Do back glass cracks disqualifies for trade-in at T-Mobile?

  • 25 November 2020
  • 15 replies

Userlevel 1

Unless I’m reading it wrong or interpreting T-Mobile’s document wrong, I don’t think the trade-in policy disqualifies back glass crack.

I’m talking about this T-Mobile support document


Checking your device condition

There are four main things to check on your device. Click each link to learn more.

Screen & LCD damage

Liquid damage

Find My iPhone & Anti-Theft disabled

Device turns on (Not required for buyer's remorse or warranty exchange)

Screen & LCD damage

Screen damage (LCD or display damage) voids all warranties and can't be accepted.

  • When inspecting a screen, remove any screen protectors and cases first. Tilt the device under good lighting conditions, and inspect at multiple angles. Screen damage includes hairline cracks that are difficult to see.
  • Screen damage includes:
    • Cracked screen
    • Cracks or chips in glass that is connected to the screen (including edges)
    • Crushed or shattered screen
    • Not readable, pixelated, or distorted display
    • Screen replacement or repair through an unauthorized third-party
  • Scratches and scuffs can occur from normal use and can be accepted.
  • Examples (click images to enlarge)


To me, this is pretty clear that back glass doesn’t constitute Screen & LCD damage. I’m being told different things in-store and over the phone so I’m trying the community to see what the actual policy is.

15 replies

Commenting to receive updates on this question because I am wondering the same thing. I saw the exact same  terms and wanted to know if the back glass counts.

Userlevel 1

Commenting to receive updates on this question because I am wondering the same thing. I saw the exact same  terms and wanted to know if the back glass counts.

Well I already returned a device over the mail with a broken glass and I got a message from T-mo yesterday saying that the trade in was approved and credited. I’m guessing it is covered. Just unacceptable that T-mobile representatives in store and some over the phone doesn’t know the actual policies.

Userlevel 1

Commenting to receive updates on this question because I am wondering the same thing. I saw the exact same  terms and wanted to know if the back glass counts.

I reached out to T-Force, since no one answered my question here and they did confirm that I was correct.

The "Check the condition of a device" page that you shared yesterday is almost identical to the official internal policy page that customer care has access to on our side of things. It even has the same example pictures and everything! The policy is the same for both instant (in-store) trade-ins and deferred (ship-back) trade-ins. The only reason I can think of for the store adamantly denying a phone with any kind of damage is that this policy was recently updated within the last year. We used to be unable to accept devices with any kind of damage. Now, it's been changed to devices that meet all of the criteria outlines in the condition check page. This isn't to excuse my in-store teammates for their lack of resource usage, but to help explain where the outdated conflicting information is coming from.


Userlevel 7
Badge +13

if you were looking for an agent to give you an answer the site here is not where you will get that..this is  mainly peer to peer with a few moderators to keep order.


for answers your best bet is either via FB or Twitter.

Ok everyone listen up! DO NOT send your phone in with a cracked back glass. I really hope this message reaches people. This is a scam that Tmobile is running. They make it very vague on whether it's ok to send it in with cracked back glass and they say that only the lcd screen is what's important. Well I was just denied my $800 promotional trade in after thinking it was good because I already received 2 monthly bill credits. They want you to send it in that way so you buy the new phone, they give you a couple monthly credits so you think everything is all good. Then they take it away and you end up having to pay full price for the new phone. I told them I wanted my old phone back and to take this 256g galaxy s21 ultra $1400 phone back which was impossible. You can't get your old phone back at this point. Such an obvious scam because they know that just about everyone has at least 1 crack in that back glass. It cracks very easily. Its just a way to get you to buy a new expensive phone and also you are giving them your old phone for free which they will just quickly refurbished and resell. You can order this back glass on Amazon for like $15 and replace it yourself. There are videos showing exactly how to do it. I was about to do this but decided I didn't have to because the back glass isn't part of their 4 point inspection which is just what they want you to think. They guy on the phone was trying to tell me the back glass is the display. I was like how is it the display? It doesn't display anything and it's a separate piece of glass! They ended up giving me a $300 credit after a long hold which I'm sure is what they are taught to do. The long hold makes you think they are talking to supervisors and managers but really they are just sitting in their chair playing candy crush or something. So if you're in this situation, make sure to at least get your $300 credit. I hate big companies and their scam tactics so much. They think they have everyone fooled. Please share this message I'm very upset about this and I would like to get the word out on this. It's pathetic.

Silsil how did your trade in go?

Troy I’m not sure if your being entire honest sound like your making up excuses for sending a phone that clearly doesn’t work. If your needing to go into this much detail well there’s a lot more your not telling us which fine I’ll just have make sure remember the miasma that spews out of your mouth.

Troy I’m not sure if your being entire honest sound like your making up excuses for sending a phone that clearly doesn’t work. If your needing to go into this much detail well there’s a lot more your not telling us which fine I’ll just have make sure remember the miasma that spews out of your mouth.

