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Old 02-24-2021, 11:54 PM   #1
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MaxxFan Died after 2 Months

Hi,
The MaxxFan Deluxe in our 2020 E21C stopped working after just 2 months. We are in contact with Airxcel and I bet they will send us a new PCB. After doing some searching online, it seems condensation inside the fan often damages the PCB. Some folks get a new PCB and water proof it with Conformal Coating to avoid this from happening again. Is it worth it? It seems wrong having to do this DIY on a brand new trailer. Your thoughts?
Thanks
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Old 02-25-2021, 02:13 AM   #2
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If mine fails, I'll be doing what SlimPotatoHead did in his ALiner

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Old 02-25-2021, 07:15 AM   #3
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It really shows how cheaply these things are made if they have a printed board without a conformal coating. Saves pennies, I guess. I would go ahead and do it myself, but I'm like that. You can get a spray for ~$20.

https://www.techspray.com/the-essent...formal-coating
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Old 02-25-2021, 08:51 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JohnP View Post
Hi,
The MaxxFan Deluxe in our 2020 E21C stopped working after just 2 months. We are in contact with Airxcel and I bet they will send us a new PCB. After doing some searching online, it seems condensation inside the fan often damages the PCB. Some folks get a new PCB and water proof it with Conformal Coating to avoid this from happening again. Is it worth it? It seems wrong having to do this DIY on a brand new trailer. Your thoughts?
Thanks
Hi: JohnP... I can't believe the number of folks having trouble with their MaxxFan's. The only time ours failed to go was when we accidentally turned it on... on thermostat function. Put my finger on the wrong button. Ours is strong enough to suck the cold out of the fridge so we don't use it as much as we used to. Alf
escape artist N.S. of Lake Erie
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Old 02-25-2021, 11:37 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Doug2000 View Post
If mine fails, I'll be doing what SlimPotatoHead did in his ALiner
Not me.

The Maxxair Fan is great. I've had a Maxxair Deluxe 7500 in my Sprinter van for 3 years now and would replace it without hesitation. Same holds true for our Maxxair Deluxe 5100 in the trailer.

Some tips to prevent condensation to start with.

We keep the trailer's thermostat set at the same temps or slightly warmer than we would in our house.

We run the Maxxair Fan in ceiling fan mode when it's cold enough to use the furnace keeping the warm air circulating prevents condensation everywhere not just in the vent lid.

We always use the range hood fan when cooking.

We leave the bathroom vent open all the time.

We haven't experienced any significant condensation. We get a little on the windows when the blinds are pulled down as that prevents the air circulation. The condensation clears when we open the blinds.
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Old 02-25-2021, 01:00 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JohnP View Post
Hi,
The MaxxFan Deluxe in our 2020 E21C stopped working after just 2 months. We are in contact with Airxcel and I bet they will send us a new PCB. After doing some searching online, it seems condensation inside the fan often damages the PCB. Some folks get a new PCB and water proof it with Conformal Coating to avoid this from happening again. Is it worth it? It seems wrong having to do this DIY on a brand new trailer. Your thoughts?
Thanks
Just curious - do you have solar and lead acid batteries? Besides condensation there has been some buzz about high DC voltage killing the board. Supposedly Airxcel is now making their boards to handle higher voltage but I still think the equalization from the GoPower solar controller set for lead acid batteries @ 14.9V+ is likely too high. I have wondered if users set their GoPower controller to AGM instead of flooded which disables the equalization mode and limits voltage to 14.4V if the issue would be resolved.
https://www.escapeforum.org/forums/f...tml#post278553

For what it's worth we have had two MaxxFan's and have not had any issues with the boards. No solar (yet). In our case the highest voltage the MaxxFan would see is 14.4V from our Progressive Dynamics PD4655LMBA replacement main board but the stock WFCO converter/charger is the same at 14.4V.
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Old 02-25-2021, 03:13 PM   #7
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I have not experienced any issue whatsoever with the MaxxFan that came with our 2014 15A. However, I have experienced short-out/electrical issues with the brand new MaxxFans (yes, plural ) I have purchased to replace the A/C unit I removed from the 15A's roof.

I still haven't hit pay dirt but it got cold a few months ago and I gave up for winter.
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Old 02-25-2021, 03:16 PM   #8
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Since we have other quieter fans that blow directly on us and use less power...I would start by just replacing the board with a simple on/off switch.

Our main use for the fan is to rapidly exhaust hot air that has gathered at the roof line when we were not in the trailer. We just turn it on full for a few minutes when we enter the trailer then turn it off shortly thereafter.
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Old 02-26-2021, 12:31 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rubicon327 View Post
Just curious - do you have solar and lead acid batteries? Besides condensation there has been some buzz about high DC voltage killing the board. Supposedly Airxcel is now making their boards to handle higher voltage but I still think the equalization from the GoPower solar controller set for lead acid batteries @ 14.9V+ is likely too high. I have wondered if users set their GoPower controller to AGM instead of flooded which disables the equalization mode and limits voltage to 14.4V if the issue would be resolved.
https://www.escapeforum.org/forums/f...tml#post278553

