Most of us have been there – you rushed through laundry day and later found your phone charger swirling in the washer. Suddenly, a flood of questions overwhelms you. Is it ruined? What do you do next? Let’s embark on a comprehensive journey answering these questions and more.
Understanding the Risks
Realizing you’ve washed your phone charger can send you into a panic. After all, water and electronics are notorious foes for a reason. To effectively handle this situation, it’s crucial to understand the risks involved.
This occurs when water creates a path for electricity to flow where it shouldn’t, possibly damaging the charger.
This is a longer-term effect. Even if your charger seems to be working fine, tiny amounts of water cause metal parts to corrode or rust, impeding its effectiveness over time.
The outcomes of washing a phone charger are not guaranteed but can range from no effect at all to significant damage making the charger completely unusable.
Here are the measures you should take immediately:
Do not plug in the charger
Plucking it out of the washer and plugging it in might be your first instinct, but this can be hazardous. It puts you at risk of electrocution and the charger at risk of short-circuiting.
Drying the Phone Charger
Even though it might be tempting to fast-track the drying process, patience is key. Stick to these steps:
Shake off as much water as possible and air dry it in a safe, ventilated spot away from direct sunlight. Turning a fan toward it can speed up the process.
Using silica gel packs (those little packets found in medicine bottles, shoeboxes, etc.) or uncooked rice can also be helpful. Place the charger in a bag with several packets, or bury it in a bowl of rice.
If you choose the rice method, make sure to clean any remaining rice grains stuck in the charger ports afterwards.
However, never use a hairdryer or any other heat source to dry your charger as it could melt the internal components.
Wait at least 48 hours for the charger to dry before testing it.
Testing the Charger
Before you can determine whether your charger is still functional, it needs to be completely dry – both on the inside and outside.
After at least 48 hours,
- Visually inspect the charger for any signs of damage or corrosion.
- Plug the charger into a wall outlet without connecting your phone first.
- If you see sparks, smoke, or smell anything burning, unplug it immediately.
- If there’s no immediate evidence of harm, connect your phone. Keep a close eye on both the charger and your device for the first few minutes.
Washing your phone charger doesn’t necessarily mean the end of its usability, but it’s critical to take the right precautions for drying and testing it to minimize any potential damage to the charger or your phone, also to ensure you’re safe from electrical hazards. Remember, if your charger shows any signs of damage, it’s better to replace it than risking it damaging your phone or worse, a fire hazard.
In essence, avoid a rush through the chores, ensure all pockets are empty before throwing clothes in the washer, and let’s hope the unlucky event of a laundered charger is a one-time experience.
Living in a tech-filled world means sometimes our gadgets get exposed to elements they’re not designed for. A quick search can provide guides like this one to mitigate any potential damages. Stay informed, act wisely, and remember, safety first!