The most common cause of smartphone death is water damage. You might think you will never be that clumsy. However, there are many ways you could get your phone wet: You might forget your phone in the washing machine, drop it during a stroll on the beach, drop it in the toilet or sink, your friend might think splashing you and your smartphone is fun. However, a wet or sunk phone doesn’t necessarily mean a dead phone. There are measures you can take to bring your phone back to life. Here are the steps to take after you’ve got your phone wet and hopefully save your wet phone on time
Note: These instructions are also applicable for other electronics like camera, tablets, GPS and such.
- Get it out of harm’s way: The longer you let your mobile phone submerge, the lesser the chances of bringing it back alive. Get it out of the water asap.
- Remove the battery, sim and memory card: The next step is to take out your removables. If you have an android phone, it probably has a removable battery. Remove the battery, sim card and memory card as fast as you can.In case of smartphones like HTC One, iphone or Nexus 4 where there is no way to remove battery, long press power button to turn the phone on
- Clean wet surfaces with dry towel or paper: Now use a clean dry towel to clean every reachable. Just don’t let the liquid get further in. Many people use hair dryer which is not the right way. Hair dryer will only drive the water further in the circuits which mean longer time for drying. However, you can use a vacuum cleaner to suck the liquids out.
- Let it dry for 3-4 days with uncooked rice: The duration of the drying phase depends on how long you left your phone wet. However, to let it completely dry out its better to wait 3 to 4 days. For precautions and better drying, put your phone in an air tight container filled with rice. After you are sure that your device is completely dry, turn it on. Many people are impatient and turn their phone on after a single day and poof the water residue short circuits the cell phone.
Note: If you have dropped your phone in salt water (eg. Ocean), you will need to first clean it with fresh or tap water to drive the saltwater out. If you don’t do that, the salt will dry in the circuits and corrosion will take place faster. Take your phone as well as its battery and put it in a small container or box filled with tap water. Now shake the box to rinse the phone. It is better to use distilled water if you have it at home.
Many cell phone repairmen actually use these same methods to repair your water damaged phone and then charge you a lot of money. But most of the time people do not take immediate action or take their phones to the repair shops when it’s too late.