Start-up company saving phones from water

July 22, 2014

Westminster Window

For all those frustrated people who’ve dropped their cell phone in the water, TekDry is the answer. Founders Adam Cookson of Broomfield, Eric Jones of Westminster and Craig Beinecke of Lakewood use a patented drying technology to quickly and safely dry liquid-damaged mobile devices while restoring device operability, saving valuable data and preventing further damage.

“TekDry is so effective that we can rescue a water-damaged phone in 20 minutes” Beinecke said.

TekDry recently opened in Westminster at 1331 W. 121st Ave. But before Beinecke and his partners started saving people’s phones, the three were business students in the executive MBA program at the University of Denver. During the program, the three worked closely together on projects and assignments, developing a strong work relationship and friendship. It wasn’t until Jones had a request from a friend that TekDry was born.

“Eric new a girl who dropped her phone in water and couldn’t afford to buy a new one, so she asked for Eric’s help,” Beinecke said. “So he came up with the drying idea and then pitched it to Adam and I, who are both engineers. That was the beginning.”

The three friends started piecing the program technology together and Beinecke bought the materials needed to build an industrial-sized model that would be used to dry out the phones. Beinecke said the technology uses a trio of engineering principles to force the water to leave the phone.

“The process is controlled by a computer,” he said. “It’s very scientific.”

The process is not limited to just phones, other electronics like tablets, laptops and digital computers dunked in water can also be fixed. For the best results, Beinecke said people should not charge or turn on an electronic device after its been exposed to water and if possible, remove the battery.

“Our success rate is about 75 percent for electronics brought to TekDry within 48 hours,” he said. “So the sooner the better. But we have had one case where someone brought in a phone seven days after a water incident and we were still able to restore the device back to normal.”

Cost to fix a cell phone is $99.99, but customers only pay the fee if the process is successful. And for those unable to stop by the store, a mail-in service is provided for a fee of $69.99. If the phone isn’t fixed, $50 will be refunded.

Currently the TekDry trio is building is semi-automated kiosk that could be placed in any retail store. Beinecke said people would be able to drop off their phone or tablet in a secured kiosk that would run the drying process and then return back to the kiosk in 30 minutes to pick up their revived device.

“Starting a company from scratch is pretty exciting and I think I can speak for the other two guys who are both every excited too,” Beinecke said. “It’s exciting to be entrepreneurs and just figuring out every day things. It’s exhilarating.”