Help! Dropped iPhone 4 in toilet!

Discussion in 'iPhone Tips, Help and Troubleshooting' started by Portal83, Aug 14, 2010.

  1. Portal83 macrumors regular

    Jun 1, 2009
    Ok. So I'm freaking out right now and never thought I'd be one of those people, but I just dropped my phone in the toilet for less than a second. I immediately took it out, dried the holes with a toothpick and Kleenex, and held it over but away from my stove.

    I'm typing this from my iPhone so it appears to not be too damaged. The camera lens is slowly drying out and the error message about non-supported accessory seems to be going away.

    Should I count myself lucky and jut leave it or is there something I should do?
  2. The General macrumors 601

    Jul 7, 2006
    Put it in a bowl of dry uncooked rice and wait til the morning.

    You've done so many bad things. Never put your phone over the stove. Never drop it in the toilet. Never power a device on that you've dropped in the toilet.

    The only thing to do once you've dropped something in water is:

    1. Turn it off immediately and remove the battery if possible.
    2. As fast as you can run, get to the kitchen and burry the phone in uncooked rice.
    3. Wait 24 hours

    Then try turning it on.
  3. Portal83 thread starter macrumors regular

    Jun 1, 2009
    Thank you.

    I can't remove the battery but I've turned it off and buried it in rice...I'm going to have a sleepless night with a lot of praying.

    I'm really hoping the fact that it's 'mostly' working is a good sign but don't want to be too optimistic.
  4. Dominat0r macrumors 6502a


    Jul 25, 2009
    leave it in there for a couple days at want it to be completely DRY inside and out before you turn it in.

    90% of the time, the water doesnt kill your trying to turn your phone on after its been in water is what does it.

    When you think its been enough, let it sit another day.

    Dont use heat, nothing like that..just the rice and time....good luck, hope your phone isnt gone.

    PS- if you have any silca gel packs laying around (i keep them when i get them) toss them in there too...silca gel is as absorbent as rice, if not more.
  5. Bandolier macrumors 6502a

    Aug 2, 2010
    Probably shouldn't have turned it on. Most impatient neanderthals will immediately turn on a wet electronic to see if it's working. What a stupid risk. Always put it in rice for at least 3 days before attempting to turn it on. It's not the water itself that causes the damage, it's the electronics coursing through the gadget and coming into contact with water that causes the short.
  6. Portal83 thread starter macrumors regular

    Jun 1, 2009
    After 1 night in rice it appears to be good as new, or at least pre-swim.
  7. DeLoMan macrumors regular

    Nov 6, 2008
    While I've never done this, an expert once told me to turn off the device and immediately put it in a bowl filled with 91% Ispropyl alcohol. The alcohol goes in and forces any water out of the device and then the alcohol evaporates in seconds once removed. I would still leave the phone alone for a day or two after removing from the alcohol before turning it on.
  8. nooaah macrumors 68000


    Sep 3, 2009
    Philadelphia, PA
    Was it really necessary to call him a neanderthal?
  9. ideal.dreams macrumors 68020


    Jul 19, 2010
    Consider yourself extremely lucky. As it's been said, you have done many wrong things.

    It's a habit, and I know you want to see if your phone works after being water damaged, but NEVER, EVER try to turn it on after it's been dropped in water. This will send electricity through it and short-circuit your phone, which will pretty much make it an expensive paper weight.

    For the record, when a phone is dropped in water, follow these steps:
    1. NEVER, turn it on. It will short-circuit the phone, and you're really screwed then.
    2. Immediately put it in uncooked rice. Rice will absorb the excess water in the phone. Leave it in for a few days to assure it's completely dry.
    3. If you're lucky, your phone will turn on.
  10. spoonk7 macrumors member

    Aug 15, 2010
  11. Rainbeaux macrumors newbie

    Oct 17, 2010
    Worked for me :)

    Thank you so much about the rice tip. I was getting the "device is not compatible with this accessory" notice even though it wasn't plugged into anything. I came here, tried the rice tip and now it's perfect. Thanks!
  12. wacky4alanis macrumors 6502a

    Mar 18, 2009
    Here's my toilet story... my wife dumped her 3G into the toilet on Sunday - fell out of her coat pocket. She fished it out and immediately turned it off. After drying it out, everything is working except the LCD backlight is not turning on, so it's next to impossible to see the display. If I hold it under a bright light, I can see enough to know that everything else is working. It can place/receive calls, the camera works, and it can browse the internet. We just can't see the dumb screen! Anybody know a fix for this problem??

