water damage - a tentative miracle?

Discussion in 'Sony Alpha E-Mount Cameras' started by Jen Watson, Aug 23, 2013.

  1. Jen Watson

    Jen Watson New to TalkEmount

    Apr 30, 2013
    As a nice compromise between taking decent photographs and not being weighed down by 15 lbs of gear, I bought a NEX-3N for summer travels. It performed great--up until I fell into a river. At least five or so minutes had elapsed between complete submersion in grimy river water, and being able to remove the battery pack. It was making some pretty awful noises before I pulled the battery out, and you could clearly see droplets of water on the inner glass of the lens.

    I was stuck on an island, so the best I could do was stick it in a bag of rice for a couple weeks (which probably did a fair bit of damage on its own). I just got home yesterday, and tested out the camera. Guess what? It worked perfectly! I have yet to thoroughly inspect the image quality, but the lens and camera are fully functional.

    Is this normal? Should I not get my hopes up yet--i.e. will it be highly prone to spontaneous failure? I know for a fact that I dramatically shortened the 16-50mm kit lens' life--it'll only be a matter of time before fungus and whatnot will get the better of it. But does the camera body stand a solid chance? Do you think I can proceed to use the camera like normal?
  2. davect01

    davect01 Super Moderator

    Aug 20, 2011
    Fountain Hills, AZ
    Real Name:
    Wow. Impressed that the camera recovered from this.

    I would take at least the lens into to a shop right away to try and clean out any fungus.
  3. Bimjo

    Bimjo Super Moderator

    Oct 28, 2011
    Washington State
    Real Name:
    I'd use it until it quits working. Sadly, it'll be less expensive to replace it than to fix it. But, the burning question is- did you go buy a Lotto ticket after it fired up? ;)
  4. Amamba

    Amamba TalkEmount All-Pro

    Apr 13, 2013
    SE MI
    My F3 auto focus died of a small spill, so you're lucky. I am now using it exclusively with MF lenses.

    I don't think fresh water is as corrosive as ocean water. I don't know if attempting to clean the internals would do more harm than good. I would just use it as is, if it works for another year our two you just upgrade it.

    Sent from my Nexus 7 using Tapatalk 2
  5. davect01

    davect01 Super Moderator

    Aug 20, 2011
    Fountain Hills, AZ
    Real Name:
    I agree. Unfortunately the repair costs are often quite expensive compared to the cost of the equipment. However, it does not hurt to get an estimate.