Instructions for those who drowned the iPhone in water. What to do and not do + photos from a microscope
You do not know the fear if you did not look into the eyes of those who dropped the iPhone into the water.
This can happen to anyone. And always nevovremya. Situations are different, the result is one: the smartphone is surviving the last days, hours, and sometimes - in general, minutes. Now it depends on your actions what will happen next. The line between a pile of expensive metal and a fully functional smartphone goes thin, crossing out city legends.
What happens with the iPhone in its final hours, how to turn back the clock and why the popular methods are doubly dangerous - later in this article, based on the experience of hundreds of thousands of unfortunate iPhone and iPad owners.
Water is not a toy for a toy
The enemy must be known in person. Especially such, without which human life is impossible. Natural water, wherever it comes from, is the worst enemy of electronics. Ever wonder why this happens? Contrary to the opinion of some, the liquid itself does not prevent the electronics from working and performing its task. The point is in water, or rather, its chemical composition.
The water you drink, in which you bathe and wash your hands, is much more difficult than it looks at first glance. Bottling, flowing, spring, sea, river - water available to humans, arising in nature or processed for drinking, contains microscopic ions of salts and minerals. You see them without a microscope almost every day. For example, in the form of traces remaining on the window after the rain. Or on the glass over the sink.
Salts and minerals are an important part of drinking water and one of the reasons that a person simply must drink to survive. It is the mineral composition that makes us prefer one producer of bottled water to another: the ratio of minerals and salts in the liquid determines its taste. All this is not in distilled water - and therefore a person is not recommended to drink it. With any liquid, the same minerals and salts are washed out of the body, and if ordinary drinking water makes up for loss, the "dead" harms the health of the body.
Why do you need distilled water? Salts and minerals present in the composition of ordinary natural water have the property of precipitating and accumulating over time. Moreover, all of them are chemically active elements capable of oxidation reaction - i.e. when exposed to oxygen - damage the structure of metal and other materials. That is why distilled water, in particular, is recommended for use with steam irons. Electronics and metal are good, a person is bad.
Do you know one more property of ions in water? They conduct electricity well. Some of them have a positive charge by nature, while others - a negative one. Hence the legendary electrical conductivity of ordinary, natural water.
An electronic device that gets into the natural water and continues to work, enters into a dense, simultaneous contact with ions of negative and positive charges. The flow from the power source in the device instantaneously closes itself. This is called "short circuit" . It often causes irreparable damage to all components of the device that conduct electricity in this circuit.
Dropping into the water working smartphone, tablet, computer and in general any electronic device, you arrange an instant local apocalypse inside the case. The more significant the contact of internal components with water, the more serious the consequences will be. It is clear, it is better never to do so - but life dictates its own rules.
I dropped the iPhone into the water. What to do?
Immediately remove the smartphone from the water and turn it off if it has not turned off by itself. If you do not have an iPhone, open the case cover just as quickly and remove the battery.
You can exhale, but you can not relax. In these seconds, the fate of the device was decided. The included device underwater could survive a very powerful short circuit, and if water gets into the housing, these closures can (and will) be repeated until you turn off the power entirely. Since the iPhone can not get the battery, your situation remains extremely difficult. Even in the off state, there is an energy source inside, which does not need to receive commands from you to exchange impulses with water and to roast a couple of chips on the motherboard. The account is still going on for hours and minutes.
Thoroughly wipe the device , removing all visible water. If you do not have the necessary tools for parsing the iPhone case, cancel the case and go to the service center without delay . And not the one that is in the official stores of operators and hypermarkets. Going there is the right way to say goodbye forever to the device, data on it and, of course, money.
You need to go directly to the repairmen. On the way, make sure that the smartphone does not turn on back without your knowledge. Do not wrap it in towels and in general in any kind of fabric: this way you will increase the humidity inside the case, which will raise the chances of saying goodbye to the gadget several times. Legs in hand - and forward.
Putting the device in the hands of qualified professionals - not indifferent consultants shops-sellers, and the repairmen themselves - can breathe out and wait for the call. And you'll have to wait until tomorrow at least. Maybe a week. Each case is unique: someone is lucky, and the water does not penetrate to the motherboard. In such cases, thorough cleaning and drying is sufficient. And someone will die some microprocessor on the board, and then the repair time will stretch for days, sometimes weeks because of finding the necessary components for replacement.
