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Why Does My Phone Smell Like Nail Polish Remover?

Phone Smell

You will see different electronic components inside if you ever open your smartphone. These are stuff you don’t see every day. Apart from the hardware parts, you’ll see that companies glue some stuff using adhesives.

The glue might loosen if you use your smartphone for games or it gets heated up. So, if you ever ask, “Why does my Phone Smell like nail polish remover,” one of the possible reasons is that the adhesives used in your Phone Smell have changed form due to heat.

The pungent smell from a hot phone is usually not pleasing, don’t sniff it intentionally; otherwise, it might cause some irritation. If the situation is too severe, and your phone starts malfunctioning, take it to the nearby repair shop, and they’ll fix it. 

However, if you are curious about what is happening or why your Phone Smell like acetone, we’ll share some points below.

In a hurry? We care about your time, so here’s a quick answer to the question you’re looking for!

Your phone smells like nail polish remover due to the presence of acetone, a common solvent in electronics manufacturing. Acetone is used to clean circuit boards and other components, and its distinctive odor can linger. Overheating can also release this smell as it breaks down certain phone materials, intensifying the scent. Ensure your phone is functioning properly and not overheating.

Why Does My Phone Smell Like Acetone?

Phone Smells

Acetone is a transparent liquid primarily used in clearing nail polish. However, phone brands often use it when prepping a smartphone’s screen. The glass protector on top covers the smell; you’ll only perceive it if you put your nose on the screen and sniff it.

Companies also use acetone to melt the plastic as an adhesive to stick batteries to the casing.

That glue is strong enough to keep the battery in place no matter how much you shake or move your mobile phone. It is cheap but the best way to attach a smartphone’s battery. The problem is your phone smells like acetone starts from here.

Reasons Why You Smell Nail Polish On Your Smartphone

Phone Smell

Battery Leakage

One of the most common reasons for that smell is your mobile phone battery leaking. While portable phone batteries are small and the leakage won’t hurt your hand, the smell and the liquid cause you some irritation.

The big problem is it will take hours before you feel the pungent smell, so you will only notice it if your mobile shows a faulty battery warning. Your battery may be already affected, and charging it while it’s leaking could permanently damage it.

Heated Adhesive 

Companies use a think adhesive to stick the batteries to the casing. If your device is overheating, it might melt and burn that adhesive if nothing cools the system. If that happens, you’ll perceive the smell of acetone since that adhesive contains it.

The good thing is that if you let the phone cool down quickly, the scent will eventually reduce. Then you can take it to a repair shop or attempt to fix the problem yourself. Many options are available online; you may find one solution that does not involve acetone.

Faulty Battery Cover

Your battery is covered with silver wrapping to keep its temperature balanced. If there is a hole in that cover, it can release a smell similar to acetone. This happens when the back of a phone gets broken, usually from being thrown or subjected to a lot of pressure. 

If that ever happens, check your phone’s back casing to see any signs of cracks. If you see anything indicating damage, take it to a nearby repair shop, or you can replace the battery if you have the skills and tools.

You Put It in a Bag With Nail Polish Remover

Someone reported this possibility in a forum. However, it may be unusual. A woman’s phone and purse leaked liquid; the latter was nail paint remover.

Reaching home, she felt that her Phone Smell funny: the nail polish remover smell. So, if you have a nail polish remover in your bag, check it before concluding about the nail polish remover smell.

The scent might take some time to disappear, so be patient. Moreover, if your phone is inside a case, your phone is okay. Change the phone case immediately to get rid of the smell.

The phone Repairman Used Thinners to Clean the Phone.

If you recently collected your phone from a phone repair shop and it smelled like acetone, the repairman must have used thinners to clean its components. You can leave the phone to rest for a while before using or charging it.

If your phone has a new battery, charge it with a slow charger first to see if it works as expected. If it is getting hot, then you can try a fast charger. The heat may increase the smell of the thinners used to clean the phone.

Faulty Motherboard

If you are storing too many files on your mobile phone, the chances are that its motherboard is under strain and prone to wear and tear. The tiny circuits may malfunction, causing your device to go hot and smell like nail polish.

Sometimes a short course can spread a smell similar to acetone, but it is not. While we won’t recommend it, try sniffing your phone around the charging port area and try to confirm whether it smells like a nail polish remover or not.

If the smell doesn’t stop when the device cools down, take it to a repair shop before more damage happens.

What Should I Do if My Phone Smells Like Nail Polish Remover?

Phone Smell

You might find it awkward to perceive such a smell coming from your phone. However, it is usually a minor problem as it all depends upon the cause of the problem. Most times, all you have to do is allow your phone to cool down and then troubleshoot.

There are many solutions if it is a problem with your battery. The worst-case scenario is you need to replace the battery. On the other hand, you can open your phone’s back casing and apply adhesive tape to the battery to seal any leaks.

However, if your phone is heating up and the problem is with your motherboard, that might indicate a severe issue. Please take it to a good repair shop instantly before more damage happens.


You should troubleshoot immediately if you ever check your Phone Smell and discover it smells like nail polish remover. We have discussed a couple of tips to help you do that. Unless your motherboard is involved, the issue is usually minor.

It could be because the battery is heating up or you spilled nail polish remover. If you need help figuring out the problem, please take your phone to a service center and let the professionals look at it.

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