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Are Apple Watches Waterproof? (Answered With Examples)


A few months after its debut in April 2015, the Apple Watch 1 sold about 4.2 million times, making it the best-selling wearable ever created. To date, Apple has released new models with more interesting features. But are Apple Watches waterproof?  

Apple watches are not waterproof. But they’re water-resistant to given level, which means they can stand up to water pressure only to a certain depth. The Apple Watch 1 has an IPX7 rating and Apple Watch 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, and SE have IPX8 rating by the brand’s current standards.

For simplicity, an Apple Watch with an IPX7 rating means the device is splash and sweat proof, and it can stand up to light rains and keep working just fine.

On the other hand, IPX8 Apple Watches are waterproof up to 50 meters.

And while the brand gives this rating based on results from simulation testing, such smartwatches can stand up to water pressure of up to 164 feet deep in a real environment.

Are Apple Watches Waterproof or Water Resistant?

Apple Watch fans like to use the terms waterproof and water-resistant interchangeably.

But while Apple has played by the book to release some of the best smartwatches, you will never find a 100% waterproof Apple Watch on the market.

Even the recent Apple Watch Series 7 and Series are only water-resistant up to 5 ATM.

 Apple Watch ModelWater-resistant RatingPrice
1.Apple Watch Series 3Waterproof up to 50m (IPX8)Buy on Amazon
2.Apple Watch Series 4Waterproof up to 50m (IPX8)Buy on Amazon
3.Apple Watch Series 5Waterproof up to 50m (IPX8)Buy on Amazon
4.Apple Watch Series 6Waterproof up to 50m (IPX8)Buy on Amazon
5.Apple Watch SEWaterproof up to 50m (IPX8)Buy on Amazon
6.Apple Watch Series 7Waterproof up to 50m (IPX8)Buy on Amazon
7.Apple Watch Series 8Waterproof up to 50m (IPX8)Buy on Amazon

How Long Can Apple Watch Be Under Water?

With the resistance rating of IPX7, the maximum period an Apple watch can stay underwater is 30 minutes at a depth of 1 meter.

Do You Have To Do Anything Before Getting Apple Watch Wet?

You will need to activate the Water Lock technology on your Apple Watch before getting it wet.

Your Apple Watch won’t detect touches once you activate this feature, which means you won’t have to worry about accidental operations while swimming.

After all, who wants to make unintended calls to a wrong contact at the wrong time simply because an Apple Watch acted up?

To activate the Water Lock on your Apple Watch:

  • Long hold the bottom of your Watch’s display until the Control Center pops. 
  • Swipe up once the Control Center appears on the screen.
  • Find the Water Lock option at the of your watch’s clock face.
  • Tap it to activate Water Lock.

Can I Wear Apple Watch 7 Swimming?

You can go swimming with your Apple Watch Series 7 because it’s water-resistant up to depth of 164 feet.

But as I’ve mentioned before, even a smartwatch this powerful and performance optimized isn’t good enough for skiing or scuba diving.

Interestingly, Apple Watches Series 2 and later can also track calories burned, count distance covered, and account for the laps made while swimming.  

Then, you can access the swimming data from the Apple Watch app.

Is It Okay To Shower With Apple Watch?

By now, you know you can swim with the Apple Watch Series 2, Series 3, Series 4, Series 5, Series 6, SE, Series 7, and Series 8.

But that doesn’t mean you can hit the shower with the watch as well.

Sure, we know what the premise is.

It’s that you can shower with any Apple Watch because it’s water-resistant up to 164 feet – with the exception of the original Apple Watch and Series 1.

But there are caveats.

  • Avoid shampoos, soaps, and chemical detergents. These non-water products can sip through the smartwatch’s casing and damage inner components, not to mention they can wear the glue securing the Apple Watch parts.
  • You must take the watch off when getting in a sauna or steam room. 

If you don’t observe these rules, your Apple Watch will lose its water-resistance, wear out, and eventually become useless.

Can Water Resistance Decrease in Apple Watch?

An Apple Watch’s water resistance wears out with time, and there’s no fix for this.

Surprisingly, it’s possible to in increase the water resistance period of your Apple Watch by:   

  • Ensuring the watch doesn’t get into contact with soaps, soapy water, perfumes, detergents, oil, hair dye, and sunscreens. 
  • Avoiding water activities such as scuba diving and skiing as they involve high water velocities.

Also, dropping an Apple Watch can easily reduce its water resistance.

As such, I recommend using an Apple Watch screen protector and store it in its case whenever it’s not in use.  

What Should I Do If My Apple Watch Gets Wet?

If your Apple Watch gets wet, use a soft, dry, non-abrasive, lint-free cloth to dry it and then eject the water stuck in the speaker vent.

I recommend using a non-abrasive and lint-free piece of cloth because it won’t leave annoying scratches on the watch’s screen.

How to Eject Water from the Apple Watch

To eject water from your Apple Watch:

  • Swipe the clock face from the bottom to open the Apple Watch Control Center
  • Tap on Water Lock
  • Press and hold the Digital Crown to clear water from the speaker

You should NOT use heating gadgets such as a blow dryer to dry your Apple Watch. Such devices can burn rubber or plastic parts of the watch. 

Rinse your Apple Watch with warm water after swimming to get rid of chemicals used to preserve pool water.

Your Apple Watch speaker might sound dull after getting into water. Don’t introduce anything to the speaker’s opening if that happens. Stick to the Apple Watch water ejection process to get water out of your speaker’s vent.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Water-resistant vs Waterproof in a Smartwatch: What’s the Difference?

A waterproof smartwatch is water impermeable.

On the other hand, a water-resistant model can stand up to water pressure up to a given depth.

With the exception of Apple Watch Series 1, all the models designed by Apple are waterproof up to 50 meters.

2. How Do I Waterproof My Apple Watch for Swimming?

You can waterproof your Apple Watch Series 2 and later by enabling the Water Lock feature.

The Water Lock is a special technology, which deactivates the buttons and screen so that the device freezes up all other functions except swim tracking.

3. Can I Wear My Apple Watch SE in the Pool?

Apple Watch SE is, in view, an impressive replacement of the Apple Watch 3. And it’s the least expensive second-generation Apple Watch you can buy.

Like Apple Watch Series 3, Watch SE features a water resistance rating of 5 ATM.

It can withstand submergence of up to 50 meters in the water. So apart from wearing the watch to the shower, it can also go in the swimming pool.

4. Should You Turn on Water Lock Before Showering With Your Apple Watch?

You don’t necessarily have to turn on the Water Lock feature on Apple Watch before taking a shower.

Remember that on a hardware level, Apple Watch 2 and later series are water-resistant regardless of whether or not the Water Lock is active.

But if you don’t want unnecessary taps, especially if you’ve activated the always-on display, activating the Water Lock feature can make a difference. 

Final Thought

When it comes to the issue on whether Apple Watches are waterproof or otherwise, the bottom line is that the brand doesn’t have a water impermeable smartwatch in its collection.

However, all of Apple’s releases, except for the original Apple Watch and Apple Watch Series 1 are water-resistant up to 50 meters.

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Michael Jonathan

Michael Jonathan is the brainchild of Apelo Studio. He loves talking about wearable devices, and he is passionate about helping you push your wearable device to its limits. His creativity and ability to tear electric components apart and put them back together makes him an incredible troubleshooter and blogger.

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