Can I get money for a water damaged iPhone?

Quick Answers

You may be able to get money for a water damaged iPhone depending on the extent of the damage, your iPhone model, whether you have AppleCare+ coverage, and whether you have homeowner’s or renter’s insurance that covers accidental damage to electronics. Apple may repair or replace water damaged iPhones for a fee if the damage is not too extensive. You can also sell water damaged iPhones for parts. With the right coverage, you may get partial reimbursement for a water damaged iPhone.

What should I do if my iPhone gets water damage?

If your iPhone comes into contact with water, you’ll want to act quickly to give yourself the best chance of saving it and getting money back for the damage:

  • Immediately power off your iPhone and do not try to turn it back on.
  • Do not try to charge your water damaged iPhone.
  • Gently wipe down the iPhone with a soft, lint-free cloth to soak up excess moisture.
  • Do not submerge the iPhone further or run it under a tap.
  • Do not try drying it using an external heat source like a hairdryer or placing it in rice.
  • Allow the iPhone to air dry completely before attempting to power it on.

Following these steps can help minimize further damage to the internal components. Be patient and let the iPhone dry out completely before testing it. Then, you can determine the extent of the damage and your options for getting money back.

Does AppleCare+ cover water damage?

The AppleCare+ protection plan for iPhones does provide some coverage for water damage, with a service fee:

  • AppleCare+ covers accidental damage from spills. This includes water damage.
  • There is a service fee for each accidental damage claim, currently $99 for iPhone screen damage or $29 for other water damage.
  • AppleCare+ allows two covered instances of accidental damage, with additional fees after that.
  • Without AppleCare+, water damage to an iPhone is not covered by the standard 1-year Apple warranty.

So if you have AppleCare+ on your water damaged iPhone, you can pay the service fee to have Apple attempt repairs. If they are unable to fix it, Apple will replace your iPhone for the fee. This can allow you to get money back for the damaged phone, minus the deductible.

Will Apple repair a water damaged iPhone?

Apple may repair an iPhone that has been damaged by water, depending on factors like:

  • iPhone model – newer models like iPhone 12 or 13 have better water resistance.
  • Degree of water exposure – small splashes vs. submersion.
  • Speed of drying – how quickly you dried the iPhone.
  • Mineral deposits – tap water can leave deposits when dry.
  • Corrosion – prolonged wetness can still cause corrosion over time.

For newer iPhone models exposed only to minor splashing and dried quickly, Apple may be able to repair functional damage like malfunctioning buttons or speakers. But extended exposure can still cause irreparable corrosion to internal components.

Out-of-warranty iPhone water damage repair

For iPhones no longer under warranty or AppleCare coverage, Apple does offer flat rate repair pricing:

  • iPhone 6 series – $299
  • iPhone 7 series – $399
  • iPhone 8 series – $399
  • iPhone X series – $599
  • iPhone 11 series – $599

This flat fee option is only available if Apple determines that your iPhone can be repaired. If the damage is beyond repair, they will advise you accordingly.

AppleCare+ water damage claims

With AppleCare+, the $29 or $99 service fee gets you an Apple repair attempt. If they cannot fix your iPhone, Apple will replace it instead:

  • iPhone replacement – $99 service fee with AppleCare+
  • You’ll get a replacement iPhone of the same model, or similar if no longer available.
  • The replacement will not extend your AppleCare+ coverage time.

Getting a replacement iPhone for the lower AppleCare+ fee allows you to recover money you might have lost from the water damage. Just be sure to dry it out quickly next time!

Should I contact my homeowner’s insurance?

Homeowner’s and renter’s insurance policies may cover accidental damage to electronics like an iPhone damaged by water exposure. Here’s what to know about making a claim:

  • Coverage for personal electronics depends on your policy details.
  • A deductible, often $500-$1000, usually applies to electronics claims.
  • Replacement cost value may be depreciated based on the age of your phone.
  • Making frequent claims can increase your rates at renewal time.

While you may get some money back, it likely won’t cover a full replacement iPhone. Weigh the costs and benefits vs. paying for Apple’s flat rate repair pricing before making an insurance claim.

What documentation will I need?

To make a successful claim to your homeowner’s or renter’s insurance provider, you’ll need to provide:

  • Policy number
  • Proof of your iPhone’s value – original receipt recommended.
  • Photos documenting the water damage.
  • An official repair estimate or denial letter from Apple.

Having complete details will help facilitate processing your electronics claim and getting money back for your water damaged iPhone.

Can I sell a water damaged iPhone?

While a water damaged iPhone may not work, it still retains some monetary value for parts. Here are some options for selling an iPhone that has water damage:

Apple Trade-In Program

  • Apple’s program accepts water damaged device trade-ins.
  • You’ll get credit based on model, storage, and extent of damage.
  • Credit can be used towards a new Apple device purchase.

Third-party buyback services

  • Sites like Decluttr, ItsWorthMore, and more buy damaged devices.
  • Quote is based on details provided plus inspection upon receipt.
  • Can be paid via PayPal, check, etc. for money back.

Sell for parts

  • Listing on eBay, Craigslist, Facebook Marketplace for parts value.
  • Clearly describe the water damage in your parts listing.
  • Buyers may purchase for screen, rear camera, logic board, etc.

Selling an irreparable water damaged iPhone can help you recoup some of its value, even if less than it would be worth in working condition.

What can affect the money I get back?

Several factors determine how much money you can recoup from a water damaged iPhone. These include:

Extent of damage

  • Splash vs. submersion damage amounts.
  • Quick drying vs. moisture sitting for a long time.
  • Corrosion to logic board, connectors vs. just screen/battery damage.
  • Level of repair difficulty – easier fixes net more money back.

iPhone model

  • Newer models like iPhone 12/13 have higher resale and replacement value.
  • Older models may have lower repair costs but also lower resale prices.
  • Out of warranty models lose AppleCare+ replacement option.


  • Insurance claim payouts account for depreciation since purchase.
  • Trade-in values decrease over time from original purchase amount.
  • Regular wear and tear also reduces value – not just water damage.

Availability of parts

  • Common parts like batteries retain higher value in water damaged phones.
  • Rarer components like logic boards have lower demand.
  • Once repaired, the phone may not bring as much money.

Understanding these factors can help set reasonable expectations for how much money you’ll get back for a water damaged iPhone.

Can I prevent water damage in the future?

While nothing can guarantee your iPhone’s safety from water damage, there are steps you can take to help avoid or minimize it happening again:

  • Use a protective case. A waterproof case creates an extra barrier against moisture.
  • Avoid wet environments. While iPhones have water resistance, they are not waterproof.
  • Dry hands before handling. Wet hands are one of the most common causes of accidental iPhone water damage.
  • Keep drinks away. Don’t place your phone next to cups, glasses of water, etc.
  • Store safely when not in use. Set it in a dry spot instead of a countertop or sink edge.
  • Inspect gaskets/seals periodically. Missing water seals can allow moisture ingress.

Practicing these basic precautions can go a long way towards avoiding costly iPhone water damage repairs and the need to recover money for damage in the future.


Getting water damaged is an unfortunate but common accident that smartphone owners may face. For the iPhone, there are various options that may allow you to recover part of the phone’s value through repair, replacement, insurance claims, or resale. The amount of money you can get back will depend on your specific circumstances. Quick action is important to limit the damage, and prevention steps can help avoid issues altogether. With the right coverage and response, you can avoid losing your iPhone’s entire monetary value due to accidental water damage.