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Thread: Pool Solar Controller not working what part is this

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    Quote Originally Posted by h8fg4 View Post
    Not that I know of, its been screwed to the wall for 18 years and only took it off the other day when it stopped working, took the front off and found the transistor like it is


    Just check that sensor wiring and the power for the pump are kept physically far enough apart. Maybe rodents chewed through the insulation.
    Other than that I can only imagine a secondary (very minor) lightning strike on the roof somehow finding it's path through the sensor wiring
    Last edited by nomeat; 03-11-18 at 12:01 PM.
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    it appears to me that the pool and roof are commoned on one side ? ps some thanks for those wouldnt go astray ! cheers don
    edit: just had a looky at the b/d on the right there are same two circuits that go to the sensors . as a result the transistor is balanced between on and off thru bias of q2 and held in place by the other transistor , so the difference between the roof sensor or the pool sensor is commoned back to q2 and set by the pot so as to operate the relay thru collector of q2.
    Last edited by hinekadon; 03-11-18 at 05:59 PM. Reason: more
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    Quote Originally Posted by nomeat View Post

    Somebody accidently connecting 240V seems way more likely.
    Mains across any semiconductor device that's not rated for it tends to produce an immediate explosion, usually resulting in blowing
    the device to bits, often only leaving the remains of the legs behind or part of the body.
    This thing has had a slow burn, in other words it's got really, really hot - so much so the plastic has slow melted.
    It's not something I had seen much at all in my 45 years of electronickery.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Studio1 View Post
    Mains across any semiconductor device that's not rated for it tends to produce an immediate explosion, usually resulting in blowing
    the device to bits, often only leaving the remains of the legs behind or part of the body.
    This thing has had a slow burn, in other words it's got really, really hot - so much so the plastic has slow melted.
    It's not something I had seen much at all in my 45 years of electronickery.
    This does not have have to be a direct connection to active.
    I mentioned above rodents !

    I have even seen slugs INSIDE a powerpoint. It tripped the RCD so I had to pull it apart.
    I test drove a Tesla X P100D. I am going keep driving my 22 y/o diesel until I can afford a second hand one or die trying.
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    Well so far so good, as I mentioned earlier there was a possible short in the roof sensor so I carefully cut into the brass end and separated the wires and it tested ok.
    I then replaced the transistor ( everything else looked ok)
    Its now running normally, started the pump as it should, just need a hot day to test it further. Its only been running for about an hour so fingers crossed !!

    Thanks again everyone for you're help.

    cheerrs thomo
    Last edited by h8fg4; 08-11-18 at 12:20 PM.

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    you can test it by holding a cig lighter on the other probe and see if it changes over, for a short time
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    Quote Originally Posted by hinekadon View Post
    you can test it by holding a cig lighter on the other probe and see if it changes over, for a short time
    Yea thanks all seems good the roof sensor is changing with the outside temperature, but its too cold to have the solar pump working to test if it turns on and off correctly.



    thanks

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    Still seems to be a problem with the roof sensor, the controller sometimes waits for a signal from the roof sensor and wont start sometimes it comes straight on.
    Once I wiggled the sensor end and the unit clicked and started working. Could this blow the circuit again.
    If I disconnect it the unit wont start
    Can I bypass the roof sensor or is there a cheap new one available
    Dont know if this would work
    But it aint cheap

    thanks thomo

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    all we have to do is find out what sort of sensor it is they are only a couple of bucks if you know could be a pt 100 which has temp /ohms of 25 degrees equals 100 ohms or some thing like that so put a ohmmeter across it and see disconnect it first of course , could be ntc or ptc type also cheers don
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    Quote Originally Posted by h8fg4 View Post
    Still seems to be a problem with the roof sensor, the controller sometimes waits for a signal from the roof sensor and wont start sometimes it comes straight on.
    Once I wiggled the sensor end and the unit clicked and started working. Could this blow the circuit again.
    If I disconnect it the unit wont start
    Can I bypass the roof sensor or is there a cheap new one available
    Dont know if this would work
    But it aint cheap

