Phones and toilets don’t mix.

Phones and toilets article header image

It’s a well known fact that phones and water don’t mix. Now a shocking report has revealed that nearly half of mobiles damaged this way have been dropped - yes, you guessed it - down the toilet.

Other popular ways to drown your phone include dunking it in a drink (cups of tea and pints are responsible for the demise of many a phone) or spilling one over it. More common perpetrators of water damage include the sink, bath or shower, reinforcing the view that nowhere is out of bounds when it comes to using our gadgetry.

Dropping your phone in with the dirty dishes and leaving it in your pocket while you put it through a hot wash also cropped up. 

The research, by comparison website, showed that 31% of Britons admit to damaging a phone with liquid - with men three times more likely to make the blunder.

The study quizzed 1,937 mobile users over the age of 18 across the UK.


So, how do you save your phone from a watery grave?

We asked the Devices Team at Three for their top tips on taking emergency action if the worst should happen.


  1. Fish out your phone as soon as possible (although you might want to think twice about this if it’s in the toilet bowl). 
  2. Take the phone apart, removing the case, battery and SIM card. Separate the pieces that make up the phone as much as you can.
  3. Mop up any liquid you can see, using a cloth that’s not going to fall apart, making sure you dry all those nooks and crannies. Don’t use bog roll or flimsy tissues as these can leave fluff and fibres inside your phone - opt for an absorbent cotton t-shirt instead.
  4. To speed up the drying process, you might want to place your phone in a bowl of uncooked rice, which will suck up any remaining moisture. Don’t take a hairdryer to your phone as the heat could damage it further. Leave your phone to dry out at room temperature.
  5. Try and resist the temptation to turn it on and see if it works. Leave your phone for at least 12 hours before putting it together again. Depending on the extent of the water damage, the drying out process could take even longer.
  6. The moment of truth: put it back together and press the ‘on’ switch. Hopefully your phone will come back to life.


Be warned: if you have problems with your phone after getting it wet, there’s technology inside all mobiles that reveals if it’s been dunked in water. If this sensor reveals your phone’s been damaged by moisture, your warranty is often invalid when it comes to further repairs or insurance claims.