Tech Tips

How to fix your water-damaged phone in 8 steps

No matter how smart your phone is, it doesn’t know how to swim.

With all the outdoor water activities that go on during the summer, keeping your phone above water can be a tough task. More claims are filed for device water damage between June and August than any other part of the year – in 2019, Asurion saw an 80% increase in liquid-related claims during the summer months.

The best way to protect your phone from water damage before you head off to the beach or pool? Invest in a floating waterproof phone pouch, like those made my MPOW or JOTO. It’s also a great idea to take steps to prevent your phone from overheating, as that can cause damage as well. But in case your phone does take the plunge, here are important tips from our experts that you’ll want to know.

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Steps to try to fix a water damaged smartphone

Here’s how to get water out of your phone:

  1. If your phone takes a spill, remove it from the liquid immediately. The longer it stays there, the more liquid will seep into the crack around your screen or into various inlets.
  2. Turn the phone off and leave it off.
  3. Remove the protective case.
  4. If possible, open the back and remove the battery, SIM card, and microSD card.
  5. Use a cloth or paper towel to dab your phone dry. Do not rub the phone dry, because it could accidentally push liquid into the phone’s more sensitive parts. If the phone was completely submerged, you might try vacuuming around the phone’s cracks and openings to suck more water out.
  6. Resist the urge to bake your phone in the sun.  Keep it in a cool, dry place.
  7. The old rice trick isn’t very reliable, but silica gel packetslike the ones that often come with new products such as a pair of shoeshave proven to be much more effective. Fill a plastic zip-top bag with silica gel and bury the phone in the bag. Leave your phone in the bag for at least 24-48 hours.
  8. After you’ve allowed your phone to fully dry, switch it on. If it doesn’t turn on right away, try charging it to see if that makes a difference.

If your phone turns back on, great! Still, keep an eye on it over the next week or so, as sometimes certain features won’t work the way they used to.

Does Asurion cover water damage?

While dropping your smartphone into liquid typically voids the manufacturer’s warranty automatically—many phones have indicators that change colors when wet—that isn’t the case when it comes to your smartphone insurance policy. If your phone is covered, you can file a claim at at any time.

Phone water damage FAQs

How can you tell if your phone has water damage?

There are a few obvious signs to look for to confirm water damage to your device:

  • Visual presence of water or evaporation (or dried area markings) behind the screen
  • Corrosion marks visible at ports
  • Discolored Liquid Damage Indicator (LDI). The LDI is typically located in the headphone jack, battery compartment or SIM tray slot. If your phone has water damage, the LDI will appear red or maroon.

Does rice fix water-damaged phones?

According to Asurion tech experts—who get asked this question frequently—putting your water-exposed device in rice may absorb some moisture. However, it may also cause other issues for your phone, such as an introduction of dust and dry starch (a rice byproduct) into your phones cracks and crevices. Rice could also potentially become lodged in your phone’s charging port or headphone jack, which can be extremely difficult to dislodge as rice swells when exposed to liquid.

Can you blow dry a water-damaged phone?

Blow drying your phone when it’s exposed to water is not recommended. While it might remove some of the surface moisture, it will do very little to remove the moisture from inside your device. Not to mention, the heat could do irreparable damage to your phone’s internal components.

How do you remove water from a charging port?

Here’s the steps to take to remove water from a phone’s charging port:​

  1. Turn off the device
  2. Take off the case
  3. Remove the battery (if you can)
  4. Wipe down the device with a dry, absorbent towel
  5. Blow away the excess fluid carefully with compressed air or by carefully blowing on it
  6. Let it sit there and dry out, with open ports facing down

Protect it now.

For more than 25 years, Asurion has helped 300 million customers protect, connect, and enjoy the tech they love most. And smartphones are no exception. Your life is on your device, make sure it’s protected. Learn more about coverage and enroll in a phone insurance plan today.