Frugal Fix: Revive your Cell Phone or Electronic Devices from Water Damage

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in Frugal Fix,Frugality,How To...

cell_phoneIf you are like me you have dropped your fair share of cell phones, pagers, ipod’s, gameboy’s and camera’s in various bodies of water.  Come on who hasn’t had a pager ride your belt right into the urinal? Okay maybe that was just me. Over the years I have polished some techniques for reviving these electronic items resulting in a fair survival rate.  Frugal Fixes are a new feature here at FiscalGeek (what isn’t at this point) where we’ll publish some useful fixes around the host that could potentially save you a fair amount of money with some of your own elbow grease and ingenuity.

Time Commitment: 2-10 minutes
Handiness Skill Level: Beginner
Potential Savings: $100′s
Materials:
Jacked up Electronics Device, Isopropyl or Rubbing Alcohol, Container larger than your electronic device, rice (optional), Dri-Z-Air (optional)

Time Tested Fix

This technique is my go to for waterlogged devices.

  1. Remove the battery from the device.  This is critical, and do it as soon as possible, even if you are not going to follow this technique, this is your best chance for device survival.
  2. Find a container slightly larger than the device that will hold liquid.
  3. Remove battery covers and other compartments so you can be sure to get into all areas of the device.
  4. Place the device in the container and fill with Alcohol completely submerging the device.  The alcohol will displace any water left in your device.  Jiggle the container around a bit to make sure the alcohol is able to drive out the water droplets in your device.  You may need to weight your device to keep it under the water.  I would suggest a 5 minute period of soaking, you can vary the time based on your results and optionally repeat this step if you are not successful.
  5. Remove the device and put it somewhere to dry for an hour or two.  The alcohol will evaporate very quickly but be sure it’s really dry.  Q-tips are helpful as well to make sure you’ve got the item clean.
  6. Reassemble your device and hopefully you are good to go.  If not you can repeat this step or try the Alternate Fix.

Alternate Fixes

These are longer term fixes that take some time but also have been used successfully by many people me included in a pinch.  Give any or all of these a try if you are unsuccessful with the Alcohol Fix.

  1. You can use a commercial product like the Bheestie Bag to remove the moisture. You can see my real life test results in the FiscalGeek Video Review. It might be $20 well spent.
  2. Put the electronic device in a large Ziploc bag filled with dry rice.  The rice acts as a desiccant to remove water from the air and aids in drying your device out quicker.  The timeframe for this would be more like overnight than a few minutes.
  3. Put the electronic device in a sealed container with a Dri-Z-Air unit.  These are used often in RV’s and damp areas and are available at the hardware store.  They are essentially a plastic container that holds their special desiccant.  It will remove a tremendous amount of moisture.
  4. The old hair dryer technique, just be sure not to get it to close and melt any components.
  5. Smash it with a hammer and buy a new device.  This one works every time.

Disclaimer: Use these techniques at your own risk. FiscalGeek provides no guarantee of results but assuming your device is inoperable you don’t have much to lose.

Good luck and be sure to let us know if you’ve had any success with these techniques. You can subscribe via RSS to be sure not to miss the next installment or also subscribe via email.

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{ 240 comments… read them below or add one }

Kosmo @ The Casual Observer 2009/06/18 at 9:34 am

I recently read a story about a journalist who was able to revive their iPod with the rice method.
.-= Kosmo @ The Casual Observer´s last blog ..Review: The Mind of Bill James =-.

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Andrea 2009/06/25 at 6:22 pm

I tried the rice method (which I have heard is a good one)…unfortunately I got impatient and opted for a variation of the hammer method (and bought a new iPod). In a nutshell, take your time and try the rice method.

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Paul Van Lierop 2009/06/26 at 8:38 am

By all means take some video of that if you try it, I don’t know how good for the Ronco it would be to suck up the moisture.

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Bill 2009/06/25 at 6:34 pm

I revived my wife’s cell from a toilet bath by removing the battery and rinsing it out thoroughly with distilled water, then letting it dry overnight. The impurities in water are the conductor, not the water.

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Sarah Lane 2009/06/25 at 6:42 pm

does this work with saltwater, too? Dropped mine in the ocean (luckily I was able to fish it out)

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julienne 2012/08/04 at 5:53 pm

mine dropped in mango juice

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Bailey 2012/08/12 at 12:54 am

that is simply amazing. mango juice…..interesting.

Sierra 2013/10/02 at 4:03 pm

its water so sure it will you may just want to try rice though.

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joe 2009/06/25 at 7:46 pm

auto garages have a device which completely removes 100% of all water. their Air Conditioner Vacuum Pump. you put your device in a container, they run the vacuum on it. water boils off fast in a strong vacuum at room temp and is sucked out as vapor. I havent tried it but if being in a vacuum wouldnt damage the device this prob would be sure-fire.

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Arvo 2009/06/25 at 8:48 pm

If it falls into salt water go with the distilled water first, lots of distilled water. You want to get rid of all the salt ions. Then go with the Isopropyl alcohol (80% or greater). Do not use
wood alcohol (methanol(?) alcohol), I understand it can be corrosive. Then set it out to dry. What helps
after is to apply some ethenol (rum/vodka/etc)to yourself to steady your nerves. Apply it even if you haven’t dropped anything into the toilet!

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wwwrench 2009/06/25 at 9:50 pm

WD-40 is also a great moisture displacer, actually that is designed purpose WD40.com . As well as most silicone sprays. The best part about these is they also stop any corrosion at the same time, where alcohol may actually encourage such. I’ve had great results with canned air as well, the kind many have around to clean keyboards. I would stay away from hairdryers they seem to just steam things up to be ruined later.
If you drop them in something with sugar, like coffee or milk and such, after you get the battery out you may want to run some water on them to keep every things from being “glued” together, the alcohol is best for this, it has enough water to do the job.

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Keshia 2009/06/26 at 4:49 am

Would any of these methods work with a AT&T Tilt?
KLW

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Stephanie 2009/06/26 at 7:24 am

I’m scared to try the alcohol method. I understand the method behind it, but emerging something in liquid that I am already trying to dry sounds counterproductive and I just can’t bring myself to do it. I did have an “incident” where my phone may have landed in the toilet recently. I ended up using the blow dryer method, and it was successful within about 10 minutes.

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KATIE 2009/06/26 at 7:41 am

WE USED THE RICE METHOD, FROM HEARING FROM A FRIEND…IT WORKED ON A VERIZON CHOCOLATE PHONE. WE DID FIND THE BATTERY LIFE OF THE PHONE DID WHERE DOWN TO STAYING ONLY CHARGED FOR ABOUT 5 HOURS, BUT A $22. BATTERY WAS BETTER THEN A $200. NEW PHONE..THX

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Miranda 2010/08/31 at 8:06 am

i tried that rice trick didnt do the trick :( and I definitely didnt want to pay for a new blackberry which would like me run $300 plus.

I just sent my phone to some repair service company (blackberryplace.com)..

Fast and legit! definitely recommend them to my blackberry family.

Miranda.

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ZDAWG 2011/12/15 at 4:44 pm

Is your caps lock stuck?

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Tim 2009/06/26 at 7:55 am

This may be a dumb question, but do you put the battery and the device in the alcohol?

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JayP 2009/06/26 at 8:02 am

what about bluetooths. I put two through the wash in the same week!!! j

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kyle 2014/01/27 at 4:51 pm

no only the board.

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Martin 2009/06/26 at 8:06 am

I am a poolman and have fallen into the pool accidently several times. The first thing I do is to try to keep my phone out of the water but sometimes it can’t be helped – especially if you fall into the deep end. Since I’m on the road and have to finish my day, I take my battery out and lay my phone parts on the dashboard of my truck. The intense FL sun beating on the dashboard dries out my phone and then works perfectly. Sometimes you just don’t have alcohol around!

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Justin 2009/06/26 at 8:33 am

If a vacuum at an autoshop works, will a Ronco foodsaver vac work too?

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cay johnson 2009/06/26 at 8:49 am

I put my soaked phone on the heating duct.
But it took 2 weeks ! And you can only do it in the winter (when the heat’s on)
I didn’t know about all these other handy-dandy methods !

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Sparky 2009/06/26 at 9:08 am

Distilling it all down; no pun intended–the gist of all the responses and of the original one, is that the components of the electronic device are damaged by sustained water exposure. This is exascerbated by voltage. To sum it up–if you remove the battery immediately after the insult–theoretically you should be able to dry it all up/off, reinstall the power source and go about your business.

And to the poster who feels alcohol is “just wrong,” you must remember that technically alcohol shares almost no properties with water. When combined with its water-displacing ability–its application to wet surfaces has more advantages than disadvantages.

So. Drop your electronics in the sewer? Either throw it away, OR–after removing the power source; secure it to dry. Then continue on. :)

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Paul Van Lierop 2009/06/26 at 12:44 pm

Beer tastes better. But that’s beside the point, definitely would recommend a dunk in isopropyl alcohol for that one without the battery as the beer will be sticky. Over night may be a problem but what have you got to lose?

