My Camera Got Wet... Now What?

It happens... you have a Point & Shoot (Compact Digital Camera) because it's easy to carry in your pocket so you will never be without a method of taking photos. But you decide to go swimming and forget the camera is in your pocket. It happened to me twice over the last couple of years.

So what do you do? Well if it's salt water, kiss your camera goodbye.

However there is hope - at least for your SD card. And really, that is what is important, as you want to at least recover your photos. As expensive as it may be, your camera is replacable... your photos, perhaps not.

You want to put your SD (or SDHC) card under running fresh water for a minute or so to flush out any salt water that might have entered. Then shake it out as best as you can then let it air-dry. Time is of the essence; you want to flush the SD card as soon as you can.

I was able to recover my photos 100% from both of my cameras, even though the cameras would not work. I tried to run the cameras under running water, but no-go. I suppose if you could take the cover off and run it under water, perhaps you could fix it, but I didn't have the tools with me at the time.

The photo to the right shows some pretty ugly looking corrosion on the contacts. But believe it or not, I was able to recover the photos from this card. The longer the card is submerged in salt water, the more corrosion you will have, so the length of time the card was underwater is significant as well.

This card was underwater for about 5 minutes before I realized the camera was still in my pocket. The second time, the card was underwater only for a few seconds, and it didn't exhibit any corrosoin on the contacts.