How to Get Bubbles Out of a Screen Protector

Written by regina edwards
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How to Get Bubbles Out of a Screen Protector
(Brand X Pictures/Brand X Pictures/Getty Images)

Smartphones, portable electronic games and MP3 players include colour screens to display photos, art and graphics. Installing a screen protector reduces scratches, dirt and dust from accumulating on the screen. However, since screen protectors are clear film, installation requires patience and practice to avoid trapping dust and particles between the screen and film. Trapped air bubbles sometimes result from trapped dust under the protector or from a hasty application. Users can apply a science lab technique to remove pesky air bubbles before you remove and reapply the screen protector.

Skill level:

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Things you need

  • Eye dropper
  • Rubbing alcohol
  • Lint-free cloth
  • Credit card
  • Wooden toothpick
  • Optional: water, small cup

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    Microscope Slide Technique

  1. 1

    Place the device on a flat surface and fill the eye dropper with rubbing alcohol.

  2. 2

    Place the lint-free cloth on one edge of the screen protector.

  3. 3

    Distil three drops of alcohol along the opposite edge of the screen protector (i.e., the opposite edge from the cloth).

  4. 4

    Check that the liquid migrates from one edge toward the cloth (the movement of the liquid will also push air bubbles and particles towards the edge)

  5. 5

    Repeat steps 3 and 4 as needed, until the liquid reaches the cloth. Be careful not to soak the screen.

  6. 6

    Gently place your finger on the centre of the screen and slowly wiggle the screen to remove bubbles and realign.

  7. 7

    Wipe the liquid from the edges of the screen protector and allow the alcohol to evaporate.

    Remove and Reapply

  1. 1

    Insert a wooden toothpick in one corner of the screen protector closest to the bubble, between the film and the screen.

  2. 2

    Gently apply pressure on the toothpick to lift the corner of the screen protector, making sure not to scratch the screen or film.

  3. 3

    Remove the toothpick and hold the screen protector by the edges.

  4. 4

    Carefully peel the film away until you reach the air bubble (or remove completely to reapply, if desired).

  5. 5

    Align the bottom edge of the protector with the bottom edge of the screen if you removed the screen protector completely.

  6. 6

    Hold the film at a slight angle away from the screen and gently affix the film to the screen by rubbing the flat side of a credit card against the film. Move in a slow, gentle motion, from one end to the other end (e.g., from right to left or from the centre to each edge).

  7. 7

    Release the film as it becomes affixed to the screen. If a bubble forms, gently peel away the portion of the film and reaffix by rubbing the credit card on the protector surface.

Tips and warnings

  • If you discover that the air bubble encases dirt or dust particles, remove the film completely and clean the screen and the protector with a solution containing equal parts of rubbing alcohol and water before reapplying.
  • Be careful when applying any liquid to the device to avoid ruining the display or internal mechanisms.

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