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How to fix a water damaged phone in 10 easy steps

So you've dropped your smartphone into the toilet, sink or pool. Don't panic! If you act fast you can prevent your smartphone from becoming water damaged. In today's article, we'll show you how you can save (or try at least) a water that has just dropped in water.

First of all, remove the phone from the water as quickly as possible. The longer it stays there, the more water or liquid will seep through the cracks and openings of your phone. Once it's out of the water, there are certain things you need to do right away, and certain things you should absolutely avoid doing in order to prevent water damage.

What not to do

  • Do not turn it on
  • Do not press any buttons or keys
  • Do not shake, tap or bang the phone
  • Do not blow on it. This could send water into other internal parts of the phone that it hadn't already reached, causing more damage in the process
  • Do not heat it up (that includes using a blow dryer or microwaving it) 
AndroidPIT Wet samsung galaxy S5 5196
Your phone can still be saved! Try the following steps before giving up. / © ANDROIDPIT

10 steps to saving your water damaged phone

1. Turn it off if, it isn’t already and hold it upright.

2. Remove any protective casing and, if your phone has them, remove your SIM and microSD cards from their slots.

3. Open up the back and remove the battery, SIM card(s) and microSD card if you are able to (note that this won't be possible with all phone models).

AndroidPIT Wet samsung galaxy S5 5220
If you can, remove the battery. / © ANDROIDPIT

4. Use a cloth, sleeve or paper towel to dab your phone dry. Avoid spreading the liquid around, because that could push it into more of the phone's openings. Just soak up as much as possible.

AndroidPIT Wet samsung galaxy S5 5215
Tab the phone dry with a cloth. / © ANDROIDPIT

5. If the water damage is more extensive, you can use a vacuum to carefully suck out water stuck from the cracks that are harder to get at. Make sure any small parts, such as the microSD card, SIM card, or battery, are out of the way before attempting this.

6. Bury the phone in a ziplock bag full of uncooked rice. Rice is great for absorbing liquid and this is actually a common method for drying smartphones and tablets. You can also buy dedicated phone drying pouches, which are worth having at home if you're the clumsy type. If you don't have one at home, don't bother going out to buy one. Indeed, time is of essence, so get your phone into rice as soon as possible.

7. Let your phone dry for a day or two. Do not be tempted to switch it on see if it still works. Put your SIM card in an old phone, or ask a friend or family if they have a spare that you can borrow. 

AndroidPIT Wet samsung galaxy S5 5208
Let your phone dry for a day or two. / © ANDROIDPIT

8. After a couple of days, you can remove the phone from the rice back, insert the battery into the phone and switch the phone on. 

9. If your phone doesn't turn on, try charging it. If it doesn't charge, the battery may be damaged. You could try a replacement battery, or consider taking your smartphone to a repair shop to be checked by a professional.

10. If your phone has turned on and it is running as it should, you should still keep a close eye on it for the next few days, to see if you notice anything out of the ordinary. Play some music to check the speakers and ensure the touch screen still responds as it should.

AndroidPIT Wet samsung galaxy S5 5222
Hopefully, it will start up as normal again. / © ANDROIDPIT

In the future, avoid taking the phone with you when you go to the pool, use the bathroom or do the dishes.

Water resistant cases

Hopefully these steps have helped you rescue your phone from death by drowning. If you want to protect your phone from water in future, you can also purchase a waterproof phone case. There are some good options available from brands such as Otterbox, Griffin Survivor and Catalyst.

Otterbox Dry Box

Water resistant phones

A number of phones are advertised as "water-resistant". Be aware that when phone manufacturers say this, it only applies under a special set of circumstances. A phone's resistance to water often depends on the clarity of the water, the depth of submersion, and the length of time for which it is submerged. We wouldn't advise submerging any smartphone in water unless it is absolutely necessary.

androidpit s7edge
Some phones like the Galaxy S7 Edge are water and dust resistant. / © AndroidPIT

Some water resistant smartphones worth mentioning

Do you have any other tips on how to save a smartphone that that could have possible water damage? Did our advice help you? Let us know in the comments.



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  • Rice and paper towels are great, but you really have to try using distilled water.

  • i just got used LG phone, and it has water in the screen. what should i do? it has been in rice for 3 days and still does not charge.

