What to do if your cellphone gets wet


Oh no! You’ve dropped your phone into the pool, left it in your pants and thrown it into the washing machine, or knocked over a tall glass of water. There goes your phone, your contacts, all the photos you’ve taken and never got around to downloading. But wait, it’s not too late. Act fast, and you can save your phone and its contents.

Take off the battery and sim card

Don’t even stop to think, just quickly dismantle these items, and dry them. Now here’s the deal: don’t turn the phone back on unless you’re completely sure that you’ve removed all the moisture. Yes, you’re probably panicking and dying to know if your phone still works. But if you put the sim and battery back before they (and the phone’s wiring) are dry, the whole thing could short circuit.

Don’t use a hairdryer

You can hasten the drying process with an air compressor, put it on the lowest setting. But never, ever, ever use a hairdryer. It’s way too hot, and will only damage the phone even further. (Remember that little item in the product manual: ‘Do not expose to high heat…’) If you don’t have an air compressor, you can use (surprise, surprise) white rice. Just submerge your phone in a bowl of uncooked rice grains, which will absorb the excess moisture. This also works with silicon gels (those little beads that come with vitamins, etc) but if you’re like most people, you probably don’t have a bowlful of those sitting anywhere in your house. Rice is infinitely easier.

Your last resort: freeze it

Remove the battery. Then, wrap the phone in three to five layers of paper towels. Then, put it in the freezer and leave for around 20 minutes. Take it out. Then, put back the battery, cross your fingers, and turn it on.

Back-up plans

Hopefully, your phone still works, and your contact list and photos are intact. But…let’s say they’re not. You won’t be panicking that much if you had backed up your data. So don’t wait till a phone emergency to take these precautions: synch your phone contact list with your computer so you always have a second copy, upload photos regularly, and have a hard copy of your very important, ‘I will pass out and die if I lose this’ information. And, of course, try not to get your phone wet. Keep a small basket by the door where you can habitually empty your pockets when you come home (cell phone, wallet, car keys, etc.)

photo from digitaltrends.com

Related Questions
    • MomDine

      I once accidentally dropped my cell phone in the toilet (it fell out of my pocket). Wish I had known these tips then! I had to buy a new phone.

    • Gary

      Freezing it? Wow, I never thought of that!

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