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Old 08-30-2010, 08:20 PM   #11
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Re: Maxx Fan

Quote:
Originally Posted by juniper
Our Maxx Fan has worked intermittently since October 09 when we bought our trailer.

We were planning to take the trailer to Chilliwack this week to have the fan looked at, but naturally it's working fine today.

Some things we have experienced:
  • Twice when we have been traveling in rain with the vent closed the fan started to emit a high-pitched buzzing sound. We had to unplug the fuse to get it to stop.
  • Several times after turning on the fan, none of the buttons would respond. To turn the fan off, we had to unplug the fuse.
  • When on battery power and in cold weather, the fan would suddenly beep twice and turn itself on. Again, none of the buttons would respond and we had to unplug the fuse.

And yes, I've read the instructions several times and it's *not* user error:
http://www.maxxair.com/Download-docu...l-Opening.html

When the fan stops responding to any button clicks, try holding down the on/off button for several seconds. Then click the - button. I'm not sure, but this seems to reset it sometimes.
Unfortunately, we experienced a similar problem to the two discussed in this thread. More unfortunately, our MaxxFan (which had never previously exhibited any problems) turned itself on while Grasshopper was sitting in our driveway unplugged. We were between trips and I only noticed b/c one day, I could hear an alarm sounding in the trailer. When I went inside to investigate, the MaxxFan was on, the Propane alarm was sounding and the batteries were showing approx 20% charge per our charge controller. It had been seven days since I had last been in the trailer so there's no telling how long things had been running. All the controls either didn't respond at all or sometimes would perform functions that were incorrect for the button pushed.

When I contacted the MaxxFan people, they immediately said it sounded like the MaxxFan PCB (motherboard/control panel) had failed for some reason. Without question, they sent me a new PCB with installation instructions. The MaxxFan people were very helpful & nice to deal with so kudos to them. I received the new PCB within a few days and installed it without too much difficulty. Our MaxxFan has been working fine with the new PCB ever since.

After removing the faulty PCB, I could visibly see where the problem was... There were two wires that connect to a transistor/sensor (?) and one had apparently rusted through to where it was only connected on one end and broke the circuit (see the pic below). The pic shows the PCB upside down so the transistor/sensor hangs down. I think that condensation somehow forms on the PCB and drips/collects at the low point which would be this transistor/sensor where the rust is. I'm not sure what can be done to prevent this from happening again in the future. It would seem likely that more Escape owners will inevitably experience similar problems. I hope not though.

The batteries seem to still be ok but I certainly don't want them to get run down that low again if at all possible. It obviously wasn't good for them. I believe that the low battery charge/voltage is what triggered the Propane Alarm. Unfortunately, it permanently damaged it b/c from that point forward, it would randomly trigger and over time, more and more frequently. I'll post (hopefully later tonight) the process of how I finally identified that the detector was in fact no longer good as opposed to some propane or other gas problem. In addition, the adventure and ordeal I encountered replacing it with a properly functioning unit. Unfortunately wasn't as smooth & easy as was fixing the MaxxFan.

A general lesson learned is that when the trailer is not going to be used for more than a few days & it is not connected to a/c power, it's always a good idea to flip the battery isolator switch (or disconnect the battery if you don't have the switch). That way, if something electrical (12v) ever malfunctions unexpectedly, it won't run down and damage your batteries or create collateral damage. There are some lessons learned that I'll share re: the propane detector that could save time & effort should it happen to others in the future...
Attached Images
File Type: jpg MaxxFan PCB Rusted Through - Low Res.jpg (83.9 KB, 137 views)
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Old 08-31-2010, 08:29 AM   #12
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Re: Maxx Fan

That is interesting information. You have drawn some good conclusions as to cause and effect. The maxx fan issue maybe addressed by Escape now that they know of it but is it really under their control? That entire unit is dropped in intact, Escape just plumbed it.

I like your recommendation on turning off the master power. I do so whenever storing for more than a few days. However, I did not think I was protecting myself from something like this, I did want to protect the battery from drain but my concern was the propane detector draining the battery. Never though such a possibility as yours, but just as easily a light could be left on or the pump not turned off.

That brings me to that master switch, since I leave the front table as a bed as much as possible, due the difficulty in set up, I have to use a broom handle to reach the master switch. Even then, what a pain! I had to replace the rocker arm early on and considered moving it, but it was a longer project than time available. Ideally that switch should be more easily accessed and visible, I would like to see a push button switch with an LED telling you its on. It would mount flush compared to the rocker arm style. I can only speak of this on the Escape 19.

From your experience we should be "killing" that switch every time we store.

What about the propane detector? Your story stopped with what sounds like a difficult replacement.
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Old 08-31-2010, 09:04 AM   #13
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Re: Maxx Fan

You could wire in a switch just about anywhere as long as the appropriate sized wire was used (not sure what that is without looking though). Any switch rated for adequate amperage could be used too. There are not likely too many push button type that would work, at least that I am aware of.

We have never had an issue with the location of the switch, though our dinette has only been made into a bed twice in 15 months. I could see the large toggle getting hooked though.

I have only disconnected the battery once though, when I put the trailer into winter storage. It generally stays plugged in when not in use though. Otherwise, disconnecting it makes good sense.
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Old 08-31-2010, 10:43 AM   #14
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Re: Maxx Fan

Quote:
Originally Posted by fudge_brownie
That is interesting information. You have drawn some good conclusions as to cause and effect. The maxx fan issue maybe addressed by Escape now that they know of it but is it really under their control? That entire unit is dropped in intact, Escape just plumbed it.
I agree with you there. I had done some web research before calling them to see if others in the greater rv world had experienced similar problems and what they did to resolve it. I did find a few threads on other forums that sounded similar and one of them even mentioned that the people at MaxxFan were aware of the issue and were looking to alter their product design to minimize the weakness.

http://www.crossroadsrv.com/forum/fo...s.asp?TID=1300

In personally talking to the MaxxFan people, I definitely got the impression that they have had this problem come up before. Since they were so quick to identify that it was a PCB issue, suggest the remedy & were more than happy to do so under warranty without prompting further leads me to believe it. I'm curious whether or not they did in fact modify their design to minimize this problem in the future.
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Old 11-02-2010, 02:58 AM   #15
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Conformal coating could fix this!

I had a similar problem with my 5100K and it looks like they could correct this pretty easily by spraying the PCB with a conformal coating to shield it from moisture. Conformal coatings are like epoxy or varnish. Some are more flexible than others, but we used them all the time on mil-spec and industrial controls that were exposed to moisture and oil. If I get a response from the folks there I will pass along the suggestion.

Regards,

Matt
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Old 08-12-2013, 05:45 PM   #16
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Maxx Fan has been sold to a company in Kansas ( they use to be in Florida) I'm looking for the manual - as I am having similar problems as in this thread, all of the links show up as an error message. Does anyone have a link or pdf that works?
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Old 08-12-2013, 07:54 PM   #17
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Did you try Airxcel | Maxxair | Maxxfan
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Old 08-12-2013, 09:21 PM   #18
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Thanks Brian, but tried that, and when I go to support Documents ...it says "no documents found".
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Old 08-26-2013, 06:35 AM   #19
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I still have had no luck finding the manual for the Maxx Fan, for those who have taken them apart - I need to try and replace the switch - (plate with the buttons, that you plug in to the motherboard). I'm not sure if this is the problem but I need to replace that first - any suggestions on the best way to proceed?
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Old 08-26-2013, 08:08 AM   #20
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