    If anybody is interested in the full details of how I got it to this semi-working state, here they are:

    When she got home, we popped out the SIM put it in rice inside a zip-lock bag for 2 days. At that point, I removed the 2 bottom screws and used a suction cup to pop up the glass cover to check and see if it was dry inside. I didn't remove any of the connectors - just lifted it up enough to check inside for moisture. It looked dry as a bone in there, so I put it back together and decided to try and turn it on - and nothing. No sounds, no lights, no vibrations, no nothing. Then I thought maybe the battery was dead, so I plugged it into the charger. Again - nothing. So then I plugged it into the PC's USB port - nothing. At this point I decided to leave it hooked up to the charger for a while and try again. The next time I plugged it into the computer, and I started hitting buttons, the PC started making noises like it was loading the drivers for the iPhone. But iTunes still couldn't see it, and the screen was still blank. So I took it to charge more, and then I noticed a VERY faint display of a USB cord connecting to iTunes (some sort of restore mode). At this point I hooked it back up to the computer and iTunes recognized it and wanted to do a restore, but it kept failing due to some USB error (I think the USB connection was dropping in and out)... So then I decided to try a different computer, and this time I was able to actually get through the entire Restore process. Interestingly - it installed 4.1 onto the iPhone during the restore (which made no sense to me whatsoever - the 3G had been running 3.1.2, and my other iPhone - a 3GS - went straight from 3.1.3 to 4.2.1, so I had never installed 4.1 on anything before). Unfortunately, this computer didn't have any of my backups on it, so it restored it as a new phone. So anyways, at this point, the phone was fully operational except for the backlight on the LCD was out, so I decided to take it back to the original computer that I normally sync to and do a restore from my old backup. BIG MISTAKE!! As soon as I plug the iPhone into the computer, the first thing it does is back up the CURRENT (mostly empty) state by overwriting my OLD BACKUP. LOL - gotta love iTunes. I figured since the restored iPhone had a generic name that was different from the name I gave it before, it would make a separate backup. But apparently, the backup is named by some code from the phone itself, so it went and overwrote my old backup. So it's not a huge disaster - we can set up the phone again from scratch, but it REALLY shouldn't work that way. But with the backlighting turned off, the phone is pretty useless. If/when I can get that backlighting part fixed, we'll get back to restoring all of her settings.
  13. sfeeley macrumors newbie

    Jan 27, 2012

    I just did the same thing, does your phone still work?????? I am freaking out.
  14. dutd33 macrumors newbie

    Aug 27, 2011
    I did the same thing on Friday. Glad to know there are other people with the same issue.

    I was told to leave it in the bag of rice for at least a couple of days and not to power it on (which I already did, argh!).

    I've also left it on top of a router so and yesterday I noticed the zip lock bag is actually moist so I think I'll be swapping out the zip-lock bag soon.

    Fingers crossed. Everything works except there's no sound in the earpiece and speaker. :(

    I honestly hope your phone is OK.
  15. normanbates macrumors regular

    Aug 24, 2011
    I think your the Neanderthal. Water/liquid physically corrodes the boards, it doesn't just short them out.

    What will happen is the corrosion will slowly spread. Look at it like what Alzheimer's does to the brain, it slowly destroys it in a physical way
  16. JWDiver macrumors newbie

    May 4, 2012
    I just did the same thing about an hour ago!

    Got up to go to the bathroom and brought the phone with me (I use the phone back-light as a light to see in the morning, as my wife gets pissed if I turn on the lights and wake her). Anyhow, I dropped my 3GS in the toilet...#%^$#! I fished it out in a fraction of a second. I noticed when I dropped it in that within about a half second the back-light went out. After pulling it out, the phone went completely dead.

