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Video:How to Revive a Waterlogged Cell Phone

with Jonathon E. Stewart

So your phone decided to take a dip in the drink, but don't despair - your handset just might have a fighting chance for survival. See how to fix a waterlogged cell phone.See Transcript

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Transcript:How to Revive a Waterlogged Cell Phone

Hey guys - Jonathon Stewart here for About.com. If you've ever gotten an e-mail from a friend that reads, "phone died - please send numbers - thanks," then you're not alone. And, if you've ever washed, bathed, swum with, or dropped your cell phone in your cocktail or the toilet, you're not alone either. But before you leave it for dead, give these simple cell phone savers a shot. Check it out.

Cell Phones and Water

Cell phones, Blackberries, and other handheld electronic devices are generally not functional when wet, and are rarely waterproof. Comprised of scores of tiny circuits and electronic receptors, sometimes exposure to water - particularly soaking - can mean the demise of your phone. But not always. Just know that your odds are probably somewhere around the 50-50 mark realistically - but at the prices of phones these days, those are odds I'll take.

Dry the Phone

Before you do anything else, power down your phone and remove the battery. If the phone was off when doused, chances of its recovery are much higher. Next, dry the phone and battery as much as possible with a lint-free towel. Gently shake any water out of the inside too.

Avoid Water-Soaked Cell Phone Myths

Whatever you do, do not use a hair dryer, oven, or microwave to dry the inside of your phone. There are some oven-related success stories out there, but there are also some unreported melted plastic messes, too. All those little circuits inside your phone are extremely heat sensitive, so give this route a shot instead.

Draw Moisture From the Phone

Submerge your phone in a bowl of dry, uncooked rice, and let it sit overnight. The rice will help to draw out the moisture from your phone, and won't damage it in any way. In the morning, replace your battery and try powering it back up. If it's still a no go, give the rice bath another day or so and try again.

Use Rubbing Alcohol

You might also try soaking the handset in rubbing alcohol, which should force out the water, and evaporate relatively quickly. Just give it a full day to dry on its own before attempting to power it back up. If you're still out of luck, try taking it to a certified technician at the cell phone store, but be prepared for the worst.

Finally, whatever you do, don't lie about soaking your phone to an employer or warranty department. Many phones have small, irreversible indicators that are telltale signs that you've soaked your phone. In the future, you can always keep your phone in a water-tight ziploc baggie. But I guess that's not really very practical.

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