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kenny 2011/11/21 at 12:05 pm

i just cheked the sticker on battery but its silver and i put it in my moms phone {its the same as mi phone xperia mini x10 pro} and it didnt work ,how do i get it too work i left it in washing machine for about five min

Annie 2009/06/26 at 9:22 am

I washed my LG phone, took the battery out, vacuumed it and used a hairdryer to get it warmed up. I also shook water out and left it on our heater vent overnite. It has been working for about 1 1/2 years since it happened, and going strong.

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Rubab 2013/10/14 at 1:54 pm

hey can we still fix our phone if we turned it on after it got wet

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Firey D 2009/06/26 at 9:33 am

The principal of the alcohol method is sound (it is generally used as a dehydrant agent and found in small quantites in presurized air cans for electronics), but the alcohol (all forms) can chemically react with the plastic, making the plastic weaker. (This is why they place the warning “Do not apply alcohol” to many plastic items.) Methanol is the worst for this (smallest alcohol, easiest to react), Isopropanol (rubbing alcohol) does this less, but still does it. Be careful when trying this method.

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Firey D 2009/06/26 at 9:38 am

Just to add to alcohol, it IS conductive in its own nature. It’s just that it evaporates quicker that it is used in electronic drying. (Water is not conductive in its own nature, but can dissolve all sorts of ions, making it conductive.)

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Alicia 2009/06/26 at 10:09 am

My ipod was washed in a washing machine. I immediately took the battery out, used a blow dryer for a few minutes and then left the ipod on top of my cable box. I figured the heat from the cable box would dry up the water and it did! One week later my ipod worked like it normally did!

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Paul Van Lierop 2009/06/26 at 12:40 pm

I have indeed on my own devices, several pagers, a flip phone of my wife’s a couple of months ago.

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eric s 2009/10/02 at 6:27 pm

howd you take the battery out of an ipod?

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paul 2009/10/02 at 9:12 pm

Not so easily eric, you’re going to have to just try the techniques without removing the battery.

Terence 2009/06/26 at 10:13 am

years ago…I was doing laundry and found my ol’ Nokia 8290 at the bottom of the washing machine..went through the entire wash cycle…being the cheap bastard I am and try to fix everything myself w/o paying money…I disassembled the entire thing and just let it air dry for a couple of days..reassembled and plug the battery back in and it worked. Indeed electronics these days are very resilient.

FYI…iPhones have a “water indicator” sticker on the circuit board that changes color if it was exposed to water/liquids. My friend dropped his in the toilet…took it apart and dried it up and it did not work…. so he took it to the Apple store..a tech opened it up and saw the sticker had changed color and immediately told my friend that he must’ve dropped it in the water or spilled water on it..warranty voided! My friend had to buy a new iPhone.

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Jay 2009/06/26 at 10:39 am

Putting the phone in a baggie with some dry tea bags works too.

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chuck 2009/06/26 at 10:39 am

I have used a dehydrator on two different occasions and it worked both time. Just be sure to remove the batteries.

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Karla 2009/06/26 at 10:58 am

Hi my son dropped his PSP in the bath tub and got scared so immediately plugged it in to see if it still worked. Obviously it didn’t work and it hasn’t worked since, I’ve replaced his PSP but now reading all this great suggestions I wonder if there is something I could still do to revive his PSP.
Thanks.

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Paul Van Lierop 2009/06/26 at 1:20 pm

Also be careful if you get it too hot you can also start to reflow the solder on your circuit boards, a gentle heat is best.

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Steve 2009/06/26 at 11:35 am

One more reason not to buy an iPhone. Non-removable battery.

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alex 2011/09/16 at 11:23 pm

yes yes you can! there are two tiny tiny screws on the bottom. unscrew and let it dry!

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glenn 2009/06/26 at 11:43 am

my son left his juke cell in his pocket. well i did not check his pockets and i washed his cell in the washing machine. so i tried the rice the blowdryer letting it air out nothing worked. my other son had the same phone so i tried his battery to my amazement on came the phone and it worked fine. with the battery that went thru the washer it would come on but would just kinda flicker but it would not respond to anything. so i thought it was gone. but it was only a few months old so i gave it one last chance with the other battery.i found a battery online for 20 bucks and it’s been working ever since.so if your willing to take a chance to see if its just the battery it may be worth the $20 – $50 dollars or if someone with the same phone is willing to let you use thier battery it could save you the cost of a new phone.
thanks

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Niki 2009/10/13 at 10:43 am

Thanks! this is the answer I was looking for. I dropped my Propel in the swimming pool (along with myself) so it was under a minute before I was able to locate it. I set up a fan on it, but that did not work, then I put it in dry rice. It got better, but was still pretty sick. After about 1 1/2 weeks it starting taking a charge but would still have glitches and the battery would drain with in 30 min. The hubby said that it was probably just the battery but I never believe him. I am going to swap with a friends teenager and see if that is the real reason before I buy the battery. Will let you all know

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paul 2009/10/13 at 3:53 pm

Good luck Niki!

TC 2009/06/26 at 11:51 am

I dunked mine in a kiddie pool on Sunday. I used the hairdryer – about 7 hours later. My baby is going strong!

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Johan 2011/07/20 at 2:26 pm

what about the phone?

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Barbie 2009/06/26 at 11:57 am

I dropped my digital camera in a full cup of beer last night! (Yes, really.) Any differences with beer vs. water???

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Cynthia 2010/02/02 at 4:16 pm

Not sure about beer, but my cell got dropped in cranberry juice and vodka. I took the battery out overnight and used a hair dryer, and it started working. A few weeks later the touch screen became totally unresponsive, though.

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Hayley 2011/12/04 at 10:49 pm

I know the feeling… i dropped my cell phone in a cup of beer last night too… the rest of the night sucked…

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Will 2009/06/26 at 12:02 pm

I’ve washed my cellphone (Samsong) 3-4 times. I know you’d think I wouldn’t do it again. Each time I took the battery off and placed the phone in front of a fan for at least 24hrs. I then put the phone the charger for another 24hrs and it works fine still (same battery) going on 3yrs now.

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O to the A 2009/06/26 at 12:07 pm

ok Paul, have you tried it on your own device?

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Jon 2009/06/26 at 12:08 pm

For drying out a phone, any source of low yet constant heat will help. After removing the battery, I propped my wet phone a few inches above a 60-watt light bulb and left the light on overnight.

It worked, but the LCD screen looked washed out until it cooled down.

And of course, I used a real light bulb, not one of the new energy savers that only put out a third of the heat. If you only have access to compact fluorescents, you might get the same effect by using a brighter bulb and setting the phone closer to it.

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dave 2009/06/26 at 12:13 pm

I forgot my iPod touch was in my pock and swam in the lake.
i put it out on a rock for 4 hours, but didn’t get the battery out. Now it won’t turn on. Is it fried? this was 4 days ago…is it too late???

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Paul Van Lierop 2009/06/26 at 1:53 pm

Oh pickle juice dang. Well it’s worth a shot, I’m no chemist but pickle juice is nasty and probably not the friend of electronics. Again a few minutes and some waiting you might be in business.

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kubreez 2009/06/26 at 12:16 pm

Thanks for the tips! I wonder if the cellular service providers are using these methods and re-distributing these phones as “refurbished”? hmmm

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Kosmo @ The Casual Observer 2009/06/26 at 12:23 pm

@ Karla – hey, give it a shot. It doesn’t work NOW, so what’s the worst that could happen?
.-= Kosmo @ The Casual Observer´s last blog ..Interview with Lazy Man =-.

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Tommy 2009/06/26 at 12:41 pm

A toaster oven seton 150- 200 degrees works too. remove the battery, put the device in the toaster oven for an hour.

Don’t go higher than 200 or the plastic over the screen will warp….. ask me how I know.

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Drew Peacock 2012/08/19 at 4:22 pm

how do you know?

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dave 2009/06/26 at 12:44 pm

when it happened, i blew as much water as i could with compressed air.
how do I get the iPod touch apart to remove the battery and dry all in innards?
i think it may have shorted out since i can’t even turn it on.

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Ms Kim 2009/06/26 at 1:21 pm

My daughter’s phone fell into the Atlantic Ocean, we recovered it, took it home, put it in the oven on low heat for about 30 to 45 minutes and it began to work like nothing ever happened!!!!:)

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Inepo Yoemia 2009/06/26 at 1:29 pm

The technic with rice is useful. My swiming phone is my best witness.

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o to the a 2009/06/26 at 1:45 pm

..and? did u fix them? my treo went swimming in pickle juice and desspite all my attepts to revive it it kicked the bucket.. think ur solution would work

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KD 2009/06/26 at 1:46 pm

We do a variation of this method with hearing aids. My husband likes to kayak and often gets his back-up aids wet. Yank the battery out ASAP and throw it away then toss the aid in a Dry-N-Store desiccator unit for at least 4 hours, preferably overnight. This works for almost any type of aid AND it saves replacement or refurb costs every time. Got this tip from his audiologist.

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David Lee Smith 2009/06/26 at 2:16 pm

Alcohol will likely damage the image sensor (CCD or CMOS) if your phone has a camera (if it makes it that far into the device). Also it may destroy the glue that holds the device together (like the face plate on a blackberry curve). If there are certain metals along with mercury then you could get a reaction that creates more damaging peroxide solids in your device. With all that said, I have personally seen an HP calculator and a digital multimeter saved using the alocohol. Both work years later. I do suggest alcohol as a last resort but you never know what reactions may occur inside.

