Accidents happen. Even if you're the most conscientious person in the world your device may take a spill from time to time and on the odd occasion it may even take a dive. If your precious iPhone ever takes a perilous plunge and ends up wet there are a few things you can do to try and save its life, and I've put together a guide to try and help!
NOTE - Before I begin do please remember that this guide, regrettably, isn't foolproof, nor is it 100% effective. It's the sum-total of our experience, which I hope will help you salvage your device!
- If the device got wet it should appear dead, if it doesn't switch it off and keep it switched off!
- Keep the device in one position. Avoid turning it upside down or shaking it to try and get the water out
- Carefully remove any cases, guards or protectors you may have
- Carefully remove surface water with a soft towel remembering to keep the device in one position
Once you've dried the outside of the device as best you can you're going to need to get your device into something that can absorb moisture (a desiccant). There are several options to choose from, here are our top 3 in order of suitability:
- Silica Gel - Silica gel is designed to attract and hold water. It is extremely effective when trying to dry out damaged electronics. You'll find the little packets in clothes, newly purchased electronic goods.
- Rice - Rice is your friend in a situation like this. It's cheap, most people have it lying around and it's super absorbent. It's worth noting that I am not talking about the microwaveable kind, I am talking about dry, uncooked rice!
Once you've decided on which product to use, gently lay your device down on a bed of it (strive to keep the device in the same position as you've been holding it) and gently cover the device over with your chosen product.
Leave it. Really, We can't stress this enough, hands off, leave it alone You'll want to keep picking it up to try it but you've got to resist the temptation. Let your desiccant do its work and leave well alone for at least 48-hours.
Things to consider while your digital best friend is drying out:
- The device has a sticker inside which will notify a service engineer if it has been exposed to water. Don't just bowl into an Apple Store and expect a free replacement. It won't happen and you may end up looking dishonest.
- Don't be tempted into using heat to dry your device out. Your iPhone contains advanced electronics and a battery, neither of these things play well with heat. Avoid the temptation to put your device on a heater or use a hairdryer. In extreme circumstances the battery could go bang, or the solder inside your device could melt, rendering it more useless that it was when you started.
Try turning your device on. If it works, excellent! If it doesn't don't give up. Put it in a fresh bag of rice or silica and just leave it for as long as you can, one week, two weeks; the longer the better. A month drying out may even be needed for it to spring into life.
If you've waited as long as you can and it's still not working then it's time to talk to Apple. They're largely helpful folk and if you're honest they may offer you the chance to pick up a refurbished replacement at a discounted price.
If that's not possible then, well, it's time to break out your credit card and replace your device. One small mercy is that your data should be secure (thanks to iCloud/Dropbox).
Best of luck!