How to Deal With a Wet iPhone

Published on March 20, 2014

Oh no!  You've dropped your iPhone in a puddle.  Is it doomed?

Not necessarily.  Here's what you can try to fix your iPhone from its soggy demise.


Turning on a wet iPhone can mean instant death, as it will cause more damage to the wet electronics inside.  If your wet iPhone is already on, turn it off as quickly as possible.

2. Shake out as much water as possible

If you see water inside your iPhones headphone jack or dock connector, for example, shake that water out of there to the best of your ability.

3. Dry off the surface of your iPhone

Take a towel and absorb as much of the water from the exterior of the iPhone, before you turn to trying to absorb the internal water your iPhone may be carrying.  This will help expedite the process.

4. Put it in rice

You may have heard of this home remedy before, and believe it or not, rice is one of the best remedies for wet electronics.  Get a big ziplock bag and fill it with uncooked rice, and place your iPhone in there for a few days.  The rice draws out moisture that you wouldn't be able to get out any other way.

What kind of rice? Try to avoid enriched rice, as it tends to leave dust on your phone.
Have a bunch of leftover silica packets? These are also great for absorbing water. (You do need a bunch of them in order to get the job done, however.)

5. Leave it in a warm place

After you've completed the rice step, don't turn on your phone just yet.  Leave it in a warm place for yet a couple more days to make sure it is dried out in its entirety.  Note that we say WARM and not HOT because excessive heat will not be good for your phone either, so approach this step with some caution.

6. Try a hair dryer? (use caution!)

Some people have had success using a hair dryer to fix a wet iPhone, but approach this step with EXTREME caution.  If you use a hair dryer, do so on low-heat setting at maximum, and take frequent breaks to allow the device to cool down.  This is best done a day after the iPhone has gotten wet.

7. Take it apart

If you're handy with electronics - and we mean REALLY handy - you can try taking your phone apart to dry off individual pieces with either the rice approach or the hair dryer approach.  Note that this can void most warranties.

8. Try a repair company

If these tactics aren't working, go ahead and contact a company that specializes in repairing wet iPhones.

9. Try Apple

While we know that moisture damage isn't covered by Apple warranties, since May 2009, Apple has been willing to trade iPhones that have been submerged for refurbished models for around $199.  You have to specifically request this offer and be able to demonstrate proof that the phone has in fact been submerged. 

A wet iPhone is not necessarily the end of the iPhone when you follow these steps.  If you're looking to protect your iPhone from future dips in the water, consider investing in one of LifeProof's cases which are completely waterproof, shockproof, and drop proof.

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