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Jazz 2010/02/10 at 2:46 pm

so the alcohol works? i was filling up my sink and in went my phone, i immediately took it apart but then it kept glitching.. i just got this… wat should i do first?

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sam 2009/06/26 at 2:36 pm

the pickle juice probably acted like a electrolyte and electrifing, and subsequently frying your components.

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Brian 2009/06/26 at 3:53 pm

Unfortunately all cell phones have a strip inside of them that tell the company you send it into that it’s been in water. I have two phones (a n95 and a mx220) that have the pink strip of shame on them.

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Steph 2010/09/11 at 4:10 pm

the LG Rumor 2 phones only have the white strip on the batteries :) i dropped mine in a school toilet, it wouldn’t turn on, so i stuck it in rice, which didn’t work cuz i was too impatient to wait LOL. i had an extra battery layin around, so i put in the old one, took my phone into the sprint store… and BAM! they ordered me a new one FREE OF CHARGE!!! because i changed the battery :P

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Chris Weiler 2009/06/26 at 4:09 pm

I would caution against using a blow-dryer. You may end up just pushing water further into the device. Instead a hose attachment from your vacumm would be a better option in my opinion.

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Brian 2009/06/26 at 4:33 pm

I’ve had a cell phone fall into water a couple of times. I found that removing the battery — RIGHT AWAY — and simply allowing it to air dry for a few days worked very well. No need for a Dry-N-Store or an alcohol bath. I agree with David Lee Smith, alcohol could be a solvent for the glue that holds your device together. Just air dry it. As long as the device isn’t already damaged before you can get the battery out you should be good.

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S, Yvon 2009/06/27 at 5:12 pm

Hey this is a great article I wish I had this a few months ago, but I be trying it out next time. It’s sad to say, but I’m sure there will be a next time.
.-= S, Yvon´s last blog ..Wall Street rallies on Bernanke relief, consumer shares
(Reuters)
=-.

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mario 2009/06/29 at 12:54 am

I did the rice technique on my macbook and it worked but subsequently died a few days after can I take off the keyboard part and dunk it in aclohol i know that the rest of the components did not get water on it?

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Steve Hill 2009/06/29 at 5:10 am

Does the alcohol method work with i-Pods? You can’t take the batteries out can you?

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Sabine 2009/06/29 at 5:55 am

the step #5, work better than the others, so go to Home Depot and get a big one in order to see the result faster

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Paul Van Lierop 2009/06/29 at 8:29 am

I want to thank everyone who has taken the time to comment there is some fantastic advice in here, perhaps worthy of rolling up all of the tips and doing a full update.

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PH 2009/06/29 at 6:47 am

I’m surprised no one has mentioned baking the device. I personally have successfully used this technique. Take out the battery. Put the device in the oven. Set the oven for 125 degrees. At this
temp the plastic will not melt. Bake for 4 hours. May sound a little crazy, but worked when everything else failed for me.

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Bob, NH 2009/06/29 at 7:27 am

Dropped mine in a hot tub !

Immediately remove battery , don’t even try to fire it up or it may fry.
get a shop-vac, put the hose on the exhaust setting , vs vacuum, so that air blows at the device. Place it, open about 1-2 feet from the hose. and run the shop vac for 10 min. worked for me twice. No solvents , no worries !

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BILL WARDELL 2009/06/29 at 7:27 am

On a guess I tried to revive my Samsung U555 cell phone using rubbing alcohol. The LCD screen never did come out of it. I washed it in the washing machine, it was on. I have rescued several devices from water, the secert to successe is don’t let the device lay in the water! Either get it right out or forget it!(don’t stand there and stare into the toilet in disbielf, just reach in and get the device ASAP!)

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Mike 2009/06/29 at 7:51 am

The damage is done to the phone at the poing of entry into the liquid. Your best bet is to remove the battery and let it air dry for a couple of days. If there was any damage done it is already done and no matter how many ways you want to dry it the damage is still already done. GOOD LUCK shopping for a new device.

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Sophia Johansen 2009/06/29 at 8:22 am

I have 3 kids. 2 cell phones and 3-Ipods have gone through the washing machine, I sometimes forget to check pockets. I have been successful at saving 2-i-pods and 1 cell phone. Here’s how. DO NOT TRY turning on the device at first. Take the battery out of a cell phone. Shake as much water out of the device as possible. Set the device on one of the heat vents-even if the heat is not on run the fan. Just let it sit there for about 5 days.(It’s works best if the heat is intermitantly on) Just forget it for a few days, and ta daaa, it will be dry and most likely work. I’ve had good luck. The I-pods have worked for almost a year after their washing machine episode! (I also tried the rice thing, but with no great success.)

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Bob, NH 2009/06/29 at 8:39 am

ADD: to the shop vac technique, I just remembered that I held the phone , open, right up to the exhaust hose and the pressure blew out alot of water befor I set vit at a foot away for another 10 minutes. Yes the red dot on the inside showed water damage, so warrantee is shot, but phone worked fine. this workes on a motorolla flip phone, not sure if it would work on a smartphone….i think the batteries are much harder to remove…

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Joyce Huskey 2009/06/29 at 9:36 am

Has anyone ever tried these methods on a camera. Ours was dropped in the pool. It turns on but the screen is black. The battery is still good. Thanks for any feedback.

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Dalia 2011/06/10 at 6:43 pm

Omg Yes its the same thing with my phone! it turns on and i cann feel it vibrate and i can even listin to music but the screen is just black!

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QSquared 2009/06/29 at 9:37 am

Pickle-juice is essentially Brine (AKA Water w/ a tremendous ammount of Salt in it).

One of the keys to reviving dunked electronics is to try to remove the battery before the water can cause a short and ruin the board.

Sometiems you’re lucky and the short doesn;’t ruin the board, but as always your best chance of revival is to pull the battery while you can still see it’s piowere3d on and working, don’t ‘chance’ that the water ‘didn’t seep in too bad’ if it’s still working.

Brine being Water filled with electosoluables is a much better carrier of electricity than water alone (In fact, truely pure water cannot carry a current, it’s the elctolytes present within the water that allow for this).

Therefore you have a much better possibility that you will cause a short that will ruin the board, or barring that, that you will leave behind salty goey deposits which will still conduct electricity even without the presence of water.

Your best bet is a good cleaning with alcohol to break up any grime and clear away any remaining water prior to putting the device in a bag of rice or what have you.

With a bit of luck, that will get you through.

~Q

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elizabeth rennick 2012/02/28 at 2:56 pm

hi i have a blackberry storm 9500 got a glass of water spilt over the touchscreen 2 weeks ago i took out the battery and dried every thing the phone works fine but it doesnt hold the network is there anything i can do there are watermarks on the screen so are there any methods i can use to remove these please any help would be appreciated also there are lot s of tips on youtube that can help

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Neal 2009/06/29 at 9:58 am

Here’s a link to purchase the Dri-Z-Air humidifier at CampingWorld.com: http://www.campingworld.com/shopping/item/dri-z-air/4735

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Lisa 2009/06/29 at 10:54 am

We use the BHEESTIE Bag. We keep it at home and travel with one. Our camera got wet on a trip so we just put it in BHEESTIE. And I can’t begin to tell you how many times we’ve needed it for wet cell phones (teenagers)! Another friend of mine dropped her blackberry in the toilet on a trip, borrowed my bag and loved the results so much she wrote about it in her business blog http://blog.oregonlive.com/wilsonville/2009/04/on_a_recent_spring_break.html. Hope this helps!

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Gemma 2009/07/12 at 12:08 pm

my daughters samsung u600 had an hour in the washing machine..her dad never checks pockets !!! also my samsung g600 was lost n left in the rain over 24hours.b4 reading all above ive tried the batery in them several times..no luck..wish id have seen this first.
IS THERE ANY WQAY I CAN FIX THEM? MY DAUGHTERS PHONE WAS ONLY FEW WEEKS OLD”!

THANKYOU

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kenny 2011/11/21 at 11:59 am

i did the same thing. i didnt chek pockets and i put it in the washing machine and mi sister told me she found it in washing machine can anyone help . i tried rice but it didnt work

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Gemma 2009/07/12 at 2:26 pm

thanks paul…
yes my daughters phone has been 3ish weeks now i had it dryin out on windowsill, ill have buy two new batterys for them as my others dnt fit. is their any definate tell tale signs if i have chance or not with the phones?? or am i clutching at straws..?

thanks xxx

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Paul Van Lierop 2009/07/12 at 8:14 pm

I don’t know that I would go out and buy new batteries you might want to call them done. It’s worth a shot trying these techniques if you haven’t already but I’m afraid you’re probably going to be out of luck.

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wwwrench 2009/07/16 at 12:03 pm

I would give it a shot with the batteries in and plug into its charger first, maybe try it without the batteries and just the charger first. Buying batteries may not be worth finding out it’s not coming back to life

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Aaron 2009/07/20 at 8:06 am

Added to my RSS, Thanks!

