Best ways to dry a wet cell phone

A wet cell phone can be very stressful but try not to panic. The following advice will not only help you dry your cell phone as quickly and effectively as possible but it can also help you prevent unnecessary liquid or moisture damage as well.

Before worrying about drying your wet phone make sure to…

Prevent further exposure

Remove the phone from the water or moisture as quickly as possible. If you dropped your phone in the toilet take it out of the toilet, if you realized you left your phone in your pants pocket when washing your laundry then stop the washer find those pants and retrieve your phone. Whatever the circumstance separate your phone from that source of moisture as quickly as you can.

Don’t press anything

Avoid the temptation to test your phone to see if it’s still working. Do NOT press anything that you do not have to press. Do NOT use your phone until it has had enough time to completely dry.

Cut the power

If water or some other liquid was just dropped onto your phone, your phone was just dropped or submerged in water, or if your phone was just exposed to moisture in some other way shape or form then the first thing that you need to do is to try and cut the power to the phone in order to decrease the possibility of an electrical short.

Pull the battery

If your phone is designed to allow you to remove the battery then take out the battery immediately. Don’t bother turning your phone off; do not wake it up if the screen is asleep, just pull out the battery without delay.

Non-removable battery

Not every phone allows its user to pull out its battery. If your phone is designed with a non-removable battery then go ahead and power your phone off like you normally would. But power it off right away and without delay.

Take off all external accessories

In order to allow your phone to breathe a little easier go ahead and take off all of the external accessories such as a protective case, its memory card (if it has one), its SIM card (if it has one), its battery cover (if applicable), etc. Take those pieces off of the phone, dry them with a clean dry cloth and then set them aside so that you can focus on drying your cell phone.

How NOT to dry a wet cell phone

I know that the topic of this post is supposed to be how to dry a wet cell phone but as a bonus I am going to include 5 things that you should NOT do to dry a phone that has been exposed to moisture or dropped in liquid.

Some of the following may not make sense until you read why you shouldn’t do it while other drying methods might seem a bit silly. Make no mistake though these are some legitimate questions I have received and have run across and none of the following methods should be used to help dry your phone.

Do NOT use a blow dryer

This is a very common mistake but you might want to think twice before using a blow dryer to dry out your smartphone. It is perfectly alright to use a blow dryer to dry your hair but it’s not a good idea to use a blow dryer to dry a cell phone as it can actually force moisture deeper into the phone (which you don’t want to do) and a blow dryer also produces heat which could damage parts of the phone as well.

Do NOT use compressed air

Do not use a compressed air duster (air in a can) or an air compressor. Like a blow dryer this can force liquid deeper into the phone and actually cause damage instead of prevent it.

Do NOT try to dry your phone using an oven

This is one of the most bizarre suggestions I have run across on the topic of drying an electronic like a smartphone. Do not “set your oven to warm and cook your phone over night” ever! This is an actual suggestion I found while browsing online one night and I’ve never forgotten it. Don’t ever cook your phone in an oven.

Do NOT put your phone in the freezer

Not only will this not assist in drying the phone but it can have quite the opposite effect and allow additional moisture to enter the phone. Even worse is that any moisture in the phone can expand once it has frozen and cause some serious damage to the phone and its hardware.

Do NOT shake the phone

Do not try to shake any liquid off of the phone or try to shake any liquid that might have gotten into the phone out of the phone. This could cause the liquid within the phone to spread to different areas of the device and inadvertently cause unnecessary liquid damage.

How to dry a wet cell phone

Here is a list of some of best ways to dry a wet cell phone…

Open air

If you’re hiking in the woods and you are using your phone as an MP3 player and after a long energetic stretch you lean down to refill your canteen at a small river or stream and cur-plunk your phone falls out of your shirt pocket and into the water. Your shirts and other cloths are wet and sweaty and you have nothing to really dry your phone with, then air drying your phone can sometimes be the best or only option available.

Dry cloth

This is one of the quickest and easiest ways to dry off the outside of your cell phone. Just remember to try not to tilt your phone too much while drying the outside of it with a clean dry cloth, especially if you believe that water may have gotten inside of your phone. You don’t want to accidently cause water to spread to other areas inside of the phone.

Windowsill or desk lamp

This pretty much goes hand in hand with air drying a cell phone. Sun bathing your cell phone or allowing it to bask under a desk lamp can help apply enough heat to help moisture evaporate while at the same time not causing too much heat to be applied to the phone which might actually damage your phone.