For what it's worth we have had two MaxxFan's and have not had any issues with the boards. No solar (yet). In our case the highest voltage the MaxxFan would see is 14.4V from our Progressive Dynamics PD4655LMBA replacement main board but the stock WFCO converter/charger is the same at 14.4V.
No, we don't have solar. The power supply entering the PCB is 13.24VDC.
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Old 02-26-2021, 12:34 AM   #10
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Thanks everyone for your thoughts. Airxcel will send us a new PCB and motor. Let's see...
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Old 02-26-2021, 07:58 AM   #11
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If mine fails, I'll be doing what SlimPotatoHead did in his ALiner
While I would never give up the convenience and flexibility the MaxxFan offers, I did just this with a two speed computer fan in my daughter's Trillium 1300. It was only a 9" vent hood, so a MaxxFan would have been a major project. Works good, and I used a 3-way switch set to low/off/high.
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Old 02-26-2021, 04:40 PM   #12
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Hi: JohnP... I can't believe the number of folks having trouble with their MaxxFan's. The only time ours failed to go was when we accidentally turned it on... on thermostat function. Put my finger on the wrong button. Alf escape artist N.S. of Lake Erie
Same thing happened recently; and it would not turn off until I pulled fuse then nothing. Have a new PCB ordered from Adventure RV.net for $45 delivered(that is if they really have it in stock). Ours is the manual lift and Airxcell was backordered on them and they don't seem widely available out there anywhere.
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Old 03-03-2021, 12:35 PM   #13
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The problem with the Maxxfan circuit board corrosion is real and it is very wise to apply the conformal coating. Whether or not you have the problem depends on the conditions you camp in. Since the lid is uninsulated, condensation will form on the underside particularily on a cold night and drip down onto the circuit board. My experience involving telephone conversations with the company on this issue was not a positive. They were very rude and arrogant. As long as the balance sheets are working out for them they don't care about the problem.
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Old 03-03-2021, 03:25 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by dstreight View Post
I have not experienced any issue whatsoever with the MaxxFan that came with our 2014 15A. However, I have experienced short-out/electrical issues with the brand new MaxxFans (yes, plural ) I have purchased to replace the A/C unit I removed from the 15A's roof.

I still haven't hit pay dirt but it got cold a few months ago and I gave up for winter.
This is a shot in the dark, but the positive on a MaxxFan is the BLACK wire. Make sure you hook it up with black + and white -. Totally whack in my opinion. I made that mistake myself because of years of treating black as negative in 12VDC applications. Then I read the installation manual

Wiring it reversed did not damage anything, but it did blow my fuses. I went through 2 of them before figuring it out.
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Old 03-03-2021, 05:02 PM   #15
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A friend with a 21 burned out his Maxxfan PCB last year. Ultimately it appears that the problem was caused by a "boost" switch on his solar charger creating 15VDC, and the Maxxfan not being capable of handling that voltage (confirmed by factory). My recommendation to him was to stop using the boost switch, at least when the DC circuits are live. It is not just the fan that can be damaged over time: almost nothing using 12VDC is designed for 15V. More recent buck/boost regulators for LEDs can handle it, but the cheap light fixtures in the Escapes don't use (or at least didn't use) regulators and the LEDs will have a much shorter service life as a result (an issue that has been discussed in other threads). This issue is likely to affect other 12VDC devices as well.

A little background: in the past automobiles exclusively used flooded lead acid batteries, which typically operate in the 12.0-12.5V range, and were charged by constant 13.3-13.4V alternator output. Then (40 years ago) the cruising sailboat market adopted multi-stage charging for minimizing engine run time, and the absorption stage typically operated at about 14.2-14.5V (depending on battery type). It caused havoc for a few years: LEDs burned out, incandescents burned brighter (and shorter), and various circuits had issues. For flooded batteries there was also occasional equalization charging above 15V, which had to be done offline to avoid damage. Now it is rare for true marine equipment to have voltage issues, although some inferior RV parts do find their way into chandleries. No doubt it is part of the reason marine electronics are more expensive. The point is that we have been here before, and the long-term fix is for manufacturers to design for a wider voltage range. Short term it is wise to review the power supply specs for any 12VDC devices, keeping them in spec by not creating high voltages if necessary. Consider replacing those with too low a maximum voltage with devices that are spec'ed to 15V (perhaps shop at marine outlets). And if all else fails consider using DC-DC converters for providing the correct voltage to the devices.

In this case where condensation is the problem conformal coating is a good solution. However the root cause is condensation, and that should be dealt with using ventilation and heat to remove the moisture (why you have that fan in the first place). When not using the trailer a quality dehumidifier should be used in humid climates. In the boating world a lot of noobs close up the boats to keep the heat inside, causing condensation to literally rain down from the overhead hatches. The solution is to ventilate more, which will also necessitate more heat in cold weather. Getting the moisture out will also be effective against mildew.
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Old 03-04-2021, 01:06 AM   #16
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Not sure how you could eliminate condensation in cold weather boondocking other than to run the Maxxfan continuously. That would suck all the heat out of the trailer.
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Old 03-04-2021, 08:28 AM   #17
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It just occurred to me that running Maxxfans in cold weather to eliminate condensation may be the root cause of global warming. Escape noobs are apparently plugging into shore power so they can run their Maxxfabs continuously while attempting to heat the atmosphere?
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Old 03-04-2021, 02:24 PM   #18
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Here's a link for spray-on dialectric coating at a reasonable price:
https://smile.amazon.com/gp/product/...?ie=UTF8&psc=1
I plan to coat the MaxxFan board in the next few days (we pick up the 21C tomorrow). Cheap and easy insurance from possible problems.
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Old 03-04-2021, 02:32 PM   #19
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Instructions for coating

I don't have the link, but a fellow on this forum posted directions and photos of the process to conformal coat. I followed them this past Fall and they were of benefit. Search around...the info is here, somewhere. I believe his tag name was Pete something.


The hints and process of disassembly/reassembly were of most benefit.
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Old 03-04-2021, 02:47 PM   #20
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I don't have the link, but a fellow on this forum posted directions and photos of the process to conformal coat. I followed them this past Fall and they were of benefit. Search around...the info is here, somewhere. I believe his tag name was Pete something.

The hints and process of disassembly/reassembly were of most benefit.
Here you go...
https://www.escapeforum.org/forums/f...tml#post365450
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