Water and electronics generally do not mix well, as water can cause short circuits and corrosion in electronic devices. iPhones, including the iPhone 6, are no exception. However, the iPhone 6 has some water resistance that allows it to withstand splashes and brief submersions in water better than earlier iPhone models. In this article, we will look at whether water can “spoil” or damage an iPhone 6 and what iPhone 6 owners can do to protect their phone from water damage.
Can water damage an iPhone 6?
Yes, water can damage an iPhone 6 under certain conditions. The iPhone 6 has an IP67 ingress protection rating, which means it can withstand immersion in 1 meter of water for up to 30 minutes. However, there are some important caveats:
- The water resistance only applies to fresh water. Salt water, chlorinated water, drinks, etc can all still damage the iPhone.
- Water resistance diminishes over time as seals wear out. Older iPhone 6 models are more vulnerable to water damage than newer ones.
- Water resistance only works if the ports are properly sealed. For example, if there is debris blocking the charging port, water can get in.
- Water pressure matters. Although the iPhone 6 can handle 1 meter depth briefly, deeper or longer immersion increases risk of damage.
- Fast moving water can push past seals and o-rings.
So while the iPhone 6 has improved water resistance compared to earlier iPhones, it is not completely waterproof. Under the right conditions, such as very deep or lengthy submersion, high water pressure, or liquid other than fresh water, an iPhone 6 can still be damaged by water exposure.
How can water damage an iPhone 6?
There are a few ways that water exposure can damage an iPhone:
Water can bridge connections and create shorts in electronic circuits. If power is running when water gets in, this can fry components and circuit boards.
The metals and other conductive materials in an iPhone are susceptible to corrosion when exposed to water. Corrosion degrades connections and can cause components to fail over time.
As water evaporates, it can leave behind mineral deposits from the dissolved solids. These deposits can interfere with electrical connections and buttons.
Growth of mold or bacteria
Stagnant water trapped inside the phone can allow mold or bacteria to grow, especially if nutrients are present. This biological growth can damage phone components.
Degradation of adhesives
Adhesives that hold the phone together can become less sticky when saturated with water. This can allow water to penetrate further and compromise seals.
So in summary, water can create electrical shorts, cause corrosion, deposit minerals, breed microorganisms, and degrade adhesives – all of which can damage the iPhone over time. The extent of the damage depends on factors like water purity, length of exposure, depth, and water pressure.
How to tell if water damaged an iPhone 6
Here are some signs that your iPhone 6 has water damage:
- Condensation or fogging inside camera, behind screen, or in other areas
- Evidence of corrosion – discoloration, mineral deposits, rust colored stains
- Buttons or switches behave erratically or do not work properly
- Speakers sound muffled or distorted
- Microphone does not pick up sound properly
- Charging ports do not work properly
- Distorted or flickering screen visuals
- Presence of moisture or liquid inside phone
- Growth of mold or bacteria visible inside phone
Basically, any symptoms that can be attributed to electricity and water mixing where they shouldn’t be mixing are signs of potential water damage. The longer your phone was exposed to water, the higher the likelihood and severity of damage.
How to dry out and recover a wet iPhone 6
If your iPhone 6 gets wet, quick action can help minimize water damage. Here are some steps to dry it out:
1. Power off the phone
Don’t try to power on a wet iPhone 6. Powering on can short circuit the device. Power it off to avoid further damage.
2. Do NOT use heat to dry
Exposing a water-damaged iPhone to heat can make damage worse by causing condensation and corrosion. Avoid hair dryers, heat guns, microwaves, ovens, etc.
3. Dab up excess moisture
Use a microfiber cloth to blot up any pooled water on the surface of the device. Be gentle to avoid scratching.
4. Disassemble and air dry
Take the phone apart as much as possible to allow inner components to air dry thoroughly. Let it sit for at least 24-48 hours.
5. Place in front of a fan
Direct airflow can help evaporate residual moisture inside the phone – just don’t overheat it.
6. Use desiccant packs
Put the phone in a sealed container with silica gel packs to actively pull moisture away.
7. When fully dry, check for damage before powering on
Look for corrosion, mineral deposits, mold, etc. Proper cleaning and repair may be needed before using again.
With quick action, an iPhone 6 that gets briefly wet may survive with minimal damage. But the longer moisture sits inside, the higher the risk of corrosion and failure over time. If in doubt, seek professional help.
How to prevent water damage to iPhone 6
While the iPhone 6 has decent water resistance, it is not waterproof. To avoid potentially damaging water exposure:
- Use a protective case designed to be waterproof/water-resistant.
- Avoid exposing your phone to water unnecessarily.
- Keep ports and seals clear of debris to maintain water resistance.
