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5x hardware bootloop cause / fix ?

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moonlightdrive

Senior Member
Oct 5, 2015
279
210
Argentina
I just fixed my nexus 5x bootloop issue. It is a hardware issue so don't waste time in downgrading or changing the stock ROMs. I learned it the hard way and lost all the data in the process. Here are the simple steps to resolve the issue:
1) Open the back cover using the plastic screw driver. I used old credit card. Start from the USB port and go upwards.
2) Remove all the screws from the inner black cover.
3) Carefully remove the battery connector, USB connector and 2 camera connectors.
4) Remove the battery using a flat tool. It might be a glued but will come out.
5) Lift the circuit board and remove the heat sheet using the plastic tool.
6) Notice the 2 black squares chipsets. We need to apply heat to the bigger chipset.
7) Take a hair dryer and use a aluminium foil to narrow down its opening. I made a cone with small opening and used tape to stick it to the hair dryer.
8) Use heat on the chipset for a minute or 2 till it gets a little hot. Press it with your hand and thumb. Do not overheat the chipset.
9) That is it. Put it back and test your phone. It worked for me.

Please tell me wich square, the red one? That's te ram memory, but below that ram module is located the infamous snapdragon 808, so f**k you lg. Same history as lg g4 and lg v10. A very bad welding that with the temperature changes finally breaks (9-14 months). People used to bake the motherboard at 275 degrees for 7 minutes or with a heat gun but after hours it will break again (the welding).
So, no more Lg for me. I can not even sell this cell phone that would be scam.
 

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sfhub

Senior Member
Oct 23, 2008
5,342
7,219
Yes it was the red one in my case. Good luck.
Thanks for confirming.

IMO for this phone sometimes it will be the CPU (marked in red in the pic) and sometimes the eMMC (marked in orange)

This is based on different symptoms for the bootloop problem. Some phones will just go into qualcomm loader mode which is probably the CPU solder joints. Some will boot up into bootloader and recovery but won't be able to write image successfully, that is probably the eMMC solder joints. Sometimes could be both.

It is pretty amazing that throwing things in the freezer or hairdrying it can get them working.

This is supposed to be lead-free solder balls which are supposed to flow at 420-430 deg F

Maybe they used the wrong solder type.
 
Last edited:

mcerk02

Senior Member
Jan 21, 2011
388
108
Slatington, PA
UPDATE:
If you are having what appears to be hardware bootloop problem update this Poll
https://goo.gl/forms/Ga8gZgG7GEgBIply1
or see results
https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1...D4IdwEWZYb2NKA/viewanalytics?usp=form_confirm
====
I was looking into the eMMC chip on this phone on the assumption it was causing the bootloop. I wanted to look at other phones that have the same Toshiba HS400 chip we use. I found some references to LG G4 and then started seeing LG G4 phones were also having a bootloop problem with similar symptoms, phone just turns off all of a sudden then is stuck in bootloop.

This led to finding articles that LG acknowledged a hardware problem with solder connections on the LG G4 mainboard.

I am wondering if this is the same problem affecting Nexus 5x since the LG G4 is pretty much a cousin of the 5x.

I don't know for sure this is the problem we are seeing, just a potential culprit.

This article has more information

http://www.trustedreviews.com/opinions/lg-g4-bootloop-problem-how-to-diagnose-and-fix

In the article there is mention of a special TOT file that can be flashed on the G4 that turns off the big cores and lets the phone boot in a slow mode running on just the small cores.


This video shows you can use a SMD rework station to heat up the CPU and eMMC memory chip, reestablishing the solder connections underneath the chips and getting your phone to work again.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jeuMBD9r4GI


This is the statement LG made about the LG G4
http://www.androidauthority.com/lg-g4-bootloop-petition-669421/

DELETED
 
Last edited:

sfhub

Senior Member
Oct 23, 2008
5,342
7,219
If the whole bootloop problem is just a solder joint being bad/loose, wouldnt this be easy to diagnose? take the phone apart and re-solder the joints. if it works, its confirmed as the problem..... I have not had a reason to attempt to take my 5X apart yet but have done so with other phones.... is the 5X not serviceable in that way?
It is not difficult to diagnose if you know what you are doing, but because it is surface mount SMT FBGA packaging it isn't something you can fix with soldering iron. There are lots of solder "balls" under the chip. Looks something like this:

http://www.lapis-semi.com/en/package/fbga.html

Usually you use SMD rework station (precisely controlled hot air gun) and pre-heater (precisely controlled baking plate) to reball these things.