Do not be in a hurry to get upset. Most importantly - in the current situation, you did everything right. But what if you do not have the opportunity to immediately go to the service? Suddenly wait until tomorrow? From this moment the fantasy of home-grown geniuses can take possession of you. On the Internet that only is not recommended in such cases. The head usually does not think at all.
Traditional Medicine and Deceptive Confidence
Sparse forums are full of tips on how to "revive" the drowned iPhone. On the surface lie dozens of stories about the owners of devices that have done some simple procedures - and voila, a miracle happened, and since then everyone has lived happily ever after. We will not deny: in some cases people are really lucky. That's just hoping for "maybe" - the last thing you want to do when it comes to a smartphone for a thousand dollars.
So, you turned off and wiped your device dry with trembling hands. Do not use a hairdryer: hot air will accelerate the evaporation of the liquid, but it can easily damage internal components and provoke accelerated destruction of contacts on the board. If you have a suitable screwdriver and you know what you are doing, you can try to disassemble the gadget completely. But what to do next?
Traditional medicine has come up with many ways to help "drowned", but one of them many times surpasses the popularity of all the rest. Network wisdom says: if you put the iPhone into a container of rice , the next morning it will become dry even inside and will work as before. As usual with such recipes, in part this is a useful piece of advice. And kind of very harmful - because it's deceptive .
The method is as follows. Immediately after the incident, you turn off the device, wipe it from moisture. You fall asleep in a plastic container as much rice as possible and put your iphone inside. Including in disassembled form. Real "sages" here add that the container or package must be closed tightly. Keep the device inside should not be more than 24 hours . After this time, you will need to carefully clean the headphone and lightning connectors from the rice crumbs. The procedure is supposedly completed.
What really happens in this container? Let's analyze the case when the iPhone is put there, barely touching the water. If nothing has got into the inside of the case, in a day you extract a very lively, fully functional device. The rice absorbs moisture residues , including microscopic droplets, left in the shallow holes of the body. In very successful cases, this can really be enough.
I did not just mention that rice is a very deceptive measure of salvation . He can absorb water. Only water - it's so, half bad. A much greater danger is represented by mineral substances and salts , inevitably dissolved in it. The liquid, evaporating from the boards and loops of the iPhone, will leave behind crystals that are invisible to the unaided eye, but extremely dangerous for electronics.
The deposits of salts and minerals remaining on the board begin to oxidise upon contact with oxygen. The process is accompanied by a slow erosion of sensitive, vital parts in the device. The consequences for the user can be very different: from strange glitches, which you want to write off to the problems of the firmware, to real problems, like a drastically refusing wireless module or loss of sensitivity of the screen with false alarms.
Do you think you are intimidated by evil repairers? Unfortunately, you are not the first and not the last, who then comes to them after rice with a dead pipe. Believing in the healing qualities of cereals, the people continue to use smartphones, not realizing that the device is in the pocket, sentenced to death. One day something will refuse, and it will be insulting to all. Even a service center, whose specialists will have to perform several times more work to replace contacts and chips.
What happens with the iPhone after it hits the water
During my previous visit to the service center, I casually touched on the topic of "drowned people". Further communication with one of the masters led to the writing of a separate article that you are reading right now. Together with Alexander, I invite you to consider in detail what happens to the internal components of the iPhone after immersion in water . And not after 15 minutes, but for several days, or even weeks.
Every day in the bring iPhones with various breakages. It is interesting that some of them, in fact, are caused by the long-term contact of the device with water. The owner, may have already forgotten about what happened or believed in miraculous healing. And inside all this time slowly and correctly there was a rotting of very important electronic components. Nobody loves unsubstantiated allegations, so let's get down to business.
All smartphones that got into the service because of contact with water, are urgently disassembled to the last plume and cog . Each spare part, on which there are traces of water, is blown by a compressed air stream, and then checked in detail for more serious damage. Some of them can not be restored: for example, the module of the camera, whose integrity has been broken. Whether you're a hundred times a master with a capital letter, the spare part will have to be replaced with a new one.
As a rule, serious cases of water ingress into the case leave traces on the motherboard. From this moment begins the Russian roulette - both for the repairman, and for the owner of the device. It's one thing when after contact with water you can confine yourself to replacing the speaker or microphone, and quite another, when the motherboard is under threat of corruption. Everyone who has ever experienced the breakdown of iPhones knows that the motherboard is the most expensive part of the Apple smartphone and it's not only difficult, but expensive, to get a new one - almost the same as going to the store and buying a new device.
