You Accidentally Washed Key Fob? Follow The Ultimate Guide

You accidentally washed key fob, and now it doesn’t let you unlock and lock your vehicle from a certain distance. What should you do? 

Before considering the step-by-step guide in this article to save your key, you must get the essential information about this gadget.

Also, you must determine whether it is waterproof.  If not, it will stop functioning when you drop it in the water. In this case, follow the guide below to restore your key fob without hassle.

What To Do If You Accidentally Washed Key Fob?

accidentally washed key fob

If your key gets wet and doesn’t function properly, what should you do to save it? To rescue your washed car key fob, disassemble it, remove the battery, and try to dry it.

Dab And Shake It

You must try to remove as much water as possible from your car key before you open this unit up after you washed key fob

Flip the key fob’s buttons side down and shake off with as much force as you can. Next, wipe it dry using a clean fabric.

Place the buttons side down and let it drain for a while.

You should use the cloth that both catches the water and draws a small amount out of the crevices when having direct contact with this unit.

Open Up It To Dry

Removing all water inside is necessary. Note that there is still a small amount of water remaining inside the unit even if you’ve tried to dry it thoroughly.

So, carefully open it once you accidentally dropped your key fob in water.

Severals are secured with Torx, Allen head screws, or small Phillips heads, while others require careful prying with a flat-blade screwdriver.

After you’ve pried your key open, let the inside and circuit board dry as gently as possible.

Next, wipe the circuit board using a cotton swab immersed in 90% isopropyl alcohol to eliminate contaminants and wait for it to dry.

Leave Key Fob In A Dry & Warm Room For A Few Days

While drying your washed key fob, you should keep it in a dry and warm room for several days. This is the most effective and safest way to dry your wet thing.

But don’t put the key on the heater’s top or close a hair dryer to avoid damage.

After the key fob went through washer, place it on a high shelf in your room. This will speed up the process of drying a bit. The higher the car, the drier and warmer the air.

After a few days when you are sure about its complete dryness, use your key fob as usual, and double-check if it functions.

Find Something Absorbent to Dry the Outer Buttons & Casing

washed key fob in washing machine
Drying the Outer Buttons & Casing

This step requires finding the right absorbent to dry the outer buttons and case, like rice or moisture-absorbing desiccant.

Otherwise, tissue or a paper towel is also handy to draw the water out from the wet.

Before drying, rotate the key and let its buttons face down to remove as much excess moisture inside your unit as possible.

Shake it lightly to move the water amount off the top of the key, and wrap it with tissue or towel or put it inside a bowl of rice or moisture-absorbing desiccant.

Check the Battery And Try It Out

If you dropped key fob in water by chance, don’t worry. You should inspect the battery to determine if it is not dying or leaking.

Remove the battery and rub the influenced positions using a cotton swab immersed in white distilled vinegar to check it. This way may neutralize the acidity and help make cleaning safer.

Yet, you should replace it with a new battery as a precautionary measure if your battery is discharged and damaged after accidental submersion in water.

Let’s say you assume the battery is damaged. Only change it with a new battery when the key is completely dry.

Remember to scrub the circuit board contacts using isopropyl alcohol and leave it dry before starting the new battery installation.

Once you’re sure about the key fob’s dryness, reassemble it carefully and try again. If it returns to work as normal, you succeeded in drying your key fob.

Yet,  suppose only a few buttons function; you must disassemble the key fob and clean the influenced contacts again.

Once your fob isn’t working, take it to a repair shop, and you might have to buy a new one.

What Happens If My Key Fob Got Wet? Will It Survive? 

washed car key fob
What Happens When Washed Key Fob

If you’ve accidentally washed your key fob when dropping it in water or the washing machine, you may wonder what occurs when it gets wet.

As you know, water is a conductor, so the key may malfunction once water goes inside.

High moisture will make it fail and get you into trouble. These issues start when the fob’s circuit board comes into contact with water and becomes wet.

In this case, your key fob will often stop functioning, not unlock your car, and your car won’t start.

More seriously, a part of the circuit board may short out, and corrosion and rust may progress faster. The most severe case is the battery may leak, explode, or die.

Yet, the key fobs of older automobiles may withstand submersion without damage.

The majority of modern one are water-resistant but not waterproof. So if your vehicle’s key fob is in water and gets wet, you must do some basic steps above to avoid ruining it.


If you accidentally washed key fob, what to do? Note that it is not waterproof and will stop working after you drop it in a puddle, washing machine, or anything with a lot of water.

The simplest and most effective way to rescue your key and help it function as usual is by drying it as soon as possible.

Follow the step-by-step guide in this article to dry it quickly and safely.

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