Some people go ghetto and use a hair dryer. You can get things working, but this IMO won't be a solid connection so it will get you going for another few months before it happens again. The real fix that professionals do is to heat up the chip, lift it, clean up the old solder, put in new solder balls using a frame to set and flux to keep in place, place chip on top, then preheat the PCB, then use hot air until the solder balls "flow" and the chip drops into place.

You can see a lot of videos (all the way from ghetto to advanced) about people doing this with xbox where they had a solder problem with BGA packaging causing RROD (red ring of death)
 
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sfhub

Senior Member
Oct 23, 2008
5,342
7,219
I am also guessing that if you open up the unit and fashion some sort of shunt from cardboard box then use non-conductive tape to tape ontop of cpu and memory chip so that when you put the phone back together, pressure is applied to the chips, you can probably get it working for a while, at least long enough to get data off of it.

Not a long term solution either, because the chips will probably overheat.

So the root causes for this problem MIGHT have been any of the following:
- the original solder balls were slightly unequal sizes making the solder connections weak for some of the connections weaker
- the substrate/motherboard may have been slightly warped causing uneven stress in some areas
- there may have been some impurities in the manufacturing process
- the heat profile may have been off for the type of solder used. Unlike lead solder, lead-free solder is non eutectic, which means the different metals in the solder melt at different temperatures (leaded solder melts completely at one temperature) If you don't heat to certain levels then increase the heat to other levels and the proper schedule, you won't get strong joints
- insufficient heat management could lead to undue stress on joints, possibly due to board slightly warping and adding stress to already weakened joints
- there are probably other explanations people in manufacturing can tell you

So your options to get things working are:
1) send it in for RMA, either Google, Project Fi, or LG
2) call your credit card and ask for warranty under their extended warranty program
3) stick it in the freezer and hope enough moisture or contraction is present to connect the fissure/crack that formed in the solder or the board warps back to a form that releaves pressure on the connector so it can form connection again
4) "reflow" the solder by heating up the chips using either precise temperature controlled hot air rework station or go ghetto and use something like a hair dryer or heat gun. reflow means you are trying to get the existing solder to heat up and melt to close the fissure/crack, but the underlying problem might still be there, like insufficient solder, warped board, solder impurities, poor heat management causing stress on joints, etc., so problem will probably return
5) "reball" using leaded solder balls of high quality (uniform size). This would be much more costly but would probably permanently fix the problem
reballing looks like this (video is for xbox360)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=atSQBCpgA1E
6) open up the unit and place some cardboard shunt to apply pressure to the CPU and eMMC chips to try and have the fissures closed when the unit is reassembled and downward pressure is applied on the chips.
 

InterrtuptoR

Senior Member
Jan 24, 2015
189
40
I am also guessing that if you open up the unit and fashion some sort of shunt from cardboard box then use non-conductive tape to tape ontop of cpu and memory chip so that when you put the phone back together, pressure is applied to the chips, you can probably get it working for a while, at least long enough to get data off of it.

Not a long term solution either, because the chips will probably overheat.

