AT&T HOW TO: Motorola q9h housing replacement


New member
Sep 24, 2003
Sacramento, CA USA
Motorola q9h
For anyone interested,

I dropped my q9h in a parking lot a few weeks back, and scratched up the housing pretty badly. I ordered a new housing off of ebay, and installed it today. If any of you are planning on doing this, it's not nearly as easy as changing the housing on the old Motorola Q. The new housing was from a seller called "gsm4world." It appears to be an all black OEM housing, and cost $17.99 + $5.00 shipping. It shipped from Hong Kong, and took about 2 weeks to arrive. If you buy from them, realize that they only ship you the front faceplate with the LCD lens and keyboard, not the back battery cover or camera lens.

Pictured below is the old housing on the left, and the phone transplanted into the new housing on the right.



The basic process is as follows: (You will need a Torx #5 screwdriver and a pocket knife or plastic cellphone opener)

1. Remove the battery cover. Remove the battery.

2. There will be four Torx #5 screws, three blue ones and one silver one that will need to be removed.

3. Then comes the hard part. The top back cover has to be removed. First, use a penknife or xacto knife to take the transparent lens cover off the camera/flash area.

Then, use a plastic cellphone opener or a pocketknife to carefully pry off the top back cover. There is a small amount of adhesive holding the cover to the unit, so start from the bottom and work your way around. There are about four clips holding the back cover onto the unit, and you should feel them snap open. Be careful not to break them off.

4. Once the back cover is off, there will be two more Torx #5 screws at the top that you will need to unscrew. Then use your penknife to carefully pry the unit away from the front faceplate. Start at the bottom and work your way around.

5. There will be a small connector which connects the keyboard to the circuitboard. Carefully disconnect this.

6. The LCD will likely be sitting pretty tight in the LCD lens; use the penknife to carefully pry it off and then transplant it into the new faceplate.

7. There is a small metal box-like apparatus up by the top speaker that also needs to be transplanted from the old faceplate to the new one.

8. Take the old side-buttons and put the in the new faceplate.

9. Connect the keyboard connector from the new faceplate to the circuitboard of the unit.

10. Carefully snap the unit into the new faceplate. Screw in the two top screws. Put the top back cover back on. Put the camera/flash lens cover back on. Screw the four bottom screws back in. Put the battery, SIM card, micro-SD cards back in, and put the battery cover back on.

That's it. I would test it to make sure your speakerphone and vibrate settings are working properly. Also, I would check to make sure all the keys work properly. One thing I've noticed is that the new housing makes the phone slightly lighter than the old housing. Also, the keyboard is not smooth plastic, but rather rough plastic which gives it a much more tactile feel.
I love you! I have an OEM black faceplate coming from and was really wondering how I was going to change it, lol.
Man I want to change the case to an all black one but after reading your directions (thanks by the way) I don't think I would be comfortable doing it. :(
Just got my black faceplate put on.

Two things to note:

1. I didn't have what you listed in step 7 on my original faceplate.

2. The camera lense cover comes off with the top back cover and there is less of a chance of scratching or marring that part of the housing trying to remove the lense cover first.
2. The camera lense cover comes off with the top back cover and there is less of a chance of scratching or marring that part of the housing trying to remove the lense cover first.


Yes, when the top back plate popped off for me, the lens cover actually stayed on, and it wasn't until I went to put the plate back on that I realized that it went under the lens cover...
Just swapped the housing per your instructions (thanks!)
BUT NOW my screen is only displaying horizontal lines and there is no backlight on the keyboard.

Does anyone have an extra full black or black/gray q9h housing left around some corner ? I'm looking for it but all i can find is the silver housing which just sucks.