That makes no sense whatsoever. If I sent in a phone that didn't work, why would I be so upset when they didn't accept it? Everything I wrote is true. I had my s9 for 3 years with 0 damage. The back glass cracked just a couple months prior to sending it in. I'm not sure why you feel the need to say I'm lying about my phone what purpose does that serve for you? I simply felt the need to warn people to not send their phones in with cracked back glass when it can easily be fixed for $18. 

Userlevel 1

Silsil how did your trade in go?

My trade went through perfectly fine. I got annoyed and filed an complaint to the three different stores that I went to. Not sure if that did anything. The explanation that I got from a previous tmo employee from reddit /r/tmobile (not from my call with higher customer support rep) was that stores would get a chargeback for devices that the warehouses deemed not eligible so even if the internal documents change, the reps are not willing to take anything that they will be liable for. 

I agree with Troyy108. They make terms of the trade-in process very vague so that you can send the phone. I’m glad that I recognized the scam and trusted my instincts before sending…. I will say that what you are hoping (getting a high value with a cracked back) will not work well for you. I was promised up to $800 trade-in value for my iPhoneX to merge to T-mobile from Sprint. In the store, they told me to ship my phone and gave me a box. I asked them what the value was. They told me that I had to wait until 2 billing cycles for the credit to post on my account. Something didn’t seem right. After a few days, I called before I shipped. I learned that I accepted an offer of $0 for my phone (perfectly clean iPhone, no damage). After some back and forth, they offered me $158 for a 64GB clean iPhoneX. I’ve already researched the market value on Ebay and FB marketplace. I decided to keep my phone and pay $800 for an iPhone13. I won’t mention the multiple instances of unprofessionalism that I had to deal with in the store. I had to literally trick the rep in going to the back to “check the lockbox” to actually search for the product I was asking for. He came back with 3 different colors after telling me 3-4 times that he didn’t have them… I digress. Before you do anything, I suggest that you call customer service and have them give you a value over the phone. Tell them that the back screen is cracked and ask them does that decrease the value. And if they don’t know, ask to speak to a supervisor or someone who does. Then in this way, when you are 100% honest up front, they cannot lower the value after shipment for a bogus reason. Have them write everything in the notes and ask for a case number. Confirm with the supervisor that it is in the notes. When the time comes, they have a reference of what was promised to you. And they WILL honor that as long as they put it in the notes. Correction of the issue may look like monthly credits to your bill. If they give you 12 months to fulfill the credits, ask for 6 months. This from my experience. Do your research before going into a store and call customer service in their presence, if needed. I will miss Sprint, who paid for my Tidal, Hulu, and my yearly AAA membership. My bill was $100 for 2 lines. Most importantly, I will miss Sprint for their honesty and transparency.


I called tmobile service with this question, then waited on hold for one hour 45 minutes, then tweeted to them, then after another two hours they responded to my tweet, but they did not answer the question. it is pretty amazing that no one at t-mobile seems to be able to answer this simple question.   I am still waiting for a response on twitter. 

newly switched and now the full monty starts---

screwed over by Tmobile

I saw someone say to replace the screen yourself.. I just wanted to come on and say that for Apple products they have their own “screws” that hold the screen in place. A good friend of mine replaced screens and told me that if apple sees non-apple screws they know the screen was replaced and any warranty will not be honored. I’m not sure if something like that gets checked for trade-in phones.. but figured it was worth saying. 

If I replace the back glass with one that doesn't have the IMEI number at the bottom will that disqualify it for replacement? I assume so

Same situation is happening to me right now. And I think my case is even more unfair.. and the best word to describe my situation is ..ROBERY... this is a robery... on Nov 26 I took the promotion that they had for black Friday.. I was supposed to trade my galaxy S9 and I took the S21.. they took my order over the phone ( by the way I have 3 lines.. 3 phones; 1 galaxy s20 and 2 s9) .. couple days later I recieve the phone and I tranfer all the Info to the new phone and I was ready to send the s9 over. I called and tmobile send me the label .. I printed and I went to the mail office and send it. .. wait couple of day... and I called to make sure they received by Dec 5 or 6th.. the customer service agent told me they did receive it and everything  was ok.OK..  my bill for December and January I saw the credit reflected on my account.... but for Feb I noticed they were charging my bill without the credit..  I've been calling and spending hours over the phone explaining the situation and they ended up saying ... ohh we recieved an s9 Blue and the order says purple.. ( they put the wrong info on the returned.. instead of putting the s9 information of the phone I was calling and wanted to trade.. they did the order on my oder phone the one that I called even though I told that person that day that I wanted to trade in the s9 blue)... now they are saying you need to pay for the phone... I told them fine let's say it's my fault for not reading the returning label and putting wrong phone requested on the label.... when are u going to give me my phone back.. the one that I sent ... they said SORRY WE CANT GIVE YOU THAT PHONE BACK... I went ballistic.. that's the most cynical way of scamming ppl... this is theft... So.. they want to charge me the full amount of the phone and on top they will keep my old phone even though they admitted is their fault from the beginning..  we should get together and do a social media protest.. this is wrong.. my email is  Check out David Rodas (@DavidTheSpartac):


Ig. @Davidcitorodas