Sixth iteration of Apple iPhone, announced on September 12, 2012. Repair of this device is similar to the previous models, requiring screwdrivers and prying tools. Available as GSM or CDMA / 16, 32, or 64 GB / Black or White.

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phone got water damage. screen flashing when charging, doesn't turn on


So, I have an iphone 5. I took it with me to kayaking in the lake and wanted to take pictures with it. Unfortunately the sealed bag I put the phone in was not perfectly sealed so water went it and the phone got water damaged.

I dried it immediately when I took the phone out and then put in rice. After 24 hours, I bought some tools and opened the phone, brushed the logic board and all connections with 91% alcohol. The logic board does not look corroded at all. It looks pretty. After that, the phone worked perfectly! I also had an incoming phone call right after that and it worked just perfect. All apps seemed working fine as well. However, then I was too excited and was stupid enough to plug the phone into the charger...

After 2 minutes est, the phone shut down and I immediately unplugged the phone. After all that, the phone won't turn on and whenever connected to charger, it starts flashing screen with apple logo. When I connect it to my Mac, the screen starts to flash and iTunes will recognize my phone whenever the phone is in restoration mode.

Now I am getting a new battery for this phone and hope it's the battery that is fried. I really hope the logic board still works. Any suggestions? What exactly happened?

I will appreciate any help!!!!

Answer this question I have this problem too

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hey Doris I am having same problem with my iPhone 4s, did you get it to fix?

i just got the new battery and its still flashing so I will let it change like you did and see what long did you charge the new battery?


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Doris Peng, start off with a new battery as planned. Sounds like your attempt to charge it may have shorted something out. Battery first, then Lightning Connector, re-evaluate after each step. Make sure that you cleaned your phones logic board properly and do not forget to remove the EMI shields. You will get water under those which will cause corrosion damage later on. Hope this helps, good luck

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Hi! Thank you so much for the help!!

Would you please tell me what EMI shields are and where they are located?

Appreciate it!


The EMI shields are the sheetmetal covers above the components. If you decide you do not want to remove those, you will have to make 100% sure that you submerge the board in high grade isopropyl alcohol. this may displace all of the water and may prevent it from corroding. BTW, do skip the rice. No reason to use it


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Hi Doris,

water damaged batteries are useless and dangerous. While you wait, you can take the battery out of your phone completely, and see if it has the same behavior---my guess is that it will. iPhones aren't that great at deriving enough power from the usb cable alone to start and function normally---but they sure like to try---this is your explanation for the flashing logo and other behavior you are seeing.

i would follow the advice already given here---new battery, if not solved then new dock connector, if not solved send out for board-level repair.

You won't be able to desolder the shields--that is not DIY work, very very very easy to damage component along the edge of the board. Whenever the board has visible corrosion at all, I would say desoldering the shields is a must. In your case, you got the board cleaned with alcohol fairly quickly---the 24hr in rice is an unfortunate spread the word to help us debunk this myth. You may be okay if you pop the board in alcohol while you wait for that new battery---or not. no way to know.

Water damage has a tendency to be very hit or miss---the phone i took apart last night had a pristine looking surface, very light water damage, but no display. I desoldered a shield and the backlight coil underneath was as green as kermit the frog.

If you end up needing help with your board-level stuff, feel free to give me a shout.


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Hi! Thank you for providing help! Now I get the new battery but after I installed it, the screen still flashes. And I also tried what you told me to that I took out the battery completely and tried to connect it to the charger - still flashes. So does this mean it's the board-level problem then?


I would interpret the flashing screen as "I'm not getting enough juice to boot!"

Most 'new' batteries that are shipped do have some charge in them, and therefore you'd expect that the new battery could boot the phone, after which you could see whether or not you have a charging problem.

It is possible that the battery you got didn't have enough juice in it---

I would think your next step is:

1.) get a friend with an iphone 5 and try switching batteries--careful not to pry on the board side!

2.) Take it to a shop and ask them if they would let you borrow a known good iPhone 5 battery for 5 minutes, or if you could buy one from them that is fully charged for $15-20

3.)Send it out for a water damage cleaning service and diagnosis---many are like mine and come with a free new battery.

Let us know if the phone is able to boot with a known good battery that has some charge in it.



Thank you for your advice!!

I charged the phone with the battery for a while, and then i found that it stopped flashing and when connected to itunes for restoration, the computer recognize my phone right away when i plug it in and iTunes logo shows on my phone screen meaning that it should be restored. With the old battery, it's a dark screen not showing anything. However, restoration has never been successful. error 2001 always. :(


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Hi Doris the emi shields can't be removed in the iPhone 5 unless they are cut or soldered off

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Yup, but better get it done so as to not accumulate corrosion;-)


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Doris Peng will be eternally grateful.
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