So the root causes for this problem MIGHT have been any of the following:
- the original solder balls were slightly unequal sizes making the solder connections weak for some of the connections weaker
- the substrate/motherboard may have been slightly warped causing uneven stress in some areas
- there may have been some impurities in the manufacturing process
- the heat profile may have been off for the type of solder used. Unlike lead solder, lead-free solder is non eutectic, which means the different metals in the solder melt at different temperatures (leaded solder melts completely at one temperature) If you don't heat to certain levels then increase the heat to other levels and the proper schedule, you won't get strong joints
- insufficient heat management could lead to undue stress on joints, possibly due to board slightly warping and adding stress to already weakened joints
- there are probably other explanations people in manufacturing can tell you

So your options to get things working are:
1) send it in for RMA, either Google, Project Fi, or LG
2) call your credit card and ask for warranty under their extended warranty program
3) stick it in the freezer and hope enough moisture or contraction is present to connect the fissure/crack that formed in the solder or the board warps back to a form that releaves pressure on the connector so it can form connection again
4) "reflow" the solder by heating up the chips using either precise temperature controlled hot air rework station or go ghetto and use something like a hair dryer or heat gun. reflow means you are trying to get the existing solder to heat up and melt to close the fissure/crack, but the underlying problem might still be there, like insufficient solder, warped board, solder impurities, poor heat management causing stress on joints, etc., so problem will probably return
5) "reball" using leaded solder balls of high quality (uniform size). This would be much more costly but would probably permanently fix the problem
reballing looks like this (video is for xbox360)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=atSQBCpgA1E
6) open up the unit and place some cardboard shunt to apply pressure to the CPU and eMMC chips to try and have the fissures closed when the unit is reassembled and downward pressure is applied on the chips.
Why is lg giving refunds, cant they fix it like that?
 

sfhub

Senior Member
Oct 23, 2008
5,342
7,219
Why is lg giving refunds, cant they fix it like that?
To fix these things for real, they probably need to figure out what went wrong with manufacturing and do a manufacturing design change. It is much cheaper to just give your money back. Even the parts they are using for repairs probably suffer from the same problem.

LG cannot reball using leaded solder balls (which would probably alleviate or eliminate the problem) due to environmental regulations. Reballing using leaded solder is more robust even with less attention to heating profiles (leaded solder melts all at the same temperature while lead-free solder is non-eutectic, meaning the different metals melt at different temperatures, so you have to be very careful in the heating of the board to follow a specific script) As a home user, if you want you can reball using leaded solder but it is an expensive and time consuming process.

LG can easily reflow your board though, but IMO that just pushes the problem further down the road because it doesn't fix the core issue of weakend joints, which might be solder ball quality problem, heating profile problem, design issue with not enough heat dissipation, or board warping due to repeated heat/cool cycles. It could be any one of those problems.

So reball using leaded solder is like using brand new more robust glue to fix the problem. Reflow is like crazy gluing the existing broken joints. I'm taking liberties in my descriptions.
 

deathstalker279

Senior Member
Apr 7, 2014
103
526
21
Guntur
androidhlp.blogspot.in
Same thing happened to me after installing the N update. After flashing the stock ROM about 3 times, i gave it up.

After trying several times the region around the camera (rear) (processor i think) got quiet hot but, didn't stuck! It was booting fine without any freezes! Unfortunately, the battery was low at that time, so, it switched off.

After i got home, i charged it for an hour and tried to boot it. But it didn't boot and freezed and rebooted 69 times...

Some thing is really not good with the manufacturing process.
Share your device's batch number as only a few devices are facing this problem
 
Last edited:

wolfie1_0

Member
Apr 4, 2012
16
6
Toronto
Sooo just as an update I had my device freeze and bootloop last night, I bought mine on launch and is therefore its out of warranty at this point.

I actually own a hot air rework setup and decided to give it a shot. about 20 min later and my phone is back up and running perfectly. I'll have to see if it stays working, I don't have any liquid flux on hand but figured I'd give it a shot anyways.

i focused my heat on the eMMC chip but couldn't locate my small tip for the setup so I probably got the CPU/RAM hot enough to reflow as well so I'm not really able to narrow it down for you guys very much. But i do have to thank the OP whom suggested it as a possible fault.

