Your iPhone has become wet, what should you do with water damage? In this tip, you can read everything about dealing with moisture damage, possible solutions and where you can find help.
If the iPhone falls into the water (sink, rain puddle, washing machine or toilet bowl, it does not matter) then there is no loss of time to limit possible moisture damage. There are all kinds of ways in which your iPhone can suffer water damage: it falls into the water, you throw liquor over it, it gets sweaty during exercise or your raincoat does not turn out to be completely waterproof. Take action quickly to prevent moisture damage as much as possible. Below you can read which steps you have to take, depending on the type of water damage.
In some situations, you do not know whether there is moisture in the iPhone. Sometimes it looks as if the iPhone has only become slightly damp on the outside, but parts of it have gradually appeared to have been corroded. The damage you notice later. That is why it is important to immediately intervene if your iPhone has become wet.
- Moisture damage
- Switch off
- Do not: rice and hair dryer
- Moisture sensors
- Switch on again
- Still broken?
- Prevent water damage
# 1 how serious is the iPhone water damage?
First, you have to estimate how big the damage is. Has an iPhone been in the washing machine for minutes or at the bottom of the pool, then you can do with all kinds of home remedies, but chances are that the inside of the iPhone is completely soaked with water. In that case, you should consult a specialist who can clean the inside of the device. If the damage is limited, for example, because you have thrown a glass of water over the appliance or because splash water from rain or the shower has entered the appliance, there is still sufficient chance of recovery.
# 2 immediately switch off iPhone
Turn off a wet iPhone as soon as possible, to prevent short circuit and further damage. You do this by holding down the power button on the top and until the scroll bar appears. Keep in mind that you cannot use the iPhone for a few days. If you turn the iPhone back on while there is still moisture in it, you still risk damaging internal components. This is of course especially true for iPhones that have been completely submerged in water. Also, do not attempt to charge the iPhone in the meantime.
Once the iPhone is turned off, it is important to remove any protective cover and remove the SIM card. Hold the iPhone upside down and shake cautiously. In this way, you remove moisture that may end up in openings of the iPhone. Then rub the iPhone dry with a towel, tea towel, paper towel, sweater or a well-absorbent soft cloth.
IHB reader Frank sent us the tip to put your iPhone in a vacuum, for example under a dome, so that the water evaporates faster. You could also try using a vacuum cleaner to get the remaining moisture out, through the various openings in the device.
# 3 How waterproof is your iPhone?
Is your iPhone watertight, then it is less bad than when you have a model that lets water in easily. Since the iPhone 6, Apple has applied rubber around the buttons and openings, making water penetrate less quickly into the device.
With the iPhone 7 and newer, the devices are further sealed, although no iPhone is really waterproof. If a device is in the water for a long time, water will still enter the housing. With newer iPhones, an IP67 value applies and that means that the device has been tested at a depth of 1 meter and a duration of 30 minutes. As you use the device for longer, water resistance will decrease.
Which iPhones are waterproof?
Which iPhones are waterproof? Can you take a shower and walk in the rain? And does it mean that previous iPhones are not water-resistant? In this article, you can read which iPhones are waterproof and not.
# 4 Do not: put iPhone in rice
You often hear that you have to put a wet iPhone in rice, but according to Ferry Timmer of The Fixables that is not a good idea, because the moisture can not escape:
“It is the worst thing you can do. What we do is first switch off the iPhone and open it. If corrosion has already occurred, we use contact spray to remove the deposit and then a washing spray. If there is still some corrosion left behind, then the iPhone goes to our genius. But in general: the wetter an iPhone enters, the better “.
# 5 Drying with a hair dryer or on the heating? Rather not
You could use a cold hair dryer to dry your iPhone, but there is a risk that you will blow in moisture, making the damage to your iPhone even worse. A hot hair dryer is also not recommended, just like laying it down in bright sunlight. The heat causes condensation and the hot air from the hair dryer can cause certain plastic materials to melt or deform.
Placing at room temperature is a great idea, but do not put your iPhone in an oven, on a stove or central heating system.
# 6 Check the moisture sensors in the iPhone
After you have let the iPhone dry you can check whether the moisture sensors have come into contact with water. Each iPhone is equipped with multiple sensors, which turn red when there has been contacting with water. If that is the case, Apple can refuse the repair. Moisture damage is always excluded unless you have AppleCare +. You can easily check this by looking at the sensor, possibly by shining a light in the opening.
