Cell Phones and Water Damage: What To Do?

Next time you’re watching Dave Letterman do his “Will It Float?” bit, if they drop an iPhone in the bucket, know the answer — it will sink.

All jokes aside, we fix a lot of wet cell phones, iPhones included, here at Bob Knows Phones™. But we are also happy to tell you what to do to avoid water damage if your phone gets wet.

Wet Cell PhoneStep 1. Remember the “5-second rule”? That piece of cheese you dropped on the floor is clean if you pick it up fast enough! Well, not really, but there is some truth to that – and it applies to water damage in phones, too. If it fell in the water, yank it back out as fast as you can.

Step 2. Don’t push any buttons so you don’t cause a short circuit. Quickly take off the phone cover if you have one on – you need to get to the battery cover. Pop the battery cover off. The water damage may not have even occurred yet.

Step 3. Don’t push any buttons. Pull out the battery. Most water damage happens through short circuits, so take out that power source.

Step 4. Pull out the SIM card and the media SD card. Your phone may not have them, but if it does, both cards are about the size of your thumb nail, and they usually sit inside the phone near the battery.

Step 5. Look over your smart phone carefully from the sides and pull out any plugs that may be covering the phone’s charger port and other “holes.” You want to unplug every “hole” so the water may escape.

Step 6. At this point, you may be tempted to shake out the water, but don’t! You may just drive the water deeper. Instead, take a piece of cloth, a napkin – even your shirt sleeve – and wipe off any visible water droplets.

Side note: Don’t blow into your phone. Don’t use a hair dryer. Blowing air into the phone may drive the water deeper and help the water do its damage. Have a vacuum cleaner handy? Suck out the water instead!

Step 7. Let it be. Put the phone down in a dry place, like your office desk, or near an AC vent in your home or car: the dry air will help stop water damage. At home, put some dry rice into a bowl and put the phone on top of it: The rice will help draw out the moisture. Better yet, see if you have some desiccant – those little silica packets they put in shoe boxes that say “Don’t Eat” on them. Take as many of those as you have and put them with your hopefully water UN-damaged phone into a plastic bag, and seal it overnight. Don’t have the silica packs? Seal it in a plastic bag with dry rice overnight.

In the morning, put the SIM card, media card and battery back in…and try turning the phone on. If the water damage has occurred, you’ll know it: the phone won’t come on, or will act funny.

If that’s the case, give us a call at 678-298-3191 or submit the form below — we fix water-damaged phones every day, and chances are, we’ll get rid of your water damage, too. We are here to help you 7 days a week.


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