Question about Olympus SP-500 UZ Digital Camera

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Camera has been flooded & wont work

It was soaked in fresh water for several hours & left to drain / dry out for a day or so.i tried to remove the back of the case but was only partly successful i managed to pull the cover away from the case so i could spray "electronic cleaning solvent no 1 " all round inside[i have used this before & it worked a treat. another camera] i allowed this to drain/dry for a long time.im unable to get it to go,hoping someone can help. thank you.

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This camera has BGA chips. Ones water goes inside, - that's it. Can't get it out with anything.

Posted on Apr 16, 2009

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What can I do to turn on my digital camera after it was submerged in water?


First of all you should get (or have gotten) the battery out as soon as possible. You could try shaking excess water out of it. You should then put it in rice to draw all the moisture out of the camera. This may take a couple of days, maybe exchange with more dry rice after first day. When you are relatively sure all moisture is gone try reinstalling the battery. I will guess that you will only have a 20% chance of it ever working again.

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Probably no saving it but there is something you can try. Remove the battery and put the camera in a one gallon ziplock bag full of fresh uncooked white rice. Leave the camera and the rice sealed in the bag for about a week and the rice should absorb any residual water that may still be in the camera.
It is a long shot but it has been known to work.

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We used the camera in the ocean first time 10 days ago. We did not wash it afterwards. Was working fine till today. The lens wont open. The camera is dead. It does charge. HELP!


Unfortunately you have effectively destroyed your camera. Salt water is up there with fire and crushing as the absolute great unrepairables when it comes to assessing damage. Plenty of owners can and do repeatedly get away with what you failed to do, but you only need to be unlucky once.

Your camera is designed to be waterproof down to 10m (33') for up to one hour, but as with all such devices it must be thoroughly rinsed in fresh water after each exposure to salt water and then left well ventilated to dry. The user manual also clearly states this and gives particular instructions on the way to do so with slight differences depending upon whether the camera has additionally been exposed to sand or soil. A further preventative measure to protect your camera is to have the seals replaced at least annually as recommended by all waterproof camera manufacturers.

If the camera is not rinsed then salt crystals and/or rust form (stainless steel isn't totally immune to rust, and rust can form extremely quickly, especially in salt water). Whether it's salt cystals or rust the effect is the same as they will both tend to shift the waterproof seals slightly and allow water inside. It only takes a tiny drop of saltwater to get inside where, once trapped, it will gradually deposit corrosive and conductive salt traces which effectively destroy the electronics. Once it's in there the only slight chance of a fix is to remove the battery and memory card and then flood the interior with de-ionised water, but this has to be done immediately to have any chance of working. Your camera has now been left too long and so the damage is irreversible and in any case I know of no owner (myself included) who would have dismantled an apparently working camera to flood it with water unless it was known for certain that water had got inside.

Unfortunately your only fix is to replace your camera and to learn from your expensive mistake. I know of no professional repairer who will even attempt a repair to a flooded digital camera; there are simply too many expensive parts which must be replaced and there's too much chance of subsequent ongoing corrosion if even the tiniest mineral deposits remain in the camera.

Sorry I cannot offer you a more positive outcome, but I hope that you now understand why rising is vital and that my advice saves you from repeating the error.

Please take a moment to rate my reply, or if you have further questions regarding my answer then add a comment and I shall respond as soon as I can.

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Drying a camera involves burying it in a bowl of dry rice for a week before even attempting to turn it on. However, your camera was exposed to so much water, there may be no hope for it.

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It all depends on if it was totally submerged or if it was slightly exposed. If it was totally submerged, there is not much to do at this point. It will need to be replaced. The entire unit will not work as designed, due to the severe water damage. Now; if it was slightly exposed to a minimal amount of liquid, simply, separate the internal component and batteries away from the cover housing and let them dry out for 5 full days. Once the dry out period has been completed, reassemble the unit and load a fresh set of batteries. It should work now.

NOTE_ The dry out method will not work if you have already tried to operate this unit shortly after the water damage occurred. Energizing a wet system board will cause a short,thus, damaging the entire unit.

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