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Weekend Project: How to make your iPhone/iPad Lightning cable last a lot longer

People love their iPhones and iPads, but that love doesn't extend to the Lightning cable that's needed to charge up the device or connect it to a computer. The problem: They break
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Written by Adrian Kingsley-Hughes, Contributor on

People love their iPhones and iPads, but that love doesn't extend to the Lightning cable that's needed to charge up the device or connect it to a computer. The problem: They break.

Here's a quick and simple (and cheap) tip to help you dramatically lengthen the lifespan of your Lightning cable.

What you need:

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Adrian Kingsley-Hughes/ZDNet
  • Heat-shrink tubing with a diameter of 6 to 6.4mm (any bigger and it won't work) and it needs to be rated at a 3 to 1 shrink ratio (this is the stuff I use). You can pick up heat-shrink tubing stuff from eBay or from an auto parts store. Preferably get the stuff that is lined with adhesive because that does a better job.
  • Something to cut the tubing down to size (scissors will do, but here I'm using my awesome Neji-Saurus screw extracting pliers because I had them handy).
  • A heat source such as a butane torch or a heat gun.

Here's what you do:

  • Cut the tubing down to around 50mm (no need to be super-precise, this isn't rocket surgery).
  • Slip the tubing over the Lightning connector.
  • With the tubing held over the strain relief of the cable, gently apply the heat (if you've not done this before you might want to experiment on something that isn't your Lightning cable). And, because you're working with fire, be sensible. You're trying to heat the tubing, not burn it, so keep the flame well away. Take your time and work around the tubing.
  • Admire your awesome work!
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Adrian Kingsley-Hughes/ZDNet

If you're not in the mood to fix your cable, or your existing one is broken to the point its not working then I suggest you replace it with something more durable, such as these NewerTech Lightning cables. They come in a variety of lengths and colors (so you can better organize your cabling), and more importantly, a 5-year warranty.

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OWC

See also:

PC, smartphone and tablet repair tools


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