We’re not the type to make up statistics, but we’ll assume that 100% of all phone users would experience a fit of panic if their phone fell in water. If it’s happened already, you probably told yourself that it’s “game over”.
Those of photos of you in Australia? Gone. The work documents you write on the bus trip to the office at the last minute? Gone. Your texts with that significant-other-in-the-making? Gone.
Well here’s the good news. If you backed everything up - you should be okay. But more importantly, phones don’t die upon immediate contact with water, meaning you can fix them even when there’s significant damage.
You just have to act fast and take the right steps.
Water turns into a phone’s kryptonite when it works its way into the ports, jacks and speakers. Once inside, it flows into the circuits. The result? The water, which acts as a conductor, carries a current which then overloads the phone with energy, frying the circuit board.
Certain practices make this worse, such as allowing the phone to dry on its own. Letting water sit in the phone leads to corrosion of its circuits, coils and resistors due to minerals in the water.
This one throws people off too because the damage isn’t immediately apparent in all cases. Sometimes, the water might take a little longer to reach vulnerable components. That’s why someone can drop their phone in water without any noticeable effects. But the following day, those poor souls won’t be able to turn on their phones.
The other thing to keep in mind is the source of water. Dropping your phone in a puddle or the toilet is bad, but dropping it in the ocean, and you can kiss that phone goodbye. Salt water is highly corrosive and will damage a phone’s components much quicker than freshwater. So be careful when taking selfies on your yacht.
Now explanations are great but solutions matter way more. Water doesn’t waste its time in circulating through your phone, and the damage it causes is never far away. So if your phone fell in water, you need to act fast.
Here’s the truth - simply allowing your phone to dry off completely on its own isn’t a good idea. Remember, water does its damage under the surface where your hands can’t reach. Power to you if you’re mechanically-inclined and repair your own devices, but if you can’t, let the experts do the dirty work.
If the phone is completely fried (it won’t turn on), check to see if you still have warranty for it. If you do, great. If not, you might have to bite the bullet and send the device to the manufacturer to repair it. That usually comes with a fee.
If the phone still works, with glitches or not, you can take it to major electronic chains or local repair shops. Best Buy’s Geek Squad offers repair services that cover phones as well. And if you’re looking for discount prices, you can always check out your local “ma and pa” store that repairs electronics.
Dropping a phone in water happens to the best of us. With that said, some people just seem to have their you-know-what together and don’t seem to have these accidents. A few simple tips can put you in their league and keep your phone dry.
Assuming you respond quickly, it will live. Follow the tips mentioned above, and even serious water damage shouldn’t leave your phone completely sidelined. The worst that might happen is a temporary vacation from your device while it’s under repair, and having to use an old-school, loaner flip phone.
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