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Sarah 2009/07/25 at 6:54 pm

Hi, I am searching for a way to fix my digital samsung camera that has been washed in the washing machine. What will work to get my digital camera back in the condition it was before. My husband is really upset, he bought it for Christmas for me and he washed it. I just want the camera to work again. What method will work let me know. Thanks :)

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anonymous 2009/07/26 at 3:23 pm

what does it mean if the phone turns on when you can charge it WITHOUT a battery? but when you uncharge it with the battery inside and it doesn’t work. is it a problem with the battery?

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wogga 2011/11/09 at 8:23 am

Yup – or 90% chance of yup.

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Paul Van Lierop 2009/07/26 at 11:29 pm

Sarah: you can certainly try these techniques, but with a camera you’re probably not going to want to use the alcohol method. Try drying it out with rice or if you’ve already tried and it’s not working, you may need to contact Samsung for a local repair center. A camera in the washing machine may not be salvageable for what it costs new.

Anonymous: You are probably not “charging it” when you have it plugged in, rather it’s running off the AC current you have it attached to. Now the uncharge part I’m not getting you mean when you try and run it off the battery you don’t have any luck? I’m going to suspect your battery in that case yes. Before you go out and buy a new one you may want to head to your local Carriers store if it’s a recent model and see if you can try one of theirs just to be sure. It would be a bummer to shell out the money for a new battery and now have a new battery for a broken phone. Good luck!

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David M 2009/08/07 at 8:23 pm

I have had my Lg Xenon for a little more than two days now. And for the past 24hours the screen has not been operational (it is black, the touch sensor still works though). Although this is the result of dropping it into the washing machine thus causing water damage, the rest of the phone is functional (to my knowledge). I have disassembled the phone and let it dry in a bag of rice and then re-assembled it. The result? Still cannot see the screen… So i have once again disassembled it and put only the screen in a new bag of rice in an attempt to draw out any other water that may possibly be in the screen. Any other suggestions other than get a new phone?

Thanks.

Oh yea another one i have heard is to put it in the freezer for a little bit that it will give you a few minutes of screen time… I personally have not tried it. But it will be my next technique after this last rice bath.

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David M 2009/08/08 at 6:25 pm

freezer thing does not work…

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Runner 2009/08/10 at 8:24 am

Hey – I have a Samsung Propel that I dropped in the toilet. It was “clean” water and I fished it out immediately. I popped the battery out immediately and then shook the phone to try and get the water out. I definitely heard it in there…

I then dried it with a paper towel. The battery water detection sticker was not triggered. The phone sticker is pale pink. I kept the SIM card and battery out and then put all the contents in a bag of rice. It’s been sitting there since last night and I don’t intend on testing it for a few days.

Should I go out and buy the screwdriver set to take it apart and let it dry? Should I still do the rubbing alcohol submersion? Any tips would be greatly appreciated! Thank you!

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paul 2009/08/10 at 9:33 am

Hey Runner I would just let er go in the rice overnight and then give it a try. If it doesn’t work I would further recommend the alcohol treatment. I don’t know that I would go through taking it all apart but that’s up to your comfort level.

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Samsung Propel 2010/12/16 at 7:27 pm

I’ve had the Samsung Propel for about a year; it worked great until I did the same thing and had the moisture sticker turn red. Took the battery out and dried it immediately; popped the battery back in but when it wouldn’t stop vibrating left it to dry for a day.

Came back and it turned on normally, updated the time and shut itself down. A friend tried turning it on several times, although I warned her it might damage it. It started up normally, but for less and less time until all it will show is the download screen. (See if I ever trust her again…)

This is the second day it’s been wet, and I just now popped it into a bowl of dry minute rice. Will it work even though the battery has been in and out of it multiple times since it got wet?

If not, will I be able to retrieve contacts/texts/videos/pictures if I take it into the store?

daish_01 2009/08/23 at 12:14 pm

hey guys i found and ipod nano. when i tried to power it on for some reason it didn’t work so i took it home and tried to charge it. when i did that the screen came up white. i called apple and set an appointment and there they told me the ipod had water damage. will the alcohol trick still work eventhough im not sure how long the ipod has been damaged?

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paul 2009/08/24 at 9:52 am

Daish_01 probably not, the battery’s built into the nano correct? One of the keys is getting that battery out of there, if you could do that, the alcohol is worth a shot but you might be out luck there. It’s best to get the moisture out immediately.

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Charlie Z 2009/08/24 at 1:52 pm

My wife ran her LG Venus through the wash last night — didn’t have rice handy, so ran out to the store and bought some and got it in there, but forgot to take out the battery. The phone was dark when it came out of the washer, so the water had clearly gotten in. Will remove the battery when I get home tonight and maybe try the alcohol tip, then back into the rice overnight before trying to reassemble and power up. Wish me luck!

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paul 2009/08/24 at 7:53 pm

Hope it works for you Charlie.

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Charlie Z 2009/08/24 at 9:42 pm

So far, it’s promising… after being in rice for close to 24 hours, I got it out and gave it a shot. Nothing. But then I recalled another post here, and plugged it into the charger — success! Even showed a full charge in just under 20 seconds, (There’s a clue!) but I unplugged it and it went dark immediately.

So I’m hoping it’s just the battery that is shot, and will see if the Verizon store will test a similar used batter in it before I pay for a new onw.

I did notice some condensation still in the viewscreen, so will leave it rice overnight again, especially now that I have it open with the battery out. All in all, feeling pretty good about it now! Thanks!

Charlie Z 2009/08/27 at 8:49 pm

Okay, a few days later… the battery seemed to take a charge and so my wife took it to work, but the charge only lasted several hours, much shorter than normal. Seems to work okay when plugged in, so think a new battery will be in order and should do the trick.

As for the rice trick, I actually had the phone burried in a container of rice, and then placed the entire container in an oven set on “warm” (with the door ajar) for about 10-15 minutes. I did that so any remaining moisture might evaporate a bit more readily and be absorbed by the rice. Display is looking pretty good, so think it might have helped. Note – oven temperature was kept well below 200 F — I didn’t bake it!

savannah 2009/08/24 at 6:29 pm

my phone was dropped in a hot tub about 9 hours ago i took it out immediatly and took the battery out it is still drying out with the battery sitting out but it will not turn on i have read all of the 89 comments but i would still like some advice. what have you done to help your phone that works every time that is simple to do and is free

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paul 2009/08/24 at 7:54 pm

Savannah I’m not sure what else to tell you other than what has already been said, I can’t guarantee anything here, phone’s aren’t inherantly waterproof. I’d recommend you try some of the options here, if there is any cost it’s a couple dollars. Good luck.

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blah 2009/08/27 at 6:58 pm

ok so i was driving in the car with my bro and its slid into a cup of water. i quickyly took it out and took the battery out and let it hang out the window for a while… i tried to turn it on 30 min later and it starts to turn on then shuts off and keeps repeating… what can i do??

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paul 2009/08/27 at 7:05 pm

See above directions. Make sure the battery gets dried out and try one of the methods, the rice method is the most gentle. Then charge up the battery and try again after about 24 hours.

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kristin 2009/08/29 at 9:51 am

ok so i have a 3yr old who decided to pour awater bottle over my LG enV…… i have it in rice now how long do i leave it in there?

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paul 2009/08/29 at 2:12 pm

I would keep it at least 12 hours maybe longer.

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savannah 2009/09/05 at 9:25 pm

i dropped my blackberry pearl in the pool for hardly 10 seconds immediately took the battery out and put it in rice i take it out every hour to see if it works (im impatient) well it turns on but to a white screen and i hear it ring but the buttons arent working and the screen remains white. if i keep it in the rice for awhile, does anyone think theres a chance itll survive? i just need some hope… :(

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Yanet Campos 2009/09/06 at 4:23 pm

i have a samsung gravity which recently was droped into the tiolet… i acted quickly and was able to get the phone to start but it wont detect the sim card. i have tried the sim card in other phones and it works fine….can anyone tell me what can i do? i would gladly apreciate it!

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paul 2009/09/11 at 3:05 pm

Yanet, did you try cleaning out the sim card area with a Q-tip and some rubbing alcohol, that’s worth a shot otherwise you might have a casualty.

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katlin 2009/11/08 at 7:06 pm

When i dropped my LG Venus into the tub a few hours ago. i took the battery out and soaked it into rice and like 25 minutes later tried to plug it into the charger. after i then realized that people say not to do that. do i still ave a chance in saving my phone??

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paul 2009/11/08 at 8:54 pm

Yes I’d give it overnight and try in the morning, there’s always a chance, even if it’s a week later. Just take the battery out if you can, and frequently the battery will be toast so if it powers up plugged in but won’t run on battery odds are you can just get a new battery and be ready to roll.

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Evolution Of Wealth 2009/12/05 at 5:18 am

My phone tried to swim in a lake. Unfortunately it didn’t know how and sunk like a rock. I grabbed it pretty quickly and took the battery out. I let it sit out in the sun all day and then sit overnight. I didn’t have any rice. I heard kitty litter works too (unused) but I didn’t have that either. So the next day I took a hair dryer to it for 10-15 minutes. It turns right on. Works like nothing happened.
.-= Evolution Of Wealth´s last blog ..What is Your Life Worth? =-.

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des 2009/12/11 at 3:21 pm

sooo i dropped my psp in my drink, dont ask how, but it was vodka n soda.. does that stil apply

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paul 2009/12/11 at 8:55 pm

I think it would still apply, if it was soda as in soda pop, alcohol might be your best bet. If it was soda water you might try rice or some of the other methods.