These two drying methods are often a good choice to use if you notice any moisture or liquid underneath or around the screen of your phone.

Dry your phone with a vacuum

While blowing air deeper or further into your phone might not be a good idea, sucking the moisture out of the phone might not be a bad option. I myself found this method of drying a phone to be very clever but a tad difficult to actually accomplish effectively.

If you do try to suck the moisture out of the phone using a vacuum cleaner then try to make sure to ground yourself first in order to avoid introducing an electrical discharge (like a static shock) to the phone.

Kitty litter

Kitty litter is great at absorbing moisture and can be used to try and absorb the moisture within your phone.

If you choose to put your phone into a sealed container with some kitty litter I suggest that you not only use clean and fresh kitty litter (naturally) but you might also consider wrapping your phone in some paper towels or some other material which will allow the phone to breath but which will prevent any small particles within the kitty litter from getting into the phone.


Uncooked rice is one of the most well known go-to products for trying to speed up the drying process of a cell phone but instant rice might even be slightly better at absorbing moisture if you have access to some.

Just like kitty litter you might want to wrap the phone loosely in a paper towel before burying your phone in rice just to keep any rice from finding its way into places where it doesn’t belong.

Silica gel packets

Silica gel packets are one of if not the best tools to use when drying a cell phone. As desiccants there are few things more effective at absorbing moisture than silica gel. Include a few of these packets with your cell phone inside of a tightly closed container and let them get to work on drying your smartphone or other electronic.

Chances are you have seen or found small silica gel packets before in your new box of shoes or stowed away in a favorite snack and if you have a few of these packets lying around they might not be very effective in their current state but did you know that you can revive used up and already saturated silica gel packs with a little bit of heat? There are plenty of tutorials online that you can follow for reviving silica gel packs but this won’t do you any good if you don’t already have any packets lying around.

Luckily silica gel packs are extremely affordable online so if you don’t have any at the moment you can stock up and invest in some for a pretty reasonable price. Just remember that you don’t have to throw them away after you have used them. You can dry them out and use them again. There are actually quite a few creative things that you can use silica gel packs for around the house but that’s a whole other topic all together.

Other honorable mentions

Phone drying kit

If you’re really lucky your local retail store might carry a phone drying kit and may have one in stock just waiting to be purchased, but if not then you can look into investing in one of these phone drying kits through an online store like Amazon.

Isopropyl alcohol

While it is true that isopropyl alcohol is a liquid and the idea of using a liquid to dry a cell phone doesn’t make a whole lot of sense, 99% isopropyl alcohol is a fantastic tool to use on a wet cell phone. For a more detailed guide you can review how to use 99% isopropyl alcohol as an effective tool when combating moisture but basically 99% isopropyl alcohol can help absorb water or moisture into itself, it is non-conductive, it can help clean sticky or other messy substances and can even help remove undesirable minerals or prevent unwanted substances or deposits from getting left behind after the phone has had time to dry.

Not to mention that isopropyl alcohol also has a pretty quick evaporation rate compared to water and most other liquids so it can even help your phone to dry out a little quicker.

Recap and conclusion

Drying your smartphone should be a top priority if your phone is ever accidently or unavoidably dropped in liquid or exposed to some type of moisture.

Just remember to try and make a conscious effort to allow any moisture on or within your phone to dry completely before attempting to use it again. If the phone is tested or turned on and used before it has had time to dry completely then this could cause unnecessary and even permanent damage to the phone which can be easily avoided.

Once you have given your phone enough time to dry then with any luck you will be able to put everything back together again, turn on your phone and it will work just like it did before.

If that’s the case then enjoy your nice and dry working cell phone and thanks for visiting this guide.

If however your phone has dried but is not responding correctly or something is not working properly then this could indicate a few things and further action may be required.

Cell phone isn’t working properly even after drying it completely

If your phone doesn’t seem to work properly even after it has had time to dry out completely you may need to try this little trick. It can often be used to help fix or revive a cell phone that’s having problems after having been dropped in liquid or exposed to moisture.

Thanks for reading

Thanks again for reading. If you have any questions then don’t hesitate to browse this website for additional information. It’s packed with useful tips, tricks and advice concerning your phone.

If you liked this guide then don’t hesitate to leave a friendly remark in the comments section below and or simply share it by taking a second to press the Facebook Like or Google + buttons below this post.

I wish you and your phone the best of luck and hope you have a wonderful day.

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