“Never put your phone in the back pocket of your jeans,” I told my daughter. (She had her phone in the back pocket of her jeans when I said this.) But she took my warning for what it was: Mourning. She hugged me. It was well known by now that I had drowned a brand-new Nexus phone, a device I loved a little too much, in exactly this way. Instead of arguing with me, she took her phone out of her pocket. “It’ll be okay,” she assured me. “You’ll get another phone. Look on the bright side,” she offered. “At least it was a ‘before’ toilet drowning.” She was right, of course. And I moved on. But I never put a phone in a back pocket. Never. It’s too dangerous.
It seems, though, that if I had known what to do in a phone-drowning emergency, I could have saved that phone. The people at TekDry — a company that specializes in resuscitating drowned phones — sent me some tips.
“The optimal window of opportunity to restore a wet electronic device,” explains Adam Cookson, TekDry’s co-founder. “Is less than forty-eight hours. It’s always best to act as soon as possible.” I knew that much. And I did act quickly. But I, apparently, did all the wrong things.
Read TekDry’s tips now so that when this happens to you, you will know what to do.
TekDry recommends the following list of tips to save a wet phone:
1. DO NOT plug in your phone – Electricity and water just don’t mix.
2. DO power off the phone – This will help prevent a short circuit.
3. DO remove the battery if possible –Separating the battery from the phone helps to keep electricity away from the waterlogged components. This minimizes the chances of irreversible damage.
4. IF it was dropped in salt water, DO rinse it in fresh water – Salt water will almost certainly corrode and short the phone and will do more damage than fresh water, so it is best to remove any traces of salt water quickly.
5. DO dry with paper towel or washcloth – Removing any visible water from the phone will keep it from seeping into the phone and doing more damage.
6. DO NOT use rice – This method is ineffective as demonstrated in the study announced today.
7. DO NOT use a blow dryer or oven – The heat from these methods often warp and damage the sensitive equipment inside your phone.
8. DO NOT use a microwave – A major component of electronic devices is metal and metal in a microwave is a recipe for disaster.
9. DO call TekDry – TekDry’s technology is most effective when implemented as soon as possible within the first 48 hours. If your phone can’t be restored, you pay only a small portion of the shipping cost.
Here is a video from TekDry explaining how it works.