**FIX** Display lines / "tearing"


#1

THIS FIX WILL PROBABLY VOID WARRANTY

Hello Pebble Community,

If you are experiencing the notorious “tearing” or lines/glitching on the display of your pebble original, I have a fix for you. The issue seems to persist despite performing a firmware update or factory reset on the pebble, and Pebble tech support has confirmed in other threads that this issue is, in fact, a hardware one. I can personally confirm that this is a hardware issue, and discovered that it can be easily fixed. IF YOU CAN STILL GET YOUR PEBBLE REPLACED UNDER WARRANTY, DO SO!! THIS WILL PROBABLY VOID YOUR WARRANTY! Since my warranty had expired, and my Pebble wasn’t working right anyway, I decided to explore the guts of my pebble. Unbeknownst to me, this would turn out to fix my display issues. I discovered that the Pebble’s e-paper display is fused to the glass of the watch body, while the internal electronics and backlight are self contained in a “detachable” unit. The motherboard/backlight interfaces with the display via ribbon-type contacts. I assume the display glitching is a result of an intermittent contact between the display and motherboard. The following instructions should fix your display issues: 1) Unscrew the four star-style screws on the back of your watch and (CAREFULLY) pop out the electronics inside. 2) Blow on/clean the contacts on the bottom side of the motherboard/backlight unit. 3) Reinstall the internals and back of watch. (This fix did not affect the waterproof seal for ME and MY PEBBLE. Your results may vary.) Enjoy, and happy Pebble-ing! This should be used as a temporary fix; please continue to support Pebble’s awesome wearable innovation by buying a new Pebble soon.

Cheers,
A happy Pebble user


#2

I was going to create a post with similar info as well. I had an old pebble steel with tearing that i had fixed with the “shim” method twice and was still giving screen tearing. I beleive the issues with pebbles are not that the connector needs more pressure, but that it simply has microscopic corrosion causing a intermittent connection and pressure temporarily helps. The correct fix i think is to clean the zebra connectors and possibly apply a grease or lubricant to prevent it from happening again. So i tried just that, I took apart the pebble, and sprayed a tiny amount(i used too much and it leaked under my backlight first try, but i cleaned it out and applied just enough to moisten the connector on my second attempt ) of contact cleaner on the zebra strip and pcb contacts. And as soon as i put the assembly on, it worked! No screen tearing or pressure needed, i didnt even need to screw the back back on for it to work. The screen either fully worked or didnt work at all now, no intermittentness and screen tearing when I moved the board a little. I think this methood and a light grease or contact cleaner has potential for a much better repair. Ive attached a few pictures. There are clips on either side of the battery and one across from it i needed to unclip with a modeling knife before the board popped out. Only time will tell how permanent this is, but it looks promising.


#3

@ivoh

How is this fix now? Still works perfectly?


#4

I did the same repair to my Pebble Steel, it seems to work – a little bit of contact cleaner on the zebra strip and then on the PCB connectors, and then, voilá! The tearing is gone.


#5

I did this repair. Worked great for a bit. I loved having my Pebble back and remembered how brilliant it is when it works.

Unfortunately, the tearing has come back, and now sometimes the screen goes completely blank or freezes permanently. The back case is also broken from having taken it apart so many times to try to fix it.

It’s a real shame as I love the watch. Might try and get a Pebble Time now as I don’t think they suffer from this problem.

Unless anyone knows any other ‘fixes’…?


#6

So, I have tried another fix and so far it is working well. I’m hoping this will be the ‘final true fix’…

It basically involves preventing the zebra strip from moving around, which seems to cause the screen tearing.

I cut a small piece of thin card (a greetings card would be a good thickness) and inserted along next to the zebra strip in the slot that it goes in. You obviously have to make the card slightly smaller than the zebra strip so that it doesn’t prevent the contacts from meeting. This card will hopefully make the zebra strip fit a bit more snugly and not move around.


#7

I really wish I had known this before I threw away my old Pebble Original ༼ つ ◕_◕ ༽つ