1. drface's Avatar
    I recently dropped my S3 in water and it took a good amount of time before I could get it (fully) dry. After the whole bag of rice thing though, the phone booted up normally and got a torrent of messages and whatnot like it was working fine. However, when I went to unlock it the screen was totally unresponsive, and has continued to be despite reboots and S Voice attempts (which can still control the phone because it works fine).

    My question is whether it is likely the water damaged the actual circuits and such that control the screen (which I assume can't be replaced easily/cheaply), or if there is a good chance replacing the screen would fix the problem (I would do this myself).

    I know you don't have the phone in your hands so your answer will be total conjecture, but some type of general idea of the way in which water breaks phones (S3 in particular) would be greatly appreciated.
    01-23-2013 12:19 PM
  2. EvilMonkey's Avatar
    I could be off-base (cause I don't fix phones), but I would think it could be pretty much anything. Basically the water created a circuit somewhere in the phone and it shorted something out somewhere. Whether that is is something that would be part of the screen you're replacing, or somewhere else further down the line on another circuit board or chip somewhere would just be conjecture.

    Just my thought. I think you could dip 10 phones in water and it could short out a different thing on each phone, depending on where the water got to first.

    Again, just a guess on my part. Maybe someone else will pipe in with some more knowledge on which parts it could be based on the symptoms.
    01-23-2013 12:33 PM
  3. EnlightenedSoul's Avatar
    How long did you dry the phone for?
    01-23-2013 12:49 PM
  4. drface's Avatar
    Thanks EvilMonkey, that's kinda what I was thinking, my hopes aren't too high for saving this thing.

    I dried it in rice for 48 hours (overkill, I know).
    01-23-2013 09:41 PM
  5. Strider2112's Avatar
    Actually, I doubt that it shorted anything (if it did it would probably be the ribbon connector and the screen wouldn't work properly period). My guess is that water got inbetween the two panels that make up the Amoled screen and the Touch-responsive pad, probably seperating them a bit or holding them apart. I don't know what the implications are on those Capacitor pads with water, but it could be that the capacitance action is no longer working due to a change in resistance. I have seen people replace the touch-pads, but I wouldn't recommend it, a whole new screen OEM is 300$, and is quite straight forward to change out.

    EDIT: Actually, I'm curious to know that if you press really hard does it respond? Or, even better, can you see something moving around under the LED screen (like the old LCD screens did when you squished the two substrates together)? Also, if you do decide to open the phone, there is a little rubberish seal that is between the frame and the glass of the phone, I am curious about the condition you may find that in, if there is lots of debris, or if it is just destroyed due to water... My questioning for that is that OEM these devices should be fairly waterproof (to an extent of course) and a failure in that seal could have caused water to get into the LED panel.

    Most of the time, water damage is in the battery, not the processor, once you dry out the phone and the IC boards are all dried out, it should be ok in general.
    01-24-2013 03:24 PM
  6. drface's Avatar
    I can't see any liquid under the screen, and I've definitely tried my fair share of pushing hard these last few days. The screen is just completely unresponsive. But it would make sense for there not to be a short since the display of the screen still works.

    But one of the first things I looked up was how to replace the screen, and the replacement part composes an entirely new screen, touchpad, and connector ribbon to the (assumed) computer parts of the phone. And it's only like 100 bucks which is pretty enticing for having an S3 again.

    As for a failure in the seal, it's definitely possible, the water exposure was rather extensive (and prolonged...). I just want to be sure (reasonably sure) that replacing the whole of the touchscreen and connector will make the phone usable. But if I do end up crackin it open I'll be sure to tell you what I find.
    01-25-2013 01:24 AM

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