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This is What Happens When Your Smartphone Gets Wet

When your Smartphone is wet, water quickly enters the device in several ways and causes serious damage.

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We’ve all been there, or know someone who has. You are taking a picture at the pool, calling someone in the rain, or accidentally dropping your phone into the toilet. When a smartphone gets wet, a variety of things can happen to the internal mechanics of the phone and it’s important to know how your device is affected.

How Does the Water Get Inside a Phone?

Today’s phone models have several openings and crevices in which water can find its way to the internal memory and other functioning parts. Some of the key areas where liquid can enter your device include:

  • Charging port
  • Headphone jack
  • Microphone
  • Speaker

It isn’t difficult for your phone to become water-logged and even a few drops from a nearby puddle splash can cause problems. Of course, full-fledged submersion of a phone in water can spell catastrophe for iPhone and Android phone users alike. Some phone cases provide covers for the openings, but there is no guarantee water won’t bypass even a covered device. 

Severity of Water Types on a Phone

The variety of liquids that can damage a phone have different chemical makeups that can result in different water-damaged scenarios. The pH balance of fluids is the measurement of how acidic or basic a substance is. A number less than 7 is an acid and more than 7 is a basic or alkaline. Either end of the scale is not desired for a phone. Water can be categorized into a few types that damage phones in different ways.

  • Pool water–this is full of chlorine, which keeps the pool sanitary and cuts down on bacteria, but the chemical can erode the rubber gaskets and other parts that protect your device.
  • Saltwater–this type of liquid can lead to corrosion in the phone that happens quickly after the initial exposure. 
  • Freshwater–though there are not nearly as many chemicals in freshwater, it can still lead to built-up residue on phone components and short circuit the device

How to Tell if Your Phone is Water Damaged

As mentioned above, when your phone is exposed to water, the internal parts that store memory and allow the phone to carry out essential functions will cease to work properly. Different parts will be affected including the integrated circuits, capacitors, and resistors. All of these are embedded on the printed circuit board. These mechanics have intricate and tiny pieces that fit together to keep your phone functioning properly. 

There are several warning signs that your phone is water-damaged:

  • Sound including phone calls and music will sound distorted
  • Static in your sound when connecting headphones
  • Inability to charge
  • Dark display screen or distorted picture

In addition to these signs, some phones will have a liquid contact indicator which is a sticker that changes color when in contact with water. It is found either next to the SIM slot in an iPhone or under the battery in an Android. 

Water damage is a serious issue that can cause damage to your device rapidly. If your phone has fallen into water, whether in the environment or a washing machine, call Secure Data Recovery to retrieve your files. Our engineers have decades of experience dealing with water-damaged devices. Call 1-800-388-1266 to start your case today.

 

See related posts:

Do’s and Don’ts of Saving Water-Damaged Phones

Why your Phone May Not Be as Waterproof as You Think

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