Tragedy Strikes! Full Blown Disaster Averted

Discussion in 'iPhone 5S' started by bballrob, Nov 2, 2013.

  1. bballrob

    bballrob Genius
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    I never thought it could happen to me, and then today, in the wee hours of the morning, it did.

    I've heard many stories of phones ending up in toilets. And each time I've said, "How'd they do that?" I had also heard that most of those incidences happened to women. That was a little understandable given how many of them I see carrying their phones in their back pocket. I can visualize them entering the bathroom, and as they undo their trousers and begin to back up in the direction of the porcelain relievatory, the phone could easily slip out of that back pocket and into the abyss. But this could never happen to me, could it?

    This morning, as I often do, I awoke to watch College GameDay on ESPN. While that show begins at 9 AM according to the regular promotions it receives on ESPN, here in the great state of Alaska, that means 5 AM, which is well before the crack of dawn. Hell, kickoff of the first game of the day at 8 AM local time is still well before sunrise at this time of year -- 9:33 AM for the official sunrise today, but I digress.

    So this morning, I made my way down to the couch a few minutes after 5 AM. I was just settling in to enjoy the show, do a little web surfing, forum reading, and basketball rule review since my referee season kicks off later this afternoon. Then, the urge hit. So, I got up and tucked my Golden iPhone into the chest pocket of the t-shirt I had slipped on this morning. I entered the restroom and closed the door. I reached down to lift the sear, and then leaned forward to rest my hand on the wall in front of me as I sometimes do as I begin my businesss in the stand up position. And then it happened. Just before I began to change the color of the water in the bowl from clear to a tint of yellow, it happened. Somehow, I managed to knock the Golden iPhone from my chest pocket, and straight into the toilet bowl below! I couldn't believe my eyes. I quickly snatched it out and began to assess the damage.

    I popped the phone out of the clear Adopted case, one of only 2 cases I deemed worthy due to it's ability to show off the glory of the iPhone while still offering some protection and full functionality of TouchID. After grabbing the nearst towel and drying it off as best I could, I started to test functionality. The screen was starting to flicker a bit, and icons were appearing blurry. This wasn't going to end well. I immediately went to the pantry in search of rice. I found a container of brown rice. I grabbed it out, and placed the phone in a quart sized Ziploc Bag, and then filled the bag with rice, covering the Golden iPhone from view. I sealed the bag, and started to do some critical research.

    I knew that AppleCare+ could be added within the first month of ownership of a new iPhone. Or at least I was pretty sure. I went to the online Apple store and started looking. Found AppleCare+ and began to read the fine print. Did a quick search for WATER. Nothing found. That was good news, because I couldn't remember if water damage was excluded from coverage.(I did later find a reference to liquid damage, but not as an exclusion.) I also found that I was slightly incorrect, especially given the time that we were looking at here. The period within which AppleCare could be added was actually 30 days, which is a month, generally speaking.

    Next step: find the date of purchase. As defined, date of purchase is the date the phone is shipped and your credit card is charged. I had ordered my Golden iPhone just a few minutes after midnight, and unfortunately,(or maybe fortunately), didn't make the first wave of shipping dates. I logged into Wells Fargo online and did a search for APPLE. First hit was on an airport extreme purchase I made at an Apple store a couple weeks ago. The next hit was the $299 charge for my Golden Phone, and the date of the charge was October 3. Today, is November 2. Day 30, post purchase. I Was in luck. As my Golden iPhone lay recovering in a bed of Brown rice on the couch beside, I grabbed the landline phone and dialed the number. When the Apple representative came on the line, I told him that I wanted to purchase AppleCare+ to my recent iPhone purchase. He transferred me to the appropriate department, and the recording said the wait would be less than 5 minutes. I decided to switch the Golden iPhone on again to see how things were looking. The initial white screen with the black Apple in the middle showed some blurriness. Once the lock screen appeared, the blurriness was no longer evident. This was a good sign. Once the next Apple rep came on the phone and I told him what I wanted to do, he said he'd just need the Serial number, which I was able to quickly retrieve from the Settings screen on the phone. The coverage was added. I was in good shape.

