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Water Damage - No Power

My girlfriend's iPhone took a swim in saltwater for about 30 seconds. After realizing it was immediately taken out and surprisingly still working. It was not powered off immediately like it should have been. Shortly after it being out of the water it turned itself off. We did not try and power it back on. We got home about four hours later and after doing some research I found that it was best not to let it dry or corrosion could set in. I bathed it in fresh water and unfortunately it decided to try and power on while doing this. The apple logo came on and the screen went on and off about four times before shutting off permanently. I'm afraid that some serious damage was done here. I should have removed the battery before running fresh water over it but I did not plan on going that far at the time. After running fresh water over it the phone started making a sizzling noise and got really hot. I knew I had to get the battery out of there. I quickly looked up the instructions and was able to get the battery disconnected. The sizzling noise immediately stopped. After removing the battery I went to the store to get alcohol and bathed the phone in it. After about 24 hours we tried to power the phone on and it did not work. We connected it to a macbook and iTunes recognised it as an iPhone but said it needed to be updated or restored. We tried update but it did not work and said it needed to be restored. We did not try restoring as we have a lot of photos on there we are concerned about. I let it sit for another two days and now it's completely dead. iTunes doesn't recognise it or anything. Will the phone power on with a bad battery if it is connected with a cable? Could a new battery resolve my issue or is my phone likely dead? I saw no corrosion in the phone but I'm afraid when I ran fresh water over it I short circuited something important. Thoughts?

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By fresh water do you mean distilled water or demineralized water, ok. Fresh water or tap water meaning not salt water is just as bad as the salt water . A ultrasonic bath in distilled water and a cleaning solution is the preferred solution but IP alcohol will do . not so good for the screen, put it in a bag of silica gel to dry it out clean all the connectors with a soft brush . Your best bet is to try a new battery. the phone wont run without one and the old one sounds like its toast. put your phone back together once the screen dries out and hope for the best

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ASAP remove battery and LCD assembally and soak everything else in isopropl alchahol (90 percent or above) let it soak for 10 minutes, then remove logic board and EMI sheilds and brush gently with toothbrush. Replace battery with a new one. If nessicary, take apart lcd assembally and clean the backlights of any remaining water. Then see if it works.

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Okay, I followed your instructions and I am letting it dry out now. Will I be able to test the iPhone without the battery or does the iPhone need the battery to power on? I just don't want to buy a new battery if it is not even going to fix it.


If you have a multimeter, you can test the battery voltage. If it is above 3.7v, it's good. You can try to use that battery, but it might not work. The battery is the first thing to fail in a water damaged phone, so if it works it probably won't last very long.


I replaced the battery and still not working. iPhone is stuck in recovery mode on iTunes. Nothing is displaying on the screen. I haven't removed the logic board EMI shields to brush. Would that make a difference? I have brushed the display connectors. Do I need to remove the whole logic board?


Yes, you need to remove the logic board and the emi shields and brush them gently. Every minute counts with this, the corrosion is probably already slowly eating away at the innards of the phone.


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As soon as you realize that your iPhone 6 or iPhone 6s is in the water you need to start acting. After you remove it from water you need to do as much as you can to remove water from your phone. The same holds true for coffee, soda and alcohol — but keep in mind the sugar and other chemicals in these can cause more damage than water alone.

Shut it down. There is a very good chance that iPhone 6 or iPhone 6s is still working after you remove it from water. Even if it is, the first thing you need to do is turn it off. You don’t want electricity and water to mix and fry something.

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Good advice. FYI my 6S Plus found it's way to the bottom of the sea for a few minutes. Once recovered, my biggest mistake was to leave the iPhone on the boat and did not act until I came back from the days trip.

Knowing that it was a lost cause I still tried to remove all key components, passing them and brushing them gently using 70% alcohol (had nothing else on hand).

This didn't change anything, it died so will use my Apple Care coverage for a new one.

One this note, I can only encourage people to disassemble everything as soon as possible, clean and all.

Thanks for all the posts and help.


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I would just let it sit for the next 48 hours and let it dry by itself. Once that period is over, I would try again and plug it in if no energy is left. The trick here… be patient and take your time, leave it in a very dry place.

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