Skip to main content

Here are a few compatible Apple toolkits and tools you may want to consider now that Apple, under its new Self Service Repair program, is providing parts, tools, and repair manuals for iPhones, from the iPhone 12 up to the latest generation.

But renting a toolkit from Apple means you’ll pay a hefty $50 price tag only to return the tools after seven days, plus a $1300 hold on your credit card. (see: Apple tax).

Yikes! Value-minded DIYers may want to opt for a toolkit of their own.

iFixit Pro Tech Toolkit

iFixit Pro Tech Toolkit – $92

One of the most prominent names in the right to repair movement, iFixit is dedicated to providing tools and repair guides to consumers for a plethora of different electronics. Being one of the highest ranking websites in mobile device repair, they have a strong reputation for providing high quality information and tools. That’s why the iFixit Pro Tech Toolkit is one of the best non-Apple toolkits for iPhone repair.

This kit come with everything you need to fix an iPhone – from picks and tweezers, to an anti-static wrist strap and tons of screw bits. It also comes with magnetic screw bits and a flexible extension bit, making it a versatile tool set that’s handy around the house after you’re done fixing your iPhone.

GANGZHIBAO 90 in 1 Precision Screwdriver Set

GANGZHIBAO 90 in 1 precision screwdriver set – $34.99

If the iFixit toolkit is too expensive for you, then the Gangzhibao 90 in 1 Precision Screwdriver Set is a good alternative. Not only does it come with many of the same tools as the iFixit set, but it’s available for one-third of the price, making it a good choice if you’re on a budget.

Eagles Professional 38 in 1 Screwdriver Set

Eagles Professional 38 in 1 Screwdriver Set – $36.98

The Eagles Professional 38 in 1 Screwdriver Set is another cheap alternative toolkit that can help you fix your iPhone and other electronics. Despite the fact that it comes with fewer tools than other kits, it does feature a couple notable tools.

One is the LCD screen opening pliers, which is a great tool for pulling the LCD screen off of your phone. The magnetizer demagnetizer tool is another, as it allows you to magnetize your screw bits when you’re working with small screws, and demagnetize the bits when you’re working with sensitive internal components.

StarTech USB Voltage and Current Tester Kit USB Voltage and Current Tester Kit – $19.99

If you’re doing phone repair, then you also shouldn’t overlook the StarTech USB Voltage and Current Tester Kit. This handy little device allows you to monitor the current between your iPhone and the charger, making it a great diagnostic tool. It can also help you pair your devices with chargers that provide proper voltage, which can help prolong battery life.

Why Is This a Big Deal Anyway?

Whether you’re an Apple customer, a small repair business owner, or a DIY tinkerer, Apple’s Self Service Repair program is quite a big deal, for a few reasons.

A Right to Repair Victory

The idea that consumers should be able to do repairs to products they own themselves is an age-old idea that, just a few decades ago, was even encouraged. But in recent years, large corporations like John Deere, Tesla, and Apple have taken an aggressive stance against this idea.

In fact, Apple has been staunchly anti-right to repair for many years. Not only have they gone up against congress to defend against allegations of anti-consumer practices regarding their repair programs, but they’ve also gone out of their way to lock down their products to prevent “unauthorized” third-party and DIY repairs.

But Apple hasn’t just made repairs impossible without proprietary tools – they’ve also outright bricked devices to deter third-party repair. Apple also recently found itself embroiled in controversy when news broke that swapping a screen from one iPhone 13 to another would cause Face ID to stop working altogether.

Apple’s Self Service Repair program is a step in the right direction for the right to repair movement. Sure, it’s rife with pitfalls and is clearly an imperfect solution. But it gives some power back to consumers and small repair businesses. And with Apple’s influence in the tech market, it’s signaling a major change in how things will work going forward, with other companies, like Samsung, following suit.

Lower Costs

The Self Service Repair program also offers another huge benefit: lower costs (sort of). Because Apple products have been subject to such strict rules for repair, many people are left with no other choice than to take their devices to an Apple authorized repair technician. This often comes with an astronomical fee, colloquially known as an “Apple tax,” and can cost hundreds of dollars for simple repairs.

Greater Repair Availability

Along with the high costs of Apple authorized phone repair services comes the low availability of authorized technicians. That means that if the closest Apple authorized repair center is 100 miles away, you’re stuck with three choices: make a road trip, take your chances with an unauthorized repair technician, or buy a new device.

With Apple’s new Self Service Repair program, you’ll no longer have these issues. You’ll still need to acquire parts from Apple, and there are still limits to the types of repairs you can do yourself.

But the fact of the matter is you can decide to do the repairs yourself or have an independent repair shop do the work for you. And you can rest a little easier knowing you won’t end up with a brick because you wanted to replace a broken screen or camera and don’t want to pay the exorbitant prices Apple’s repair centers charge.

Apple has plans to extend the program to include other Apple products, such as Macs, in the future. This is a step in the right direction for right to repair advocates, and a big step towards a more sustainable future.


Author Cody Brown

More posts by Cody Brown