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Maritime cellphone issues
Old 10-02-2007, 07:34 AM   #1
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Maritime cellphone issues

Well within, oh, 5 minutes of arriving at our seaside getaway on Friday, I managed to drop my cell phone into the salt water. Didn't really work after it dried out (turned on but kept vibrating), so I rinsed it with fresh water and am now waiting for it to dry out. If this doesn't work, what are my alternatives? I assume the most liekly outcome is that I am going to the Verizon store this weekend and shelling oout for a new phone.
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Old 10-02-2007, 07:51 AM   #2
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I've never had an electronic item work after immersion, including a very nice early generation GPS that went overboard when we lived on the boat Sigh. I did have a camera work again after being dropped into a pitcher of beer, but that is a whole other story. Hope it wasn't a super fancy model! Sorry!
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Old 10-02-2007, 07:51 AM   #3
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Based on my experience of bathing one while launching our boat, water and cell phones do not mix. Your phone is (wet) toast.

Check for a new Verizon phone online. You might find a better deal plus get it quicker than waiting until the weekend to buy one.
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Old 10-02-2007, 07:56 AM   #4
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Wonder of anyone makes a waterproof cellphone? Surely there is a market for such a thing.
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Old 10-02-2007, 08:07 AM   #5
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I think LG has got one they are working on now, the CanU 502S--CNET says it costs $545! Whew! It better be waterproof for that kind of scratch!
We used to sell a lot of those otter-type clear plastic waterproof cases for small electronics when I worked at the sailboat chandlery. They are also good for the small cameras and iPods.
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Old 10-02-2007, 08:08 AM   #6
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I dropped a cell phone into fresh water once. Worked fine after drying out, though the battery life seemed to have been shortened somewhat. (May have been my imagination.)

It might be important not to turn it on until it has been rinsed in fresh water and dried thoroughly. Same with running USB memory sticks through the laundry. (Oops.)
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Old 10-02-2007, 09:07 AM   #7
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Well within, oh, 5 minutes of arriving at our seaside getaway on Friday, I managed to drop my cell phone into the salt water. Didn't really work after it dried out (turned on but kept vibrating), so I rinsed it with fresh water and am now waiting for it to dry out. If this doesn't work, what are my alternatives? I assume the most liekly outcome is that I am going to the Verizon store this weekend and shelling oout for a new phone.
Depends how quickly you removed battery might be salvagable.
Give it a dunk in isopropyl alcohol (99% is best, regular rubbing alcohol will do too if you don't have the pure one) after water bath.
Than use hair dryer on no heat setting.

sailor,
who recovered several electronics gizmos after salt water immersion.
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Old 10-02-2007, 10:37 AM   #8
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From the Verizon site
The Verizon Wireless G'zOne Type–S is engineered to perform, designed to last, and built to survive, it can handle just about anything you throw its' way. It's able to withstand the penetrating elements of rain, humidity and even submersion. It is ruggedized, shock resistant and ready to be dropped. Dust resistant, the keypad stays clean, sturdy and fully operational even in the meanest of desert conditions.

$149 online price
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Old 10-02-2007, 11:03 AM   #9
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Try EBAY first. Just bought one cheep.
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Old 10-02-2007, 11:17 AM   #10
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Don't count it out. Back when I was on Sprint I had one of those blue samsung flip phones that I left in my pocket. My wife put her through a wash and rinse cycle. It also did a full 45 minutes in the dryer.

I still worked for months after that.
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Old 10-02-2007, 11:58 AM   #11
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Well within, oh, 5 minutes of arriving at our seaside getaway on Friday, I managed to drop my cell phone into the salt water. Didn't really work after it dried out (turned on but kept vibrating), so I rinsed it with fresh water and am now waiting for it to dry out. If this doesn't work, what are my alternatives? I assume the most liekly outcome is that I am going to the Verizon store this weekend and shelling oout for a new phone.
If only you would have posted this right after you did it. At this point there is little you can do but pray. For the future, here is what you do.

- Immediately remove the battery and the SIM card if it has one.
- Dry everything as best you can with a dry cloth, shaking it to throw off any additional moisture.
- If you dropped it in salt water or a chlorinated pool, soak it denatured alcohol overnight. If fresh water, you might get by with a soak in distilled water.
- Remove it and let it dry completely for at least three days. Do not, under any circumstances, try to turn it on before it is completely dry.
- When completely dry, replace the SIM card and the battery.

Guaranteed to work 50% of the time.

At this point there is little you can do. Let it dry as best you can and try it. It might work intermittently, but the salt inside will keep corroding the electrical parts until you need a new one.

Good ad for cell phone insurance, I always carry it for an additional $5 per month.
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Old 10-02-2007, 12:03 PM   #12
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Good ad for cell phone insurance, I always carry it for an additional $5 per month.
I thought about that, but at $5 per month I could have bought 2 or 3 phones by now. Never insure what you can afford to replace.
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Old 10-02-2007, 12:23 PM   #13
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I thought about that, but at $5 per month I could have bought 2 or 3 phones by now. Never insure what you can afford to replace.
It depends on the phone's cost. I have a Verizon Razr that costs around $399 new if bought out of cycle without a new service plan. A used one on EBay is around half of that but there's a chance it won't work. I get a new phone every two years, so a $60 per year policy is worth it if I kill a phone more often than two years. So far I've run through two in 18 months. The last one was a chlorine kill, very difficult to bring back -- worse than salt.
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Old 10-02-2007, 01:21 PM   #14
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I've never had an electronic item work after immersion,
See SoonToRetire's post. That will do it... sometimes. Absolute key is remove that battery. That's a problem on an iPhone or iPod.

Two experiences:

1) Niece spilled a soft drink into the keyboard of her laptop. My SIL tells me about it days later. She said her IT guy at work told her the LAST thing you want to do is put water on it to flush it out. I told her that complete water washing was common on electronic assembly lines. No problem. I opened it, flushed, shampooed with mild dish soap , rinsed, rinsed, rinsed, blew dried it as much as possible, then dried it for days. Still working two years later.

2) Niece (yes, same niece ) drops an electronic toy in salt water while we are all on vacation. Rather than ask me what to do, my SIL decides the 'battery must be shorted out' and bought new batteries and put those in! Big mistake. Anyway, later that day they tell me about it. I take the batteries out, open the thing up to flush the water out, and..... the copper traces on the circuit board were completely etched away. The electrolytic action of the battery, salt water, and copper just destroyed the thing. If they would have popped the batteries out first thing, they would have had a chance.

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Old 10-02-2007, 02:23 PM   #15
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"Electronic toy", huh?
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Old 10-02-2007, 02:38 PM   #16
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"Electronic toy", huh?
Hey, they vibrate!
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Old 10-02-2007, 02:49 PM   #17
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"Electronic toy", huh?
Perverts!

Oh my gosh - she was a kid at the time!

And I couldn't (still don't) remember how to spell tomogachi (or whatever those electronic pet things were called).

Anyway, you beat OAP to the punch line

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Old 10-02-2007, 04:41 PM   #18
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Old 10-02-2007, 04:52 PM   #19
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Wonder of anyone makes a waterproof cellphone? Surely there is a market for such a thing.
Here you go, Brewer, splashproof but not necessarily buoyant.

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Old 10-02-2007, 05:02 PM   #20
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