Check out nine ways that you may be accidentally damaging your smartphone, and figure out a few ways to stop the bumps and bruises before they result in a broken phone.
One of the biggest misconceptions about smartphones is that you don’t have to worry about security with them nearly as much as you do with your computer. But that’s a myth, and downloading apps at random without doing your research is a great way to end up with malware on your device. Avoid downloading apps from third-party stores or clicking download links on suspicious websites, even if they show the icon and name of an app you think you can trust.
Leaving your phone plugged in
It may not really be a problem to leave your phone plugged in for a couple of hours once it is charged completely, since devices can limit the power being transferred to the battery once that battery is fully charged. But there is no benefit to continue to charge your phone after the battery reaches 100 per cent; leaving the device plugged in for long periods of time can generate excess heat and damage your phone. Another great way to damage your phone as you charge it is leaving the device plugged in when it is tucked under your pillow or even just sitting on top of your mattress. A smartphone heats up as it is charging, and if you don’t place it somewhere where that heat can dissipate, it can overheat.
Allowing your phone to overheat
Speaking of overheating, your phone doesn’t have to be plugged in for the device to get too hot. It is relatively easy for your phone to overheat in strong sunlight. And in some cases, a phone can get hot enough to shut down when left in direct sunlight, even in an air-conditioned room. The problem there is that excessive heat can damage the battery. So, shielding your phone from the sun, turning it off if you have to leave it in a hot car, and otherwise keeping your device at a comfortable temperature is a good idea to prevent accidental damage.
Dropping your phone, even if it’s in a case
A case won’t prevent you from dropping your phone (or knocking it off your desk or counter), and a drop can still damage your phone. Even if you don’t immediately see a shattered screen or a dented corner, it’s still possible that a fall has weakened your phone’s casing or damaged something inside the device. If you routinely drop your phone, the repeated impacts may be doing more damage than you think.
Exposing your phone to liquids
Plenty of smartphones aren’t made to stand up to use in a rainstorm, and you should probably prevent yours from getting splashed at the pool. But even encounters that seem innocuous can do damage to your phone, like setting it down on top of a wet bath towel. Your phone may incur damage when you use it with wet hands in the bathtub — even if you manage to avoid dropping it into the water.
Keeping your phone on 24/7
Just like you turn your computer off when you aren’t using it, it is a good idea to shut your phone down at least occasionally to give it a rest. Leaving your phone on all the time burns through the life expectancy of its components more quickly than you would by shutting it off every occasionally. Regularly shutting down your device, or even simply rebooting it, will help ensure that caches are cleared and that everything is running smoothly.
Leaving your phone on the couch (or keeping it in your pocket)
Leaving your smartphone on the couch can be a bad idea. When you’re watching a game or just engrossed in a movie, it is easy to forget that your phone is sitting right next to you, just waiting to be dropped on the floor when you jump up (either for a popcorn break or to celebrate a goal). Even accidentally sitting on your phone can damage it. The same argument could be made to advocate against keeping your phone in your pocket. If you repeatedly sit on your phone or routinely find it falling out of your pocket and clattering to the ground, then you should probably reconsider your habits.
Filling up your phone’s storage
Keeping your phone packed full of apps and data will slow it down. And of course, if the memory is full, you won’t have any room to download a new app or store a new video. Deleting apps, browser data, and unused media can all help keep your phone performing well; avoiding the temptation to overload the memory will save you the frustration of the constant struggle for space.
Being careless about plugging your phone in to the charger
Being careless about plugging your phone in to its charger is a great way to end up with a damaged port. Being rough or careless when you’re plugging your phone in is always a bad idea, since tiny ports are easy to ruin and major force is never necessary. From a scratched phone to a broken port, the outcome when you force the cable is never good.