Smartphones + Liquid – Some Common Misconceptions
One thing that we hear time and time again from customer is that Samsung, Apple and other devices are completely waterproof – which unfortunately, is not actually correct.
Many high-end devices, such as Samsung’s Galaxy series and Apple’s iPhone series, are not yet immune to being submersed in pools or toilets. Although most flagship devices have now been rated with the IP68 standard, this is not enough to render the device 100% waterproof.
What are IP ratings?
Ingress Protection, shortened as IP, is a universally accepted measurement of varying degrees for dust and liquid resistance. The number is determined by the following factors:
- The first digit is used for protection against solid materials, providing dust and debris resistance
- The second digit is used for protection against water and liquids, especially submersion for long periods of time
This means the IP68 rating is currently the highest available protection against dust and liquid. However, the rating itself doesn’t mean that they are permanent conditions for a device.
With continual usage, dust and liquid resistance can decrease as a result of normal wear and tear. A lot will depend on the age of the phone and what stresses and strains it has been subjected to over it’s lifetime.
For example, a device that has been kept in a back pocket and sat on or dropped will often have a ‘twist’ in its chassis (frame) ,which could be invisible to the naked eye but still have a detrimental effect on its ability to keep liquid out.
“I thought my warranty protects me from this?”
Apple themselves say that their One-Year Limited Warranty does not cover for any potential damage caused by liquid exposure, but still allows you to contact AppleCare or an authorised iPhone service provider if your iPhone is causing issues regardless – no doubt for a hefty repair quote!
Samsung, on the other hand, only covers liquid damage under their warranty if it was unintentionally spilt in or on the phone, and is defined as “other damage.”
Huawei states that, if any liquid enters the phone, you should take your phone (with proof of purchases) to an authorized Huawei Customer Service Center for a thorough inspection and diagnosis.
“So what should I do if my phone gets wet?”
Switch your device off immediately, DO NOT attempt to charge the device and, if the device has a removable battery, remove it ASAP! Contact us immediately to arrange for one of our technicians to assess your device.
Contrary to popular belief, popping it in a cupboard overnight or into a box of rice is also ineffective as this just allows the water to settle on the device’s vital components, which causes longer term damage.
Instead, bring it to us as soon as possible so we can act fast and remove any liquids from inside the device. 9 times out of 10 when we catch a device whilst it’s still wet, it will come back out the door fully functional.
“Can I charge my phone if it’s wet?”
Absolutely not! Charging a device that has been wet is a bad idea and is dangerous! You could cause irreparable damage to the device and can quickly become a potential fire hazard.
Water and electricity are not a good combination for electronic devices, as vital components can become short-circuited.
From our considerable experience of repairing many of these “waterproof” devices for water damage, we would strongly advise you to check the small print carefully before going swimming with your phone!
“Is there anything you can do to help?”
Yes, there is – but you need to strike while the iron is hot… or in this case, wet!