If you’ve never dropped your phone in water, then you’re one of the lucky ones. Cell phone water damage is potentially destructive, but most of the remedies require nothing more than a few common household items. Here are a few tips and tricks to get your phone dried out and working properly again.

Taking the Phone Apart

The first thing you should do is open the phone if you can; this might be tougher for some than for others. Some smartphones, such as iPhones, are hard to open without the help of a professional, and doing so might void your warranty.

If you have a phone that can be opened, remove the battery, SIM card, memory card and any other detachable element. Do what you can to dry up the larger pools of water. Take a towel or rag and carefully blot each individual piece. Set them on paper towels, which will absorb the moisture. Next, you need to address the water inside the phone, but this can be dangerous. Many people immediately think to use a blow dryer to dry it out, but that can blow the water droplets further into the phone.

A Holistic Approach

The next step is placing your phone in a bowl of uncooked rice. This may seem bizarre, but it has been proven to be very effective because of rice’s ability to absorb large amounts of moisture. It’s important to keep the phone exposed to dry rice for as long as possible, so move your phone around in the bowl every hour or so. Every four or five hours you’ll want to flip it so it’s covered in rice and for the water in the phone to escape through different cracks. Leave the phone in the rice bowl overnight. Once you wake up, take it out and put it back on either a towel or a couple sheets of paper towels.

This should dry the phone out enough to get it working, but make sure to charge your phone before you turn it on. Before you do, make sure the charger and the charging port are dry. After that is done, turn on your phone. If you were quick enough with your drying efforts, the phone may be in working condition again. Of course, if too much water has leaked into the phone, you may need to call an authorized dealer for further help. Keep in mind that these repairs can sometimes cost more than just replacing your phone with a used model.

What techniques have you used to prevent cell phone water damage, and how successful were they?

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