Skip to Content

iPhone Vibrating After Water Damage (Causes and What to Do)

Dropping your phone in the water can often result in a full-blown freakout, and understandably so. Water damage can be devastating, especially if your phone is out of warranty, not backed up, or if you can’t afford another one.

Thankfully, water damage isn’t the end of your phone if you play your cards right. There are a few things you can do to salvage your phone so worry not, there is hope for your iPhone!

In this article, we’ll cover everything you can do if your iPhone is vibrating after water damage. Read on to learn the ‘first aid’ of a water-damaged iPhone, why the rice hack can kill your phone, and what you can do instead.

Key Things to Do First about iPhone vibrating

Before we get into the two solutions we have for your iPhone vibrating after getting some water in it, there are four main things you need to do.

Turn It Off Immediately

Your iPhone vibrating after water damage suggests that its motherboard was damaged or got wet. If you want to avoid more permanent damage, you have to turn it off to limit the electricity going through it.

Understandably, this may not be possible; you may need to use your phone to get back home or call somebody. If you can’t turn off your phone quickly, don’t beat yourself up too much about it. 

Do Not Plug It In

It doesn’t matter if its battery will die or if you want to back it up before it’s too late; if you got water in your iPhone, it‘s absolutely essential that you don’t plug it into any source of electricity.

By doing so, you not only risk electrocuting yourself or someone else, but you also risk starting a fire and irreversibly damaging your iPhone.

Contact an Authorized Repair Center

Yes, we get it. If you intended to do that, you probably wouldn’t be on this page right now.  However, it’s important to understand that whatever you pay to the repair shop is probably going to be cheaper than buying a new phone

If you have an old or cheap phone that you don’t mind messing up while you’re attempting to fix, you can try your luck first before contacting a repair shop.

Ditch the Rice Hack for Now

Finally, the most important and possibly most overrated and controversial thing to keep in mind is that rice will not save your phone.

That’s right. Aside from the fact that there are a few things you need to do before you let your phone dry out completely, rice is not very likely to help your situation.

Debunking the Urban Legend of Rice Drying

Pretty much everyone knows now that if your phone gets wet, you should put it in rice for a few days. During that time, the rice will suck all the moisture out of your phone.

Unfortunately, there are quite a few problems with that. First, to avoid corrosion, your iPhone needs to dry much faster than a few days.

Second, the dried spots are likely to leave some limescale or other minerals behind, which are as much of a problem as the water itself.

Third, rice dust. If you’ve ever handled rice before, you know how dusty it can be. This dust can go inside the phone, causing damage that wouldn’t happen if it was just air-dried.

Fourth, rice can also cause minor scratches all over the phone, bringing its overall value and durability down. So, you see, there are plenty of reasons why you should avoid this method. 

Read more: iPhone vibrates when charging

How to Dry Your Water-Damaged iPhone

So how should you dry your iPhone without rice? 

There are lots of steps that should precede using a drying agent like rice. What you can do will depend on what you have around.

These steps are not to be ignored. To properly dry your phone, you should:

  1. Remove its case and any other removable components such as SIM and memory card trays, back, and battery.
  2. A great way to get water out of your phone is by using a vacuum cleaner. Aim it to all the ports and openings.
  3. You can use a blow dryer but make sure it isn’t too hot. That means your phone should not get too hot to touch.
  4. If neither is available, just whip your phone back and forth to push out any water inside it. Don’t stop until you don’t see a single drop coming out of the phone.
  5. Get a towel with good absorption and minimal lint, and thoroughly dry the phone with it. Tap it against your hand or a cushion to expel any water.
  6. Finally, place your phone in a sunny spot on top of paper towels with a fan directly facing it. The warmth of the sun will minimize the time it takes for the insides of your phone to dry.
  7. If you’re at night or in a particularly cold or humid area, you can use silica gel packets instead of rice to dry your phone.


Read more: iPhone won’t charge past 1

If your iPhone is vibrating after water damage, what you do next can literally save your phone or render it useless. 

First, you need to turn off your phone and remove it from any source of electricity. Second, start drying it using a vacuum cleaner or a blow dryer. 

Once you get all the water out, leave your phone on a paper towel in the sun with a fan directed to it. Make sure your phone doesn’t get too hot when in the sun or under the blow dryer. 

Check on it after no less than 3 hours to see if it’s still vibrating or glitching in any way. If it’s still not working properly, you may need to take it to a repair shop.