What to Do If Your Cell Phone Falls in Water?

By Contributing Writer

Dropping a cell phone in water is an all-too-common mishap, as cell phones have become smaller and more feature-enhanced than ever before. However, a soaking does not have to mean the end of your cell phone. Quick action to thoroughly dry the phone can save it and save you the cost of replacing it--as many cell phone warranties do not cover accidental water damage.

Disconnect Power Immediately

The first and most critical step is to remove your wet cell phone's battery and SIM card as soon as possible. Do not attempt to power up the phone to see if it works, as this can damage the circuits. Set the battery aside and save the SIM card in order to retain critical information in case you need to get a new phone after all.

Dry Thoroughly and Quickly

The cell phone should be dried as quickly and thoroughly as possible to avoid water damage. Compressed air or a wet/dry vacuum are ideal for removing water. Avoid any type of heat, such as a blow dryer, heat lamp or direct sunlight, which can warp or melt delicate electronic components and connectors. After removing as much water as possible, submerge the phone in a desiccant, such as dry rice, to remove any remaining traces of water. Silica gel packets are another desiccant option. Leave overnight.

Test the Phone

After the phone has dried thoroughly, replace the battery and turn on the phone. If the phone still doesn't work, it could be that the battery was damaged. You might want to try a replacement battery before replacing the entire phone. You could also have the phone looked at by a professional, depending on what is most cost-effective for you.

Warnings

Excessive heat may damage a cell phone; never use hair dryers, heat lamps, microwave or conventional ovens or direct sunlight to dry a wet cell phone.If a cell phone has been submerged in salt water, rinse with fresh water after removing the battery and before the drying process to remove as much salt as possible.

Keeping Your Phone Dry

Following are some of the most common water hazards for cell phones and ways to avoid them.- Toilet: If you are in the bathroom be sure your phone is secure, particularly if you tend to carry it in your pants pocket.- Washing machine: Check all pockets thoroughly before doing laundry.- Bathtub: It is best not to use your cell phone while in the bathtub.- Kitchen sink: Keep cell phone free and clear of kitchen sink while doing dishes.- Rain: Make sure cell phone is secure in a pocket or purse before going out into the rain. Do not use cell phone during a heavy rain unless you are under shelter.