1. Unkitjc's Avatar
    After a month of no leads, I have some updates regarding my attempt to get my phone fixed. Some new important things have occurred since. As follows:

    I recently got some water damage to my 950XL (dual sim) and the phone was stuck in a boot loop since, where the Microsoft screen comes on, then within 10 seconds the phone reboots again. The windows logo never appears. The water damage occurred towards the bottom of the phone, near the USB port, up to the camera keys. I dried it out before giving the phone to the service centre to get it fixed.

    The service centres I have here in India are not official Microsoft ones, like Nokia used to have theirs, but a Microsoft approved service centre (a kind of franchisee I think). Anyways, they were not able to determine the problem.

    I tried to do basic troubleshooting - I disconnected all cables from the motherboard and started to reconnect them one by one till I was able to boot the phone completely. Since the service centre people had done a fresh install of the OS, I set up the phone and am running the latest OS build available for consumers (Creators Update I believe).

    Now, the phone works for the most part - cellular, wifi, bluetooth, display, touch, vibrator, power key, all of these things work.
    What doesn't work: the cameras, iris scanner, volume keys, camera key.

    How I got this to work: There are two cables related to the display. (In portrait orientation) I have the left cable detached, and the right cable attached, and the back half of the housing is unscrewed.

    In this condition, with the unscrewed back half and left cable detached, the cameras turn on - but everything appears very dark and greenish (almost like there is no light at all). Also, the cameras are unable to click any pictures. The red light that assists the iris scanner does not turn on at all. Occasionally trying to setup the iris scanner causes the phone to reboot.

    When I connect the left display cable, or screw on the back half of the housing on, the phone gets stuck in a boot loop. The service centre couldn't tell me what the problem is, and therefore would not fix it. Is there something I can do from my end? I would really appreciate it if someone could tell me what the two cables for the display signify, and why it affects the volume/camera keys and the cameras the way it does. I know I must have short-circuited something, but I don't know which component I need to replace. I think the iris scanner has completely failed, I might have physically damaged it..

    Thanks in advance


    Original Post:
    Recently I met with an unfortunate event at work, where my Lumia 950 XL got some water into it.

    The phone was not fully submerged, thought it was towards the bottom, usb port side.

    I instantly removed the battery and wiped away any visible water, it seemed mainly to be in the USB C port and near the battery connectors.

    After letting the phone dry in sunlight for two days I further opened it up and let it dry more (warranty was already void).

    After a total of 3 days to me it seemed like the phone may have dried, so I decided to try and boot it (probably a mistake).

    The phone, without me pressing the power button, kept turning on, displaying the Microsoft boot screen, then restart all over again. Stuck n this cycle.

    Now I gave the phone to a guy to clean with alcohol, which he did, and for good measure reinstalled the software using WDRT, and still the phone is stuck on the same reboot sequence.

    It might be a list cause, but is there any chance of saving my phone?

    More info: This is the second time my phone got water damage. The first time it worked, as in I could boot it, buy the display had gone green (touch worked, but no display, just a green glow).
    I let the phone stay for a while, after which I started using it via continuum, which heated the phone up a lot, thereby fixing the display automatically (left over water must have dried off).

    This time though, the symptoms seems to tell me there could be a more severe problem, like in the IC/power supply.

    For the replies, thank you in advance!

    *Update*
    As per a care centre (Not Microsoft, but a care centre licensed by Microsoft) figures its a display issue. They deduced this by putting the motherboard into another phone, also trying to put a new display into the phone - in both instances it booted well. I still wonder if the power button is an issue, but if they are right, the replacement is going to cost me $225. Wondering if I should order a replacement from Ali Express which costs $145
    Last edited by Unkitjc; 04-24-2017 at 05:30 AM. Reason: New info
    04-04-2017 02:58 PM
  2. xandros9's Avatar
    I think you're boned. Water damage is very finicky and if I had to repair that, I would probably swap out everything that could've been affected. ("if you replace all the parts of a car, is it the same car?")

    Even if you start fixing up stuff, you risk more stuff breaking later. I would cut my losses at that point.
    04-04-2017 03:43 PM
  3. Zulfigar's Avatar
    I'm not so sure about cutting loses, yet. Try getting a new battery and see if that fixes it.

    Though, I'm assuming your USB port worked if you're able to use the WDRT to reset it?
    04-04-2017 04:21 PM
  4. Unkitjc's Avatar
    I'm not so sure about cutting loses, yet. Try getting a new battery and see if that fixes it.

    Though, I'm assuming your USB port worked if you're able to use the WDRT to reset it?
    Well... Sorry for the bad info, but I & the guy I took the phone to (my cousin) were not able to reinstall the OS via WDRT. The software did recognize my phone and initiated the required download, but the phone keeps rebooting constantly so WDRT is unable to flash the phone.

    Also, soft reset/hard reset keys don't work as the phone keeps rebooting before anything happens. Although, pressing the volume down key seems to put an end to the endless boot loop. (it resumes if I press the power button again).

    So no hard or soft reset, no booting.. only the Microsoft screen.

    And yeah - the USB port does work - my pc recognizes the device until it reboots again.

    I'm thinking there's no real fix here, as it might be a power supply issue - only the bootloader is getting power, not to the whole OS (I don't know if that is even possible).

    Nothing to do but let it rest in peace in a drawer :(

    Going by the lack of responses my hopes are even lower now
    04-05-2017 11:42 AM
  5. anthonyng's Avatar
    @Unkitjc sorry, it really does seem that the water corroded something enough to cause the problem of constant reset.... something shorting out.. How miniaturized everything is I don't have a promising idea to offer :( You've already done everything I would've done.
    04-05-2017 01:27 PM
  6. Indistinguishable's Avatar
    I think you're boned. Water damage is very finicky and if I had to repair that, I would probably swap out everything that could've been affected. ("if you replace all the parts of a car, is it the same car?")

    Even if you start fixing up stuff, you risk more stuff breaking later. I would cut my losses at that point.
    Yep... Have to agree with this. Sorry, OP.

    For future reference, the best thing to do with a device that has been exposed to water is to submerge it in uncooked rice for about 48 hours.
    xandros9 and libra89 like this.
    04-05-2017 06:59 PM
  7. Unkitjc's Avatar
    I'm not so sure about cutting loses, yet. Try getting a new battery and see if that fixes it.

    Though, I'm assuming your USB port worked if you're able to use the WDRT to reset it?
    The battery, motherboard, USB port and display are all okay. I just updated my post regarding this.. Seems the water damage might be lesser than I was led to believe by the service centre.

    @Unkitjc sorry, it really does seem that the water corroded something enough to cause the problem of constant reset.... something shorting out.. How miniaturized everything is I don't have a promising idea to offer :( You've already done everything I would've done.
    Yea, I had done almost everything.. One of the service centre guys was kind enough to do some advanced troubleshooting of the hardware components. While they weren't able to completely understand the problem (I think their policies may have something to do with it, don't know), the service guy did say it could have something to do with the camera button being damaged.. I have seen videos of how to see if that is the care, but I am not sure if I can trust myself to handle the components - I may have damaged my iris scanner already..

    I got the phone to boot and do most basic tasks so going to see what to do next

    Yep... Have to agree with this. Sorry, OP.

    For future reference, the best thing to do with a device that has been exposed to water is to submerge it in uncooked rice for about 48 hours.
    I did not try the rice bit, but it's been about a month now, and the developments are such that I would need to know someone on the inside of the company to help me get this fixed
    Last edited by xandros9; 04-24-2017 at 02:58 PM.
    04-24-2017 05:34 AM
  8. anthonyng's Avatar
    I got the phone to boot and do most basic tasks so going to see what to do next
    wow, best of luck to you!
    04-24-2017 12:06 PM
  9. Unkitjc's Avatar
    Thank you @anthonyng :)
    04-24-2017 12:10 PM
  10. Hari Santosh Kadiyala's Avatar
    same issue with my phone. phone drenched in the water on the top side. i removed all parts and put under sunlight for two days.. when i put battery, phone is booting continously with Microsoft Icon
    04-25-2017 10:47 AM
  11. Unkitjc's Avatar
    Originally posted by anthonyng
    Originally Posted by Unkitjc
    I got the phone to boot and do most basic tasks so going to see what to do next
    wow, best of luck to you!
    I did some research and troubleshooting on my own, now the phone works, except for the volume and camera keys (power button works), and in the troubleshooting process I damaged the iris scanner.. Oh well. Now I will check out what replacing the iris scanner and button will cost (hopefully much less than the display does).
    anthonyng likes this.
    05-17-2017 04:06 PM
  12. Unkitjc's Avatar
    Originally posted by Hari Santosh Kadiyala
    same issue with my phone. phone drenched in the water on the top side. i removed all parts and put under sunlight for two days.. when i put battery, phone is booting continously with Microsoft Icon
    I would suggest waiting it out, the phone might fix itself.. I kind of do not trust the service centres, because they are 3rd party (B2X), and my experience is that they might not give you the best response as to why the reboot is happening. If you want to get your hands dirty and try to fix the device yourself, I could share with you what I did.

    Remember this - your display is OK since you can see the Microsoft logo. Your motherboard probably is also ok too, as the bootloader does initiate. You can verify if the phone's USB port works, plug it into the PC and see if the Windows Device Recovery Tool recognizes it (mine did show). Possible causes can be many with the number of parts like vibrator, faulty/shorted power/volume/camera button strip, residue water on the inside of the back panel on pogo pins, iris scanner, etc.. It took me a couple of hours of manually disconnecting and connecting all the pieces, after which I got the phone (mostly) working, even figuring out what needs replacing. The service centre people kept insisting I change the motherboard at one week, the next they asked me to change the display - both cost a lot, and I knew neither were a problem... So I took things into my own hands :P
    anthonyng likes this.
    05-17-2017 04:17 PM

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