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nathan 2009/12/12 at 5:36 pm

yeah the alcohol is a peice of crap. i had my phone working with rice. so i decided to put it in alcohol to get the rest of the water out. now my phone wont even turn on. fml. thanks

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Victoria 2012/06/09 at 2:22 am

possibly f mine too. i wish i would have read this earlier before i tried the alcohol. someone on youtube suggested distilled water. maybe i should have tried that instead. i just tried the alcohol since i heard about it on other sites too. hopefully it at least still works as well as it did before i tried the alcohol but still had water damage.

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Ashley 2009/12/19 at 10:30 pm

Hi My names Ashley ,

I had Lots my phone for about a month and it was outside someone found it and braught it to me . butt its not water damaged it took a while before i realized becuz it was still working butt slowly Slowing down .. I Just went threw everything everyone had to say butt nothing about it being a month of time passed .. Wat do u think will work the best for this Situation :(

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Ashley 2009/12/19 at 10:31 pm

I mean it Is Water Damaged

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lostwithoutphone 2009/12/22 at 5:43 pm

Someone please help me! Here’s my story.
I dropped my phone in coffee where it soaked there for about five minutes.
I took the battery and the memory card out as soon as i found it there.
I tried to turn it on once and it didnt work.
I wasn’t home so i just left the battery out overnight.
The next day it worked fine when I hooked it up to the charger and hours without the charger later.
Then that night it stopped. The display is now black and it now longer makes sounds.
Sometimes if i look close enough i can see the phone still functioning and it still vibrates just no display screen.
Can someone help with this?

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hannah sergeant 2010/01/03 at 6:15 am

hi :).
well i dropped my phone in the bath not long ago, it droped it in and as soon as it did i took it out and dried it all the battery,sim card,phone itself, with a towel and then the hairdryer.
it switches on, but when it switches on on the screen it says ” please insert sim card, emergency calls only ” so will i be able to fix it, or is my phone permanatly damaged?!
write back, thankyou xxx.

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paul 2010/01/03 at 9:57 pm

Have you tried removing and reinserting the SIM card a few times? It’s possible some contaminate got on there and is preventing the SIM card from being read properly. You might also try finding a friend with a SIM card to try as well at least to try and narrow down your issues. You might very well be out of luck. If all else fails you can always try the alcohol trick without the battery or sim card of course as a means to try and flush the contaminants off your phone.

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danica 2010/01/07 at 10:55 pm

hey..i was really just wanting to know this, i have an at&t quickfire(which is touchscreen) and i wanted to know if the alchohol method would work for the touchscreen? everything works but the touchscreen and i don’t wanna take the chances and ruien it for good!!!!!!! thanks:)

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paul 2010/01/07 at 11:36 pm

I had a friend try this on his tilt and it had issues with his keyboard (adhesive pulled away). Now admittedly that’s not a touch screen but something to think about. Is the phone useful though if the touchscreen doesn’t work? If that’s the case you don’t have much to lose.

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Emily F. 2010/01/08 at 6:28 pm

hi!
i dropped my phone in the tub two days ago. i immediately scooped it out and dried it with a towel, removing the battery and such. everything still works just fine, but i can see water under the screen. ive left it under my snakes lamp (with a 60 watt bulb) for a few hours at a time, and thats dried off some of the water. will it continue to work if i keep doing that? or are there any other methods to make this process speed along?
Thanks!

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paul 2010/01/08 at 9:10 pm

Emily this might benefit well by throwing it in a bag of rice at night when you are not using it. Odds are though if it’s working right now it will continue to work as it dries out. I’d be careful how hot you get it when drying it out as that could cause additional damage if it’s too warm, but a 60w bulb sounds reasonable.

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winson 2010/01/21 at 3:41 am

It is a good idea, the first thing is to cut off the power supply to prevent further damage of the electronic device. Then the rest is only make it dry. Another way is to put it into a desiccator for a few minutes. As long as the desiccant inside works well to absorb all the moisture, some desiccator even have vacuum pump that really sucks out all the air and moisture at the same time.

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The Casual Observer 2010/01/31 at 10:18 pm

I now have personal experience with the rice fix. Phone works great.

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JuliaDi 2010/02/03 at 1:41 pm

I am trading a five year old cute little blonde haired blued eyed girl for a new cell phone if anyone is interested, this being the 2nd time it has happened with her help… trying the rice method along with the occasional low heat blow dryer since I am incredibly impatient when it comes to having stored MY LIFE in my Palm Centro…GREAT site to see recommendations on, I am keeping all fingers and toes crossed and then with great fear and trepidation, goining to try the alcohol method…the first shot i took helped, next I’ll try the phone!!

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ashanti 2012/09/18 at 10:41 pm

my phone fell in the toilet for about 5-8 secs and I quickly dried it and put it in rice for a long time!!! Now my qwery keyboard works but I cannot click any thing on my android screen :’( to go back I have to take the battery out ( even tho the screen comes on and I use my slide keyboard to scroll). Soooooo annoying!!!!!! Please please try to help me I been without a functioning phone for days.

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HG 2012/09/18 at 11:49 pm

Sounds as though you did not take the battery out right away and dry the phone by itself. That could be the problem. I don’t know whether the rice or the dehydrator or both helped mine, but since it won’t work without a battery, I still don’t know for sure that it will work when the new battery arrives. At least I got it to the place where I can get see that my settings are all intact so long as I have it plugged in. My address book is there, etc. I also bought a Beastie Bag, but it did not help the battery and the phone was already seeming ly OK by the time I got it. But you might try that–but with the battery out.

sophie 2010/03/01 at 11:41 am

Hi….i dropped my camera AND my fone in the toilets! The fone i have taken the battery ou and i am trying to dry it on the radiator for the past 2 days but think its pretty dead…..its my camera i really wan2 work! it will come on then its just black and the lense wont extend all the way out! any tips ill be very grateful as i love my camera!

Thanks

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paul 2010/03/01 at 11:58 am

That’s a little beyond my expertise here Sophie. If the mechanicals are messed up on your camera a dis-assembly may be in order to clean the parts out. Myself I’ve had terrible luck on trying to repair my own camera you can see my post When DIY has no ROI. And the way cameras are these days it’s not cost effective to have most of them repaired. You can always try the alcohol method as it could help remove some of the contaminants that may prevent your lens from extending. If it’s not really working you dont’ have much to lose as I’ve said before although if you are thinking of having it repaired you might want to hold off on the home remedies.

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Matt 2010/03/20 at 2:55 pm

my phone dropped in water
the screeen is white

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dakota 2010/03/23 at 9:10 am

I have a question, Will this still work if my phone has been water damaged for about 3 days already?

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paul 2010/03/23 at 10:42 am

Quite possibly. With one of my wife’s phones I performed the alcohol trick at about day 3 after we finally found her phone outside and then let it just dry out. It took about a week total but powered right back on at that point. If the battery is not already out though get it out asap.

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Victoria 2012/06/09 at 2:35 am

my phone turns on but i was hoping to remove some of the white tint to the screen that resulted from the water so i tried the alcohol bath. is the alcohol treatment just to get the phone to turn on? by this i mean, is the water damage to the screen not affected by the alcohol?

emily 2010/03/28 at 4:46 pm

so i ‘went swimming’ with my samsung f480i (touch screen) a couple of days ago. we immediately took the battery out, and have tried both the hairdryer and rice methods but no luck. it was a chlorine pool so should this alter my approach? any ideas? :/

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kayla 2010/03/30 at 9:48 am

heyy i just want to know, will all these things work if the phone has gone in the washer for the whole rinse and wash cycle???

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paul 2010/03/30 at 12:49 pm

It doesn’t hurt to try Kayla.

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Bobby T 2010/04/21 at 4:45 pm

I dropped my phone, the LG Vu, in the toilet and got it to work again and turn back on. but now the only thing that doesn’t work is my camera. Whenever i press the button, it goes to the screen where you adjust your ringtone sound volume. How do i get my camera button to work again?

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paul 2010/04/21 at 7:37 pm

Bobby you might have to look elsewhere for that specific fix I’m afraid.

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Danny Malan 2010/05/17 at 1:11 pm

Nokia PDA came off my belt without my knowing and drowned in a wet gutter for 2 hours before I retrieved it.
Battery out – straight into a bowl of rice for 24 hours. Also took the vacuum cleaner to it (rice dust) and left it in direct sunlight for 2 days.
First attempts at ‘life’ – blank screen with faint water mark, but unit was working. Sum more sun – day 3½ my cell phone is fine… AFTER I went out and bought another one! PATIENCE!!!

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Aliyah 2010/06/07 at 4:55 pm

Omg i was goin swimming nextdoor and I dropped my phone in a small puddle and it was only there for about 3 to 4 seconds between landing and me picking it up. So I thought it wuz nothing but ever since that night my qwerty keyboard, camera button, and volume buttons(which are all on the back half of my phone) have only worked at certain times. I have a slide out qwerty keyboard. But I would say 75% of the time they do not work.I can barely live without my qwerty keyboard!! It has been about a week since this happened. Idk what to do. I don’t even know if I CAM do anything anymore. I completely forgot there were methods for this so when I noticed these problems I just thought whatever. I was already thinkingnof getting a new phone but it turns out I can’t get one for another year. What should I do? CAN I still do anything?

