Saving a Drowning Cellphone

Here’s what to do if you ever find yourself playing lifeguard to a drowning cellphone:

  1. If the cellphone fell in the toilet, don’t flush… but I guess you knew that. You have to get the phone out as quickly as possible, if that means sticking your hand in the toilet, you shouldn’t take too much time agonizing over the decision unless you are OK with buying a new phone (These steps apply even if water has been spilled on the phone).
  2. After you have the phone out of the water, you need to turn it off. Water stands less of a chance of damaging electronics when there is no electricity flowing through the device. Don’t use the power button! Remove the battery to power down the phone. 
  3. After the battery is out, remove any other removable parts like SIM cards or other storage devices.
  4. Dry off the phone and its components as best you can with a dry rag or towel.
  5. DON’T EVER USE A HAIRDRYER OR ANYTHING ELSE THAT BLOWS AIR. It doesn’t matter if you use hot or cold settings, you don’t want the air to push the moisture deeper into the phone.
  6. If you have a vacuum that can handle moisture use that to suck the moisture out of the phone. If you don’t have a wet vac, skip ahead to step 7.
  7. Leave the phone and it’s components to dry on something that will absorb moisture well (a bed of uncooked rice works very well). Let it sit for at least a day.
  8. After a day or so (longer is better if the phone was completely submerged) reassemble it.
  9. Say a little prayer to the cellphone Gods, and turn the phone back on.
  10. If it doesn’t work, try letting it dry some more… but you should probably look into whether you have insurance on your phone, or start pricing out a new one online.

If you spilled something other than water on it, all bets are off.

Hopefully you never have to rescue a phone, but incase you do, you are now a fully certified phone lifeguard.

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