Angie's List: When to repair or replace your cell phone

LEWISTON, ID - For many people, their cell phone is within reach at all times - morning, noon and night.

But with all that usage, a phone is more likely to suffer some damage. In today's Angie's List report, when it pays to consider repairing your cell phone instead of replacing it.

"Within the same week it happened," said consumer Elias Quintana. "One day I dropped it getting out of the car and the next day I dropped it in my apartment and then the day after that I dropped it outside somewhere."

"Cell phones today have become a life line for most of us," said Angie's List Owner Angie Hicks. "We carry them with us wherever we go which means they are likely to get dropped, dropped in the water, broken, and many times people think they automatically need replaced, but they can be repaired. It's something you should check out to see whether it's cost-efficient. Common repairs that you might have done on your cell phone is if the screen cracks on it, it could potentially be replaced, if you are having trouble with the battery the battery can be replaced. Additionally if it's dropped in water momentarily, you might even be able to dry the phone out."

"Worse things are leaving them on the table when you've got condensation," said cellphone repair Chris Barclay. "You know, you're having dinner and you put your phone down on the table where your glass was just sitting there and there's a ring. That could absorb moisture right there."

"We're seeing more and more companies that will do cell phone repair," said Hicks. "But the key here is finding someone who specializes in the make and model of your type of phone so that they have the right expertise."

"Investing $100 or $50 in a high quality case is going to be the best thing for you," said Barclay. "A lot of people don't want the bulk of it, or they don't like the color of it, and that's not the purpose of the case. The case is to protect your investment so you don't have to come see me."

If you have phone insurance, be sure to read and understand exactly what it covers. If you have a phone case, check the company's warranty. Some offer a lifetime warranty on their cases so if your device breaks while in their product, they will replace the device for you.