How to save a wet phone: Tips to give users

If your company supplies users with smartphones, you’ll want to make sure they know how to care for those devices. One important bit of information they should know: how to properly dry out a wet phone. 

Given the number of users with company-issued or personally owned smartphones, it’s almost inevitable that at least one of them will drop the device in a puddle, the sink, a toilet or other body of water at some point.

Here are some instructions you can pass on to users in case they ever need to save a wet phone:

  1. If the phone is on, turn it off immediately. If it’s off, do not turn it on to see if it still works.
  2. Take out all removable parts in the wet phone — including the battery, SIM card and flash memory. The most important thing is to keep power from running through the phone’s circuits, so remove the battery first.
  3. Also remove any covers or removable exterior pieces the phone might have to expose as much of the phone’s insides as possible.
  4. If the phone fell in salt water, flush it with fresh water (after it’s turned off and the battery is removed).
  5. Dry the phone and its components as much as possible with a towel.
  6. Put the phone and all the removed pieces inside a sealed container filled with uncooked rice. Leave it there for 24-48 hours.
  7. Test the phone — hopefully the rice will have dried out all the moisture. If the phone won’t turn on, try removing the battery and plugging the phone into the charger. If that works, it likely means you just need a new battery.

That method won’t work every time — but using rice to dry out a wet phone will give the device a better chance of avoiding damage than waiting for it to dry out naturally.

Now, here are some things to warn users not to do with a wet phone:

  1. Don’t expose a wet phone to heat in an attempt to dry it out — that could fry the device’s insides.
  2. Don’t use a hair dryer to dry out the phone — even if it’s set to the “cool” setting. That will only force the moisture deeper inside the device.

Do you have any tips for saving a wet phone, or other smartphone maintenance advice? Share your ideas in the comments section below.

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