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Dry a Wet Phone, MP3 Player, or Camera with a Bheestie Bag

This $20 product promises to suck out every drop of moisture, hopefully leaving your gizmo good as new.

I can think of few hassles as devastating as dropping your cell phone into the potty. Or the swimming pool. Or letting it take a tumble in the washing machine. Heck, maybe it got a little too sweaty at the gym.

These kinds of accidents happen all the time, often with the result of an expensive trip to the store for a replacement. But maybe that doesn't have to be the outcome.

A couple years back, PC World offered some tips for reviving a wet phone, including the ever-popular "submerge it in a bowl of dry rice." But if you want a more robust solution, consider stocking a Bheestie Bag.

For $20, this moisture-absorbing bag of magic beads claims to be 700 percent more effective than rice, and faster than silica gel (which is what some other device-drying products use).

All you do is remove your phone's battery (if possible), drop it in the bag, seal it up, then go to bed. When you wake up, your device should emerge dry as a bone -- and, with luck, fully functional. (There are no guarantees, but water doesn't always mean a death sentence for small electronics. Once the moisture is gone, it should perk right up again.)

I haven't tried a Bheestie Bag myself, as I've managed to keep my phones and other gadgets from taking unintended swims. But the user reviews on Amazon (where the Bheestie sells for $18.15) are extremely favorable.

The catch, of course, is that you really need to buy one in advance, keeping it on hand just in case of water damage. Still, if you're the accident-prone type, you might be better off spending $20 now than hundreds later to replace your device. Your thoughts?

Contributing Editor Rick Broida writes about business and consumer technology. Ask for help with your PC hassles at [email protected], or try the treasure trove of helpful folks in the PC World Community Forums. Sign up to have the Hassle-Free PC newsletter e-mailed to you each week.

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