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How do I replace the battery in the iPhone 3G and iPhone 3GS?
Apple will replace the battery in the iPhone 3G or iPhone 3GS for a cost of US$79 plus US$6.95 shipping (along with any applicable sales tax). However, more affordable third-party replacement services are available and replacing the battery yourself also is possible if you are very tech savvy.
However, the battery in the iPhone 3G and iPhone 3GS is both glued and soldered to the logicboard. As a result, the battery in these models is challenging to replace and professional installation is recommended.
Specifically, the iPhone 3G is model number A1241 and the iPhone 3GS is A1303. The China-only iPhone 3G and iPhone 3GS models that do not have wi-fi are model number A1324 and A1325, respectively. All of these models also can be differentiated by the serial number with EveryiPhone.com's Ultimate iLookup.
Battery Replacement Video Instructions
For those not discouraged by the challenge of disassembling a small electronic device and soldering, two quality videos from RepairsUniverse and PowerBookMedic that cover battery replacement for the iPhone 3G and iPhone 3GS models are below for your convenience.
Opening iPhone 3GS Case
Replacing iPhone 3GS Battery
From watching the video or videos for your iPhone 3G or iPhone 3GS, you should be able to determine whether or not you feel comfortable replacing the battery yourself or if you would instead prefer to hire a professional.
Site sponsor Mission Repair offers free iPhone hardware diagnosis and a professional 24 hour iPhone battery replacement service by mail as well as inexpensive "do it yourself" iPhone battery replacement kits.