Your cell phones, laptops, tablets, and other devices are designed to withstand certain weather conditions. Developers know that your device will spend a lot of time outside and needs to be durable. However, that doesn’t make them perfect.
The wear-and-tear associated with summer conditions can seriously harm your device if you aren’t careful. Rather than spend hundreds of dollars to replace a device that was damaged this summer, learn how to protect them instead.
Avoid Extreme Heat
Your devices are built to withstand hot temperatures. However, they aren’t designed to withstand extreme temperatures.
In the summer, the black screen of your phone absorbs more heat than you think. In fact, exposure to extreme heat can cause some elements inside your phone to actually melt. Even in less extreme cases, the heat can damage the internal battery causing it to fail.
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Something as simple as placing your phone in the dashboard of your car or out on your towel at the pool can cause your device to quickly overheat. To avoid paying for your mistake, here’s how to protect your device from the summer heat.
Place your phone below the sun level in the car.
The interior of your car is more shaded than the dashboard. Try to keep your device in the shadier parts of your car. Leave it in the cup holder, in the glove box, or even in your pocket while in the car.
Never, ever, leave your phone in the hot car. Just like you wouldn’t leave your dog in the hot car, your phone will overheat and die. Don’t leave it in the car, even for a minute.
Cover your device while outside.
When you plan to be outside for long periods of time, keep your phone covered. Leaving your phone face up or face down while outside for long periods of time can cause it to overheat. The sun is hot. Letting it bake your phone is expensive. Since there isn’t sunscreen for phones, cover it up instead.
Simply put your device inside of your bag or under a towel while outside to protect it from the heat. If you can, leave it in a shady place like under an umbrella.
Remember, extreme heat can cause your phone battery to fail. If you notice your battery dies frequently, even when it says it has 50% battery life still, your battery could have heat-damage. Here’s some more information on extending the life of your phone battery.
If your phone does overheat…
Your device should warn you if it gets too hot. Some devices may even automatically shut off to protect its internal components from overheating.
After getting too hot, you need to cool the device off. Since you can’t give it a large glass of water to drink or take it for a dip in the pool, here are some tips for cooling your device off.
Take it inside.
Allow your device to cool down slowly. Never put it in a freezer, refrigerator, or pour cold water over it. Cooling down too quickly could cause further damage.
Instead, take your device into the air conditioning to cool down slowly. Place it on a solid surface like a cool table or countertop. Avoid placing it on a cushioned surface that could absorb the heat and keep it hot for longer.
Remove the case.
Your case could be trapping the heat closer to your phone. Waterproof or heavy-duty cases may be preventing the device’s cooling mechanisms to work properly.
Remove the case and allow the phone to fully cool down before reapplying the case.
Prevent Water Damage
Most people know how damaging water can be to electronic devices. Just in case it needs repeating, water and electricity do not mix. Ever. Even “waterproof” devices should take care around water. Being fully submerged in water can still damage electrical circuits.
In the summer, we are drawn to refreshing water. Whether you’re at the pool, the beach, or wherever else with water, keep your device at a safe distance.
Double check that you removed all of your devices from your pockets and body before entering the water. Triple check that you removed your smartwatch. Quadruple check that your $1000 iPhone X isn’t in your pocket. Ask your friends one more time if they remembered to remove their electronics before you push them into the pool.
To protect your phone from accidental water damage, you can place it in a sealed sandwich bag. It won’t protect it if it drops into the pool, but it should survive a splash or two.
If your phone does get wet…
If you find that your phone or device does get wet, you should pat it dry immediately. Use a dry towel and absorb as much moisture as you can. Remove the case to better sop up the water.
Do NOT attempt to turn the phone on. Remove the battery if you can and dry the battery compartment.
If you have an iPhone or a device that doesn’t have a removable battery, you will need to turn the device off. Do this quickly and carefully. Do not press any other buttons. Just turn it off.
Wrap the phone in a paper towel then place the entire phone into a bag of rice. Wrap the battery and place it in the rice too for good measure. Make sure the whole phone is completely covered in the uncooked rice. Leave it there for 24 hours. I know, 24 hours without your phone is torture. But it’s better than paying for a whole new phone.
Do NOT take the phone out of the rice before the 24 hours is up. Do NOT attempt to check your messages or turn the phone on. Leave it alone. Place it in a high cabinet to avoid the temptation.
After 24 hours, remove the device and attempt to power it on. If it turns on, you might be safe. However, there’s no guarantee that the water may not have done damage you can’t see yet. Only time will tell. You can take iPhones to the Genius Bar (Apple Store) to inquire about potential water damage if you’re worried.
You can also purchase moisture removal products that work faster and better than the rice. Search for them online. You can use this Wet Cell Phone Emergency Kit.
Keep Sand Out
This might seem obvious, but dirt and sand can harm your phone too. The small particles can get inside the device through the speakers, phone jack, or power chord plug, which can harm the phone.
To avoid damage from dirt and sand, place the phone inside a sandwich bag. Never throw your phone directly into the sand. That’s just careless anyway. Instead, place it in the bag and wrap it in a towel to protect it from damaging water and sun.
If sand does get in your device…
After a day on the beach, if you find that your phone does have sand in it, don’t lose hope. Blow gently into the port with sand in it. Gentle blowing can dislodge the sand. You can also use canned air like you would use to clean out a computer or keyboard. Just be sure it doesn’t have any cleaning product in it. You just want air.
Do you have questions about how to protect your phone from summer perils? Do you need help with an overheated, water-logged, or sandy device? Did something else terrible happen to your phone?
You need a Goober. Our Tech Goobers can do almost anything. They can assess the damage and let you know if your device is usable again. They can also help you pick out a new device if yours is irreparable.
Call 302-645-7177 or contact us online to get help from Techno Goober today.
Here are some more tech tips for keeping your expensive phone and devices safe: