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As a 5 year long owner...


Winch

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I have over 40 Insteon devices throughout the house. I love the inter-operability and control I have over them.

 

If there is one suggestion I have is the weakest point in the entire setup; the PLM.

This unit does not last more than 18mos.
I am on my third one now. I wish these were build to last longer because when the PLM dies, the entire system is down.

 

Thanks

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Winch

 

Have any of the bad PLMs been at hardware level v2.0 or v2.1 (white sticker on back of PLM)?

 

No. I kept the last one in the futile hopes I could repair it on my own. That one has v1.5 in the sticker.

The one that replaced that one is about a year old and it says v1.C.

I expect that one to go sometime 2016.

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UDI has developed their own PLM.

Sticking point right now. SmartLabs is stalling on providing the promised Insteon power line and RF controller chips.

 

Yes, I heard this from the Tech that helped me try to revive the last one that went out.

I had been hoping more leaway had been done by now.

I just hope that by the time I need another replacement, the politics had been resolved.

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Well if your last 2413S was a hardware 2.0 or above. It should have the updated capacitors in it and hopefully last longer. Only time will tell if the new capacitors corrected the issues.

 

Awesome. Thanks. At least I know now there is something better out there. Now I almost want it to die already so I can get the updated one. :-P  ALMOST!

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Yes, I am using an almost two year old v1 and have a brand new V2.1 unit in a box.

 

I am wondering if I should avoid the agro and just switch them, while I am still sane, and attempt to fix the older one now, or just leave it in and let it prove itself or not.

 

Trouble is, I have an untested one that may be out of warranty by that time.

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Switch to the new PLM. If it outlasts the warranty and fails down the line, you still have one that has life left until you replace the one that failed B)

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Switch to the new PLM. If it outlasts the warranty and fails down the line, you still have one that has life left until you replace the one that failed B)

Yes, I think that logic is the best route. I wonder if these caps go bad with shelf life too. I know the old paper and wax ones or electrolytic breeds would but that was after massive heat treatment in the tube chassis equipment and sitting for years.

 

I guees I should do the swap and get proactive with new caps. See if I can still solder with a 10,000 x magnifying glass yet. :)

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Speaking of CAPS, has any one figured out which component is the one failing? I tested most of the ones I saw dubious but all tested fine.

This is a chore since it is mostly SMD, but the one failing has to be always the same since this has been a wide spread problem that has been very well documented for years.

 

One thing I noticed right away was the manufacturing process had left a ton of flux on the board. This can eat up board traces over time. If that is the case, I might as well throw it in the trash right now instead of trying to repair it.

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All five of the caps we changed are through hole electrolytic type. No surface mounts involved.

 

C7 and C13 the two 10uf/35 volt ones in the unregulated 12 volt supply. That I suspect. As mine had a less than 7 volt reading on the unregulated 12 volts that is more like 18 volts when running properly.

It is a small switcher and the C7 and C13 where not rated for low ESR and switching supplies.

The other three where also changed as a precaution.

 

Six page thread on the 2413S PLM failures here.

http://forum.universal-devices.com/topic/13866-repair-of-2413s-plm-when-the-power-supply-fails/

 

I have also had two 2443 Hardware 2.? Access Points fail also. They use the same base 2413 PLM board. With no serial daughter board. I replaced the five caps and both are now 100% functional again. Their 12 volts where also around 7 or less volts. Too low for the small 5 volt logic supply regulator to work.

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Larry,

If it is a 1.0 there was rework on the board.

As they had to add the second 10uf/35 volt cap and small coil between the caps. So they are hanging off the main board and a fly wire to the back of the board. Would take more skill to replace the caps in it. Though someone has reported doing it in the PLM repair thread.

 

The newer 1.5 has the artwork updated and all the capacitors we are talking about are now on the board and no parts hanging up unto the air.

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Thanks for everything you have done on this Brian.

Once I get around to swapping the PLMs I will be researching the forum for "the cure".

 

My PLM is almost two years old now and I  think it was in  the mid v1.x (fingers crossed)

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....

One thing I noticed right away was the manufacturing process had left a ton of flux on the board. This can eat up board traces over time. If that is the case, I might as well throw it in the trash right now instead of trying to repair it.

There is flux cleaning spray that works well with an old toothbrush but I think if moisture is kept low flux is not a problem for etching the traces.

 

Keep the brush wet and conductive and your other hand on a trace to equalise/neutralise  any static or voltage difference.

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