How To Blow Up A Phone

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The pic is of my Android phones.  The one at the top is the one I “blew up”. Notice how puffed up the battery is, even after I manually tried to smash it down, this was the end result.  Now, notice the phone at the bottom, see how nice and flat the battery is?  I bet I could actually get the back to fit back on properly.  Who knew this could happen?  Better yet, HOW did this happen?  Wait…did you REALLY just ask that?  Oh yeah, for me it was as simple as……

Grocery shopping ..ugh!  I will only take half of the Demented Duo, because Harold has a tendency to wander off.  However, mom takes FOREVER just to get into the car.  No matter how much I warn her “The longer you take, the hotter it will be coming back!”  She still takes two hours to gather up all her stuff and load it into her walker.  Invariably, I end up running back into the house to fetch something she has forgotten, such as her purse, or water.  I have learned to take the Ford Explorer on these excursions because mom’s walker usually gets dirt into it when in the back of my pickup.  Not to mention all the kleenex she stuffs in the walker ends up flying all over the road.  Both vehicles have that lovely Oklahoma Air Condtioning–you know, roll down all the windows and pray.

Mom was finally ready to be loaded into the Explorer around 11:30am,  I silently grind my teeth on the way out, knowing the temperature is already 92 degrees outside making it about 120 inside the car.  I put my purse with my phone in it on the back seat, something I’ve done a hundred times.  I then load mom into the car, and put her walker in the back seat.  It’s a 10 mile drive into “town”, 3 of which is on dirt and gravel road.  Due to the distance and the fact we have no a/c I generally load a cooler to hold the milk and other refrigerated items we purchase for the trip back.

After an hour and a half of shopping we head home, again with my purse put into the back seat.  Once we get home I unload mom first into the garage and then begin unloading the groceries from the car.  It only takes about 20 minutes for me to put everything away and go back out to the car to retrieve my purse and anything else mom might have left behind.  I walk my now heat exhausted, sweaty self back to my air conditioned room to cool off.  The first thing I do is sit down and take out my phone to check messages because I can NEVER hear this phone ring when it’s in my purse.  Here’s where the real trouble starts.

The first thing I notice is I can’t get the damn phone out of the protective shell/holder I use.  Thinking that’s odd, I force the shell off and the back of the phone breaks off with it.  WTF!  I pick up the phone case and notice the little tabs at the top are broken off.  When I turn the phone over, I see that the battery has puffed out and there’s NO WAY I’m getting the back on again.  Unless…I put my weight on it and push the battery flat again.  Another brilliant “Lucy” idea.

I guess the Android phone is like most these days, the battery is NOT supposed to be removed and is made of  something totally different than the old flip-phone batteries.  It looks like one of those little hand warmer bags you can stick into your gloves in the winter.  It’s pliable to the touch, not rigid like a “real” battery.  Obviously, I had been out in the heat too long.  Because I was actually thinking that all I had to do to fix the phone was somehow get the excess AIR out of the battery.  AIR??  REALLY??

I really needed to get this phone fixed, I didn’t want to go through Labor Day weekend without it.  I figured if I couldn’t fix it myself, I could go the next day to a Verizon store.  As long as I got there early, I shouldn’t have to worry about people taking off early for the 3-day holiday.  Its a plan!  In the mean time little miss do-it-my-damn-self tried some good ole redneck fixin’. Keep in mind my heat exhausted brain, was still on the “get the air out” track.

At first I tried using the phone back to push the battery in, holding the phone between both hands, I acted like a human vise pushing on the front and back trying to mash the phone back together.  No good, my hands aren’t strong enough.  Next, I put a towel on the floor to protect the phone screen, place the phone face down and kneel on one knee onto the phone.  Damn, even my entire body weight doesn’t do it.  It DID push the battery down some though.  Hmmmm.  I’m hot and tired and just want to go shower and go to bed.  I figured my weight for a little while pushed the battery down some, how about some weight on it all night.  Hell, I could wake up in the morning and all is normal.  Another plan!

Looking around my room, wondering what I could leave on top of this phone all night, I spy the tool box I forgot to take back out to the shop.  The tool box is fully loaded and weighs about 60 pounds, as long as I use the towel and carpet to protect the screen it should work fine.  Right??  Not ONCE in my demented, heat exhausted mind, did I consider this is still a BATTERY.  They DO explode!  So, like a complete idiot, I arrange the phone face down on the towel and carpet and put the tool box on top of it.  The next morning I was up at 6am to check the phone.  I pull the toolbox off and see that the battery has actually gone down quite a bit.  But, it’s still not right, and through all my efforts the battery has begun to shift around because it’s basically held on with glue.  With a sigh, I go off to the kitchen to fetch a ziploc bag.

As I put the phone pieces into the bag, I FINALLY realize how lucky I am this phone didn’t explode in my face while I had been torturing the battery. I had to laugh, God really does watch over me.  I look up the nearest Verizon store, which is in the Tulsa Hills Mall.  Nice little trip from Bristow. I call to be sure they will be open and then go to tell the Duo my phone story.  After hearing all the ways I tried to mash the battery back in, mom turns to me and says, “Oh and you think I AM the one that’s sick in the head!”  Ummmm, yeah.

I arrived at the Verzon store at 9:30am, I walk in holding my Ziploc bag of phone and approach the counter.  There are 5 people at this counter working on various things, one young lady steps forward and introduces herself and asks me how she can help me.  My reply was to put the bag onto the counter in full view of everyone and say “I think I have a battery problem.”    These people acted like I threw a grenade at them.  My salesperson yells, “Oh My God!”   And I hear other comments of “Holy Shit!” and “I have never SEEN that before.”  As if performing some bizarre line dance, all 5 of the counterpeople step back in unison until their backs are literally against the wall.  My sales lady finally blurts out, “Can you even turn that on?”  I replied, “Sure it works, it’s just really inconvenient to try to use it while simultaneously holding the thing together.”

The rest of the counter personnel didn’t relax until they saw me take the phone out and turn it on.  While it was booting up, they all came over to check it out.  The manager even took a picture, to use as a teaching tool.  By this time I was used to fooling with the phone and was amused at all the fuss.  All I could think was, Man I can sure clear a room!  After a few hours, I still didn’t have an actual phone, but I got a new tablet to take home with me, so I had some entertainment for Labor Day.  The sales people all kept saying I blew the phone up.  In my mind when something blows up it literally explodes into little pieces.  Thank GOD that didn’t happen.  Apparently, the extreme heat in the car (repeated exposure) finally blew the phone up.  The phone was over 2 years old, so it was time for something new.  As it turns out I ended up with an exact replacement phone, an upgraded Droid Maxx phone, AND the tablet for the price of the $99 keyboard case that fits on the tablet.  Much easier to type these stories on than the Droid phone!  Tomorrow I think I’ll see if I can’t blow up my truck! Maybe I’ll get a new Caddy…hey, I can still hope!

 


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