    So...According to this site, one fatal mistake is that I tried to turn it on. "DOAH!"

    I sat it in front of a hair dryer on low heat for about a half hour. Nothing. The phone is now on life support in a bag of uncooked rice. I will keep it there for a couple days and see what happens.

    If anyone has any input, please feel free to chime in.

  17. Munkypoo7 macrumors 6502


    Oct 24, 2011
    Miami, FL
    You shouldn't have used a hair dryer, that's also a no-no when trying tor rescue wet electronics.

    The combination of turning it on after it was wet and using a hair dryer.. well, you're changes aren't great, but I suppose they could always be worse.

    Let that sucker sit in bowl of uncooked rice and wait (as you're already doing) for a day or even two.
  18. Zachhopper macrumors newbie

    May 4, 2012
    I did the same thing on Wednesday to my iPhone 4s. Except mine was a river by my house not a toilet lol. I used a vacuum with the smallest attachment on it and stuck it to the hole that you plug the charger in to for about 20 minutes and than I put it in rice for 24 hours. When I tried to turn it on I couldnt see because I thought the LCD was burned out. I took it to the apple store to see what they could do, try suggested I buy a new one. Not happening. I took it to the phone doctors and for 60 bucks it's like a brand new one!! Way better than the 200 they wante for a new one!
  19. HickDead macrumors 6502a


    Dec 2, 2011
    Do people really need to take their iPhone to the crapper with them?

    Whatever happened to the good ole days of reading a magazine in the bathroom!
  20. zorinlynx macrumors 601


    May 31, 2007
    Florida, USA
    When you use your phone on the can always keep it below rim level. It can't fall in the bowl if it's under it!

    Also for the love of all that is holy in the universe, put the damn thing away before you finish up your business. Never touch your phone between when you start finishing the business and washing your hands! Eww!
  21. trlyka macrumors 6502a


    Dec 26, 2011
    Where I work, people will go into the ladies room and you hear them chatting in the stalls. UGH. When we go on a break or lunch, our phones are with us and in a pocket, hopefully. People put them in thier back pockets too. When you pull down your pants, it loosens the material and viola! The phone falls out if you're not careful.

    Anyway, I hope the people dropping thier phones in the toilet flushed first :eek:
  22. jbachandouris macrumors 601


    Aug 18, 2009
    Upstate NY
    Sorry for your situation. Although I am sympathetic, I personally would never admit to dropping it in the toilet, washing machine, swimming pool, etc. I would go to Apple store and pay my fee for a replacement and be done with it.

    Sure the bag of rice and alcohol may help, but who's to say there won't be intermittent problems down the road.

    That's just me. Anyway, good luck.
  23. zorinlynx macrumors 601


    May 31, 2007
    Florida, USA
    Unless it was a DIRE EMERGENCY, talking to someone on the phone while sitting on the can just feels disrespectful to them. It can wait five freaking minutes. Or converse with text messages; at least that's less "personal".
  24. TripleP macrumors newbie

    Mar 27, 2012
    To anyone who has dropped their iDevice in water ... have faith in the uncooked rice trick and don't rush to spend your hard-earned money on a replacement. My son recently dropped his iPod Touch in the toilet, dried it with a towel and placed it on a shelf with the water-logged case still on. I didn't realize what had happened until after I had already (1) tried several times to power it on, and (2) connected it to the wall charger, thinking my son had simply drained the battery like he often does. I pretty much did everything you're NOT supposed to do when trying to revive a wet device. Nevertheless, I tried the uncooked rice trick, fully expecting it to fail, but it worked like a charm. After two days in the rice, nothing was working; after four days, it powered on, but with no functionality; and after a full week in the rice, everything worked perfectly (I did, however, have to do a restore). That was a couple months ago, and everything is still working perfectly. YMMV, but I wanted to share my experience with others who might otherwise give up prematurely on a water-logged iDevice. ;)
  25. trlyka macrumors 6502a


    Dec 26, 2011
    We have a drama queen here. She likes to be heard for whatever reason. She has kids with 3 different men :rolleyes: So you usually hear her giving someone a hard time about something.

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