How do you dry out an iPod that went through the wash?

If your iPod has accidentally gone through the wash, quick action is needed to try and revive it. Getting moisture inside an electronic device like an iPod can cause serious damage, but there are some DIY methods you can try at home to dry it out before taking it in for professional repair.

Can you save a wet iPod?

It is possible to save an iPod that has gotten wet, but the sooner you act the better. The longer moisture sits inside the device, the more potential it has to cause corrosion and electrical shorts. This can permanently destroy an iPod. However, if you act quickly there are steps you can take to dry it out and potentially revive it.

Step 1 – Remove the iPod from liquid immediately

As soon as you realize your iPod has gone through the wash, remove it immediately. Whether it is still in the washing machine or floating in water, take it out right away. The less time it spends submerged, the better chance it has of drying out completely.

Step 2 – Turn the iPod off

Do not try to turn on your wet iPod. Having it powered on can cause a short circuit and make the damage worse. Make sure to turn your iPod off before attempting to dry it out.

Step 3 – Remove case and accessories

Take off any protective cases, covers or plugs from the iPod. You want to allow it to dry out completely, so remove anything blocking the ports. Also take out any headphones or cables that may have gotten wet.

Step 4 – Dry the exterior

Use a soft lint-free cloth to dry the outside of your iPod. Gently blot up any moisture on the screen and exterior casing. Be careful not to scratch or damage the screen’s surface.

Step 5 – Do not use heat to dry

You may be tempted to speed up drying with a hairdryer or other heat source. However, this can potentially damage the iPod further. Stick to air drying instead.

Step 6 – Absorb moisture with dry rice

Place your iPod in a sealable bag or airtight container. Pour in dry white rice until the iPod is fully covered. Rice will naturally help absorb any moisture inside the ports and casing. Let your iPod sit in rice for at least 24 hours.

Step 7 – Check for moisture in ports

After 24 hours, carefully remove your iPod from the rice. Use a flashlight to look closely for any remaining moisture in the ports and connectors. If present, place back in rice for another 24 hours.

Step 8 – Air dry components

If your iPod case can be safely opened without damaging components, open it and remove the battery and interior parts. Gently wipe any moisture from the parts using a clean lint-free cloth. Allow components to air dry for at least 48 hours.

Step 9 – Check for corrosion

Examine the interior of your iPod and components for any signs of corrosion before reassembling. Corrosion may indicate permanent water damage. Consider taking your iPod to a repair shop if corrosion is present.

Step 10 – Reassemble components

Once completely dry, carefully reassemble the interior components and reattach the exterior casing. Make sure everything is connected properly before attempting to turn on.

Step 11 – Attempt to power on

The moment of truth – try turning your iPod back on. If it powers up normally, you hopefully saved it from water damage. Be sure to fully charge it and test all features before regular use.

Step 12 – Backup data immediately

If your iPod turns back on, the first thing you should do is backup your data. Make sure important media and files are saved elsewhere in case your iPod stops working again later. Better safe than sorry.

Step 13 – Keep an eye out for issues

Even if your iPod appears to work after drying out, problems could arise in the future. Watch for erratic behavior, glitches and performance issues which may indicate water damage was done internally.

Professional repair options

If DIY drying does not successfully revive your iPod, you may need to seek professional repair:

  • Apple Store – Make a Genius Bar appointment for official Apple inspection and repair.
  • Authorized service provider – Find an Apple authorized third party repair shop.
  • Phone repair shop – A general electronics repair shop may be able to troubleshoot.
  • Data recovery service – If your iPod won’t power on, a data recovery service can sometimes salvage data from water damaged devices.

Professional disassembly and cleaning may be required if moisture lingers inside the device. Component-level repairs might be necessary if corrosion has occurred. Be aware that repairs can get costly. If your iPod is very old and damage is severe, replacement may be a better option.

Water damage prevention tips

To avoid going through device drying in the future, here are some tips to keep your iPod away from moisture:

  • Keep your iPod out of bathroom and other wet areas.
  • Securely close any ports when not in use.
  • Never submerge an iPod or use near water.
  • Use a waterproof case or sleeve if taking your iPod near water.
  • Avoid placing your iPod in pockets or bags that may get wet.
  • Take extra care when washing clothes with a pocketed iPod.

Following basic precautions will go a long way in preventing costly water damage incidents.


Reviving a water damaged iPod is possible if you take quick action. Drying it out properly and checking for internal issues are key to getting it working again. While an underwater trip through the washer can spell doom for electronics, there is hope if you move fast. Just be sure to take preventative steps so it never happens again!