Cleaning out a dirty hole

Yesterday my rather battered Samsung Galaxy SII started doing something weird. It seemed to develop magical powers, and was charging even when it wasn’t plugged in.

I plugged and then unplugged it and it seemed to correct the problem but, after a few hours, it happened again. I gave it a light “tap” and it decided to then charge intermittently, even though no cable was present.

Now, I’d either somehow invented a wireless power source in my pocket or I’d got a dirty microUSB socket. Hey, that rhymes! Anyhow, reaching into my pocket I found that a piece of paper and sweet wrappers had been left in there. They had gone through the washing machine and transformed into a crumbly, dusty, metallic paper tissue. This had worked it’s way into the microUSB socket and was somehow making the phone think it was on charge.

The solution came in the form of a toothbrush. A quick wiggle was enough to clean out the hole and everything went back to normal. No toothpaste obviously, and don’t try an electric one because it can do more harm than good – just a normal dry toothbrush.

Cleaning out a dirty hole

Obviously I should take better care of my phone and yes, I should check my pockets before washing my clothes, but I’d love to hear from you if you’ve ever tried any tricks like this to fix your phone. We’ve already seen how rice can fix a damp phone, but I’d be interested your “home remedies” and quick-fixes for fixing a broken phone.