An iPad Mini in Water

Sure, you’ve heard a lot about iPhones being water resistant, but what about iPads? Can you dunk them in the drink without any damage? Let’s take a look—and see what you can do about it.

iPads Aren’t Waterproof

Unlike iPhones, iPads have no water resistance features. If you dunk an iPad in water, your device will likely suffer damage unless it is dried quickly. Power the iPad off immediately, dry it externally as much as possible, and leave it sitting powered-off for 24 hours. Or you could try taking the wet iPad to an Apple store where they could potentially disassemble it and dry it out from the inside before corrosion damage occurs.

Tip: To get technical, iPhones aren’t “waterproof” either. Some iPhones are water-resistant, which means they can stay submerged for a certain period of time without damage. But if they stay in too long—or dive too deep—damage will occur.

If you need a water-resistant Apple device, you could consider purchasing an iPhone instead. For example, the iPhone 13 is rated at IP68 under IEC standard 60529, which means it can resist water for up to 30 minutes at 6 meters of depth. Alternately, Amazon sells the Kindle Paperwhite Signature Edition, which is water-resistant in fresh water for up to 60 minutes in two meters of water.

Best eReader Overall

Kindle Paperwhite Signature Edition (Water-Resistant)

The water-resistant 2021 Kindle Paperwhite Signature Edition features water resistance up to two meters for 60 minutes.

But if you absolutely have to use an iPad around water, there’s another alternative: Get a waterproof case, which we’ll cover below.

Get a Waterproof iPad Case Instead

While iPads aren’t waterproof or water-resistant, you can purchase a water-resistant case for one. A case such as the OtterBox ResQ adds IP68 water resistance, which means you could drop your iPad in two meters of water for up to 30 minutes and it would be safe (in ideal circumstances). It retails for around $40 in May 2022.

OtterBox ResQ Water-Resistant iPad Case

Compatible with iPad 8th & 7th Gen (10.2

Alternately, if you just need to keep your iPad dry from splashes (not immersion) while cooking or using liquids, you could place it in a gallon-sized plastic zipper bag, such as the Ziploc Gallon Food Storage Bag. That way, if anything splashes onto it, you can easily wipe it off or dispose of the wet bag. You can still use the touch screen through the plastic bag.

Ziploc Gallon Zipper Bags

Cheaply protect your iPad from splashes and spills, not full immersion in water.

Do not fully immerse your iPad in water while it’s in a plastic zipper bag, however. If the seal isn’t perfect, your iPad will be damaged. But it’s good an emergency situation, or just a low-cost solution for light splash resistance. Good luck, and stay safe out there!

RELATED: Is My iPhone Waterproof?

Profile Photo for Benj Edwards Benj Edwards
Benj Edwards is a former Associate Editor for How-To Geek. Now, he is an AI and Machine Learning Reporter for Ars Technica. For over 15 years, he has written about technology and tech history for sites such as The Atlantic, Fast Company, PCMag, PCWorld, Macworld, Ars Technica, and Wired. In 2005, he created Vintage Computing and Gaming, a blog devoted to tech history. He also created The Culture of Tech podcast and regularly contributes to the Retronauts retrogaming podcast.
Read Full Bio »