cellphone dipped in water

How To Save Your Phone From The Brink Of A Watery Death

It’s happened to even the best of us: we’ll be partaking in an activity that’s near water when suddenly, our cell phone rings. Then, when we least expect it, our phone slips out of our hand and takes a swan dive right into the water. There is no worse situation involving cell phones than having them suffer water damage, as this kind of damage can essentially and completely stop the phone from working altogether.

There are plenty of incidents involving water that can cause potentially irreversible damage to a cell phone:

Regardless of the situation that has caused this kind of thing to happen, rest assured that there are ways to prevent your phone from completely dying. In fact, by making note of and following the forthcoming steps, you will be able to not only prevent any major damage to your phone, but you will be able to have it working as normal within the span of just three days.

Remove The Phone’s Battery

The very first thing you should do in the event that your phone suffers water damage is to remove the battery from the back of the device. If the battery sustains water damage, then the longer you leave it in the phone, the more chances there will be of the battery shorting out. This can, essentially, cause the phone to get fried thanks to the battery being hit by an excess patch of moisture.

In addition to the battery, you will also want to remove items such as the following:

If, in the event, your cell phone does not contain a removable battery, please move on to the next step.

Immediately Power Down Your Phone

If your phone does not contain a removable battery and it sustains some form of water damage, power the device down immediately. The longer you leave it up and running, the more it will become damaged to the point where it will no longer be usable. It is absolutely essential that you make sure your phone is completely off before moving on to the next step in the process.

Begin Taking The Phone Apart

Next, you will want to take the phone itself apart. This process is fairly simple. Begin by unscrewing the back plate of the phone, which will allow the logic board to be exposed to the open air and give it a chance to dry out.

There are a few important notes to keep in mind for this particular step. Firstly, if you are the least bit uncomfortable with taking your phone apart by yourself or if you are unsure how to do so, ask a family member or friend to do this process for you, or simply move on to the next step. Lastly, if you own an Apple iPhone and you remove the back plate, you will essentially void the phone’s warranty. Do not open the phone if you have a protection plan of some sort attached to it; instead, get to your nearest area Apple Store as quickly as possible and allow them to remedy the situation for you.

Spray The Phone With A Can Of Compressed Air

You’ve likely seen cans of compressed air at various stores that you go to. Individuals generally purchase these for tasks such as clearing out dust between the keys on their computer keyboards. Compressed air is also a great tool to utilize in terms of drying out a water damage-laden cell phone, regardless of whether the phone has been opened or is still closed.

Compressed air will help to dry virtually every single nook and cranny on the affected phone.

* If the phone has been opened, use the compressed air to blow the following areas: around the battery, between the phone’s screen, and the logic board.
* If the phone is still closed, simply use the compressed air and blow through any and all open areas on the device.

Perhaps the most important area that you will want to concentrate on in this step is the phone’s charging port. This is because this particular area of the device is the closest to the phone’s battery compartment. This is also the area in which you will have the most amount of space to navigate the nozzle of the compressed air can in order to dry out the area.

No Compressed Air? Use A Hair Dryer Instead

If you don’t own a can of compressed air, a hair dryer will instead suffice just fine to get the job done. A quick note: you will want to ensure that you use only cool air rather than any kind of heat for this step. If heat is used, this can actually cause the water inside the phone to cause steam, which can further damage the device.

The “Rice” Solution

Now, we come to perhaps the most commonly heard of step in terms of drying out a cell phone that has become damaged by water: submerging it in rice. This has been proven to be the best way to help prevent your phone from becoming damaged any further due to the fact that rice pulls moisture out of the air. When a wet phone is involved, this means that the rice will actually pull all moisture out of the device, though this particular process takes time and requires patience on your part.

Typically, you will want to have half of a pound of rice available to achieve the desired solution much more quickly. You also will want to have some form of a container that has an airtight seal, such as a sandwich bag or a tupperware container. After submerging the phone in the rice and sealing the container that both things are in, you will want to wait no longer than 72 hours before removing it and attempting to power the device back on.

The Final Step

When you remove the phone from the rice, be sure to check for any excess water before turning the phone back on. If the phone is dry, place the battery back into it (if it was able to be removed beforehand) and power the device on. If you followed all of the steps to the letter, your phone should be working perfectly once again.


In order to prevent something like this from happening to your phone again, you will want to consider getting the device waterproofed. You can achieve this by either purchasing a waterproof phone case or, if you wish, investing in a completely new phone that has waterproofing capabilities.

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