If anyone has any questions for me feel free to ask, I also wouldn't have any issues doing it for a small price for other people if they wanted to pay shipping to and from Canada
 

RyanEJ25

Senior Member
Mar 29, 2013
140
28
Orange County
I just fixed my nexus 5x bootloop issue. It is a hardware issue so don't waste time in downgrading or changing the stock ROMs. I learned it the hard way and lost all the data in the process. Here are the simple steps to resolve the issue:
1) Open the back cover using the plastic screw driver. I used old credit card. Start from the USB port and go upwards.
2) Remove all the screws from the inner black cover.
3) Carefully remove the battery connector, USB connector and 2 camera connectors.
4) Remove the battery using a flat tool. It might be a glued but will come out.
5) Lift the circuit board and remove the heat sheet using the plastic tool.
6) Notice the 2 black squares chipsets. We need to apply heat to the bigger chipset.
7) Take a hair dryer and use a aluminium foil to narrow down its opening. I made a cone with small opening and used tape to stick it to the hair dryer.
8) Use heat on the chipset for a minute or 2 till it gets a little hot. Press it with your hand and thumb. Do not overheat the chipset.
9) That is it. Put it back and test your phone. It worked for me.

I tried this and now the phone gets so hot I can't even touch it and the screen doesn't turn on. Its still read by fastboot so idk what I did. It was only 3 or 4 ribbon connectors. I give up back to google.
 

ACHILLES R32

Senior Member
Dec 28, 2010
1,158
732
VA
I'm having the exact issues like everyone else. I was able to access recovery and recover files from the SD. However Im now having a hard turning on the phone and when I do, I can get it into bootloader/ recovery but computer won't recognize it. So I can't lock the bootloader and unroot to send it in for repair. What do you guys suggest? As far a returning to stock and unrooting would it even be possible?
If not I'm probably going to send the phone as is and hope LG fixes it lol.

Sent from my Nexus 5
 
Last edited:

dtgo

Senior Member
Jun 18, 2007
127
12
well let it be confirmed that heating actually fixes the bootloop issue , i was having this issue and i opened it up and heated as the post instructed and now its working
 
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ACHILLES R32

Senior Member
Dec 28, 2010
1,158
732
VA
Tried to boot the phone and all I get is the red blinking light ant this point I'm just thinking about getting a pixel but 680$ for 32GB is insane. Hopefully LG fixes my phone sending it in on Wednesday

Sent from my Nexus 5
 

bhardwajshash

Member
Mar 12, 2015
32
1
Hello everyone

My friend is facing the same issue on his 5X. Problem is, he's in India, and this was an Indian purchase. The phone is out of warranty, so LG is asking for about $200 for a motherboard replacement.
Shouldn't they be issuing refunds or at least fixing it for free when it's an issue THEY have caused, regardless of the warranty period? Why rip customers off?
 

Nidstang

Senior Member
May 15, 2014
132
71
Sometimes if it is emmc eventually it locks out enough bad blocks to start working again.
Interesting enough on Nougat, they added forward error correction, so minor eMMC failure could actually be masked and recovered from because "error correction" can "repair" limited errors using redundant bits.
If you look in the dmesg log you'll see "fec" entries when error correction is doing its thing.

Thanks for all your efforts in this thread.

I pre-ordered a N5X, received it shortly after launch, and have been using it ever since with absolutely no problems. Really like the phone. I update to the latest version every month through the OTAs that Google posts, have always been utterly stock, not rooted and bootloader is locked.

Tonight, my phone spontaneously rebooted twice. Each time it was stuck at the Google logo for 5-10 minutes, but both times it eventually rebooted itself. After the first time it rebooted itself again and got stuck again, but since that time it appears fine (last hour or so). Good thing, at least I was able to go into all my 2FA-protected accounts and make sure I have a second way in and also make sure all my data is backed up.

That said, is this the error correction you are talking about, or is something else going on? If it is the error correction, can I comfortably use the phone (I rely on this phone extensively for work -- text, e-mail, and voice calls)? Does this link correctly explain how to access the dmesg log referenced above and, if so, what exactly would I be looking for?

Sorry for all the questions. But there is a ton of FUD out there about this issue, and this thread seems the only real source of solid information.

Update: It's bootlooping again. I can get it running for about 15-20 minutes every so often, but then it reboots and loops again.

