Spilled Water on Laptop? Here’s What to Do Next

Spilled Water on Laptop

It’s 2021 and there are still no options for waterproof laptops outside of rugged laptops, which simply aren’t practical for any user who isn’t working in the middle of the Amazon rainforest.

And yet, spilled water on laptop is among the most common causes of the repairs we have to make every day, especially as more and more people are working remotely. But what do you do if the spill just occurred?

Actually, there’s plenty. Before taking it into a repair shop, follow these steps to give your laptop the best chance at survival.

What to Do First

The first thing to do when you have spilled water on laptop turns the computer off. Press your power button immediately and hold it down until the machine powers off.

It’s important that you don’t waste time shutting down the laptop properly. The longer the computer is left on while water is soaking into it, the greater than chance of a short circuit or permanent damage to the internal components.

When you’re sure the computer is off, you can unplug it and then remove the battery. You’ll be able to do this easily if you have a removable battery, but you’ll require tools and expertise if the battery is internal. We wouldn’t recommend removing an internal battery unless you know what you’re doing.

You should also remove any detachable components that are plugged into the laptop. Unplug any cables, your mouse and keyboard, as well as flash drives and anything in your disc drive.

Drying Out Your Machine

From here, you’ll want to try and reduce the amount of damage done as much as possible. Start by drying the outside of the laptop. Use a lint-free fabric or absorbent towel. Lint can cause damage to your device so be sure to steer clear of any clothes containing it.

Wipe down and dry the front, back, bottom, and sides of the machine. Make sure to pay special attention to the keyboard, vents, and ports.

To dry the inside of your laptop as best as possible, open it as far as it goes and place it upside down over something absorbent, like a towel. Let it sit in a dry, open-air spot for at least 24 hours if you can.

Read also: How to Increase Laptop Speed?

What Not to Do

There are a few things you shouldn’t do after you’ve spilled water on your laptop. These are:

  • Don’t wait to turn off the laptop. Water can quickly cause short circuits and internal damage if there’s electricity flowing through the machine.
  • Don’t attempt to unplug the laptop from the wall if you or your clothes are wet. Instead, switch the power off from the circuit breaker to avoid any risk of electrocution.
  • If you see or feel heat, steam, smoke, melting, bubbling, or bulging, do not handle the laptop.
  • Never try to force the laptop to dry quickly with a heat gun or hair dryer. The heat from these devices will damage the internal components of the laptop if there is water trapped inside.
  • Unless you have an older laptop, don’t try taking your machine apart. Older laptops were easier to open up and remove components, but modern laptops are more complex than that.
  • Seriously consider buying a new battery if your battery came into contact with any liquid. A compromised battery is unsafe to use.

Following these precautions keeps both you and your laptop safe.

Assessing the Damage

After your laptop has sat for a sufficient amount of time and you’re sure it’s dry, you can plug it back in. In most cases, your laptop will turn back on, but that doesn’t mean that everything is A-okay.

If water got inside your laptop, there’s sure to be some issues. That’s especially true if you spilled something other than water on your laptop.

If you spilled something acidic, like a sugary or alcoholic drink, it definitely left behind some minerals. Those minerals are conductive and corrosive and will eventually lead to permanent damage inside your machine.

For that reason, even if your laptop turns on after drying out, you should take it to a repair shop. Professional repair shops will have the tools and expertise to take the laptop apart and clean each component one by one before reassembling the device.

Take Steps to Protect to Your Laptop from Damage

Of course, the best way to protect your laptop from water damage is to prevent spills in the first place. If you can’t be more mindful of where your drink is in relation to your device, then consider using thermoses for your coffee and replacing the lids on bottles after you’ve drank from them.

And while waterproof cases for laptops don’t quite exist to the extent they do for phones, you can protect one of the most vulnerable parts of this machine. That is the keyboard.

Look for silicone and plastic covers that prevent liquids from entering the gaps in the keys and causing malfunctions. They slip on easily and don’t hinder the normal use of your keys.

Spilled Water on Laptop? Bring It to Esource Parts

Spilled water on laptop can cause serious damage to the internal components of your machine. But if you follow the above directives, you have a good chance of reducing that damage.

After you’ve dried out your laptop, you’ll have to have it looked at. And unless you have an older laptop model, it’s best to have it inspected by a knowledgeable professional. Bring your laptop into our repair shop and we’ll have it looked at and diagnosed, usually within the same day.

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