E-How, Dr. Cell Phone technicians
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? It usually means you have to replace your phone, but sometimes if you're fast, you can save the 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 over time. But this time may be quite short - 20 seconds or less. So grab your phone quickly!
- Remove 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.
- Remove your SIM card. 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. Do not heat it. Just pat it dry and leave it aside until you need to connect your phone to your cellular network. Note that many phones by specific providers, such as Verizon, do not use SIM cards.
- Call Dr. Cell Phone Immediately! The sooner a technician can work on your phone, the less likely your phone will suffer corrosion and permanent damage.
- Allow the phone to dry. Since you do not want to ruin your phone or lose all of the numbers in your phone book, you need to allow the phone to dry. Also, ringtones and graphics stay with the phone - not the SIM. Don't try putting the battery back on to see if it works as this would risk damaging the phone with a short circuit.
- Test your phone. After you have waited 3 days, make sure everything is clean and dry. If you are willing to take the risk, re-attach the battery to the phone and see if it works. If your phone does not work repeat step 4.
- Don't put the battery in for at least three days, or longer if your digital screen is foggy.
- An alternate drying technique is to seal the phone (battery, SIM card, SD card all removed) in a plastic bag with a few of the silica packs that come packed with shoes, coats, electronics. Leave the phone in the bag for a day or 2, and the silica packs may help absorb the moisture.
- Don't heat the battery or it could leak acid.
- Do not apply heat to your phone. You don't want to melt or burn your phone.
- Warranties don't cover water damage.
- Even if all these steps are followed, minerals dissolved in the water can precipitate on solder and component pins, causing corrosion or shorting. Components pins are packed so closely together in a modern cell phone that even a small encrustation can create a short, rendering the phone inoperable.
- Dr. Cell Phone only provides this information as general guide. We cannot be responsible for damage to the phone occuring outside of our workshop