iPhone 3G - Water damage, Error 28 when restoring

Discussion in 'iPhone Tips, Help and Troubleshooting' started by JvdP, Nov 7, 2009.

  1. JvdP macrumors newbie

    Nov 7, 2009
    My beloved iPhone 3G got wet while sitting in my pocket during a heavy rain shower. At first, I didn't really see the harm (it was just wet, so I wiped it dry) since it was still working. But about an hour later, I got it out again and noticed that the screen was flickering (backlight on and off) and the volume was constantly going up and down, which concerned me a lot since I'm just in love with this machine! The rain must be the cause, especially since the camera window had drops of water behind it. In an attempt to 'rescue' it I tried turning it off, but it kept on rebooting itself! This drove me crazy, since I didn't want the water to make any more (maybe harmful) shortages.

    As soon as I came home, I put the phone on the radiator and a small heater blowing warm air onto it. Via Google I found an interesting topic (also on MacRumors) about iPhones that experienced water damage. It sounded as a good idea to me to put the iPhone in a bag of rice, and so I did. I was very pleased to read that most iPhones survived even the most deadly amounts of water, so I kinda got my hopes up.

    The iPhone still kept on rebooting, even while in the bag of rice, but the battery eventually died. After about 4 hours of warmth and 12 hours in the bag I decided to hook it up to my mac. It might sound a little bit short, but I figured that the damage would be done by now anyway (since it kept rebooting), so it wouldn't hurt to try. The water behind the camera window was gone by then and the flickering of the screen had stopped too. It did not behave normally though, when hooked to my mac, it only showed the Apple logo and when I unplugged it, it started the never ending reboot cycle. So I tried getting into DFU mode, which failed too. I'm sure this is not my fault, since I carefully followed the steps to get there and furthermore, I had put iPhones into DFU modes before. I could only get into the Recovery mode (where you see the 'connect to iTunes' logo) and so I tried restoring. That's where I got the Error 28. To be more precise:

    1. "Extracting software"
    2. "Preparing iphone for restore"
    3. Flicker of the screen
    4. Apple logo on iPhone (seems to be booting)
    5. Rotating wheel under the iPhone logo
    6. A glimpse of the install bar under de iPhone logo
    7. Rotating wheel again
    8. iPhone screen goes black (seems to reboot)
    9. Error 28 on iTunes

    I have read the Apple page about error 28, but they all suggest doing things with the computer itself. But I'm sure that it's not my mac being the problem. I did however, tried these things:

    1. Updated to the last version if iTunes
    2. Reboot my mac
    3. I'm pretty sure that ports 80 and 443 are open
    4. gs.apple.com works, the others don't
    5. Try a different USB port

    At this point I stopped worrying about trying to troubleshoot my mac, because I kinda knew it wasn't my mac causing the trouble, but my iPhone.

    I honestly have no idea what to do next, you could even call me desperate. Is my iPhone lost or is there a way to solve this? Do you guys think this is an hardware error (damaged due to the water) or a software error caused by the shortages it had. In the last case, I can still see hope on my horizon.
  2. Pgohlke macrumors 6502

    Jan 9, 2009
    Centerville, Ohio
    well after checking with the all mighty google error 28 mostly comes up from hardware error, meaning that the water probably damaged your phone
  3. JvdP thread starter macrumors newbie

    Nov 7, 2009
    I read the same thing (that Error 28 is mostly an hardware error) so I'm sceptic that it will get better... I read about somebody using contact spray in order to 'clean' the board and it's contacts, does anybody think that this is a good possible solution in this case?
  4. Pgohlke macrumors 6502

    Jan 9, 2009
    Centerville, Ohio
    I dont know if i would spray the board with that its made out of hydrogen peroxide and straight from wikipedia

    "Hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) is a very pale blue liquid, slightly more viscous than water, that appears colorless in dilute solution. It is a weak acid, has strong oxidizing properties"

    so probably not good to use. What about alcohol isn't that good for cleaning electronics because it drys quickly?
  5. JvdP thread starter macrumors newbie

    Nov 7, 2009
    Well, as far as I understood it, Contact spray is meant to clean the contacts from nasty stuff (also stuff such as corrosion). It would be weird if it's bad for the electronics, that would be something like toothpaste that actually makes your teeth less healthy :p
  6. CCRGMac macrumors newbie

    Sep 1, 2009
    I think you guys are discussing two different 'contact sprays' - one for electrical contacts and one for contact lenses.
  7. -aggie- macrumors P6


    Jun 19, 2009
    Where bunnies are welcome.
    Whatever they're discussing, they're not going to fix the iPhone by spraying it.
  8. Pgohlke macrumors 6502

    Jan 9, 2009
    Centerville, Ohio
    Yeah sorry he must be talking electrical, i thought it was one of those things like toothpaste gets out scratches things.

    By the way you could just pay the $199 fee for out of warranty water damage replacement.
  9. boston44 macrumors 6502

    May 8, 2009
    I don't believe apple does the $199 fee anymore, despite what the website says.
  10. JvdP thread starter macrumors newbie

    Nov 7, 2009
    And even if it would, this is not an option since I bought my iPhone second hand and I don't even have any form of receipt.

    Why wouldn't the contact spray work? I've noticed someone here who got it working with contact spray! I'll post my story there too, just for the sake of sharing it with others :(

Share This Page