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Aliyah 2010/06/07 at 5:06 pm

BTW today j left the battery and phone laying out on the couch for about 2 to 3 hours and it did nothing

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avery service 2010/06/08 at 10:37 pm

my phone went through the wash about 4 days ago. i took the batterie out and dried it with the rice, it now turns on, but some of the buttons are changed around. would drying it more with a different method help or is it broke?

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paul 2010/06/08 at 11:40 pm

Let it dry a few more days and you may find they come back to life. If not try the alcohol method which might help remove any contaminents.

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Sara 2010/06/14 at 8:22 am

I left my Xenon in my pocket and put the pants in the wash. Fortunately I realised a few minutes into the cycle.
I tried the rice method, and so far no sccuess. Could the problem be the laundry soap? I didn’t rinse the phone out or anything, just took it apart and right into the rice.
Should I try something else? The Alcohol?
Any suggestions?

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paul 2010/06/14 at 10:29 am

It does take time to dry out 24-48 hours minimum. Alcohol is always an option, couldn’t hurt.

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Mari 2010/06/17 at 7:48 am

My Phone fell in the toilet yesterday. But iDid something tht ithink ishud have not done
igot so scared tht icharged the phone right away.& it worked perfectly but then turned off on me. Is there any chance that if iput my phone in rice & let it set overnight it will still work? & if iPlug my phone in but it turns on without a battery is it the phone tht dmaged or the battery?
Plz write back iNeed Help.!!!!!

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Boom 2010/09/09 at 8:55 pm

Mari, you’re annoying

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Mikayla 2010/06/19 at 12:52 pm

I have a samsung sch-r451c.. My daughter dropped it in the sink, it was only in there for like a second but since then my CLEAR button has been stuck. I can’t make calls because of this because all i can hear is the loud beeping as if i were pressing a button while making a call. also i can’t look at texts or anything because when i go to the menu it immediately clears. She dropped it in the phone yesterday and i hoped it would dry out on it’s own but i’m not having any luck. any one think this will fix itself? what should i do?

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Brittany 2010/07/04 at 7:13 am

Ok so my frined through me in the pool yesturday…. well afer a minute or two i noticed my phone was in my pocket i have a lg chococlate touch will; the rice method work?!

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Camael 2010/07/09 at 8:13 am

Well, yesterday my brother decided to fall over the side of the boat into a lake and my phone went with him. I’ve had my new HTC Hero for 2 weeks now and it was in his pocket under water for less than 30 secs. The phone was already on and it was vibrating like crazy when we got it out. We quickly removed the battery and rushed inside to blowdry the battery and the phone itself. It has been sitting out all night and morning. I shook it and it doesn’t have any more water (that I know of). My mother put in the battery and it didn’t turn on. Will put it in the bag of rice (it worked for my nano in the mop bucket incident) and then try to swap my battery with my brother’s later on. Thanks for the awesome ideas!

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Camael 2010/07/13 at 10:10 am

Yeah, well I kept it in a bag of rice for 5 days and turned it on. It worked, but the touch screen was unusable. Today I couldn’t get it on at all. I believe it’s a goner.

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Julian 2010/07/12 at 7:09 am

As for IPODS and IPHONES, if you just cannot get it to work after some of these methods, bleach the headphones and charger openings. Obviously this won’t get it to work but when you bring it into the apple store, they’ll look for the water damage strips and the bleach will have turned them white. No warrenty voided. Brand new, free iPod.

This is coming from an iPod touch user that left it in the rain overnight.
Good luck!

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Noah 2010/07/15 at 12:48 pm

I swam for about 5-7 minutes with my psp in my pocket yesterday before I realized it was in there. I took the battery out immediately. I ran home and looked on the internet for ways to make it work again. Most of them said to let it air dry for about a week. I’m trying that right now, and if it doesn’t work, I’m going to try one of these methods. I’ll write back and tell how everything turned out. Good luck to the rest of you

Peace, I’m out!

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Jess Alwerdt 2010/07/18 at 4:59 pm

I just recently dropped my loaner phone that is a Samsung into water. I have put it into rice and it is now working but it will not stop vibrating. I also do not think it got much water damage because there are still x’s on the stickers which I think would be smeared to show water damage? Any ideas?

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Mark 2010/07/23 at 11:25 am

I’ve used DampRid on my son’s phone many times with great results. Place in DampRid container for 24 hours.

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Christian Tuller 2010/07/24 at 6:34 pm

My Brother dropped my walky talky radio into the water and imeaditly pulled it out. is there a way of making it work again.

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Geoff 2010/08/04 at 2:24 pm

i have a tmobile g1 and i dropped it one night during a storm and the battery fell out right into a puddle of water but i dried it and it worked fine. however when i use the keyboard if i close it too hard the phone shuts off. but i drop the phone alot and now it just works about 20 percent of the time

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Water damage comany 2010/08/12 at 3:54 pm

Some say to remove the battery and sim card and place in a bag of rice for a few days.

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Water damage comany 2010/08/12 at 3:55 pm

Some great advice here

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Beth 2010/09/05 at 1:01 pm

I dropped my Droid 2 in the toilet. I grabbed it immediately. I tried to power down but the screen froze( I didn’t think to remove the battery). I shook out as much water as I could. I was close to the Verizon store and the guy there took out my battery and SD card and told me to slide it open and put it in rice along with the battery. I left it in the rice for 24 hrs. I cleaned the rice dust off with a soft brush. Then I said a little prayer put everything together. It’s working. The screen has a little discoloration(not bad). I have hope even that will clear up.

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Victoria 2012/06/09 at 2:47 am

i forgot to include the battery in my Ziploc bag with rice. thanks!

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Emma 2010/09/06 at 1:48 am

heey, i recently dropped my LG Shine Touch of only 4 days old of the end of my dock into the lake. Unfortunetly myself and the rest of my family havent had the best luck with keeping our phones dry, we have dropped 2 blackberries and 2 LG phones including my own. Only one LG phone has been able to survive, because mine is sitting in a rice bag, almost reaching the 24hrs. mark, but i was just wondering, if having the phone off with a cover on while it got wet makes a difference?

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Evski 2010/10/26 at 3:44 pm

ok. so i played golf yesterday and an hour into it it started to DOWN POUR and my at&t phone was in my golf bag. Like 9 hour later i noticed that the white paper that if it turns pink means water damage was def. pink. So i immediately took out the battery and all the junk and put it in rice. its been in rice all day today…do you think it will recover? And yes it does work. im just scared cause the paper is pink.

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Jenny 2010/11/14 at 12:50 pm

An open bottle of children’s bubbles spilled on my lg rumor 2. I took the battery out right away and cleaned the exterior of the phone as best I could. I left it in the sun to dry because I was outside and after about half an hour the screen had condensation on it. I put it in the bowl of rice because I was told it worked, and after a day I took it out and I put the battery in and the battery seems to not be damaged, but you can see the soap on the interior of the LCD screen and the buttons don’t coincide with what appears on the screen when I click them. I’m thinking maybe something else needs to be done because these methods are for water spilling on the phone, not soap. Does anyone have any suggestions? Thank you.

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bRYNN 2011/01/24 at 12:05 am

Hi. I dropped my HTC EVO 4g in the toilet. (it was in my back pocket and fell in) I grabbed it after 2 seconds and immediately took out the battery and dried both the phone and battery under a hand dryer til dried. I’ve had the phone sitting in a plastic bag with dried rice for about 22 hours. I took it out and tested it once, the evo will power on/vibrate/and make all the startup noises PLUS my new email and texting sounds. However the LCD screen stays black. There is a backlight that comes on and lights up the home button, phone button, and the buttons along the lower LCD of the phone. It charges. I plugged it in the charger and the orange button lights up as normal. So far…everything is normal except for the LCD staying black. Any Suggestions?

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leomar 2011/02/07 at 5:13 am

I let intense heat heal my phone and it worked ….
Philippines is really a very hot place…
It has worked miracles…

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Leomar Percival 2011/02/07 at 5:20 am

I dropped my phone in a toilet full of poo but since my phone was very expensive, I grabbed it out, not minding the foul smell of the “yellow submarine”… I removed the battery and then called for my technician friend for an instant fix…
Upon knowing what had exactly happened, he didn’t fixed it…
I just let it stay in the dorm for a week… I then turned it on and miraculously, it worked up to now…
Thanks for the Miracle…

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Kelsey 2011/03/12 at 9:40 am

so, i have a 2 year old sister that loves baths. when i go to pull her out of the bathtub my phone slides out of my bra and into a FULL bathtub!!
i tried the rice thing overnight and my phone turns on. here the issue:
-it makes crackeling noises at me
-the touch screen doesnt work AT ALL
-and its super slow and delayed!
whats the best way to revive my touchscreen?!

