How to Fix a Wet iPod or iPhone

By Jack Gerard

Apple's iPod and iPhone, like most modern electronic devices, contain extremely complex and delicate parts that are highly susceptible to water damage. If your device gets wet, water can flow between the conductive components on the circuit boards inside and cause short circuits that permanently damage it. Quick action and thorough drying are necessary to fix a wet iPhone or iPod.

Things You'll Need

  • Desiccant material, such as silica gel or dry rice
  • Zip-top bag

Step 1

Turn your iPod or iPhone off as quickly as possible after it becomes wet. The longer your device is on after it gets wet, the more likely it is to suffer severe or irreparable damage. Do not turn it on to see if it works; running power through the device can cause more damage.

Step 2

Dry the iPhone or iPod as well as you can manually. Wipe it off with a towel or other cloth and shake it if necessary to remove water that may have penetrated the docking port or other openings.

Step 3

Place the iPod or iPhone in a container with some form of desiccant in it. Silica gel packets such as those packaged with shoes and other leather goods work well, although dry rice can be used if no other desiccant material is available. Use a zip closure plastic bag or other sealed container to ensure that the desiccant draws water from within the phone instead of the open air.

Step 4

Leave the iPhone or iPod in the desiccant container for 24 to 48 hours or longer depending on the amount of water it came in contact with. If the device was completely submerged, allow it to remain with the desiccant for up to seven days. Change the desiccant material every 24 hours.

Step 5

Remove the iPod or iPhone from the desiccant container and attempt to turn it on. If no permanent damage was caused by the water, then the phone should power up and start normally.

Tips & Warnings

  • Do not compressed air to remove any dust or other debris from the device's ports after drying the phone out; you can drive particles into the device. Instead, gently use a fine-tipped paintbrush, if necessary.
  • If you have a hearing aid dryer, you may be able to use it to dry out your device much faster than a desiccant could. Do not attempt to use a hair dryer or other large heat source because this can cause further damage to the iPhone.
  • The iPhone contains several sensors that turn from white to red in the presence of water. If taking your iPhone in for repair, the Geniuses at the Apple Store will check these sensors to see if the iPhone has been damaged by water. Water damage voids the iPhone's warranty.