- Never charge or use an iPhone that has been exposed to water before thoroughly drying it out.
- Have your iPhone’s water-resistance seals tested and replaced periodically.
- Consider investing in water indicating stickers that change color if moisture is present.
- Use a sound transducer to detect fluid sloshing inside a seemingly dry phone.
- Purchase water damage insurance in case your phone does get wet.
- Back up your data regularly so it can be restored if water damage occurs.
While the iPhone 6 is reasonably water resistant for an iPhone, it is not invincible. Care and preventive measures are required to avoid liquid damage, just as with any electronic device. With proper precautions, an iPhone 6 can enjoy years of use even in wet environments. But negligence around water can still result in a spoiled phone.
Can a water damaged iPhone 6 be repaired?
In some cases, it is possible to repair an iPhone 6 that has been damaged by water exposure. However, success depends heavily on the specifics of the damage and the steps taken afterward.
Some repairable water damage includes:
- Corroded charging port – can be cleaned or replaced
- Moisture in camera – module can be replaced
- Damaged screen or backlight – can swap new screen
- Speaker/microphone not working – can swap in new ones
- Short-circuited motherboard – possible to replace if isolated area
More extensive water damage often cannot be economically repaired:
- Pervasive corrosion on logic board – not worth replacing entire board
- Failed integrated circuits – cannot be individually replaced
- Mineral deposits on small SMT components – difficult/impossible to clean
The extent of feasible repair depends on:
- How quickly power was removed from the device after getting wet.
- Speed of disassembly and drying process.
- Purity of water – chemical contaminants worsen corrosion.
- Age of phone – newer devices tend to hold up better.
For significant water damage, full board-level repair or replacement may be required. At some point, this becomes uneconomical compared to getting a replacement phone. But for mild exposure that is dealt with quickly, repair is often possible. An experienced technician should be able to determine if cost-effective repair is an option after inspecting and diagnosing any water damage present.
Does AppleCare cover water damage to iPhone 6?
The limited 1-year AppleCare warranty provided with iPhones does not cover water damage. According to Apple, “this warranty does not apply: (a) to damage caused by accident, abuse, misuse, fire, earthquake or other external cause”. So any water damage to an iPhone 6 would be considered “accidental damage” and is not covered under the standard AppleCare policy.
However, Apple does offer an optional AppleCare+ plan that adds additional protection for iPhone 6 models against accidental damage from water exposure. Specifically, AppleCare+ offers up to two incidents of accidental damage coverage, each subject to a service fee.
For an iPhone 6, the AppleCare+ accidental damage fee is $99 per incident for screen or back glass damage, or $299 per incident for any other water damage. So with AppleCare+, water damage can be repaired at a reduced cost, but is not 100% covered.
AppleCare+ must be purchased within 60 days of getting an iPhone 6. And the water damage coverage only lasts for 24 months after the purchase date of AppleCare+. So this protection is limited, but can help reduce repair costs in cases of accidental water exposure during the first 2 years of owning an iPhone 6 with AppleCare+ purchased.
Third party insurance for water damaged iPhone
Besides AppleCare+, there are third party insurance plans from companies like SquareTrade and Asurion that can cover water damage to an iPhone 6. Both warranty providers offer comprehensive protection plans that include accidental damage from liquid exposure.
SquareTrade offers a 24 month protection plan covering water damage with a deductible of just $25 per claim. Asurion’s coverage spans anywhere from 1 to 24 months with deductibles ranging from $50 to $200 depending on the plan. Monthly premiums for these third party iPhone insurance plans typically run $8-$16 per month.
Unlike AppleCare+, third party iPhone insurers do not require you to purchase the policy within 60 days. Protection can be added at any time, even years after purchasing the iPhone 6. However, plans longer than 24 months are rare.
So while AppleCare+ offers Apple’s only direct water damage protection option, third parties provide similar or better coverage that is accessible at any time during ownership of the iPhone 6. Just make sure to read policy details carefully, as there are sometimes exclusions or limits.
|Insurer||Coverage Duration||Deductible per Claim|
|AppleCare+||24 months from purchase||$99 screen/back glass
$299 other damage
While the iPhone 6 has decent water resistance, it is still possible for water damage to occur under certain conditions. Symptoms like fogging, corrosion, and malfunctioning components can indicate water exposure. Quickly drying a wet iPhone 6 and addressing any damage right away gives the best chance for recovery or repair. Preventative steps can also help avoid water damage in the first place. For additional protection, AppleCare+ or third party insurance plans are available to cover water damage incidents for iPhone 6 models, outside of Apple’s standard 1 year warranty. So with proper precautions, care, and insurance coverage, an iPhone 6 can withstand the occasional splash without getting spoiled.