Apple’s self-service repair program went live today, giving iPhone (and eventually Mac) customers the tools and instructions need to repair their devices at a lower cost and from the comfort of their own homes.
To do so, however, you need tools—some of which are proprietary. With the “Self Service Repair Store” opening today, you can now purchase those parts individually. However, doing so might not be the most cost-effective method. Spending $85 on a Torque Driver or $13 on a single Torx Security Bit adds significant cost to your repair, and you might only need these tools once or twice.
Fortunately, Apple offers a $49 (including shipping) rental kit that contains all the tools and parts needed to make repairs on specific devices. Maybe too many parts, depending on which repair you’re making, but there’s no way to rent individual tools a la carte. The rental lasts for 7 days once you’ve received the tool kit, after which you are charged “a fee and a tax” via a hold on your credit card.
Just be sure to stretch before you try hauling these kits to your workbench, because they are hefty. As MacRumors notes, the two cases you receive with the rental kits weigh 43 pounds and 36 pounds, individually. When stacked, the cases measure 20 inches wide and 47 inches tall. It’s safe to say that you can skip the gym on iPhone repair day. Unless you want to cheat and use the cases’ wheels, which I’m thrilled to report don’t cost $700 extra.
What’s inside these beefy kits? The first case for iPhone 12 and iPhone 13 repairs includes a “Heated Display Removal Fixture” and a “Heated Display Pocket,” a pair of technical devices that would cost roughly $350 to buy separately. In the other case are various parts, including battery and display presses, a repair tray, torque drivers, screw bits, and adhesive covers. You can find a full list in the Q&A section of the Tool Kit Rental page.
But what if I just need one torque driver, and I don’t want to buy it to keep? I guess I’ll have to hit the gym so I can carry all of that extra gear.
In all seriousness, I’m eager to see what’s included in the rental kits for Mac repairs once Apple adds laptops and desktops to its self-service repair program later this year. Heft aside, the rental service seems like a legitimately great way to save money on genuine components most people don’t have in their toolbox. If only you could rent just the specific tools you need individually, too. And if only Apple’s new right-to-repair initiative supported older iPhone models—you know, the ones most in need of repairs or replacement parts.