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Dan 2011/04/16 at 7:59 pm

I recently dropped my touch screen phone into the ocean, and ofcourse in panic turned it on to see if it would work after some later research I read that this can further damage your device because the salt water gets to areas that it wasnt able to get to before. Furthermore I put it in rice and waited maybe 2-3 days. I went to power it on, and it turned on but the battery indicator read many levels one min. it would be 72 percent than 3 percent, so I got a new battery and when I looked at my old one I guess the salt corroded the metal contacts, so I knew there was salt in there still. I was fed up with how long it was taking so I put it in alcohol knowing it would wash away the salt. I turned it on again and this time the screen had alcohal in it dimming it in areas, and right now Im going to leave it, because I’m done waiting! Moral of the story: Electronics + Salt Water = Screwed up phone. Hope I helped you somewhat!

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rachel 2011/05/28 at 10:26 am

well the technique i used was hairdry it as soon as you notice (take out the battery first & sim card & memory card )then after 30 mins of hairdrying use the vacume to get out the hard to reach places & then put it in a wooly sock and stick it on the radiator for 2 hours & then it’ll work , trust me ive used this technique 2 times and once on my friends phone , i know it takes a while but its worth the waiting . hope i helped :)

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Molly 2011/06/17 at 4:07 pm

Being stupid, I put the battery in the alcohol with my phone and now it’s drying. Am I screwed or is there a fix to this?

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Corey 2011/07/08 at 4:51 pm

I went swimming in the ocean with my phone. After about 3 minutes i realized it was in my pocket so in a panic i tried To turn it on. Obviously that didnt work. So i took it apart and wrapped the peices in paper towels. The next day i put the device in rice for 24 hours. I took it out and tried o turn it on… It didn work. I left it in rice for a while until the next morning. Then i plugged it in and the screen started blinking. I then took it apart and put it back in rice for 24 hours. It still didnt work. I got frusterated and blow dried it for 5 minutes and that didnt work eiher! Please help me.

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cameik 2011/07/16 at 1:50 pm

My observations on this topic: if water gets at phone, take battery out IMMEDIATELY. I put a cellphone halfway through a wash cycle, oops. Took it out, battery out, keep it out, stuck the phone in rice after mopping out all the water I could get with tissue… Next day I tried it with the battery again. The screen had horrible watermark, but it was working at least. Next step was to set the oven on at minimum temp, 200 degrees, turn oven off, open door a while 30 seconds? to drop the temp a little, put phone on a clean plate in the middle overnight., phone was PERFECT the next morning, I’m still using it 2 months later…

Alcohol seems to be good idea, but some rubbing alcohol is about 50% water, and I wouldn’t be too sure it wouldn’t react with some of the surface mounted devices making cell phones work.

For those people dealing with salt water, I would as quickly as possible submerge phone (BATTERY REMOVED!) in distilled water if handy, or just run tap water over it for, I dunno, maybe 30 seconds, to dissolve and remove any traces of the salt left in contact with the circuit boards. The salts, if left, will draw moisture right out of the air, you might get it working perfectly right out of the rice, and oven, but moisture in the air on a humid day or if you take the phone with you into a bathroom while you have a shower, could fry it later! I love the vacuum idea, way better than the oven (if you set the temp too high, you fry) , but where do I find this type off vacuum, with a neat little chamber to fit my cellphone in? Maybe this could be a marketable item! Great if you happen to have this around… Hey, how about using a penis enlargement pump, you stick your cell phone in, securely cap the business end, squeeze the lever like you never done before, and leave overnight, woohoo!

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neva 2011/08/03 at 1:25 pm

My SPrint 755 was dropped in a lake, 30′ water…any hopes of saving the data?

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Emily 2011/08/05 at 2:13 pm

All I did was get some salty water on the surface of my touch screen, and now its totally haywire. wasn’t even submerged!

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Steffani 2011/08/21 at 6:39 pm

Hey my daughter spilled her sipi cup on my LG its been in rice for about two hours now Ive turned on once should i try it or just wait? also would the alcohol fix the water marks on the edges of the screen

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Steffani 2011/08/21 at 7:02 pm

also it has three screens now two small ones on top of the big one in the upper two corners…

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sara murillo 2011/08/29 at 9:32 pm

hi my name is sara and my mom put her phone next to a cup tht had ice melting and the watter was close to the phone and it got wet and its been over a month will the rice in a ziploc bag thing work???

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jasmine 2011/09/13 at 9:15 pm

How do you fix a water damage Motorola Cliq????? HELP!!

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alex 2011/09/16 at 11:37 pm

really freaked out!
i just washed my iphone 4, once i took my bedding out it fell out. i was about to hair dry blow it then i heard it can just spread the water and make it worse. so then i when i on mission to find a tiny screw to get into my phone and take the battery out! (not so easy) of course i look like the biggest weirdo walking into lowes, home depot and hardware stores.. oh an at&t (who suck cause they can’t control anything to do with apple..cause apple sucks..) with my iphone in a baggy filled with rice. ugh i just worried cause i feel like i didn’t react enough! an my i’m like 90% sure my phone was still on. what do you think? i’m soooo not liking the idea of having to buy one of craigslist.. don’t even want to think about apple.

anyways to get the battery out! i found a mini phillips head. 0-3 sizing. it worked! and my battery and phone are in a huge baggy filled with uncooked rice. just worried about timing– if i waiting too long.. and how long i should keep it in there. someone help!

:)thanksss:(

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kassy 2011/09/27 at 5:58 pm

okay, dropped my phone in the toilet..before even peeing, js. took the battery out and put it all in rice, next day i turned on the phone, it vibrated with new texts for about a minute, the key pad lit up but the screen is black. any help whatsoever?/:

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Paul Jr 2011/09/28 at 4:54 am

all i do is take the battery out and put ny pphone and battery in a bowl of rice.

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jessie 2011/10/16 at 9:49 pm

my lg remarg got wet while it was charging and i let it ry out all day and everything but the screen works now i can call out but the screen remains black what can i do?

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Nick 2011/10/20 at 2:00 pm

My ipod was sitting in a puddle of water for 8 hours until i realized it was actually there. By some miracle the water detector ring was still white and i just left it out while i went to my classes. works fine just no sound except for with headphones or speaker

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Hailey 2011/11/19 at 1:40 pm

What a resourceful article. I’ve also come across these iLoc Cases that help prevent water and sand damage. Their great for around the pool beach and for things like camping. I got a batch of five for my friends and family for just a couple bucks. Try it out at http://www.ilocstore.com

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Tabitha 2011/12/11 at 1:21 am

Would this method work on a psp cuz if so can someone please let me know… Thanks

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Felicia 2011/12/19 at 11:23 am

im wondering if there is anyway to further fix mine.
ive recently learned dont talk on the phone in the bathroom drunk.

everything works on the phone, but its a touch screen, an i guess its lost its touch, its completely unresponsive.
can i bring it back or am i screwed?

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Sarah 2011/12/25 at 3:37 pm

Last night i my cell fell in the sink (fully submerged) i pulled out the battery and dried it with a cloth. i wasnt home so i couldnt stick it in rice or really do anything. 5 hours after the phone went for a swim i finally put it in rice overnight, then too the blow dryer to it (without battery) and its seems okay. screens a little smudgy, and the trackpad is a little off sometimes but its working okay now. im sure there is still water in there (from the look of the screen) should i risk doing anything else to it?

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shane 2011/12/26 at 6:28 pm

my daughter droped her samsung cell phone in the toilet ,we took the battery out let it all dry and it worked great for a few moments then the screen went all bright white what can i do if anything?plus it keeps going off when i turn it on

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Xbxbdhehe 2012/01/24 at 10:17 pm

I soaked my phone in alcohol because it wasn’t working anyway so I figured I had nothing to lose. It has alcohol in the screen now but that might dry up later? It’s still drying so I’m still hoping for the best

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Bob 2012/01/24 at 10:58 pm

Putting it in an oven works. My phone turned on after I put it for 10 minutes at about 180 degrees. Then again, it melted so the screen is very damaged but still working, the camera lens’ busted and the battery doesn’t fit anymore. But hey, it worked, just make sure it doesn’t melt.

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I drowned it with my tears.. 2012/01/27 at 12:46 pm

This may be the funniest cellphone debilitating experiences you will ever read….I was on the phone and I was having a very intense emotional conversation…I was crying hard…after the phone call I noticed a little water damage on my screen. I wasn’t too concerned seeing that I have dropped it in the snow once and it already had a little. I fell asleep and woke up to my phone screen was not working but, I can hear me recieving texts, phone calls, and my morning alarms went off. The phone is working but the screen wont light up/show… Please help….

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Rod 2012/02/19 at 3:52 pm

any electronic equipment soaked in anything can often be fixed.
1. Remove battery
2. If dropped in any non-oily liquid but clean water, put it in lots of clean water for as long as it was in the liquid.
3. Then, you have to get rid of the clean water. Alcohol works for non electronic watches. (Anybody remember them… you have to oil them afterwards ) According to the posts, alcohol damages some components.
4. If you have only clean water remaining, you can use the dessicant methods or vacuum methods noted in this blog, or you can put the device in an oven to raise the vapor pressure of the remaining water above the water vapor pressure in the surrounding air. The electronics will stand a very high temperature… much greater than boiling water. Some lcd materials are rated at storage temperatures and operating temperatures of up to 80C, (170 degrees fahrenheit) I am pretty sure that 120 degrees in an oven will be fine. Leave it a long time, longer will not hurt.
5. The battery should be sealed and ok. If not, it is cheap.

