How To Fix A Wet Phone Without Rice Involves A Surprising Ingredient — Cat Litter
All you wanted to do was flip through Instagram while sitting on the potty, but that plan went down the drain when you dropped your smartphone in the toilet. Now what? After a phone has gone for a swim, many of us resort to the tried-and-true method of letting it sit in rice to draw the moisture out; but it looks like there might be an even better method: Put your phone in cat litter.
The ol' bag o' rice method is a trusty one, as it's been tested and shown to be effective at fixing a phone that was dropped in water. Supposedly, it works so well because the tiny grains of rice are able to get in all the nooks and crannies of your phone to absorb any water left inside. It makes sense when you think about it: You typically cook one part rice in about two parts liquid. By the time the rice is done, it's absorbed just about everything. Those little grains can hold a lot!
Using similar logic, it's perhaps not all that surprising that kitty litter could do the same, especially given its intended purpose. Gazelle reports that cat litter — specifically, crystal cat litter — is such an effective drying agent because it's a silica gel (you know, that stuff that comes in little packets and says "Do Not Eat").
All you have to do is take your previously submerged phone and dump it in a bag or bowl of the litter. The longer it's in there, the better; so aim to keep it in there a few days. Gazelle tested the theory and found that cat litter worked far better than conventional white rice (although instant rice was right up there at the top).
Lifehacker also discussed putting smartphones in cat litter, with one reader noting that they wrapped their soaked phone in a towel and stuck it in their container of litter for two days. Upon removing the phone and powering it up, everything was A-OK — although they noted that leaving it in for a bit longer would've been even better.
If you find yourself in the middle of a wet phone emergency and don't have access to crystal kitty litter, couscous and instant oatmeal could fix your phone as well. This easy smartphone hack could very well save your device — and save you a bunch of money.