My Troubled History With This Galaxy S4 Tablet


Jul 17, 2016
I got a tablet as a thoughtful gift from my boyfriend in September 2014. It's a Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 SM-T530N 16GB, Wi-Fi, 10.1in - White Bulk Packaging.

It was amazing to have a nice tablet without any problems. Too bad it seemed short lived, because by October 2014, it was suddenly acting as if it was overheating (displaying the "stopped charging, top high temperature") and no matter what I tried to do to remedy that error, it always persisted (including when it was turned off!) Then in November 2014, the errors turned to "stopped charging, temperature too low. Whatever we did seemed to be of little help. In December, the tablet started to drain a little quick, regardless of what we were doing with it. These errors kept persisting throughout the next few months, and then the charging stopped completely, and after extensive troubleshooting and getting no results, we sent off the tablet to a local well-reputed fixers who looked at it and were able to get the charger port fixed again.

But that was the only thing that seemed to be able to become resolved, because the tablet worked completely fine after about another month after the fix until the battery started draining again. But this time from April 2015 to now, the battery thing and the tablet's recurrent problems (charging paused, temperature too high/low) have gotten progressively worse. The battery drains to zero in less than a minute, shutting down even though when I unplug it from the charger before that happened, the reported charge was "fully charged, 100%). I have done many, many, many attempts to figure out what was going on via forums, videos, research, etc but nothing had worked. I also have recalibrated the battery multiple times too, with the same result, along with factory resets yielding the same problem of the battery dying in under a minute or thirty seconds. It has gotten so bad that by last night, the battery would not even stay on without the charger plugged in for one second (I can confirm it was one second).

Now keep in mind the warranty for this tablet has been voided and/or expired by this point.

Adding a couple of newer problems to the recurring ones; there is now random shutdowns with the black screen flashing an empty battery with a lightning bolt inside it- implying it had no juice left- despite it being plugged in and charging at the time, and the tablet restarting itself randomly from time to time, no matter what it was doing.

I had gotten so fed up with all the problems that I decided to use my investigative skills, along with my somewhat knowledgable tech-fixit skills to see if I could open up the blasted thing today and figure out what was going on once and for all. While I am pretty good at fixing computers and cell phones (I'm the techie for my friends and family to come to), I really regret my decision to do so.

I pry open the back to look at the insides and I'm dismayed by the unfamiliar layout, especially when I see the damnedly screws for the battery pack, plus the three ribbon cables on top of the battery and hard drive instead of it being nestled beneath everything else like what I had encountered when fixing other devices for my friends.

It was ridiculous how long and how difficult it was for me to get the screws off (they ended up being stripped, not because I had the wrong type of screwdrivers, but because the screws would not move with the proper amount of force or the proper angle. Three of them eventually came out with a little extra help from tweezers, but the long one on the bottom right would never budge, and of course, became so severely stripped that I had to kind of give up on getting it out since it was stuck in there and I uzted the battery mostly out where I could detach it from the seat. I had carefully peeled the tape off the three ribbon cables and detached them before physically examining the battery for any malformations/problems. I did not detect anything, just like when the people I had taken the tablet to said when they inspected the tablet two years before. I start to put anything back everything, and I firmly believe this is where I screwed up royally. I was able to screw the battery back into place and I started putting the ribbon cables back into their slots. I'm used to other devices where it's wires and cables, not ZIFs and not "free" ribbon cables. I partially peeled off a small part of the protective sealing on top of the lock of the cable on the left (I believe that was the superficial damage since I was able to seat it and lock it), the middle cable was reattached and locked, but I majorly f-ed up on reattaching the LCD cable. I accidentally crimped the top part of it several times while trying to slide it back into its seat, and the lock broke when I couldn't get it to go down on top of the cable correctly.
Now this is what is happening with the tablet, and I'm still trying to figure out what I can do about it before it's just a better idea to get a new tablet (please give recommendations for tablets if you'd like). The screen is flickering constantly and seems to favor red and yellow when it's off and displaying the charging progress. The battery and charging problems have not changed, but the display is constantly flickering and the text garbles. I have tried reseating the Los cable multiple times with the same results, and I am now attempting a factory reset to observe what is happening when I leave it on without troubleshooting it and probably making it worse in the process.

Here are some pictures of what I'm experiencing as the result of my idiotic attempt to investigate and fix what was broke.

Please do let me know of suggestions of what to do if there's any way to fix this (I'm not expecting miracles as this is my bungle and therefore I am more than willing to just completely scrap this thing, but I need suggestions on what I should get for a family/personal/gamer family tablet with good specs and good for curious toddlers' interactions with their parents)

Sorry if this is somehow in the wrong section, I'm on my iPhone and my replacement charger for my computer won't arrive until tomorrow so I can't really see everything I'm posting to.
With all the effort you have put into it, I hate to say it, but it sounds like the cost and effort is not worth the never ending headache. Were it me, at this point, I would get a new device.

Just my two cents.