What do you do if your iPhone ends up in the bath, or the sink, or going through the wash?
I could have subtitled this blog ‘toddlers, and why we can’t have anything nice anymore’, but to be honest I’m just as much to blame for destroying phones as they are.
The first iPhone scuba episode happened about 8 months ago when I was supervising bath time and kept spotting a new black bath toy under the bubbles. Took me about 5 minutes to work out bath toys generally aren’t black or phone shaped . Lesson one – iPhones don’t float.
Keep it Clean
My language was anything but when I got the sheets out of the washing machine to find my phone wrapped up in them. I should have listened when everyone kept telling me that phones before bed are a bad thing.
Not a dry eye in the house
I had NO idea how much I rely on my phone until it was gone (cue 1980’s ballad). I have now realised that my social, work, intellectual, navigational, financial, educational and parenting life are all run exclusively by my phone, not to mention the 500 photos I had been meaning to back up for ages. I needed a fast fix.
Like watching paint dry
Fortunately there is a fix – unfortunately it’s not a quick one. The absolute first thing you have to do is to resist the almost uncontrollable urge to plug your phone in. If it’s got water inside of it then it will probably have shut down in self defence. Your first instinct will be to deny that it got that wet and that your battery must have just run out, and that a quick charge will fix everything. As we all know electricity and water generally don’t mix too well and a premature charge up will see the insides of your phone fried forever and your precious data gone with it.
The second thing you have to do is to take your SIM out and put it somewhere safe. (apologies if that last bit sounds patronising, but if you’re reading this you’re probably as hopeless with electronics as I am, and will forget that the SIM is quite an important part of the phone).
The third thing you need to do is to find an airtight container, fill it with rice and stick your phone in there. I’ve since read that rice dust can also be damaging to your phones insides but I’d reckon my phones chances against rice dust than 30 litres of water.
The final, and most difficult, thing you need to do is to leave your phone there for as long as you can manage – at least 48 hours at a minimum but up to a week is great. The longer you can leave it the more chance you have of being able to switch it on again.
I tried mine after 48 hours, plugged it straight into my computer and managed to rescue all of my photos and back my data up to iTunes.
I’ve even tried this method for toys – our Leapfrog alphabet game got washed up in the sink – I stuck it straight in the rice and it worked again after a few days.
Don’t Add Water
Although your phone is now switched on and you’ve rescued your data, your iPhone may never be the same again. Similar to the Gremlins, iPhones generally don’t mix well with water and you may find that Siri now speaks in a Russian accent, your camera gives a misty, underwater filter to all photos, and your calls sound like they’re being made from Mars. This is when to call in the experts. Our local mobile phone hospital opened mine up last time and gave it a proper dry for free (I’ve been a bit of a regular customer) and it’s been as good as gold ever since.
Now if someone could only give me a cheap fix for my smashed screen my phone will be as good as new!