Update 2: Called Google support, they are shipping me a replacement.
 
Last edited:

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  • 11
    UPDATE:
    Confirmation reflow fixes 5x hardware bootloop
    http://forum.xda-developers.com/nex...-cause-fix-t3476794/post70123267#post70123267

    UPDATE:
    If you are having what appears to be hardware bootloop problem update this Poll
    https://goo.gl/forms/Ga8gZgG7GEgBIply1
    or see results
    https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1...D4IdwEWZYb2NKA/viewanalytics?usp=form_confirm
    ====
    I was looking into the eMMC chip on this phone on the assumption it was causing the bootloop. I wanted to look at other phones that have the same Toshiba HS400 chip we use. I found some references to LG G4 and then started seeing LG G4 phones were also having a bootloop problem with similar symptoms, phone just turns off all of a sudden then is stuck in bootloop.

    This led to finding articles that LG acknowledged a hardware problem with solder connections on the LG G4 mainboard.

    I am wondering if this is the same problem affecting Nexus 5x since the LG G4 is pretty much a cousin of the 5x.

    I don't know for sure this is the problem we are seeing, just a potential culprit.

    This article has more information

    http://www.trustedreviews.com/opinions/lg-g4-bootloop-problem-how-to-diagnose-and-fix

    In the article there is mention of a special TOT file that can be flashed on the G4 that turns off the big cores and lets the phone boot in a slow mode running on just the small cores.


    This video shows you can use a SMD rework station to heat up the CPU and eMMC memory chip, reestablishing the solder connections underneath the chips and getting your phone to work again.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jeuMBD9r4GI


    This is the statement LG made about the LG G4
    http://www.androidauthority.com/lg-g4-bootloop-petition-669421/

    Here’s the full statement LG made to Android Authority:

    LG Electronics has been made aware of a booting issue with the LG G4 smartphone that has now been identified as resulting from a loose contact between components. Customers who are experiencing booting issues with their LG G4s should contact their local carrier from where the G4 was purchased or a nearby LG Service Center (www.lg.com/common) for repair under full warranty.

    Customers who purchased their G4 devices from non-carrier retailers should contact an LG Service Center with the understanding that warranty conditions will differ. LG Electronics is committed to providing the highest standards of product quality and customer service and apologizes for the inconvenience caused to some of our customers who initially received incorrect diagnoses.
    8
    I just fixed my nexus 5x bootloop issue. It is a hardware issue so don't waste time in downgrading or changing the stock ROMs. I learned it the hard way and lost all the data in the process. Here are the simple steps to resolve the issue:
    1) Open the back cover using the plastic screw driver. I used old credit card. Start from the USB port and go upwards.
    2) Remove all the screws from the inner black cover.
    3) Carefully remove the battery connector, USB connector and 2 camera connectors.
    4) Remove the battery using a flat tool. It might be a glued but will come out.
    5) Lift the circuit board and remove the heat sheet using the plastic tool.
    6) Notice the 2 black squares chipsets. We need to apply heat to the bigger chipset.
    7) Take a hair dryer and use a aluminium foil to narrow down its opening. I made a cone with small opening and used tape to stick it to the hair dryer.
    8) Use heat on the chipset for a minute or 2 till it gets a little hot. Press it with your hand and thumb. Do not overheat the chipset.
    9) That is it. Put it back and test your phone. It worked for me.
    4
    Why is lg giving refunds, cant they fix it like that?
    To fix these things for real, they probably need to figure out what went wrong with manufacturing and do a manufacturing design change. It is much cheaper to just give your money back. Even the parts they are using for repairs probably suffer from the same problem.

    LG cannot reball using leaded solder balls (which would probably alleviate or eliminate the problem) due to environmental regulations. Reballing using leaded solder is more robust even with less attention to heating profiles (leaded solder melts all at the same temperature while lead-free solder is non-eutectic, meaning the different metals melt at different temperatures, so you have to be very careful in the heating of the board to follow a specific script) As a home user, if you want you can reball using leaded solder but it is an expensive and time consuming process.

