Apple iPhone 6, 6 Plus: How to Fix a Water-Damaged iPhone

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Apple iPhone 6 iPhone 6 PlusApple iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus might have a long list of features but being waiter resistant is certainly not one of them. In other words, even a little amount of water would be more than enough to warrant a death-sentence for your freshly bought iPhone 6 or iPhone 6 Plus.

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Once water hits the inside of your device, you have a 50/50 chance of having a non-working phone. Not only that, but there are a few stickers on the iPhone that will turn red once water has hit them, making it impossible to fool Geniuses at the Apple Store when you claim that it just stopped working, and decreasing your device’s selling value when you’re ready to get rid of it at a later point in time.

However, there are a few steps that you can take to ensure that you have the highest chance possible of keeping your device working after facing its deadly enemy, and today, we’re going to be sharing these steps with you, in hopes that they may help you in case you do encounter a wet situation.

Steps to Take Immediately

The minute you watch your iPhone 6 or iPhone 6 Plus hit a pool of water, you’re going to be in a frenzy, and it happens. In fact, most people end up playing with the device to ensure that it still works, but this is absolutely the worst thing that you could do. Once removed from the water, immediately turn your device completely off and remove any case that you might have on it. From there, remove the SIM card tray and try using a blow dryer on the device on low-heat in order to soak up as much water as possible.

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Whatever you do, do not attempt to charge it, as this will definitely cause a short-circuit within your device and either cause you to ruin your charging dock, or worse. Once you’ve done all you can, do not attempt to turn it on again. Keep it off, and bring out a large bowl or bag filled with rice, instant rice, oatmeal, food dehydrator, or even cat litter. Stick your iPhone in it, and allow it to sit overnight.

If you do not have any food items available, just allow it to sit in a warm-environment and dry itself out overnight. Make sure that the environment isn’t humid, so a bathroom might not be the best place. Try putting it on a window sill in the kitchen, and allow it to sit in the sun for a bit.

Afterwards

Letting your iPhone sit and dry for 24 hours is the best thing that you can do for it, but if you can, allow it to sit for a few days. Once the device appears to be entirely dry, attempt to turn it on. If all works fine, congratulations, your iPhone 6 lives to see another day. After turning it on, the best things to test are whether or not you can be heard while making phone calls and whether or not your can hear the other person on the line, play music, and attempt to talk to Siri. If all of these functions work fine, your iPhone is in perfect working order.

There are cases where the drop in water is enough to fry the device, and it may not turn on. Don’t go into complete panic mode immediately if it doesn’t turn on, instead, attempt to charge your device. Your battery easily could have died during the encounter with water. If charging it does nothing, either your display, battery, or charging dock has been fried. Once again, don’t panic yet. If you have insurance through Apple, take advantage of this, and ship your iPhone 6 away to get some repairs done. You could also attempt to go to a third-party repair shop, as it may be cheaper, especially if you don’t have insurance.

The Repair Shops

There’s bound to be an iPhone/smartphone repair shop within a 10-mile radius of your house. This is where your iPhone might be able to see the light of day yet again if you don’t have AppleCare+. There are a few things you need to watch out for. First of all, check the reviews on multiple websites of the repair shop to ensure that they’re legitimate. Second of all, make sure they’re not ripping you off and attempting to take your money. You wouldn’t believe how common this is, regardless of whether or not they have great reviews.

If they try to tell you that you need a new home-button flex, volume flex, or anything that sounds absurd as to why it would help you turn your iPhone back on, ask to see the device opened up. Water damage is visible, and you should be able to spot if something isn’t right.

If you’d rather not go to a third-party repair shop, you can still go to Apple, but you will be paying a pretty penny. You can check out repair costs here on their website to see exactly what you would be charged. If you have a close friend who knows a lot about iPhones and repairing them, you could always attempt to go to them as well. Either way, there’s quite a few options to pick from to fix your water-damaged iPhone, so don’t panic!

Please note that these tips do apply for every other device as well, not just iPhones.

