Dear Lifehacker, I recently got a new phone but I don't want to just get rid of my old one in case I need it. What's the best way to store my mobile phone so that it will still work if and when I decide to use it? Thanks, Happy To Hoard
Picture by CannedTuna
Keeping a spare phone is always a sensible idea: if your current model gets lost or stolen or needs repairs, going back to a familiar model is a good emergency tactic. Follow these steps to maximise your chances of using the phone again:
- If you're storing a smart phone, you might want to wipe your personal information from it first.
- Remove the SIM (which you'll presumably want for your new phone).
- Remove the battery if you can. This obviously isn't an option if the phone has an integrated battery (like the iPhone), but it's a good idea if you can, as it means you don't risk chemicals leaking from the battery.
- Gather together the phone, the charger, and any other accessories. If you've got the manual, then it also makes sense to store that; if not, however, chances are you'll be able to Google and find the information you need.
- If you're the packaging-keeping type, you can put the phone back in its original box. If not, store it in a sealed plastic bag and label it with the phone name. Keeping everything in one place makes it easier to get the phone working if you need it again; otherwise you'll be rifling through cabling trying to find the relevant bits.
- Store it in a cool, dry place — not an overheated garage or near a water heater.
If you decide it's not worth keeping the old phone, remember to dispose of it in a responsible fashion so that its components are properly recycled.
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