Apple sets the record straight that you shouldn't put your iPhone in rice to dry it — here's why

iPhone 15 Pro Max and iPhone 15 Pro cameras
(Image credit: Future)

Apple is weighing in on one of the oldest smartphone myths around by officially stating that users should not put their iPhones in rice to dry out after they fall into the water.

Earlier this year Apple quietly published a support article on what to do if a warning pops up on your phone about water in the charging port. The article states outright not to put your phone into rice, partially because it doesn’t work, but also due to potential damage from grains getting stuck in ports.

Apple’s guidelines also discourage inserting any foreign object into the ports, such as cotton swabs or paper towels, to avoid damaging any of the components. The company also doesn't recommend trying to dry the phone out using excessive heat sources such as hairdryers.

iPhone 15 Pro bottom

(Image credit: Future)

The concept of putting wet smartphones into uncooked rice in order to dry them out has been around for as long as most of us can remember. The theory is that the uncooked rice will draw out the moisture.  So for instance, if you dropped your new iPhone 15 Pro into a pool, putting it in rice might help dry it out. 

Of course these days most smartphones are waterproofed to a certain degree, and liquid entering them is less of a problem than it once was. However, iPhones will still alert users if there is an excessive amount of water in the port and will not charge. This is to protect the phone from any potential damage and from corrosion to the port itself. If this warning does appear then Apple is very clear on what course of action to take. 

The first thing to do is disconnect the charger from the phone and the wall to be safe. Then tap the phone gently on the side to get out any excess moisture and leave it to dry for up to 24 hours before trying to charge it again. If it still won't charge and there is no water warning, there might be some dirt in the port and it may be time to try cleaning it

If the issue persists then it might be time to book an appointment to take the phone into a repair center, or even consider a full replacement. While it's nice that Apple has released updated guidelines for how to deal with water in your phone, a lot of this could be avoided by simply adding a cover to the charging port

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Josh is a staff writer for Tom's Guide and is based in the UK. He has worked for several publications but now works primarily on mobile phones. Outside of phones, he has a passion for video games, novels, and Warhammer.