  • Jen 2 months ago Link to comment

    I own the moto g5
    ok so it was pretty stupid but I dropped my phone in the toilet and it was completely submerged in water I took it out and dried it off and tried turning it on a few times before seeing this post, but I didn't put it in rice straight away, I put it in a while after, it's been in rice for a couple of hours now, is there a chance it will still work if it wasn't put in straight away?

  • this past Tuesday morning I dropped my Samsung g6 into toilet. screened turned black. was going crazy and put it into a Rubbermaid container covered in rice, top to bottom. later in the day I put it in a larger container with much more rice. 4 o'clock this afternoon tried turning on, nothing. tried charging, nothing. took 3 - 4 tries and finally started charging, very slowly. it's now charging, I have gotten texts, sent texts, etc. so far, so good. going to try other things later and see what goes. have a lot of hope right now!!!!

  • Malstron 3 months ago Link to comment

    I used the rice method two times in one year ( ゚д゚ )

  • Help my. phone fell in water but it worked so I didn't do anything and now it cant turn on woud the rice still work

  • Vitanie 5 months ago Link to comment

    "do not be tempted to turn it on and see if its working"
    Me: wtf do you mean, im the type of person to whats app every fucking second

  • JulieB 6 months ago Link to comment

    What they don't tell you is that you'll keep getting grains of rice stuck in your charger port.

  • My phone fell on water it turns on but the touch screen doesn't work is there anyway to fix it

  • So about 10 mins ago, I spilled some milk on my phone on accident. (Samsung galaxy j7) The damage isn't so bad however, it's home, back, and window buttons randomly activate and are unresponsive sometimes. I took it all apart, battery and micro sd. I couldn't get the sim card out so i left it considering the only areas hit with milk where the bottom holes for the charger, headphones, and a random little hole. its now sitting in rice. Anything else i should do?

    • Dude I have the same phone and idk what to do I dropped in it the bath tub after I tried playing music and it's in rice right now I took the battery out but I'm not sure if it'll help what did u do also please tell me if this works cuz I rlly need to know anyway please reply if this works for u

    • Hi I spilled milk over my Samsung j5 17 in milk two days ago I'm looking to no if it worked with it phone putting it in rice. Thanks.

  • My cellphone got wet from a soda spill, for days it would not recharge, because of overheating. I disassembled the phone, with the circuit board exposed, dabbed it with a wet cloth to clean it, blew into the holes of the steel protective cases housing the cpu,etc. then placed the phone in the freezer. After 5 hours, took it out of freezer, saw it was moist with wet residue from the freeze process, let it dethaw, and recharged phone. Phone works great now.

  • Tips to help with water damaged phone:

    - follow common sense and common knowledge steps

    that's how helpful this article was

  • I have dropped my Corby 2 in detergent water. Its been 30 min. How should I recover it??

  • Hi Shivan sorry I forgot to say thank you because I did save my photos!! I was very happy until I noticed i cant send or receive texts, I put it back in the rice and see what happens please if you have any more tips of what else i can do :(

  • Hi I left my phone in rice for two and half days, apps and wifi work well but I cant recieve or sent text messages, any ideas please,

  • Tj Martin 8 months ago Link to comment

    Mine was in my pocket in a hot tub for 30 minutes my S5. A few days later the screen stopped working. I turned on my oven to just a hair under 200 degrees and put my phone with the battery out and the back cover off on a piece of wood glass side up. I left it in for five minutes pulled it out it was hot but I could still grab it with my bare hands. Then I placed it in my freezer on a bag of ice for five minutes. After this one or two of my numbers to unlock the phone worked but the rest of the screen was still unresponsive. I repeated this procedure two more times for a total of three times. The last time I left my phone in the oven for almost 10 to 12 minutes. After it was cool from the ice I put the battery back in and the touch screen was fully responsive again in all ways. My theory is that heating it this way evaporated or removed all of the water inside of the phone and any on or in the display as well. It is now two days later and my phone still works great in every way just as before this happened. I never did try the rice technique or any other technique prior to this good luck. Perhaps heating it two 160 degrees or so or longer let's say for 15 to 20 minutes might be a safer approach. I wish I had several water logged phones to test this hypothesis.

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