How to Eject Water from Your Apple Watch?

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If you own an Apple Watch, chances are you’ll get it wet from swimming, showering, or just being caught in the rain. Luckily, Apple has designed the watch to be water-resistant. Even better, a clever feature called Water Lock makes it easy to eject water from the watch after it gets submerged. Here’s what you need to know about using Water Lock to keep your Apple Watch working correctly when it gets wet.

What is a Water Lock?

Water Lock is a feature on Apple Watch Series 2, and later, it prevents accidental screen interactions when the watch is exposed to water. When the Water Lock is on, the touchscreen is disabled so that water droplets or underwater pressure won’t register as taps and swipes on the screen.

Importantly, Water Lock does not make the watch any more waterproof than it already is. Since Series 2, all Apple Watches have had a water resistance rating of 50 meters, regardless of whether a water lock is enabled. The feature prevents unintended touchscreen input.

How to Turn On Water Lock?

There are two ways to activate Water Lock:

  1. Swipe up from the bottom of the watch face to open the Control Center. Look for the water drop icon and tap it. The screen will now say, “Turn Digital Crown to unlock and eject water.”
  2. Start a water-based workout in the Workout app, such as Pool Swim or Open Water Swim. Water Lock will automatically turn on at the start of these workouts.
Eject Water from Apple Watch

How to Eject Water with a Water Lock?

After your watch has been submerged in water, follow these steps to turn off the Water Lock and eject any water inside the speaker holes:

  1. Turn the Digital Crown on the side of the watch. You’ll hear sounds start to play from the watch speaker and feel the watch vibrate.
  2. Continue turning the crown until you feel the haptics stop and see the message “Unlocked” on the screen.
  3. Water will spray out of the speaker holes on the side of the watch as the sounds play. Rotate the crown for about 10-15 seconds to eject all water.
  4. Wipe your Apple watch with a soft, dry cloth to remove any remaining moisture.

The sounds and vibrations work to clear water from the speaker cavity. You may see streams of liquid shoot out from the holes. This is perfectly normal and shows the water ejection system is working.

When Should You Use a Water Lock?

Turning on the Water Lock first is a good idea whenever you plan to submerge your watch. This includes activities like:

  • Swimming in a pool or ocean
  • Surfing, water skiing, or other water sports
  • Taking a shower or bath
  • Washing dishes or hands

You don’t necessarily need a water lock for light exposure like rain, sweat, or washing your hands since the screen is less likely to register phantom taps. But it doesn’t hurt to turn it on anyway.

Other Apple Watch Water Resistance Tips

While the latest Apple Watch is designed to handle water, there are a few precautions to keep in mind to avoid damaging the water seals over time:

  • Avoid wearing the watch in high-velocity water, like water skiing or diving into a pool.
  • Please don’t wear it in a sauna or steam room, as the heat and steam can degrade the seals.
  • Rinse off the watch with fresh water after the ocean swims to avoid corrosion from salt water.
  • If the speaker sounds muffled after swimming, use the Water Lock again to clear any remaining liquid.

The Bottom Line

Water Lock is an essential Apple Watch feature for swimmers and anyone who gets their watch wet. By turning off the touch screen and providing an easy way to eject trapped water, Water Lock protects your watch from unintended input and moisture damage. Remember to turn the Digital Crown to unlock it after each swim or shower. With proper care, your Apple Watch can withstand plenty of aquatic adventures.

Ray Reamer

Ray Reamer is a speaker repair specialist based in Sicklerville, New Jersey. He runs the popular blog where he writes about repairing phone speakers that have been water damaged.