Hey good people of hukd,
So I dropped my iPhone 3gs in the toilet. Well, it flew out of my jeans pocket as I picked up my clothes and I watched it dive in slow motion in the toilet bowl.
I immediately dived in afterwards (and no, it wasn't flushed) and grabbed it out. All in all, it was probably submerged for 3-4 seconds max. The screen was still on but unresponsive so I couldn't switch it off immediately. I took the hair dryer to it, blew cold air to get rid of the water in the headphone/connector docks and dabbed off all the water/piss that I could.
I then left it to dry for a couple of days in a tub of rice, as advised by google. Now when I connect it to my computer, the apple logo comes on for about 10-15 seconds, then disappears, and this process repeats itself over and over again. However, if I plug it in to the mains socket, after 15 seconds of the apple logo I reach the "connect to iTunes screen", and the touch screen is fully responsive as I can dial an emergency number.
I don't understand why I would get to that screen when the phone is connected to the mains, but not when it is connected to the computer. My only guess at this point is that the battery was fried by the water (I remember the battery still had about 60% charge when I dropped it in, and I wasn't able to switch the phone off immediately. About an hour later, the phone was dead). Could it be that the phone receives enough power when connected to the mains to actually boot in recovery mode, whereas the lower voltage it receives when connected via usb is insufficient to go beyond the apple logo?
As a side note, I bought the phone factory unlocked on ebay, and afaik, Apple won't cover water damaged iPhones under their standard 1 year warranty. Both moisture sensors in the headphone and connection docks have turned pink
So my questions are: does my theory on the dead battery seem valid? And if not, what steps can I take to have my phone repaired/replaced by apple, and how much would it cost?