    After completing the call, I began to test functionality some more. I tried to play a song from the music app. Sound was not normal. A bit on the quiet side, and some odd vibration going on as well. I placed a call to the Golden iPhone from my home line. The Imperial March star wars ringtone sounded pretty normal, but again the internal vibrating sound is evident. Shut it down, and back into the bed of brown rice.

    An hour or so later, more functionality tests. Power up appears normal. No blurriness, however, across the top at the edge of the screen, some black spots spaced intermittently. The music now plays at a normal volume, but some vibration still persists. I still haven't tested any actual phone call capability so see if the microphone has been affected. Nor have I plugged in any headphones to see how they work, or don't.

    I do feel better now that I have added the AppleCare+ coverage. I've never purchased it in the past, cause "those things won't happen to me." I couldn't have been more wrong.
     
  2. Europa

    Europa Moderator
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    That sucks! You did the right thing putting it rice right away. It's best to not attempt to use it all after until it has sat in rice for several days. I would take it out of the bag and put it in a large bowl of rice.

    I've bought AppleCare+ on all of my iPhones for several years now. It covers two incidents of accidental damage, including water damage, for a $79 deductible (it used to be $49). One thing that's great about AppleCare+ is you don't have to drive to an Apple Store for replacements. They will ship you a replacement phone with free two-day shipping. If you don't live near an Apple Store, this is very convenient. You the. print the return shipping label and return the old phone in the same box. AppleCare+ should be purchased at the same time the phone is purchased. They do allow adding it within the first month, but the phone must be taken to an Apple Store to be inspected for damage prior first. AT&T will not be able to add it after the phone is purchased.

    That being said, you *might* luck out and get them to add AppleCare+ and use this as your first occurrence. There was someone here on eiC who broke their phone a few days buying it and Apple let them add it on when they took it in. Hopefully they let you do this if you have problems with it after taking it out of the rice, but I wouldn't count on it. The $99+$79 will be cheaper than a water-damaged replacement iPhone if they do.

    Leave it in rice for several days and don't attempt to power it on. Good luck with it!
     
    #2 Europa, Nov 2, 2013
    Last edited: Nov 2, 2013
  3. bballrob

    bballrob Genius
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    They've already added it. That was accomplished with the call this morning. I received an email confirming coverage and all the terms about an hour and a half after the call. The website did say the following about adding AppleCare+:

    How to get AppleCare+
    Add it to your shopping cart during the checkout process when you purchase your new iPhone.
    Buy it within 30 days of your iPhone purchase. Your iPhone purchase date is the date we ship and charge you for your order:

    • At an Apple Retail Store (requires inspection of your iPhone and proof of purchase)
    • By calling (800) 275-2273 (requires you to run a remote diagnostic and provide proof of purchase)


    I figured that they would have me do something on the phone that would send them some diagnostic file while I was on the phone with them, which spooked me a bit, however they never did, so I think I'm good.

    I seem to recall that when I had my space grey phone for a couple weeks while waiting for my Golden iPhone to arrive, that when I picked the Space Gray phone at the AT&T Store, they said I could still add the AppleCare later, but I may be confusing that with AT&T's own insurance that could have been added later.
     
  4. bballrob

    bballrob Genius
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    @Europa, why do you recommend a bowl of rice rather than a bag?
     
  5. Kadelic

    Kadelic Genius
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    Just guessing here, but probably because a bag will trap the moisture in while a bowl will allow it to escape and evaporate.

    By the way, I've had a similar incident in the past but luckily I had a Lifeproof case at the time. It was still an OMG moment for a second though.
     
  6. Europa

    Europa Moderator
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    Cool. Sounds like they've made it easier by adding the remote diagnostic feature. I'm not sure why they didn't run it. A couple years ago they didn't even let people take them to Apple to be inspected. It was time of purchase or nothing.

    I assumed you meant a sandwhich-sized Baggie. You want more rice than could fit in that. One of the large ziplock bags would work, I guess, but I'd opt for a large bowl even though it probably wouldn't make a difference.
     
