What to Do if Your Smartphone Gets Wet

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shutterstock_150054098There’s only one thing worse than dropping your smartphone, and that’s dropping it into water. But if you do, don’t despair, because you may be able to repair the damage without having to replace your phone. And it’s definitely worth a try, because smartphones are expensive items and their warranties do not usually cover water damage.

Here are some things to try if your smartphone gets wet:

  • Turn it off – The first thing to do after you retrieve it from the water is to turn your smartphone off. Water and electronics don’t mix, and unless you power it down as quickly as possible it will short-circuit.
  • Remove the battery – The next thing to do is to remove the battery. Some smartphones such as iPhones won’t allow you access to the battery, but if your phone does, remove it and dry it.
  • Remove the cover – Most people have a protective cover of some kind on their smartphone and you need to remove this, as it will trap moisture against the phone.
  • Dry gently – Now you want to dry the outside of the phone gently with a soft cloth. Be sure to keep the phone horizontal and relatively still to prevent water moving around inside it.
  • Vacuum – If you have a mini vac such as those used to clean computer keyboards, you can try applying this to the ports of your smartphone to suck out any water inside.
  • Absorb the water – The best way to get the water inside your phone out is through absorption, and there are two methods of doing this. One is to seal the phone in a ziplock bag full of uncooked rice for 24 hours, and the other is to use desiccants instead of rice. These are the little bags of silica you find in packaging all the time, and they have even greater absorption powers than rice.

If after a day or two you feel the phone is as dry as you are able to make it, try turning it on. If it doesn’t work with the battery, try plugging in the charger. If it works with the charger but not the battery, then you may be able to get away with just replacing the battery.

If it’s a very expensive smartphone, it may be worth your while taking it to a phone repairer. The cost of repairing it or replacing some of its components may still be cheaper than buying a new phone.

Whether you are successful in reviving your waterlogged phone or not will depend on how long it was submerged for and how much water got inside. While trying these methods may not be successful, there are several methods that will definitely not work. These include trying to shake the water out of your phone, turning a hot blow dryer on it, or putting it in the oven, freezer or microwave. All these methods will simply eliminate any chance you might have of saving your smartphone.

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