1 COMMENT

  1. i really wish people would stop all this advice of using rice and fully drying the device out blah blah blah before taking it to the local repair shop where if received BEFORE the device has been dried out it will be more likely to be saved

    i deal with these phones and devices daily

    if an iphone that has suffered simple water damage it can indeed be dried out and work again
    that cannot be denied

    but what if the water was salt water ? or wine ? any fizzy drink ? any drink containing sugar
    these LIQUIDS all cause lasting damage. electrolytes in these liquids cause the device to short out the small gaps between components causing a voltage build up to go to places it should not be these liquids leave behind deposits that cannot be removed by external drying

    parts of what you have said are indeed correct
    the led/lcd screen in the iphone requires a massive 18 volts to run it this comes from a 4.7 volt battery ( HOW THE F***) i hear you ask ? simple really and to keep it simple for u non tech heads out there lots of tiny tiny parts called capacitors inside your iphone that store and build up the energy from this 4.7 volt battery so it reaches 18 volts

    you can be assured that if your liquid has come into contact with this 18 volts and the liquid is also in contact with several other parts of the phone your motherboard is fried

    if you wish to try drying out your phone at home and destroy any chance you had of having it repaired by someone that knows what to do i would suggest using silica gel packs to help remove the moisture

    these packs do not contaminate the iphone unlike rice
    when the rice comes into contact with water it releases starch and a few other nasties that get sucked into your phone while the water is being sucked out

    rice is more trouble than its worth

    at the end of the day the play list for any liquid damaged phone should be as follows

    the end user ( IE YOU ) should

    remove phone from liquid

    remove battery asap do not wait to power down the device first

    if your battery is sealed into the phone such as the case with some htc sony and iphones switch the device off (do not test it or check things work as that 18 volt will destroy any chip not designed to take it if it makes contact)

    remove all plastics / covers

    remove sim card memory card and open any flaps there are on the phone

    do not attempt to charge the phone

    do not shake the phone to get the water out the capacitors that build up that 18 volt will hold the charge in them for a time after the device has fully powered off if you shake the phone and the water hits these its game over

    cannot stress enough the importance of getting the device to a repair agent before it is fully dry .

    liquid damage procedures for engineers that are currently using the rice method or some other crap they have been told

    step 1
    Disassemble the phone

    step 2
    remove all speakers and cameras from the motherboard of the device

    step 3
    submerge the motherboard in a 99% pure isopropanol cleaning solvent

    step 4
    use an ultrasonic cleaner with the isopropanol cleaning solvent
    (this will send ultrasonic sound waves around the chips that are covered by tin the ipa solution combined with the ultrasonic sound waves will help to erode the built up debris on the chips and save you from having to remove the tinwork and repoint the solder legs

    step 5
    while the motherboard is in the cleaner (30 mins) you can begin to clean up the rest of the phone
    start with the plugs and sockets pay close attention to high voltage areas like the charging port and lcd connection

    (note: while the motherboard is in the solution you mat need to assist the cleaning process by turning the board over or even using a soft toothbrush to help remove debris)

    step 6
    dry off the motherboard with a lint free anti static cloth (pat the outside of the board dry taking care not to dislodge any small components)

    step 7
    use a hot air gun with a variable temperature and air flow control to dry off the solution that remains under the tinwork the ipa solution has a boiling point of around 60 – 70 °C you need not go any hotter than this

    step 8
    reassemble the phone roughly as a test phase start with as little attached as you can get away with
    connect the lcd screen so you can see but not the digitizer,camera or home button flex
    attempt to switch the phone on at this point if everything loads up fine at this point pull the battery flex to power down the phone

    reconnect the digitizer and repeat this time testing its function
    you can now use the power button and swipe to switch the phone off
    add in the home button and front camera flexs test and shut down
    add in the charging port and loud speaker test all speakers microphones top and bottom and charging port for both charge and data transfer and shut down
    add in the rear camera test and shut down
    you have tested the guts of the phone

    step 9
    rebuild guts of phone fixing everything in place with correct screws of correct length and thickness

    step 10
    insert sim card and check network signal wifi and bluetooth ( please be sure to have rear of phone reconstructed for this test as the phone uses the frame to boost signals

    step 11
    rebuild phone give it a full charge and test every function
    make sure battery is not draining too fast

    step 12
    return phone to very happy customer

    if this method did not solve your issue you may have shorted components there are plenty of places to look for reference material on the subject and even schematics that will tell you what voltages should be at what point.

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