Rice to the Rescue: A Tale of iPhone Hope

Last Friday, I decided to go swimming with my iPhone 3G in the spa. For at least 30 minutes, my phone simmered in hot water while in my pocket. Needless to say, it was completely dead when I found it.

I immediately went to the interwebs to see if there was any chance of recovery. After reading several articles on how people tried to raise their water damaged iPhones from dead, I started my request to give life to Frankenstein’s monster. I threw it in a refrigerator for 30 minutes to draw out moisture. That didn’t work. I left it on top of the refrigerator overnight. That didn’t work. I used a blow dryer on it for over an hour. That didn’t work. I finally got so fed up that I tore it down to the component level. I was able to separate the whole thing by by front glass, LCD screen, motherboard, camera, connection port, battery, and camera. I used the blow dryer on the individual components and put it back together. That didn’t work. I broke it all down again and placed each component into a baggy filled with uncooked rice. The components stayed in the bag for 48 hours before I took them out, dusted off all of the rice, and put it back together again. That didn’t work… initially.

I plugged power into it and hit the power button. It started up right away! Now it did stay on the Apple startup logo for about a half hour before fully booting, but after that it was up and running. I immediately backed it up before testing any bit of it. That worked. Testing it, I found everything to be working just fine except for the camera which will just not turn on anymore. The LCD screen has this permanent 3D pattern in it now, but it’s not bad enough that you can’t see what’s going on. After all the voodoo and witchcraft I did it to over the weekend, it turned out to be the little iPhone that could. Success! Success I tell you!

Seems like most people who have tried to recover a water damaged iPhone have done so unsuccessfully. It’s why I’m totally patting myself on the back for this one. Go me! I just need to keep this thing running for eight more days when I pick up my new iPhone 4. Good luck to us all and jebus bless rice.