  7. Europa

    Europa Moderator
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    The rice should absorb all the moisture. I'm not sure if it makes a difference if it's in a bowl or a bag, but you do want a large amount (several cups) of rice.
     
  8. Muckcityjustin

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    I'd suggest a bowl because a zip lock bag won't allow any kind of moisture to escape.


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  9. Europa

    Europa Moderator
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    The point of the rice is to absorb all of the water and moisture. It's acts as a desiccant. If there is any moisture in the bag that can't escape into the air, the rice has already absorbed all that it can and it is no more useful to the phone than a wet towel. The rice would need to be switched out at that point regardless of what type of container it was in. A phone cannot hold enough water to max out the absorption of three cups of rice, so the container shouldn't matter.

    I would still go with a bowl, but I think either would be fine as long as there is enough rice to absorb all of the water and moisture.
     
    #9 Europa, Nov 2, 2013
    Last edited: Nov 2, 2013
  10. Santa

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    My guess is the bowl/bag depends on the humidity of the outside world. Here in CO, I'd maybe do a bowl. In Houston? I'd go bag all the way.

    It's been 10 years since I've pulled the toilet trick. I still buy Applecare+ just in case it happens again.
     
  11. Kriss

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    Sounds like your "golden phone" got a golden shower. Sure hope you washed it off before putting it to your ear. Lol.
     
  12. bballrob

    bballrob Genius
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    Luckily at the point of submersion, the only thing in the toilet was water.

    I just removed the phone from the rice to turn it on and check things out. It powered up fine, but once I unlocked it, the screen flickered a couple times. Then, as I was perusing some emails, the screen stopped responding to touches. Couldn't scroll, etc. The home button still worked, as did the touch ID which I tested. I couldn't even power it off again as I couldn't do the SLIDE TO POWER OFF. I tried doing a hard reset to power it off, and rather than waiting to release the buttons until the Apple logo powered back on, I just let go of the buttons as soon as the screen went black. Back to the rice it goes. But not looking good.
     
  13. Kriss

    Kriss Zealot
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    It could take several days before it is completely dried out. During which time I wouldn't turn it on. Electricity and water don't play nice together. By turning it on and using it while there is moisture inside, you may damage sensitive circuits and/or components.
     
  14. Europa

    Europa Moderator
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    Why?! Half a day is not enough time. Attempting to use it at this point was the worst thing you could have done. They have to sit in rice for at least three days to maximize the chances of the rice absorbing all the water.
     
  15. bballrob

    bballrob Genius
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    OK, I admit it. I'm just an IMPATIENT MALE! I will leave it in the rice now until Tuesday. If things ain't right then, I'm filing the claim.
     
  16. Europa

    Europa Moderator
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    I haven't ever dropped one in water and needed to use rice, but I realize it would be tempting to power it on too soon. This is one of a few reasons I always keep my previous iPhone to use as a backup. You can just remove the SIM and put it in the old iPhone for a few days. AppleCare+ comes in if it doesn't work afterwards.
     
  17. bballrob

    bballrob Genius
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    And the only problem here is, I sent my iPhone 4s to my daughter at college in Idaho last Saturday. And she activated it yesterday. So I'm currently phoneless. How sad is that?!?!

    I will survive.
     
  18. Josh Yates

    Josh Yates Contributor
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    The peace of mind AppleCare+ gives is well worth the extra $99. I've had it on my iPhone/iPads since it came out...and while I take care of my devices...I know I'm covered should I have an accident. I have daughters that are 9 & 4 and I'm a youth pastor that hangs out with No problem junior and senior high students a lot...so an "accident" can always happen! It also helps when I sell my devices to upgrade!


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  19. Ledsteplin

    Ledsteplin Genius
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    That was great story telling. bballbob! Ever consider writing a book? Or short stories? I can't wait for the sequel. Hopefully a happy ending.


    Sent on iPhone 5 using iCafe app
     
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  20. liberated

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    I got tired of reading the OP after the 1st 20 paragraphs LOL j/k. Yeah, rice and ziplock, then replace the phone as this seldom works :)
     

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