How to tell if your iPhone is waterproof or water-resistant, and to what extent

Hollis Johnson/Business InsiderThere are several ways to tell if your iPhone model is water-resistant.

Your iPhone 7 or iPhone 7 Plus is not waterproof. Neither are any of the newer phones the company has released, all the way up to the iPhone 11 Pro Max.

The difference between waterproof and water-resistant is the difference between a piece of hardware that won’t break even with extended exposure to water, and one that almost surely will.

Here’s how to tell how water-resistant your iPhone is.

Check out the products mentioned in this article:

iPhone 7 (From $US349.99 at Best Buy)

iPhone 7 Plus (From $US449.99 at Best Buy)

iPhone 8 (From $US449.99 at Best Buy)

iPhone 8 Plus (From $US549.99 at Best Buy)

iPhone X (From $US899.99 at Best Buy)

iPhone XR (From $US599.99 at Best Buy)

iPhone XS (From $US899.99 at Best Buy)

iPhone XS Max (From $US999.99 at Best Buy)

iPhone 11 (From $US699.99 at Best Buy)

iPhone 11 Pro (From $US999.99 at Best Buy)

iPhone 11 Pro Max (From $US1,099.99 at Best Buy)

The iPhone 7 and 7 Plus were the first water-resistant iPhones

IPhone 7 and iphone 7 plusHollis Johnson/Business InsiderThe iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus were the first water-resistant phones made by Apple.

The iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus were the first iPhones rated as IP67, which means the phones are resistant to splashe,s and can be submerged in just over three feet of fresh water for up to 30 minutes without damage.

Subsequent iPhone models, including the 8, 8 Plus, X, and XR have the same IP67 rating. But Apple took this water resistance further with the iPhone XS,XS Max, and now with the iPhone 11, 11 Pro, and 11 Pro Max.

The iPhone 11 series and the iPhone XS series are slightly more water-resistant than previous models

IPhone XS MaxHollis Johnson/Business InsiderThe iPhone XS has a higher water-resistance rating than the phones that came before it.

In case you were wondering, the latest iPhone 11, iPhone 11 Pro, and iPhone 11 Pro Max all have a water resistance rating of IP68, the same as the previous iPhone XS and XS Max. This means that they can withstand a 30 minute exposure in a little more than six feet of fresh water. (I’d still recommend using your smartphone primarily on dry land, though. Or at least on a boat.)

Now, you might think that if your phone can be underwater for a half hour, you don’t have much to worry about from a bit of rain or a spilled glass of water. And you probably don’t, in fact, but it’s better to play it safe. Apple’s warranty does not cover issues caused by water, so if your phone is damaged by water despite that water resistance, you’re left holding the bag, so to speak.

And over time, the water-resistant capabilities of your phone wear down. The rubber gaskets that seal out liquid at the lightning cable port, the SIM card slot, and around the buttons slowly degrades, losing water-blocking ability.

Also note that when we talk about water resistance, we’re talking about clean freshwater, as far as Apple is concerned. They make no claims about the phone’s resistance to damage caused by salt water or any other liquids, like coffee, motor oil, or Red Bull, to name a few of the fluids out there other than pure water.

Prevent damage after your phone gets wet

And one note you need to make sure to remember: after your iPhone gets wet, whether from rain, a spilled beverage, or a total toilet submersion, don’t plug anything into it until you are certain it’s dry again. Connecting a charger or headphones via a wet port may cause serious damage.

Apple recommends waiting at least five hours before plugging anything in.

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