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Saving a Wet Cell phone

Water damage caused by dropping your phone into a pool, bathtub, sink or toilet (hope you flushed first) can have devestating effects. If you are like me, you store most of your phone numbers on your cell phone. If you use these numbers daily, water damage to your cell can be a huge problem. Here is a cool article from which gives advice on how to save your cell phone if the unthinkable occurs.

*Note: SIM cards survive water damage much better than your phone’s internal memory in the case of submersion in water. Consider that when choosing where to store your contact information.

Also, If your phone was lost in a swimming pool or hot tub, rinse your phone in clean water as chlorine is very corrosive.


  1. 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!
  2. 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.
  3. 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, but some of the following steps are unnecessary i.e. don’t 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.
  4. Dry your phone. Obviously you need to remove as much of the water as soon as possible, so you can to prevent it from getting into the phone. Use a towel or paper towel to remove as much of the water as possible.
  5. 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, ring tones 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. Leaving your phone in a bowl of dry rice will help to expedite moisture evaporation.
  6. Heat your phone. Apply enough heat to your phone to cause the water to evaporate without water-logging your digital screen. One of the best things you can do to save a cell phone is to set it on the back of your computer monitor or TV screen over the heat vents. This is usually the perfect amount of heat to fix your phone. The convection action of the heat vents will help carry away the moisture in your phone. Leave the phone on the heat for at least 2-3 days.
  7. Test your phone. After you have waited 3 days, make sure everything is clean and dry looking and re-attach the battery to the phone and see if it works. If your phone does not work repeat step 4. If it still won’t work, try taking your cell phone to an authorized dealer. Sometimes they can fix it.


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3 Responses to “Saving a Wet Cell phone”

  1. Been there, done that. What about a digital camera? These things happen with a two year old in the house! :lol:

  2. S says:

    Would add as item 3.5 If phone was lost in a pool, give phone a quick bath in clean water. We have had countless phones delivered by poolattendants that had their phone dive to the pool “a few days/weeks ago”. It may look fine initially, but chlorine is very corrosive to the internals of a phone or any other electronic device…

  3. I dropped my cell phone in the toilet and grabbed it fast and then turned it off and took the battery out.I then used a hair dryer on it and that was not wise but I didn’t know that your actually suspose to use a vaccum on it to suck all the water out! A hair dryer will force the water back in. My phone worked and I called my user and had insurance put on it right away because I hadn’t had it very long. And I ask what did the insurance cover and it covered water damage. Yeah so if it stops working they will have to give me a new one. Smart Choice to carry insurance. The best thing to do is just have a police report written up and say it was stolen and they will replace it alot quicker. They won’t if you don’t have a police report on it. I found that out years ago on one. How stupid is that.