repair or replacement is right for you. From cost to the age of your device and warranty coverage, here’s what you need to consider to help you decide.
How much does it cost to repair vs replace your phone?
A good rule to follow: If repairing your phone costs half as much as buying a new one—or more—consider getting a new phone, especially if yours is more than a few years old. Remember, you can often trade in your old phone and apply that credit towards a new one, too.
Let’s do the math. Replacing a cracked screen runs $79 to $300, or more. If you’d be happy with a new Google Pixel™ 6 (from $499) or an older iPhone model like the SE (from $429), it might not make sense to fix your broken device.
There are other situations, however, in which a repair makes more sense. The average cost of the hottest new smartphones from Apple® and Samsung is $1,160. Meanwhile, the average cost of a screen repair on those same models—using Apple and Samsung parts, tools and testing at a uBreakiFix® by Asurion or Asurion Tech Repair & Solutions™ store—is less than a third of the replacement cost according to Asurion data.
Unfortunately, many people don’t seem to understand the tradeoffs. According to a new Asurion study, 44% of Americans would choose to buy a new phone if their screen was shattered. That’s nearly half of Americans missing out on hundreds of dollars in savings by choosing to replace instead of repair their broken phones.
How old is your phone?
The average phone lasts about 3 years (longer if you’ve been following these tricks and tips to extend its lifespan). If your phone is more than 3 years old, and especially if it’s been acting sluggish or glitchy, paying for a repair may not be worth it. But if your phone is relatively new, you should strongly consider fixing it.
Is your phone under warranty?
If your phone isn’t working properly, you’ll want to find out if it’s still under warranty. If it is, you may be eligible for a free or low-cost repair or replacement. Here’s how to check your warranty:
- On an iPhone®: Go to https://checkcoverage.apple.com/ and follow the prompts. You’ll need your serial number, which can be found via Settings > General > About.
- On a Samsung® phone: Follow the prompts at the online warranty checker. You’ll need to sign into your Samsung account, then provide your location and serial number or IMEI number. (To find out your IMEI number, dial *#06#.)
Keep in mind, all warranties come with exceptions, including water damage, cosmetic damage (like dents and scratches), repairs by non-authorized providers, and normal wear and tear. If your phone was damaged due to an exception, or if your warranty has expired, bring it to a local phone repair shop and ask for a quote.
When should you repair your phone?
Let’s break it down. Here are a few situations when it’s worth repairing your phone, assuming it’s less than a couple of years old.
Your battery drains quickly
If your phone dies soon after a full charge or feels sluggish throughout the day, a simple, affordable fix is to replace the battery. A battery replacement will cost approximately $50 to $70, depending on your device, and it will breathe some much-needed life back into your current device.
Callers can’t hear you
If people keep telling you that they can’t hear you—and if you know you have a good connection—you may have a busted microphone. A smartphone repair expert can identify the problem and tell you what it will cost to fix.
Your phone is running out of storage
This is an easy one to fix, and it’s free. If you’re getting the “Phone storage is full” notification on your iPhone®, Samsung Galaxy® or Google Pixel™, or even if your device is just running slowly, try deleting videos, photos, or apps. Check out the steps in this guide to freeing up storage space on your phone.
Where should you go to get your phone repaired?
For phone repairs, be sure to turn to a store that has good online reviews, uses quality parts, and offers warranty for their services—like your nearest uBreakiFix® by Asurion or Asurion Tech Repair & Solutions™ store. Our certified experts offer a no-cost diagnostic and are trained to fix all smartphones—including Apple®, Samsung Galaxy®, and Google Pixel® devices—using top-quality parts and equipment provided by the manufacturers. Plus most repairs at our stores are done in 45 minutes or less, so you can get back to what’s important.
What is the environmental impact of repairing your phone?
Repairing your older devices is eco-friendly. Buying new ones—not so much. Every year, tech manufacturers unveil flashy new smartphones, and that requires massive amounts of materials, electricity, and fossil fuels. As the Public Interest Research Group, a U.S.-based non-profit, put it in a 2020 report:
“If we held on to our phones one-year longer on average, the emissions reductions would be equivalent to taking 636,000 cars off the road and would reduce manufacturing material demand by 42.5 million pounds per day.”
When should you replace your phone?
Here are a couple of scenarios in which it’s best to save yourself some time and money, and buy a new phone.
Your phone randomly reboots or shuts down
If your phone has been rebooting or shutting down, even when it’s fully charged, it’s likely worn out and needs to be replaced. But first, confirm that the glitch isn’t due to malware (don’t worry, there’s a guide to help you).
Your phone isn’t compatible with the latest operating system
Older phones may not be compatible with the latest operating system, which means your device won’t benefit from security fixes and app updates. If this is happening to you, it’s time to upgrade.
If you’re still not sure you should repair your old phone or buy a new one, we can help. Stop by your nearest uBreakiFix® by Asurion or Asurion Tech Repair & Solutions™ store for advice from a trusted tech expert.
*The Asurion® trademarks and logos are the property of Asurion, LLC. All rights reserved. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners. Asurion is not affiliated with, sponsored by, or endorsed by any of the respective owners of the other trademarks appearing herein.*
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