How To: Fix Water Damage to your iPhone

Thursday 3 May 2012

I should probably own up that I’m the type of clumsy, accident-prone person that frequently knocks things over, drops, spills and is generally a catastrophe. I would dearly love to be poised and elegant, but the truth is that I’m just not.
So last night, I managed to drop my iPhone in a sink full of water. Shouldn’t have really had it anywhere near the sink, but there you go. I managed to scoop it out really fast, but it still started going a little haywire. It was still working, but it kept randomly locking itself etc- clearly not good. A friend told me the following trick to sort it out and it really worked:

1) Switch the phone off immediately. Electronic charge and water never mix.
2) Insert the phone into a sealed ziplock sandwich bag or a lidded Tupperware container (anything airtight) with a few scoops of rice, so it’s completely submerged.

They told me to leave it four days, but because I’m surgically attached to my phone, I only left it on overnight. But now it works fine! The rice works to draw the moisture gently out of the phone without using heat (which can damage the phone further).

What works even better than rice are those silica grains that you get sachets of inside new handbags or shoes. Either stockpile these when you get some new clothes or you can buy a large bag from craft stores (and probably eBay). Quicker is better as it doesn’t give the water a chance to cause any corrosion. I might well purchase some silica beads ‘just in case’ this happens again.

Although I have insurance for water damage, there’s still an excess to pay and the phone would have had to be sent away for a while, whereas this method has worked perfectly for me. I know the Apple Care warranty doesn’t cover water damage, so I think this could be a real problem for some people, so I’m urging you to try the rice method!
A couple of people I told this to thought it must be an urban legend, but it did work for me – and lots of other people are saying the same when I searched it online. Definitely worth a try if you are clumsy like me!


  1. This comment has been removed by the author.

  2. Use a plastic case opener or prying tool. You must push down on and stretch the black rubber seal that goes between the silver bezel and the glass. Best to damage it in only one spot directly above one of the screw holes near the home button. Razor blades or screwdrivers will not easily fit between the bezel and glass or exert pressure in the right place. It takes some depth to get under the glass and black plastic home button frame to lift it up. The glass can easily be cracked (or cracked worse) with the wrong tools or pressure. This could also result in glass particles flying directly into your eye.
    Iphone 4 Glass Replacement Kit