What is the Apple Watch Water Drop Icon at the Top of My Screen?

The Apple Watch needs to display a lot of information on its tiny screen so that it can be an effective way to show status and notification information. But if you are seeing a water drop on Apple Watch and you can’t do anything, then you may be wondering what is this Apple Watch water drop icon and how do I get rid of it?

How to Enable Water Mode on an Apple Watch

  1. Swipe up from the bottom of the screen.
  2. Tap the water drop icon.

How to Exit Water Mode on an Apple Watch

  1. Press the crown button.
  2. Spin it repeatedly until you hear a tone.

Our article continues below with additional information on the Apple Watch water drop icon, including pictures of how to enable or disable that setting on the Apple Watch.

The Apple Watch is an interesting device because it’s electronic, but it can be used in the water, the rain, or when you are sweating.

While the watch was designed to function in wet environments, it is still a good idea to protect it when you have the ability to do so. One way to do this is with the Apple Watch water mode, which is identified by a water drop icon that appears at the top of the watch screen.

Have you noticed a small blue water drop at the top of your Apple Watch screen? Coincidentally, did you also notice that the screen was locked? This is a mode that is useful when you are in water, as water can cause your watch’s touch screen to do some unexpected things.

Our guide below will show you how to manually enter this mode, as well as how you can exit it when you don’t need it active anymore.

How to Put the Apple Watch in “Water Mode” (Guide with Pictures)

The steps in this article are going to show you how to put the watch in water mode and how to exit that mode.

Following these steps is going to activate a mode that is meant to be used when you go into water, such as before a swimming workout or before simply going into a pool.

Water can make touch screens behave strangely, so enabling this mode will lock the screen. Then, before you can exit this mode, you will spin the digital crown to eject the water from the device and unlock the screen.

These steps will show you how to get your watch out of water lock mode.

Step 1: Swipe up from the bottom of the Apple Watch face.

swipe up from the bottom of the apple watch screen

Drag your finger up from the bottom of the watch screen.

Step 2: Tap the icon that looks like a drop of water.

what is the water drop on my apple watch

Touch the water lock button.

This is going to put the blue water drop icon at the top of the screen, which will cause it to lock.

Once you have finished the activity that caused you to put the watch into water lock mode you can spin the digital crown away from you until the lock is disabled.

The Water Mode setting on your Apple Watch is particularly interesting because it’s both a setting that you can enable on your own, as well as a setting that can turn on by itself.

If you’ve ever gone running in the rain or been wearing your watch when you were sweating profusely, then it’s very possible that the water drop has appeared on its own. Regardless of whether you are in water mode manually or automatically, you can follow the steps below to turn it off.

The Water Drop Means That Water Mode is Turned On – You Can Turn it Off With These Steps (Guide with Pictures)

To exit water mode, press the crown button on the side of the watch, then spin the crown when you see this screen.

how to enter water mode on the apple watch

After spinning the crown a few times you will hear a sound come from the watch, then you will see a notification that the watch has been unlocked.

Just as a caveat, I feel like the Apple Watch Series 2 required you to turn the digital crown a lot more than you need to do with newer versions of the Apple Watch. On the newer watch models, you seem to be able to disable the Apple watch water lock with just a couple of turns, while you needed to continue turning a few times on older models.

You can continue reading below for additional information on the water drop on your Apple Watch.

What Does Water Lock Actually Do?

The reason that your Apple Watch has the ability to “lock” itself from water is so that no accidental taps occur on the watch face while the device is getting wet. When that raindrop icon appears on your Apple Watch face the screen will be locked. Turning the digital crown will unlock the watch screen, plus eject any water from the speaker hole.

While the Apple Watch 2 and newer are “water resistant”, which means that they can be used in shallow water, and are more resistant to everyday moisture like sweat, rain, and hand-washing, the device is not waterproof. This means that you shouldn’t go scuba diving, or perform other water activities where you will be submerged in more than a few feet of water while you are wearing the watch.

Additionally, water-resistance doesn’t last forever. The water resistance can be affected by things like soap, impact, heavy steam, chemicals and acids, as well as other substances. Water resistance also can’t be restored, so it’s in your best interest as an Apple Watch owner to avoid subjecting the device to any undo harm.

Sick of the constant Breathe reminders on your watch? Learn how to disable the Apple Watch Breathe reminders if you aren’t using them and usually just dismiss them when they pop up.

Our guide continues below with additional discussion about the Apple Watch water lock and how you can use it to eject water from your watch, or prevent water from getting into it.

More Information About the Water Drop on Apple Watch

Most newer Apple Watch series devices have some level of water protection or water resistance that make it so that the device won’t instantly be ruined if it gets wet.

But if you can proactively (like right before you begin a water based workout) open the Control Center and tap the water drop Apple Watch icon you can definitely protect Apple watches a bit and reduce the amount of potential damage that water could cause to the device.

Because, while the device does have some level of resistance to moisture, the water lock feature or water lock mode can provide some additional utility that can preserve your watch’s screen and internal components.

I also find that I use the water lock not just to clear water inside of the device, but also because my son will accidentally tap the screen a lot while I’m holding him, and the touchscreen on the watch seems pretty sensitive to almost any degree of touch.

Fortunately, it’s pretty simple to open Control Center and enable the water lock feature, then turn off water lock by spinning the digital crown a couple of times.

Frequently Asked Questions About How to Eject Water from the Apple Watch with Water Lock

Is there any way to completely shut off the Apple Watch water lock?

No, there is no way to prevent this setting from enabling on its own, nor removing it from the watch’s control center.

How do I turn on the handwashing feature on the Apple watch?

Some newer watch models are able to tell when you are washing your hands, and will start a timer when it occurs.

You can find this setting by opening the Settings app, either on the watch itself or in the Watch app on the iPhone, then scrolling down and choosing the Handwashing option.

You can then enable the Handwashing Timer option.

For more information, check out our Apple Watch hand washing guide.

How do I change the digital crown side on the Apple Watch?

If you open the Settings menu, then choose Watch Orientation, you can select the side that the crown is on.

Note that this may flip your watch face upside down, depending on how the display is currently oriented.

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