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Thread: iPhone 3GS water damage

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okay guys I have an iPhone 3GS I got from a friend that dropped it into a 50 gallon drum. after getting the phone out she tried to turn it
...
  1. #1
    Master of Colors delutedsoul's Avatar
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    Default iPhone 3GS water damage
    okay guys I have an iPhone 3GS I got from a friend that dropped it into a 50 gallon drum. after getting the phone out she tried to turn it on..I know bad move. anyway I replaced a few parts but now I've noticed the computer will detect the phone in dfu mode and in iTunes. now when I start the phone up it shows the apple loading black screen perfectly fine. but as soon as I let go of the power button the screen goes White. any help or ideas or tricks will be greatly appreciated.

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    Did you replace the lcd? Sounds like the lcd ribbon isnt reading right
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    Master of Colors delutedsoul's Avatar
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    yea I replaced the LCD screen. and like I said the opening boot looks great until I release the power button

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    maybe something wrong with the flex cable
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    Master of Colors delutedsoul's Avatar
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    so maybe change out that whole bundle

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    Quote Originally Posted by delutedsoul View Post
    so maybe change out that whole bundle
    Probably headphone jack and all
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    Master of Colors delutedsoul's Avatar
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    ok I'll get to work on that and report back...anybody heard of this happening before

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    Master of Colors delutedsoul's Avatar
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    well I put a new cable assembly on it and it still gives the same result but I waa looking closely at the logic board and the LCD connector has some slight discolouration on it. what is the best cleaner to use on these?

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    Is there still water present or just the hard water stains left from the water? Is it dry?

    If wet, take phone apart (completely), remove motherboard, put in container of de-ionized or RO (reverse osmosis) or distilled water with maybe 25% IPA (isopropyl alcohol). Let sit a while (1 or 2 hours). Remove, shake out water.

    Pour out water that motherboard was sitting in, dry out the container, pour just IPA into it enough to cover motherboard. You should use 99% pure IPA if you can find it, anything less could leave residue on motherboard. Let board sit in that for an hour.

    Remove board from IPA, shake dry and stand on edge to dry over night. It should be fine within 12-20 hours (no need to wait several days).

    Theory: The DI or RO or distilled water acts as a good solvent for either hard water or water with impurities that got into the iphone. The water isn't the problem, its the impurities. Using pure water (1) doesn't add more impurities (2) will wash away impurities. The IPA in the water breaks down the surface tension of water a little bit (the resulting mixture has less surface tension than just water), water itself won't want to go under chips and low-standoff stuff on the board, the water+IPA will. Very pure IPA (99%+) likes water a lot, it will mix with water very well. This last rinse with just alcohol will dissolve all the water left on and under things on the board and take it with it. Afterwards, you are just left with alcohol to dry, and it dries very fast.

    If your board is dry, and it isn't working, you probably have minerals or salts from the water interfering with the low voltage signals (bridging) between components and causing trouble. You can try the following steps:

    To try to remove hard water or salts from motherboard:
    * Remove motherboard from iphone
    * Find someone who has access to or buy a ultrasonic parts washer big enough to wash motherboard. Try to find one with a sweep or varying frequency -- its easier on boards with components.
    * Find a low suds detergent (I used Simple Green), dilute to 1:20 or 1:30 with pure water, degas mixture in the ultrasonic.
    * Wash board for a few minutes (4 minutes)
    * Follow up with pure water + IPA rinse, and IPA rinse.
    * Dry
    Last edited by m38493; 04-01-2011 at 04:18 PM. Reason: more info

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    Quote Originally Posted by m38493 View Post
    Is there still water present or just the hard water stains left from the water? Is it dry?

    If wet, take phone apart (completely), remove motherboard, put in container of de-ionized or RO (reverse osmosis) or distilled water with maybe 25% IPA (isopropyl alcohol). Let sit a while (1 or 2 hours). Remove, shake out water.

    Pour out water that motherboard was sitting in, dry out the container, pour just IPA into it enough to cover motherboard. You should use 99% pure IPA if you can find it, anything less could leave residue on motherboard. Let board sit in that for an hour.

    Remove board from IPA, shake dry and stand on edge to dry over night. It should be fine within 12-20 hours (no need to wait several days).

    Theory: The DI or RO or distilled water acts as a good solvent for either hard water or water with impurities that got into the iphone. The water isn't the problem, its the impurities. Using pure water (1) doesn't add more impurities (2) will wash away impurities. The IPA in the water breaks down the surface tension of water a little bit (the resulting mixture has less surface tension than just water), water itself won't want to go under chips and low-standoff stuff on the board, the water+IPA will. Very pure IPA (99%+) likes water a lot, it will mix with water very well. This last rinse with just alcohol will dissolve all the water left on and under things on the board and take it with it. Afterwards, you are just left with alcohol to dry, and it dries very fast.

    If your board is dry, and it isn't working, you probably have minerals or salts from the water interfering with the low voltage signals (bridging) between components and causing trouble. You can try the following steps:

    To try to remove hard water or salts from motherboard:
    * Remove motherboard from iphone
    * Find someone who has access to or buy a ultrasonic parts washer big enough to wash motherboard. Try to find one with a sweep or varying frequency -- its easier on boards with components.
    * Find a low suds detergent (I used Simple Green), dilute to 1:20 or 1:30 with pure water, degas mixture in the ultrasonic.
    * Wash board for a few minutes (4 minutes)
    * Follow up with pure water + IPA rinse, and IPA rinse.
    * Dry
    Fantastic post.


    I usually just use a small bath of 99% IPA and seep for around an hour, then allow the IPA to oxidise.

    Does the job!

    Never went into it as detailed as this post instructs,
    but will try sometime

    +1

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    I usually just use a small bath of 99% IPA and seep for around an hour, then allow the IPA to oxidise.

    Does the job!
    I'm curious:

    Do you do this with phones that are still wet inside, or ones where the water has dried and have mineral deposits on them?

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    Master of Colors delutedsoul's Avatar
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    how can I tell that it's oxidised

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    how can I tell that it's oxidised
    He means dry (dry=oxidised)

    You can't really tell under the chips if it is dry. You could try a can of compressed air and blow a little bit on the bottom side of a chip with no glue around it. If any liquid comes out other side, there is still liquid under it. If no liquid comes out it is dry.

    IPA will dry very fast, and spread out (it doesn't stay under chips too well, it wants to come out).

    12 hours should be enough (mine was completely dry after 8 H)

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    Ok after reading this, I had the same issues, and replaced the headphone jack, charger port assembly, and battery. I just tried to put it in DFU mode like the OP, and when I did that I assumed nothing happened, but when I plugged it into iTunes, it was DETECTED!!!! Now that I know that, I'm assuming the LCD is bad, but how do I get my phone out of DFU mode without restoring so I can recover my data? I tried Tiny Umbrella, but the only option present is "Fix Recovery," not "Kick out of recovery." Any suggestions?

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    you cant hard reset it?

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    > Fix recovery is to "kick out of DFU mode", I think...

    No, actually Fix recovery is to get it out of recovery mode, not DFU. Do a reset (as others have suggested here)
    Last edited by m38493; 04-02-2011 at 09:47 PM. Reason: my wrong

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    Yeah it is, but it didn't work for me. I think I'm going to order a new LCD before I try restoring.

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    StealthBravo is correct. Graceful exit from DFU is Hard Reset. Hold both Top/Power button and Home button at same time for about 15 seconds, keep holding until iPhone powers back on.

    Good luck,

    Brad

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    Master of Colors delutedsoul's Avatar
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    how long should I let the logic board set in the ipa

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