Spilled Water, Soda, Or Coffee On Your Laptop- Don’t Panic, Do This

Picture this.

You are busy working on your laptop and are typing furiously trying to meet your work deadline when ALL HELL BREAK LOOSE. The cup of coffee sitting next to your laptop has been knocked over.

You watch in horror as the coffee spills all over your laptop. Once you get over the initial shock, you try to turn it back on. You did not realize the damage spilled water on the laptop already made. AND GUESS WHAT? The dreaded error message stares you in the face.

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What To Do If You Spilled Water On Your Laptop?

In case you start thinking This Is The End Of The World, Stop right there. In the words of Joe Silverman, owner of New York Computer Help, ‘’First of all, don’t panic’’

Also read: How Much Does A Good Laptop Cost?

Why Do I Say This?

Because I have been there. And trust me when I say that It’s NOT THE END FOR YOUR LAPTOP JUST YET. If you know what to do and act quickly, spilling a drink on your laptop doesn’t have to be a ticket for replacement.

The GOOD NEWS is that if a small amount of liquid has spilled on your laptop, there is hope left.

That being said, Let me get one thing out there. If you drop your laptop in a swimming pool or say a tub full of water, DO NOT GET YOUR HOPES UP. In other words, your laptop is toast.

Now let’s take a deep breath and get to Saving Your Laptop. Time is of the essence. And quite frankly, you ain’t got any to lose.

Did you know that research from Sewelltech states that around 60% of all Computer-related accidents result from spills, With 40% being coffee spills?

Keep Calm and read this detailed step-by-step guide on how to save your laptop from accidental spills of WATER, COFFEE, or SODA.

This article WILL HELP save your laptop from eternal damnation.

A relevant read on how to cool down an overheating laptop

Safety Comes First-Turn It Off Right Now

It’s a no-brainer.

Wet and Electronics don’t mix. If this happens, the liquid will destroy the internal hardware and Cause a Serious Shock.

 Now let’s hope you are not reading all this on the wet laptop. That will be a BAD IDEA.

I Can’t Stress This Enough. Firstly, make sure your hands are totally dry before you get to save your laptop.

Here’s What You Need To Do: Unplug the power cable. Next, hold down the power button for a couple of seconds until it is turned off.

DO THIS NOW if you don’t want to fry the internals. Don’t bother to save your work, shut it down ASAP. Otherwise, it’s GAME OVER.

Okay, are you done with that?

Now you are safe from shock. Finally, go ahead and remove any external device that is plugged in USB drives, mice, cables, etc. Also, open and remove anything that can be easily removed-This includes the battery, RAM, the hard drive, or the SSD.

Once you have nailed the first step-The laptop is off and the area is safe, you can dig a little deeper.

Turn Your Laptop Upside Down Let It Drain

This Is Important: Use a dry cloth and dap any excess water from the laptop surface-The Keyboard, screen, vents, or the ports.

A word of caution: Use something soft & delicate, preferably a microfiber cloth, to soak the excess water. Good old paper towels will work too.

DO NOT scrub it aggressively or in circles. Now we don’t want to scratch the laptop, right? Try pressing the cloth lightly in a repetitive motion without rubbing.

Now Here’s The Next Step: Place a clean towel on a flat surface and place the laptop upside down on it in a tent mode. Ideally, you should leave the laptop to sit for 24 to 48 hours.

In general, The Longer You Leave Your Laptop Sit, The Better.

Consider Using Compressed Air To Dry Your Laptop

But it doesn’t stop there.

This is the part where a quick spray with a can of compressed air will do wonders in helping dry the laptop.

Alternatively, you can use the OLD FASHIONED HAIR DRYER as well. However, make sure that the dryer is set to its coolest setting and use it at a distance of at least 20 cm above the laptop.

What if you spill something far more problematic than water on your laptop-Coffee Or Soda for instance?

The Type Of Spill Matters- Water, Coffee or Soda

Now let’s suppose you have spilled the least corrosive liquid of all, aka Water on your laptop.

The GOOD NEWS is that this doesn’t have to be much of a problem. You see: Water can naturally evaporate without leaving a visible sticky residue behind.

However, the Question Is: What Should You Do If You Spill a large CARAMEL FRAPPUCCINO(with extra whipped cream and syrup) on your beloved laptop?

Now the Problem With these Sugary Drinks is that they often leave a residue when they dry. The larger the residue, the larger the risk.

Now I am no expert in chemistry to tell you what substance acts how on electronics. But in my experience, you don’t want to just let the liquid dry and think it will do the trick.

Best Case Scenario;

Your keys will be sticky. Now you can easily rectify this with a damp cloth or a soft toothbrush.

If The Damp Cloth Fails To Do The Job, you can grab your favorite cleaning solution.

KEEP IN MIND: Don’t use ammonia or alcohol-based cleaning solutions.

For those who like DIYs, use a cleaning solution of half household white vinegar and half distilled water.

For a commercial cleaning solution, this right here is a great environmentally friendly option.

Worst Case Scenario;

Your internal laptop components can overheat and fail. Now is the time to SEEK HELP OF A PROFESSIONAL.

Did you know that it’s much easier & cheaper to just get a keyboard replacement? It’s a five-minute job at most and you can do it yourself.

You’ll be glad to know that you can easily find the repair manual by searching for the brand name and model online. Fortunately, LaptopKeyboard.com covers the majority of the models.

Many Youtube videos will take you through the whole process.

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Your Laptop Is Dry- Now What?

Now that your laptop is all clean and dry, you can do either one of these two things;

You can FIRE UP YOUR LAPTOP and see what happens OR you can PLAY IT SAFE and take it to an authorized repair shop for a thorough inspection.

Now I get. You probably would want to give simply turning it on a shot rather than spending your money.

But Look At It This Way: Sure you will lose a few bucks but so will a new laptop and recovering lost data.

In my experience, you should still take it to a repair shop, just in case.

Truth is just because something your laptop works after it’s dried doesn’t mean it’s completely fixed. There could be underlying issues that could lead to more problems in the future and frankly, more dollars spent.

That’s it. Now that your laptop is powered up and working, take some necessary precautions in making sure THIS IS THE LAST TIME IT HAPPENS.

Relevant read: Best Laptops For Medical Students

What About The Next Time does It happen?

There Should Be NO Next Time.

Here’s How You Make Sure There Is No Next Time:

You start by getting a NO-SPILL SIPPY CUP. The next time you keep your coffee cup so close to your laptop-THINK TWICE.

That’s just for starters. Above all, consider investing in a waterproof laptop cover with ventilation holes, for instance, a PLASTIC KEYBOARD and a Waterproof Laptop Screen too.

You took all the necessary measures but the coffee still spilled on your laptop?

This is where you make sure you are Regularly Backing Your Important Data to an external hard drive or cloud storage like MyDrive or DropBox.

Relevant read: Best Touch Screen Laptops

Putting It All Together

To conclude, it all adds up to this.

Coffee, Water or Soda Spills On Your Laptop Isn’t A Death Sentence After All.

With these few simple steps and A Great Deal of PATIENCE, your laptop will be as good as new in no time.

Moreover don’t just take my words for it. Follow these steps and see for yourself when you spill water, coffee, or soda on your laptop.

Also read: Does RAM Affect FPS in Games?

Can you really afford not to?

If you have found the article useful or have some stories to tell of your own, let us know in the comments below. You can also reach us through our contact form.

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