# 7 Blowing water out of the speaker
The iPhone 7 and newer are more resistant to water, but of course, there is always water in the speaker. A solution has been found for the Apple Watch: the water seal. This allows you to empty the speaker after use by playing a certain tone. This is possible with the iPhone, but it is not standard. You will have to find a suitable tone yourself or use the Sonic app. This app plays a tone of up to 25,000 Hz. A tone around 160-170Hz is often enough to make the water vibrate out.
# 8 How long do I have to wait with turn on?
How long you have to wait for the iPhone to be switched on again is difficult to say: this depends on the question where the water has settled and how much moisture there is in the iPhone. On the outside, you have no view on that. We advise you to wait two days to turn on your iPhone, but it is always wise to be more patient and not to use the device for a few days and not to recharge in the meantime. In the case of serious water damage, it is best not to switch on your device at all and first have a specialist look at it.
If your device has been in contact with water for a short time and you have a virtually watertight iPhone, you can switch it on again after a few days to see if it works as it should.
If after about 72 hours the iPhone just functions again, then you probably were lucky. But keep in mind that there may still be some residual moisture in the iPhone, causing a build-up on the connectors and components. To extend the life of your iPhone you can possibly visit a repairer to have the iPhone checked internally.
# 9 What to do if your iPhone is broken?
If your iPhone has not survived its dive into the water bath, an iPhone insurance can offer a solution. Sometimes water damage and mistakes are covered. Has someone else thrown your iPhone in the water, then you can use the general liability insurance for private individuals? Almost every private individual has taken out such insurance, often as part of a package.
Water damage is never covered by the iPhone guarantee, even with appliances that should be virtually watertight. Do you have AppleCare + you can have the device repaired fairly cheaply by Apple? With AppleCare + also damage caused by yourself covered.
Do not you have AppleCare +, iPhone water damage is not covered by the warranty. You then have two options: you can go to an external repair company or exchange your broken iPhone at Apple for a refurbished iPhone. For approximately € 200 you can exchange an Apple iPhones that can no longer be repaired for a new one. Usually, these are refurbished devices that can not be distinguished from new ones.
# 10 Prevent iPhone water damage: use a waterproof case
If you work in an environment with lots of water, for example as a sailing instructor or as a lifeguard in the pool, you can prevent water damage with a waterproof iPhone case. In the overview below you can see which covers protect your iPhone against water damage. This is one of the best ways to protect yourself from water damage. If you do not have such a cover and go to the beach, for example, a Ziploc bag is a good first barrier against sand, dust, and water.
Most common iPhone water damage
The following water damage is most common when an iPhone has been in contact with moisture:
- iPhone is no longer on: there may be a short circuit or the water has affected the internal components. As a result, the electrical circuits can no longer work. You can not fix this yourself, so go to a specialist if you want to get the iPhone working again. With a hard reset, you can check whether the iPhone really does not work anymore.
- iPhone does not want to charge: there is probably a problem with the charging port. The Lightning port is one of the places where electrical components are exposed unprotected, which increases the risk of corrosion. Prevent further damage by ensuring that the Lightning port is completely dry before reconnecting the phone. This prevents short circuit and further corrosion. Are you sure that it is no moisture damage, then there may be something wrong with your iPhone battery?
- The screen has water damage: this can be recognized by lines or dark spots under the screen. Switch off your iPhone and have a specialist watch it. Repairing yourself is usually not an option.
How bad your device depends on whether your iPhone is waterproof. How water-resistant the device depends on the IP value. With an iPhone 7 or newer, this is IP67.
Other possible problems with water damage:
- The microphone is broken: we have a separate article in which we explain what you can check to make sure that the microphone is faulty.
- Home button does not work: you can have this repaired and in the meantime use this trick: Home button defective, try Assistive Touch.
- Other buttons do not work: if the volume buttons are broken, you can continue to use most functions. You then adjust the volume via the software. If you want to continue using your iPhone for a longer time, you can have the button repaired.
- Speaker sounds strange: maybe there is moisture in the speaker, that you can vibrate with tip # 7. If the speaker does not work at all, you can still listen via a connected external speaker, earbuds or a Bluetooth speaker.