    LG can easily reflow your board though, but IMO that just pushes the problem further down the road because it doesn't fix the core issue of weakend joints, which might be solder ball quality problem, heating profile problem, design issue with not enough heat dissipation, or board warping due to repeated heat/cool cycles. It could be any one of those problems.

    So reball using leaded solder is like using brand new more robust glue to fix the problem. Reflow is like crazy gluing the existing broken joints. I'm taking liberties in my descriptions.
    3
    I am also guessing that if you open up the unit and fashion some sort of shunt from cardboard box then use non-conductive tape to tape ontop of cpu and memory chip so that when you put the phone back together, pressure is applied to the chips, you can probably get it working for a while, at least long enough to get data off of it.

    Not a long term solution either, because the chips will probably overheat.

    So the root causes for this problem MIGHT have been any of the following:
    - the original solder balls were slightly unequal sizes making the solder connections weak for some of the connections weaker
    - the substrate/motherboard may have been slightly warped causing uneven stress in some areas
    - there may have been some impurities in the manufacturing process
    - the heat profile may have been off for the type of solder used. Unlike lead solder, lead-free solder is non eutectic, which means the different metals in the solder melt at different temperatures (leaded solder melts completely at one temperature) If you don't heat to certain levels then increase the heat to other levels and the proper schedule, you won't get strong joints
    - insufficient heat management could lead to undue stress on joints, possibly due to board slightly warping and adding stress to already weakened joints
    - there are probably other explanations people in manufacturing can tell you

    So your options to get things working are:
    1) send it in for RMA, either Google, Project Fi, or LG
    2) call your credit card and ask for warranty under their extended warranty program
    3) stick it in the freezer and hope enough moisture or contraction is present to connect the fissure/crack that formed in the solder or the board warps back to a form that releaves pressure on the connector so it can form connection again
    4) "reflow" the solder by heating up the chips using either precise temperature controlled hot air rework station or go ghetto and use something like a hair dryer or heat gun. reflow means you are trying to get the existing solder to heat up and melt to close the fissure/crack, but the underlying problem might still be there, like insufficient solder, warped board, solder impurities, poor heat management causing stress on joints, etc., so problem will probably return
    5) "reball" using leaded solder balls of high quality (uniform size). This would be much more costly but would probably permanently fix the problem
    reballing looks like this (video is for xbox360)
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=atSQBCpgA1E
    6) open up the unit and place some cardboard shunt to apply pressure to the CPU and eMMC chips to try and have the fissures closed when the unit is reassembled and downward pressure is applied on the chips.
    2
    Hi. I tested my 5x https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=net.vinagre.android.emmc_check&hl=pl. It showed that emmc is Toshiba 032G74. Test passed without problems. I haven't updated to 7 yet, because I would like to avoid eventually problem with bootloop.
    The problem that was pointed out for the LG G4 cousin of this 5x phone is not that the eMMC chip is defective, rather the solder connection to either the eMMC or the CPU is faulty, so in that case it wouldn't matter which eMMC chip you had.

    I am trying to get some discussion about what the cause of the problem is on the 5x using the G4 bootloop problem as a starting point.

    As to the eMMC info, if you want the information about your emmc you can also do

    Code:
    su
    cd /sys/bus/mmc/devices/mmc0:0001/
    cat name date fwrev hwrev manfid oemid
    
    032G74
    07/1999
    0x0
    0x0
    0x000011
    0x0100

    also you can reboot your phone and type

    Code:
    bullhead:/ $ dmesg | grep mmc0
    [    1.914434] mmc0: no vqmmc regulator found
    [    1.914459] mmc0: no vmmc regulator found
    [    1.914736] mmc0: SDHCI controller on f9824900.sdhci [f9824900.sdhci] using 32-bit ADMA
    [    2.046259] mmc0: BKOPS_EN bit = 0
    [    2.063777] mmc0: new HS400 MMC card at address 0001
    [    2.064305] mmcblk0: mmc0:0001 032G74 29.1 GiB