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What To Do If You Spill Water On Your Laptop

Reviewed By: Kevin Pocock

Last Updated on July 15, 2024
What To Do If You Spill Water On Your Laptop
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In the age of studying and working from home, laptops may be practical, but they are very vulnerable to damage. Most of the time, the damage happens simply because we become too comfortable around these devices. Spills in particular are frequent since it might be difficult to enjoy a drink around your laptop without experiencing an accident. Unfortunately, even a minor splash can cause havoc on your laptop, damaging a device that was previously in working order. Continue reading if you want to know what to do if you have spilled water on your laptop.

Now Read: Best Laptops Under $1000 in 2022

Turn Off Your Laptop Immediately

Power off your laptop and unplug it from its power supply as soon as you notice the spill. To ensure a complete shutdown of your computer, make sure to hold down the power button for at least five seconds. It’s critical that you finish this step as quickly as you can. 

Otherwise, you run the chance of your laptop short-circuiting, at which time securing a complete recovery will be much more challenging. Avoid wasting time by going through the standard shutdown procedures. Even though it requires going against your natural tendency and pressing the power button, the sooner your laptop is shut off, the better.

Prioritize safety if there is a significant spill that gets you and your laptop wet. This can entail setting aside your laptop for a moment and turning off the power with the circuit breaker. If you detect heat emanating from your computer or see smoke, steam, or bubbles, don’t touch it.

Remove The Battery

Remove the battery right away if you haven’t already. Typically, you can remove the battery by pressing a button on the bottom of your device. In order to avoid any more potential damage, you can also seek assistance to detach the internal battery.

Take the laptop’s battery out. It is essential because system components often have leftover power. Additionally, a short circuit will result if the liquid touches the battery terminal or any nearby components. It is simple to remove the laptop battery if you’re wondering how it’s done. The majority of laptop batteries may be removed by pushing the battery latches located on either side of the battery slot. 

To remove the battery, you might need to detach the back plate. The battery can be removed to reduce the risk of electrical harm, but only after the power cable has been unplugged.

Dry Off Everything You Can Reach

Working swiftly will let you remove as much water as possible quickly. The more time your laptop is wet, especially if the liquid wasn’t just water, the greater the chance of long-lasting damage. Nevertheless, proceed with caution especially when it comes to opening the laptop and handling its interior parts as these are delicate.

In general, you should use a cloth or a paper towel to absorb liquid, but you can also use cotton swabs for smaller portions and nooks and crevices. For a water spill, that should be sufficient, but if you spilled soda, coffee, or tea, it’s vital to clean up any residue that might have been left behind after the liquid evaporated. 

Small quantities of rubbing alcohol are helpful for this method as well, but you should always dip your cloth in the alcohol rather than pouring or spraying it straight on the components.

Now Read: Best Laptops Under $1000 in 2022

Remove Storage Drives

After wiping the laptop’s surface, try removing the storage discs. A spilled liquid has a good chance of making its way through your complete system and into parts like RAM and hard drives. 

Therefore, swiftly remove your hard disc or SSD before cleaning the storage drive and soak up extra water with a paper towel or cotton cloth. To remove memory from a laptop, push the side clips on each memory stick to eject it. 

To release an HDD or SSD from the frame, more screws would need to be unfastened. Make sure to carefully remove the drives from the power and data connection ports/cables.

Seek Professional Assistance

Consider taking your laptop to a repair shop for more help once you’ve dried it. Even if your computer might start up normally, there is probably damage behind it. If you don’t take care of these concerns right away, you might later face more serious problems in the future. 

If you have spilled something other than water, it is particularly recommended to seek professional assistance. For instance, coffee and soda can seriously harm your laptop in ways that you probably won’t be able to fix on your own. 

If you spend a few extra minutes visiting a repair facility, you may be able to use your laptop for a lot longer than you would be able to if you chose to overlook the liquid damage. You won’t ever regret leaving your device in the hands of a professional. 


It can seem as though everything is lost if you accidentally pour a liquid all over your laptop. Liquid damage can wreak havoc on internal parts and circuitry, requiring costly repairs or, in the worst-case scenario, forcing you to buy a new laptop. Luckily, you can minimize the damage if you know what to do.

You can now rest easy knowing that you’ve followed every safety step mentioned above. Observe the issue objectively and consider what might be done to avoid it in the future. To prevent similar problems, later on, avoid putting drinks close to your laptop. 

Si Yan contributed to PC Guide in 2022 and supported with content creation. Previously working at a major electronics company, she brought her knowledge of consumer tech to the site.