P4P Fresh Water Crash - Recovered

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While paying too much attention to a video capture, I backed into leafless branches. Obstacle avoidance does not work as branches were too thin/light. Drone went straight down and remained in 3' of water for about 10-15 minutes. I removed the battery immediately. Then I set up a fan to dry it out after placing the room temperature to 78 degrees. I left it over night. It started up, home point was set, and it flew multiple modes perfectly. The camera appear to need more drying as the exposure was not correct.

Here is first flight test:


This is my circuit drying set-up ... not too complicated.
IMG_1299.JPG.jpeg



The camera focused well but over exposed. The next step will be to dry the gimbal and camera circuits more thoroughly. Their enclosures prevented full drying.
FullSizeRender.jpg.jpeg
 
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I used another battery. The battery that got wet seems to light up properly, but I will let it dry for a week first. In the interest of limiting variables, I wanted to test the Phantom ONLY. By next week, I will have let my battery and gimbal dry fully and test them again.
 
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Thanks for your input. I have, over the years, preferred not to use rice or other desiccants. It does help when you are in a rush or can't use dry air. Fast moving, dry air is by far a commonly used remedy. Consider the hand dryers in rest rooms or the approach used by those who dry out basements. I've also used fast moving dry air for iPhones or Nikons that have fallen in the water. Fortunately, the Phantom has air vents so the air can flow across the circuit boards. Unfortunately, the camera and gimbal circuit boards aren't open to the air unless you remove the covers. So ... while the drone is fully recovered via the fan approach illustrated, the camera and gimbal circuits will need time with the covers off.
 
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Wow! Glad it's working for you man. What is the silver frayed looking stuff on the camera back btw?
 
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That looks like a Vaseline type of substance. I actually believe that it's purpose is to seal the most sensitive elements in the circuit board from water. Not really sure.
 
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I used another battery. The battery that got wet seems to light up properly, but I will let it dry for a week first. In the interest of limiting variables, I wanted to test the Phantom ONLY. By next week, I will have let my battery and gimbal dry fully and test them again.

Excellent idea.

Seems the clearest of the warnings centres around the battery, and I'd do exactly the same... give it a week. Or as long as it takes to feel certain that the chemicals won't react...

Really glad to hear for you the Phantom recovered well! Let us know how the battery test goes...
 

alokbhargava

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You would be surprised to see the results with a dehumidifier in a closed room.
 
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As it turns out, the gimbal and the camera did not recover fully. So the drone is going to the shop for repairs.
 
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That's too bad but for the most part, sounds like you had a pretty decent recovery for a 10-15 minute submersion. Hope the camera works out.
 
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DJI in New York City gave me an estimate. It was high but reasonable. The issue is that they would not warrant any service done to a drone which had landed in water. I ended up getting a new P4P. That was good since I needed a standard control unit. My P4P Plus control unit was limited due to the software.
 
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Did you receive any discount on the new P4P?

I did not ask for or get a discount. Unfortunately, I did learn a lesson. When photographing something, face your drone away from the subject and go as far away as you think is needed for framing and then make incremental framing adjustments going forward. It's too bad we need to learn the hard way so often.
 
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When my P4P+ went diving into the Comal river, I did pretty much the same thing. I put the bird in front of my window A/C. The dry air did wonders. It will start up, rev up, gimbal up and down, but camera is shot. And the battery was a no go as well. I still have it in case I might need a part in the future
 

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