    thanks thomo
    No they are specific for a certain model.
    You need to measure how many ohms it has at around 25˚C like Hinekadon said.
    I am assuming it has an intermittent conctact so wiggle it until you get a reading. I assume it will be between 100Ω and 10k, so anything showing in the MΩ range or less than 1Ω is faulty.
    You do that in the evening when the sun is down.
    Then you warm it up with your hand or pour a cup of hot water over it.
    Then you measure again.
    If the Ohm value is lower it is an NTC, if higher a PTC.
    I am tipping an NTC, hopefully. If PTC things will be tricky as there are non linear types and the one you need can be hard to find.

    Jaycar has all the standard NTC values, choose the one that is closest to what you measured before you heated it. Doesn't have to be perfect, you have an adjuster on the PCB.
    Cut off the faulty one(taking about 10cm of the wire with it, that could be the actual fault not just the sensor itself) and solder on the new one. Dip it completely in Araldite. Let it harden and dip it again in fresh Araldite.
    Put a bit of heatshrink tube around it.
    All done for $1,95 (assuming you already have Araldite and heatshrink tube lying around)
    Last edited by nomeat; 12-12-18 at 08:02 PM.
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    At 26C it reads 1.834k and at 46c it reads 2.220k so I guess its PTC unfortunately
    Anything I can try

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    Quote Originally Posted by h8fg4 View Post
    At 26C it reads 1.834k and at 46c it reads 2.220k so I guess its PTC unfortunately
    Anything I can try
    Are you 100% sure? That is bad. None of the stores I am aware of have this. Element14 (Farnell) I keep getting access denied.



    A few things:
    Ditch the controller, connect the pump to a GPO and switch manually.
    Toughen up and swim in cold water like me In summer my pool is still very warm.
    Try grinding VERY CAREFULLY away the resin or what ever the sensor is encapsulated in at the point where the wire goes in to expose the copper and re-solder it, but try bending the wire nearby first. Maybe there is a break further back
    Program a 1$ PIC micro (12F683) and build your own controller using an NTC.
    Contact Heatseeker and ask if you have to sell a kidney or not to afford a replacement sensor.
    I test drove a Tesla X P100D. I am going keep driving my 22 y/o diesel until I can afford a second hand one or die trying.
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    Quote Originally Posted by nomeat View Post
    Are you 100% sure? That is bad. None of the stores I am aware of have this. Element14 (Farnell) I keep getting access denied.



    A few things:
    Ditch the controller, connect the pump to a GPO and switch manually.
    Toughen up and swim in cold water like me In summer my pool is still very warm.
    Try grinding VERY CAREFULLY away the resin or what ever the sensor is encapsulated in at the point where the wire goes in to expose the copper and re-solder it, but try bending the wire nearby first. Maybe there is a break further back
    Program a 1$ PIC micro (12F683) and build your own controller using an NTC.
    Contact Heatseeker and ask if you have to sell a kidney or not to afford a replacement sensor.
    I drink like a fish but dont swim much myself, its for the wife and grankids
    I did carefully cut the metal end of the sensor and thought I fixed the short then used hot melt glue gun to reseal it then heat sinked over the top but obviously didn't do a good enough job. (no breaks)
    Heatseeker dont support this any more.
    I,ll slip it back into the rubber tube on the roof and see what happens, Its just handy to turn the pump off when it gets to 28

    Thanks again for the help

    cheers thomo
    Last edited by h8fg4; 13-12-18 at 01:52 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by h8fg4 View Post
    Its just handy to turn the pump off when it gets to 28

    I think this could be a simple solution for that, set in heating mode:
    I just ordered one for my fermenter.
    Last edited by nomeat; 13-12-18 at 04:32 PM.
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    Default pt100

    nope thing just dont add up the difference is not believable for ntc or ptc i suspect its a pt100 thats full of water and corroded to get that sort of results just solder a 100 ohm resister across the wires and see what happens if it is pt100 it will work to some extent but dont expect any accuracy just to see if it is ???? and get back to us cheers don
    when youve done the solder job dunk the whole thing in enamel paint and wait for it to dry i mean wires and all
    Last edited by hinekadon; 13-12-18 at 06:09 PM. Reason: more
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    Don, I doubt it is a PT100.
    They are used for accurate temperature measurements in a wide range using a bridge and a differential amplifier because the change of resistance is very low compared to standard NTCs.
    This circuit just had a simple transistor for the input. I don't remember seeing any OP amp IC. The images are gone.

