Dropping your expensive smartphone in the toilet is one of the leading causes of death for such devices. Fortunately, you can resuscitate your drowned electronics using a simple product from Bheestie.
The Bheestie Bag (pictured) can dry out small electronic devices after you drop them into water or spill something on them. It’s a low-tech but innovative way to solve a modern curse: cool electronics that aren’t waterproof.
To rescue a device, make sure you remove the battery and then drop it into the Bheestie Bag. Zip it and seal it. (Don’t open the plastic bag of beads that comes with it). You can keep it in the bag for a day, but longer will work better to ensure the device dries out. If it’s a flip device, make sure it’s open all the way.
I tried it out myself after a gadget mishap. I dropped my Verizon 4G USB modem from Pantech on the ground outside my home. It rained that night, and I found it the next morning, soaking wet. So I dropped it into a Bheestie Bag for three days. When I pulled it out and put it into my laptop, it worked fine. Bheestie has a number of other testimonials on its site.
The bag has powerful water-absorbing beads (made from a material dubbed molecular sieves) that physically bond with the water and literally pull it out of the electronics. The absorbent materials are like the silica gel desicants that ship with a lot of packaged goods, but they work better at drying things out, says Karen Wildman, co-creator of the Bheestie Bag, in an interview.
The Bheestie costs $20 plus shipping and it is available on the company’s web site, Amazon, Restoration Hardware stores, and REI. As an aside, most phones have an indicator in them these days that changes color when the device has been submerged in water.
Wildman said the bag works most of the time, particularly if the customer leaves the wet gear in the bag for the appropriate amount of time. Inside the bag, the materials create an extremely dry environment, so it’s important to keep the bag sealed.
The product is the brainchild of two sisters, Wildman and her sister Lisa Holmes. They were constantly battling malfunctioning electronics due to moisture and water damage.
Wildman had the initial idea after son dropped his Nintendo GameBoy in a pond. After moving to Texas, she had some trouble trying to keep her hearing aids dry, due to the humidity. She applied that knowledge toward finding materials for the Bheestie Bag. She teamed up with Holmes, a triathlete, and came up with something that helps active outdoor people deal with the problem of wet electronics.
Portland, Ore.-based Bheestie consists of just the two sisters, but they have sold more than 100,000 Bheestie Bags over the past few years. Now they’re ratcheting up their marketing and trying to raise awareness about how to fix soaked electronics, Wildman said.
“It’s an awareness problem, as most people just throw the electronics out when it gets wet,” Wildman said.
One rival is the iRecovery Cell Phone Drying Kit, which costs $12.99 and uses silica gel packets.