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jameca 2012/02/19 at 10:39 pm

i really upset about being careless and dropping my cell phone in water. it still works but the mute is stuck. i can hear others, but they can’t hear me. i don’t want to pay alot to get it fixed i bet its simple and they probably try to charge alot. its very frustrating to be without a phone.

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Carl 2012/03/14 at 5:15 pm

Dunked a phone in the pool. Any suggestions?

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AlphaGreen22 2012/03/14 at 5:17 pm

Dunked a phone in a pool. Tried turning it on a bunch, nada. Help please?!

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mj 2012/07/13 at 2:11 am

leave youre phone on a bowl or cup of uncooked rice and let it sit there over night.
it worked with my sidekick 4g

NOTE: you probably should not dry the phone if it has a keyboard or smartphone, but if you have a simple phone then it might work. the wisest choice is to probably leave youre phone in rice MUCH MORE EFECTIVE

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Ronald 2012/07/17 at 2:44 pm

After getting pushed in the pool by my cousin I had my phone in my pocket. I threw it out of the pool RIGHT away. I had to wait about an hour before can get any rice. Everything wrks find now EXCEPT the touch screen. It comes on and can see everything except when i try and touch something it doesnt work. I tried freezing it, putting it in the sun in rice and many other things and t doesn’t work…Please I need help please!

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Ronald 2012/07/17 at 2:44 pm

After getting pushed in the pool by my cousin I had my phone in my pocket. I threw it out of the pool RIGHT away. I had to wait about an hour before can get any rice. Everything wrks find now EXCEPT the touch screen. It comes on and can see everything except when i try and touch something it doesnt work. I tried freezing it, putting it in the sun in rice and many other things and t doesn’t work…Please I need help please!

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Rachel Black 2012/08/02 at 5:38 pm

I have a droid bionic & monday night i dropped in a cup of orange soda mixed with vodka. Its been sitting in a bag of rice since then but i still take it out every now & then to check on it but its still not turning on & i did try the blow drying method but it still didnt do the job. I need help!

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Monica 2012/08/05 at 11:22 pm

I dropped my phone in grease the dot isnt red i put it in rice for about 8 hrs how much longer should I leave it????

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meghan 2012/08/30 at 8:07 pm

okay so i dropped my phone in the gutter when i got out of the car about a year ago. there was very little water and only the back got wet. I immediately took the battery out, dried it off and put it in rice for 2 maybe 3 days. When i got it out it wouldn’t turn on. Now, it turns on and all the buttons work and it holds a charge but the touch screen does not work. I need the phone because I recently ran over my other phone and it works but the screen is busted and it is stuck on vibrate, not to mention it has a hole in the battery and has been dropped in a toilet and fallen off the back of a car at 65 mph and laid in the highway all night while it was pouring rain! Still works though! but anyway back to the point…is there anything I can do for the touch screen on the other phone before buying a new one??

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GaGirl 2012/09/05 at 2:02 pm

Grits ( a southern staple) works just as well as the rice method.

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HG 2012/09/11 at 1:10 pm

With the help of this website, I may have saved my cell phone from the few minutes it spent in the washer. I used a combination of rice and time in a dehydrator. When I turn it on, it appears to be charging the battery and then the green light comes on signifying it is fully charged. However, if I unplug it from electricity, it will go dark. I take this to mean the battery is damaged and not able to be charged. The phone itself seems fine, including the sim card, although I have not actually tried to make a call yet. So here’s my question: can I pursue any further remedy for the battery while a new one is in transit? Can I, for example, try the dehydrator? I did have it in rice for 3 days and had taken it out as soon as I fished the phone out of the washer. Dried it off, used a hair dryer, then put it into the rice but separate from the phone. Is there any hope for this battery at all?

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John paul 2012/10/17 at 10:10 am

Please help me .. my phone soaked in water for about 8 hours .. now i cant touch the screen because theres water … what is the best solution for it ?

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John paul 2012/10/17 at 10:15 am

Please help me !!! .. my phone soaked in water for about 8 hours .. now i cant touch the screen because theres a water … what is the best solution for it ? PLEASE !!!!

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John paul presnillo 2012/10/17 at 10:16 am

Hi everyone !!! Please help me !!! .. my phone soaked in water for about 8 hours .. now i cant touch the screen because theres a water … what is the best solution for it ? PLEASE !!!!

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HG 2012/10/17 at 12:39 pm

Mine was only under water for a few minutes, so I don’t know whether my techniques will work for you. But I took the battery out, put the phone and battery in rice separately for 3 days, then put them in a dehydrator for about a day, then put them in a Beastie Bag. The phone made it, but the battery did not. I think perhaps the rice did the trick and I may not have even needed to do the rest. The only after effect is that the phone will occasionally switch off without my knowing it. Doesn’t happen often, though. Otherwise, it is good as new.

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Charmaine 2012/10/17 at 11:38 pm

What if the device has water damage on it already, and hasn’t gone through this process yet. Could I still be able to revive the phone?

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HG 2012/10/18 at 6:15 pm

I’m not sure what the question means exactly. I think that the longer the phone is exposed to water the harder it would be to revive it, but I don’t know that for sure. I would certainly give it a try. You can’t come out any worse than you already are. And it just might work.

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anand mehta 2012/10/23 at 4:56 am

i liked the 5th method
smash it with hammer and buy a new one

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MT 2013/02/23 at 4:48 am

Some good tips, but it might also be worth considering phone recovery packs – they’re designed for sucking moisture out of electronics and can help bring phones/gadgets back from the dead. Give http://www.rescuetec.com a look for more info – they deliver internationally I think.

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obeythickazz 2013/04/05 at 12:33 pm

your a lyinh mother fucker u dumbass bitch it made it worst fuck u and your fucking plans bitch ass nigga fuck it fuck it
trying to kill me yall pussy ass niggas

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Maddie 2013/07/05 at 3:33 pm

My phones screen is cracked and I sat on a chair by my pool When I got out I saw on the ground with my battery out and the back It had gotten splashed and I took it in tryed to turn it on and the screen went purple so right after that I took out the battery and sim card and put it all in a bag of rice I tried to turn it on after the 24 hour time period I also tryed the vaccume method . My phone works but my screen is a dark blueish color ..How can I fix my screen.! Help……( My phones a touch screen android)

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louis 2014/07/06 at 7:24 pm

I got my phone soaked its a zte z998 I put it in the rice left it over night and it want come on what now

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Reema 2014/09/19 at 1:23 am

Hi All!!…

I Have a new hp slate 6 voice tab.
I accidentlt spilt curd on it.
It was working just fine for a day and so i dint try to dry it.
When I put my phone on a charger, The screen had some weird coloured lines . I tried to remove the battery and air dried it for few hours. Now the screen is just blank. This happened yesterday. Any suggestions pls to save my phone. And is it too late to save it??

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Danielle 2014/11/13 at 6:43 pm

does this work for baby slobber filled devices?

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Paul Van Lierop 2009/06/18 at 10:30 am

Indeed it honestly works, these devices are amazingly resilient and with just a little effort you could literally save hundreds of dollars.

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Paul Van Lierop 2009/06/25 at 7:34 pm

Hmm I have not tried it with salt water. It’s very corrosive so your mileage may vary with that one, if you do it quickly you have much better odds.

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Paul Van Lierop 2009/06/25 at 8:45 pm

Ooh that’s a great tip as well Joe, question is how much would they charge you for the service but for a big ticket item could definitely be worth it.

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Paul Van Lierop 2009/06/26 at 7:33 am

It’s worth a shot especially if it’s not working right now.

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Paul Van Lierop 2009/06/26 at 8:01 am

Keep the battery out of the alcohol for sure, just get it good and dry. And by all means check out some of the ideas in the comments FiscalGeek readers have some skillz themselves.

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Paul Van Lierop 2009/06/26 at 8:04 am

I don’t see why not, but through the wash may be a different story that’s some serious impact they can receive in the washer so you may have other issues, in that case you may want to see my last suggestion :-).

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Paul Van Lierop 2009/06/26 at 8:19 am

Thanks Martin from a true professional, the real key to all of this is to get that battery out. That’s where iPhone’s can be trouble.

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Jazz 2010/02/10 at 2:57 pm

ive tried the alcohol trick… i was scared to leave it in for five munutes so i ried about three. i have not turned my phone on quite yet, but there are still droplets in the screen area.. wat do i do? should i vacuum it?

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Paul Van Lierop 2009/06/26 at 12:42 pm

It could be too late Dave, but once again at this point it doesn’t hurt to try, and I would go for an extended time with a gentle dry like many have recommended here.

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Paul Van Lierop 2009/07/12 at 2:21 pm

If it’s been many days or weeks you might be out of luck. If you have another battery to try give that a whirl as sometimes that could be the culprit other than that it’s more expensive fixes or perhaps ebay sale.

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paul 2009/08/27 at 9:16 pm

Nice work Charlie, think of the money that you’ve saved!

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joe 2010/09/03 at 6:25 am

the alcohol method completely messed up my phone it was working until i used the alcohol now the screen is messed up

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Steve 2010/09/22 at 12:31 pm

If it was working why did you use the alcohol method??

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