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Seen At 11: Putting Mobile Devices On The Mend

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) -- It's one of those heart-stopping moments -- your laptop gets knocked off the table, a tablet slips from your hand, or your phone is dropped in water.

As CBS 2's Maurice DuBois reported, anyone who has dealt with those situations knows it can be a nightmare.

Your first reaction after your device gets wet is to turn it on and see if it works. But experts say turning on your water-logged electronic device could short it out.

Now, there is a new device called Drybox, which is designed specifically to save gadgets that get wet, DuBois reported.

Thom Abbey, of the Device Shop, explains how it works:

The water-logged device is put in Drybox for a 25-minute cycle. Inside, a combination of heat, pressure and light dries out the phone, but doesn't damage the delicate components inside - saving the customers data, a lot of money and heartache.

Abbey says if the phone is put in Drybox within 36 hours of becoming wet, there is about an 80 percent success rate.

Since we rely so heavily on them, damaged devices, shattered screens and saturated keyboards are more common than ever, DuBois reported.

Arthur Zilberman, owner of LaptopMD, says human error is what keeps his technicians busy. "Spills are common. We have about a 60 to 70 percent success rate."

Hi-tech microscopic cameras make cleaning damaged components easier, saving customers precious data and the expense of buying a new computer.

Cracks may look disastrous but can be a quick repair too, DuBois reported. Specially designed tools make swapping out screens simple.

Simple or not, the customer's concern is almost always for the contents of their device. "They come in here, 'Guys, I don't care about the repair. I don't care what you're going to charge me. I just need my data off,'" Zilberman said.

Repairs start at about $75 to revive a soaked phone, or fix a cracked screen, DuBois reported. They go up from there, but can still be cheaper than replacing the device.

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