    The variation of the resistance fits roughly for a 2k NTC if it were the other way around, although it could be even higher.

    h8fg4 you said that it worked but it had an intermittent short.
    Still it might be a good idea to run a test using a pot instead of the sensor and find out at which values it switches on and off because an internally corroded sensor could be producing random values. That way we can really confirm if it is a PTC.
    I suggest a 4k7/5k pot though*
    Also a bit confused that you want the pump to switch OFF at 28˚. Do you mean the pool water or the roof sensor?
    Are there two sensors, one for the pool water and one for the solar heater? I understand the one we are talking about is for the roof to switch the pump ON.

    Using hot glue is a bad idea to insulate a solar sensor. That is why I suggested Araldite.

    * Another idea is to also measure the voltage across the sensor input just when the motor switches on with the pot.
    Lets assume the motor just switches on when the pot has a value of 2kΩ and you measure 0.7V across it.
    Grab another pnp transistor and use 2k2 as the emitter resistor across the input. The collector of this transitor using a resistor of 2k2 to the negative of the capacitor with the blue resistor on the shown image posted below.
    Now you can use pretty much any old NTC from Jaycar, I suggest 10k and connect it to base and +, NOT ground!
    Then solder a 10k trim-pot between the base and ground and adjust until you get 0.7V over the emitter resistor.
    You have now inverted the function of the sensor input. If the NTC gets lower the voltage on the input will get higher.

    If you want to do this I will draw something up sometime tomorrow, getting late now.
    Last edited by nomeat; 13-12-18 at 11:40 PM.
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    heres the circuit bd post 5
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    Quote Originally Posted by hinekadon View Post
    heres the circuit bd post 5
    Thanks, so it is a simple pnp transistor and there is a pool sensor as well and the common is + .
    I will correct the polarity of my circuit above.
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    Quote : Also a bit confused that you want the pump to switch OFF at 28˚. Do you mean the pool water or the roof sensor?
    Are there two sensors, one for the pool water and one for the solar heater? I understand the one we are talking about is for the roof to switch the pump ON.

    there are 2 sensors pool and roof when I go to work I turn it on and during the day it starts if pool temp is under 28 but turns off when it gets 28 otherwise it could
    be 32 by the time I get home.

    Quote* Another idea is to also measure the voltage across the sensor input just when the motor switches on with the pot.
    Lets assume the motor just switches on when the pot has a value of 2kΩ and you measure 0.7V across it.
    Grab another pnp transistor and use 2k2 as the emitter resistor across the input. The collector of this transitor using a resistor of 2k2 to the negative of the capacitor with the blue resistor on the shown image posted below.
    Now you can use pretty much any old NTC from Jaycar, I suggest 10k and connect it to base and +, NOT ground!
    Then solder a 10k trim-pot between the base and ground and adjust until you get 0.7V over the emitter resistor.
    You have now inverted the function of the sensor input. If the NTC gets lower the voltage on the input will get higher.

    Sorry mate remember u are talking to a retired mechanic, most of this stuff goes straight over my head

    When I did the measurement I dropped the end in a cup of water that was 50c , I will try it again using a lighter perhaps

    thanks

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    h8 dont worry about your lack of knowledge thats what we are here for its a question and answer site so even the silliest are answered so long as we are not getting jerked off we are happy to extend our minds even if they are old and a little forgetful results are what counts you should have realised that , please dont let it go over your head ,just ask and be honest we dont think of anyone as stupid by the questions . we manage to take a broad mind to problems dont be frightened to have a try to build your fault away to save a buck or two as we have all done it nomeat said he would modify his circuit so wait for him no worries ???
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