Tip & How-To about Cell Phones

How to Save a Wet Cell Phone

Ever dropped your cell phone in the sink, or even worse... the toilet? Did you ever leave it in your pocket and run it through the washer? Did you ever swim with your cell phone in your pocket? It usually means you have to replace your phone, but sometimes if you're fast, you can save the phone! It's not being wet that kills a cell phone, it's being on and wet at the same time. This can short the circuitry out. If you're able to turn your phone off before it fries, you may well be able to resuscitate your drowned phone!


Get it out of the water as soon as possible. The plastic covers on cell phones are fairly tight, but water can enter the phone in a short period of time, perhaps only 20 seconds or less. Grab your phone quickly! If you can't get to it in time, your best bet is to remove the battery while it is still under water. Water helps dissipate heat from shorts that can damage the phone, so most damage occurs when the inside of the phone is wet and connected to a power source. This can go both ways. Being under water is more likely to short the battery to even more sensitive contacts, so be careful.

  1. Don't panic. Your phone will probably not be too damaged if you take it out of the water right away.
  2. 3Remove the battery. This is one of the most important steps. Don't take time to think about it; electricity and water do not mix. Cutting power to your phone is a crucial first step in saving it. Many circuits inside the phone will survive immersion in water provided they are not attached to a power source when wet.
  3. 4Try putting your cell phone, with battery removed, in an oven on warm and hold. The dry heat will dry that ish out in no time.
  4. 5Remove the SIM card if you have a GSM carrier, . Some or all of your valuable contacts (along with other data) could be stored on your SIM. To some people, this could be more worth saving than the phone itself. SIM cards survive water damage well, but some of the following steps are unnecessary i.e. don't heat it. Just pat it dry and leave it aside until you need to connect your phone to your cellular network. (This step does not apply to CDMA carriers such as Verizon, Alltel, US Cellular, Sprint, etc.)
  5. 6Dry your phone. You can put it in a bag of rice. Obviously you need to remove as much of the water as soon as possible, so you can save it from getting into the phone. Shake it out without dropping it, then use a towel or paper towel (ideally trying not to clog the wet paper in the gaps and grooves of the phone) to gently remove as much of the remaining water as possible. Dry the excess moisture by hand.
  6. 7Remove any covers and external connectors to open up as many gaps, slots, and crevices in the phone as possible.
  7. 8Use a vacuum cleaner if possible. Do not use a hair dryer (even on a "cold" mode) to dry out the phone, as this may force moisture further into the small components and likely melt them, deep inside the phone. If moisture is driven deeper inside, corrosion and oxidation may result when minerals from liquids are deposited on the circuitry. Using a hairdryer might be a temporary fix, but this will eventually cause component failure inside the phone. Instead, remove all residual moisture by drawing it away with a vacuum cleaner held over the affected areas for up to 20 minutes in each accessible area. This is the fastest method and can completely dry out your phone and get it working in thirty minutes (however, unless the exposure to water was extremely short, it's not recommended to attempt to turn your phone on this soon). Be careful not to hold the vacuum too close to the phone, as a vacuum can create static electricity, which is even worse.
  8. 9Use a substance with a high affinity for water to help draw out moisture. Leave the phone in a bowl or bag of uncooked rice overnight. The rice would absorb any remaining moisture. If available, it is preferable to use desiccant instead. Desiccant will absorb moisture better than rice. Turn the phone to a different position every hour until you go to sleep. This will allow any water left inside to run down and hopefully find an opening to escape.
  9. 10Let the phone sit on absorbent towels, napkin, or other paper. Remember that the goal is to evacuate all the moisture and humidity, not to trap it or add even more. Check the absorbent material every hour for 4 to 6 hours. If moisture is evident, repeat the vacuuming step and desiccant steps.
  10. 11Test your phone. After you have waited a day or so, make sure everything is clean and looks dry, and re-attach the battery to the phone. Try turning it on. If your phone still does not work, try plugging it into its charger without the battery. If this works, you need a new battery. If not, try taking your cell phone to an authorized dealer. Sometimes they can fix it. Don't try to hide the fact that it has been wet. There are internal indicators that prove moisture.
  11. 12Take the phone apart if your phone doesn't turn on at all. If you feel comfortable doing this, try taking it apart. First, make sure that you have ALL the right parts and know exactly where they go. Be sure to put everything back in its proper place once finished. As you're disassembling it, pat each individual part dry with a small towel and use the vacuum cleaner once more on the crevices. If this doesn't work, go to the professionals.







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2 Answers

I recently jumped into a pool with my cell phone in my pocket (SAMSUNG Reality). I realized it 10 minues or so after. Dried the phone. A day later, the phone will turn on when connected to charger & battery, I can send text and make calls, but will shut off within a couple minutes. Is the phone broke or does just the battery need to be replaced?


When phone gets wet NEVER try to turn it on. Take battery out right away shake water off and put both in bowl of rice for at least 24 hrs. If your not home or don't have rice right away take battery out and get some. We have a bowl of rice on the counter all summer long for those who jump in the pool with phone in their pocket. I have washed them dropped them in the toilet my son jumped in pool with his phone, put it rice for 24 hrs and we were up and running with the exception of the one in the pool, that one cost me new battery on Ebay ($4.95) but phone worked fine, didn't even lose contacts or pictures. But the key is to NOT try to turn it on after its been wet. Water and batteries don't mix.

Jun 16, 2010 | Samsung Exclaim M550 Cell Phone

1 Answer

dropped in toilet.


Hi,

you need to bring your to a nearest service center let them open it.

please don't use it or try to power up until it still not fixed to prevent any circuit problems.

thanks,

Jun 25, 2009 | LG Vu CU920 Cellular Phone

1 Answer

Nokia N70 fell in the toilet


Its better not to use it because even if it be repaired this will not be reliable.
best solution ?
please dont forget to vote if you consider my suggestion helpfull.

Dec 28, 2007 | Nokia 7260 Cellular Phone

1 Answer

l7 water damage


I dropped my phone in the toilet when it fell out of my back pocket. The best thing to do is dry it as well as possible and then leave it out to dry. I let my phone dry for approximately 2-4 weeks and now it's working again. I found this out after I went out and bought another phone. LRL from Texas.

Nov 17, 2007 | Motorola Mobility SLVR L7 Cellular Phone

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