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Emergency Response: What to Do If Spilled Water on MacBook

Posted By Volodymyr Chubei | 01 Nov 2023

If you spill water on your MacBook or other liquid, don't panic. With the right actions, you can minimize the damage and get your device back in working order.

So read on what you need to do in a situation when you spilled liquid on a MacBook. With this step-by-step guide, you will be able to react quickly and save your device from negative effects.

6 steps on what to do if spilled water on MacBook

To make sure you solve the problem after spilled water on a MacBook, follow the instructions. It's important to follow the sequence of steps and pay attention to details on every stage, starting from disconnecting your MacBook to removing the liquid.

Step 1. Safely unplug your MacBook and move it to a dry location

It is very important to follow safety rules to avoid electric shock or fire. In case of water spilled on a MacBook outlet, it is recommended that you first turn off the power on the fuse box. If a charger is connected to your MacBook, disconnect it.

After you disconnect your MacBook from power sources, you can safely remove the liquid from it and move your device to a dry place.

Step 2. Turn off your MacBook

If water spills on a MacBook that is turned on, the first thing you should do is to turn it off. You should not waste time-saving your work and closing applications. You need to act very quickly. Just press the power button and hold it until the device turns off.

Step 3. Disconnect accessories and battery

Disconnect all external devices. These can be a keyboard and mouse, monitor, headset, printer, game console, external storage disk, etc. If the battery is removable, remove it as well. On newer models, this cannot be done without additional steps. Identifying a removable battery is easy — it can be easily removed from the bottom of the device case.

Step 4. Blot available liquid

Use paper towels to remove liquid from all accessible areas. Wipe the case and screen, and use cotton swabs around the keys and other hard-to-reach areas. Be careful not to accidentally turn on the laptop. Doing so can cause contacts short and internal components failure.

Step 5. Allow your device to dry for 48 hours

At this point, you may be tempted to turn on your MacBook and check if it works. This is nor advisable as the liquid may remain on internal components, and if you turn the device on it may cause even more damage.

Wait 48 hours with your notebook upside down to allow the liquid to drain out of the keyboard and ports. If you want to speed up the drying process, place an absorbent material such as a towel, paper towels, or microfiber cloths under your MacBook.

Creating a flow of cool air can also help speed up drying. You can place your MacBook in a well-ventilated room, on draught, or turn on a fan to actively blow air.

If needed, silica gel sachets can be used for better absorption. Dry rice is contraindicated for this purpose because it may cause harmful residues on the internal components of the device.

It is important to avoid high temperatures that can damage internal components. Do not use a hair dryer and do not place your MacBook on top of a heater.

Also: How to Fix Sticky Keys on MacBook

Step 6. Wait until your device is completely dry

Be patient and wait at least two days before turning on your laptop. This is to allow water or other liquid to dry out completely, which will increase the chances of performance in the long run. It is recommended that you turn on your MacBook only when you are sure that the liquid inside the device is definitely dried.

It is important to understand that even if a laptop is working seamlessly, this does not guarantee that there will be no problems in the future. One common and unpleasant consequence of spills is that internal components may continue to corrode.

To avoid such troubles, it is recommended to contact an Apple Service Center. Specialists will check your MacBook for damage. If necessary, they will fix problems, but you will have to pay for non-warranty services.

Types of liquid spilled on my MacBook: why it does matter

Some liquids can do more damage to your MacBook than spilled water or 100% alcohol. For example, beer and sweet carbonated beverages become sticky when they dry, and salt water leaves a conductive residue.

You can try cleaning your MacBook with alcohol or distilled water. Before you do this, turn off the device completely and remove the battery. Use only distilled water or 100% alcohol for cleaning. However, you should realize that the cleaning process in this case will take longer and may require experience in MacBook repair.

How to prevent water spills on your MacBook in the future

No one is immune to accidents. To avoid such problems in the future, we recommend that you heed these tips to help prevent spills on your laptop:

  1. Get a MacBook stand.
  2. Do not keep drinks or other liquids near the device.
  3. Buy Insurance for your MacBook for free repair service.

It is recommended that you make regular backups so that you don't lose important information in case of problems with your device.

Also: How to take care of MacBook: 10 Tips to Make it Last as Long as Possible

Genuine Top Case With Battery, Space Gray A2159

If the instructions do not solve the problem, you may need to replace one or more parts. You can find many genuine parts for different MacBook models on Apple Parts.

In the store, you can find a wide range of original parts, without cheaper analogs and replicas. In addition to the authenticity of Apple brand parts, Apple Parts guarantees affordable prices and fast delivery.

You can also order your MacBook repair service by mail. Choose your laptop model and what needs to be repaired. Send the equipment to any FedEx branch and get the cost of repair after diagnosis. Pay the bill in any convenient way and we will send the repaired laptop back within 1-2 days.


1. Can a MacBook survive a water spill?
If you follow the instructions properly, you can get your MacBook back to working order. If in doubt, it is better to use the services of specialists.
2. What to do first if water spills on your MacBook?
First of all, disconnect the laptop from the power source and turn it off. If possible, you should also remove the battery.
3. Spilled water on MacBook, how long to let dry?
The recommended time for complete drying is 48 hours. A cold air flow and silica gel packets can be used to speed up the process.


Volodymyr Chubei
Computer Repair Specialist at AppleParts.io

Volodymyr was born in Ukraine and has found his passion for electronics from his childhood. At the age of 13, he was capable of soldering some basic elements of a logic board and today he is one of the co-founders of AppleParts.io

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