How To Use The Eject Water Feature On Your Apple Watch

The Apple Watch has been water resistant to a certain extent since the beginning, with the Apple Watch Series 2 and all later models boasting a swim-proof design and overall improved resistance against water, as explained by Apple. Water Lock is a software feature that arrived starting with the Apple Watch Series 2 that keeps the wearable's screen from registering touches while submerged in water, and, most importantly, it purges water from the watch's speaker once you're finished in the pool or shower.

Though Water Lock is designed to turn on automatically when you start a water-based workout, you can also manually turn on the feature and use it to purge water from the watch's speaker. As expected given that this is an Apple product, the entire process is very simple, though the first time you experience it, the feature may seem a bit surprising. Apple explains on its website that you might hear some sounds when the water is purged, and that water may also end up on your wrist.

How to eject water from your Apple Watch

The Apple Watch Series 2 and newer models will automatically turn on Water Lock if you start a workout that involves water, such as swimming, though you can also turn it on whenever you'd like by swiping to open the Control Center and then tapping the Water Lock button (it's the one with an icon that looks like a water drop). The smartwatch is designed to automatically play sounds that eject water from the speaker when the Water Lock is turned off, which is done in one of two ways depending on which version of watchOS you're using.

On watchOS 9 with Water Lock enabled, you'll want to press and hold the Digital Crown for a few seconds. The Apple Watch will play a sound to purge water from the wearable's speaker. You'll also get a haptic vibration in to confirm that Water Lock is disabled. WatchOS 9 is available on the Apple Watch Series 4 or later, including the Apple Watch SE (1st and 2nd generation) and Apple Watch Ultra.

On watchOS 8 or earlier with Water Lock enabled, you'll want to spin the Digital Crown for a few seconds. You'll feel a haptic vibration from your Apple Watch to confirm Water Lock is off.

What you need to know about Water Lock

With Water Lock, the Apple Watch ejects water from its speaker and disables touch input on the screen. That's it. Some users seem to think that the Water Lock enables a special mode that seals off the Watch's speaker from water or provides extra protection against water versus when it's turned off, but that's not the case. Water Lock on Apple Watch is simply a way to ensure you're not accidentally sending a text or calling someone while the touch screen is submerged underwater. That's why you can still hear your notification alerts while Water Lock is enabled in a situation where your Apple Watch might not be fully submerged — like, for example, when you're in the shower.

In a way, this is a good thing because if you forget to turn on Water Lock and submerge your Apple Watch in water, your Watch is still protected. Water resistance and the duration for which you can submerge your Apple Watch are based solely upon what model you have, as explained by Apple. For example, the Apple Watch Ultra can be submerged for up to around 328 feet. 

Note that on its website, Apple warns that if your smartwatch speaker sounds muffled after turning off Water Lock and purging the water, you should simply let the water evaporate. You shouldn't shake the smartwatch or try to stick anything into its openings, as either activity could damage the wearable.