These masters do not like easy ways. C for a long time are engaged in repair of the filled iPhone and, judging by the contents of the box with orders, are fighting for each motherboard.
In complex and tedious work, the guys are assisted by special equipment . For example, this is a powerful soldering station. It is she (and direct hands, of course) that allows you to raise "from the knees" gadgets with rotten chips and contacts.
On the tip of this soldering device came to life not one hundred iphone and ipad. During the shooting, I noticed that Alexander's hands are absolutely motionless, no tremor. I wanted to joke on this topic, but here inappropriately moved the microscope. A childish love for such things instantly knocked all other thoughts out of my head. The male (and largest) half of the readers of the site will understand me.
The microscope is not intended for a biologist-researcher: still the scales of electronics are slightly larger. This tool allows you to quickly find problematic places on microchips and cards. Suppressing the desire to stick in there absolutely all the objects in the hall, I suggested looking at the "motherboard" from iPhone, which collided with water in full. To begin with, a more or less live copy, belonging to the iPhone 5 before last year, was found.
So, at first glance, the board is all in perfect order. In this error lies the main problem of drowned iPhones: damage from water and oxidation can be minimal, and the effect will be critical. The first and absolutely necessary action, which is waiting for all the soaked devices - cleaning from salts and minerals , as well as from oxidizing metal.
Thought to see an unusual unit? Everything is much simpler. As experience shows, for this it is quite enough to use a toothbrush with a soft pile. Naturally, this is not done dryly: a special Contact Cleaner solution applied to the brush removes traces of oxidation and salt residues from the board.
Once the solution has dried, it's time to assess the damage. Here without a microscope anywhere, especially during the subsequent soldering. Together with Alexander, I looked inside the camera. It turned out quite normal, it's just a macro photo.
Do you see the water? I do not see it either. It's there, in fact, no longer exists. But the salt and minerals had time to split one of the connectors on the motherboard, into which a cable from the display is attached. What can this situation threaten? Ironically, the device from the outside works fine. But the impression is wrong.
There were several problems. Firstly, the iPhone did not want to catch the network. Probably one of the microcircuits connected with wireless communication was damaged. And secondly, the touch screen worked very poorly. Every now and then false shots were triggered, and real ones were not registered at all. Working with a smartphone was extremely problematic. But the owner of this particular device is still very good. Situations are worse.
Do you think that the iPhone is unlucky? "This Khan" - sadly confirms Alexander, guessing my thoughts. Theoretically, it is possible to restore such a payment, but the amount of work here is simply unthinkable. In addition to powerful multi-stage cleaning, you will need to check absolutely all the chips , even the smallest ones. The owner of this gadget either threw the smartphone into the washing machine and left it there for the night, or simply took out and scored on it, remembering after a couple of days.
This looks like an iPhone for those who believe in rice, hair dryer and other fairy tales of the Vienna Woods. And those who postpone the trip to the service until better times.
Returning to the still breathing specimen, I noticed several other traces of contact with the liquid. "This is not the worst" - as if the master encouraged. Returning to the microscope, I look at the reverse side where the wireless communication chips are located.
If an insect tore off a leg, it may still be alive. But not for long. And painful. Approximately this is how it feels and this iPhone, contacts of one of the chips in which they rotted by themselves due to the negligence of the owner. I do not know how to you, but personally I was very sad to look at all this. Maybe someone did not have time to take it earlier. Or simply did not know. Or maybe they read cool and not bad advice on the Internet and decided that "first aid" would be enough.
It looks like a typical drowned man, who was even lucky. Spots under the screen, idle connection, wildly buggy touchscreen. The most offensive, that in most cases all this could be avoided.
The moral of this fable is as follows. Utopil iphone? Forward to the service. Fast! Leave the rice for breakfast.
Warning - armed
No one is insured against problems. But those who know how to behave are much more likely to get out of the water dry. Together with a working iphone and ipad. I do not want any such situations, but if it happened to you, close ones or friends, do not waste time. As in saving real drowning, the account here goes for seconds. Follow the famous proverb does not work: the iPhone does not have hands. So take action yourself: quickly dry and immediately go to specialists. They will help you.