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Old 06-11-2020, 11:47 AM   #1
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Maxxfan Failure

Just returned from our second trip in the 21. The Maxxfan was used a few times on the first trip and functioned normally.

This trip, being a little on the cool and rainy side. the fan wasn't used. One day when I stepped into the trailer I heard what sounded like a smoke detector with a low battery warning just chirping away. I reached up and undid the smoke detector and then realized the chirping wasn't coming from my hands, it was coming from the Maxxfan.

I turned the fan on, hoping that turning it on and then off would silence the chirp. It didn't and the on switch became unresponsive and I had to pull the fuse to stop it. Later I put the fuse back in and all was well for awhile and then the chirping started again. Since pulling fuse also turns off some lights I removed the cover and disconnected the power wire.

I googled "Maxxfan chirping" and I can see that I'm not the first person to have this problem.

Dustin at ETI says to contact Airxcel. I've tried. After selecting "warranty" you don't even get voice mail letting you leave a message. It just rings and rings. Tried several times and put it on speaker phone until I was ready to scream listening to it just ring and ring.

I liked it better in the old days when ETI had their "bumper to bumper" warranty. Don't know what the solution will be but I'm not happy being a Canadian buying a Canadian made trailer and having to get service and parts from a US company.

Don't know how this will be resolved but I'm not happy with the process so far.

Ron
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Old 06-11-2020, 12:04 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ron in BC View Post
Just returned from our second trip in the 21. The Maxxfan was used a few times on the first trip and functioned normally.

This trip, being a little on the cool and rainy side. the fan wasn't used. One day when I stepped into the trailer I heard what sounded like a smoke detector with a low battery warning just chirping away. I reached up and undid the smoke detector and then realized the chirping wasn't coming from my hands, it was coming from the Maxxfan.

I turned the fan on, hoping that turning it on and then off would silence the chirp. It didn't and the on switch became unresponsive and I had to pull the fuse to stop it. Later I put the fuse back in and all was well for awhile and then the chirping started again. Since pulling fuse also turns off some lights I removed the cover and disconnected the power wire.

I googled "Maxxfan chirping" and I can see that I'm not the first person to have this problem.

Dustin at ETI says to contact Airxcel. I've tried. After selecting "warranty" you don't even get voice mail letting you leave a message. It just rings and rings. Tried several times and put it on speaker phone until I was ready to scream listening to it just ring and ring.

I liked it better in the old days when ETI had their "bumper to bumper" warranty. Don't know what the solution will be but I'm not happy being a Canadian buying a Canadian made trailer and having to get service and parts from a US company.

Don't know how this will be resolved but I'm not happy with the process so far.

Ron
Sorry to hear that you have joined the Maxxfan failure club.

The bad news is that the replacement control board from Maxxfan is not going to completely cure the problem either. The version 3.9 control boards are better than the one that failed in your Maxxfan but not by much.

I started a thread on the Maxxfan 7000K series for control board failures -
https://www.escapeforum.org/forums/f...tor-14667.html
but have found that all the Maxxfans have the control board voltage problem - not just the remote control ones. None of the Maxxfan control boards like normal RV voltages and will die sooner or later due to this issue.

The only way to get them to live longer lives is to add a voltage regulator that limits the supplied voltage to 12v.
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Old 06-11-2020, 12:19 PM   #3
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I've followed that thread but I think that there's also a second reason for circuit board failure; condensation related short circuiting. That's been blamed for other cases of "chirping" problems.

At any rate I have the good fortune to have a brilliant bro-inlaw electrical engineer whose asked me to send him a photo of the board so he can advise me how to determine what's failed.

I'll no doubt install a voltage regulator at the same time that I do whatever I end up doing.

I noticed when I googled the chirping problem that there were several comments about poor Airxcel customer service. Now I see why.

Ron
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Old 06-11-2020, 01:27 PM   #4
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I'm not looking forward to this experience in the future. Do you have the deluxe model with remote and smoke lens or the standard model?
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Old 06-11-2020, 01:40 PM   #5
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Ron,
I just emailed Airxcel support because I got the new SDS2 stove for a stupid price on eBay. It is brand new, but had no manuals. Airxcel responded in 24 hrs with the manuals. Emailing is probably the route to take with them.
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Old 06-11-2020, 03:03 PM   #6
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Chirping Solution

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ron in BC View Post
I've followed that thread but I think that there's also a second reason for circuit board failure; condensation related short circuiting. That's been blamed for other cases of "chirping" problems.

At any rate I have the good fortune to have a brilliant bro-inlaw electrical engineer whose asked me to send him a photo of the board so he can advise me how to determine what's failed.

I'll no doubt install a voltage regulator at the same time that I do whatever I end up doing.

I noticed when I googled the chirping problem that there were several comments about poor Airxcel customer service. Now I see why.

Ron
Hi Ron,

i may have a solution to your chirping problem. My fan also began to chirp when we were in Paducah, KY on our way back to WA from the east coast. While we were across the street from our little campground at a Mexican restaurant, a nasty thunderstorm came through suddenly. We waited it out an upon return noticed that the strong winds that came from the rear had blown rainwater in the MaxxiFan vent. It wasn't much and quickly wiped up. But later in the middle of the night the chirping started. So it was clearly the circuit board getting wet. I removed the bezel on the underside of the fan and disconnected the positive lead. WE let it dry out a few days, reconnected everything and all was good until we had very cold weather in Wyoming. Again the chirping started. Rinse & repeat.

After we got home, Johnny Hung posted a step-by-step solution on the Escape FB page. https://www.facebook.com/groups/9139...2383343214593/
(Jim Bennet or I can add you as a member of the group if you are not already.)

The solution involves removing the circuit board enough to have both sides clear. Then drying it out by lightly using a blow dryer on low heat to ensure no moisture is present. The spray coating it with "CRC Seal Coat Clear Urethane Coating" which is a non-conductive polyurethane film. After treatment we took a 3500 mile trip to AZ and back and had no chirping on that trip. It appears to have solved the problem.
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Old 06-11-2020, 05:13 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cpaharley2008 View Post
I'm not looking forward to this experience in the future. Do you have the deluxe model with remote and smoke lens or the standard model?
"Deluxe" is the model but no smoked cover or remote.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Greg A View Post
Ron,
I just emailed Airxcel support because I got the new SDS2 stove for a stupid price on eBay. It is brand new, but had no manuals. Airxcel responded in 24 hrs with the manuals. Emailing is probably the route to take with them.
Thanks Greg, done, asked for a new circuit board.

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Originally Posted by arniesea View Post
Hi Ron,

i may have a solution to your chirping problem. My fan also began to chirp when we were in Paducah, KY on our way back to WA from the east coast. While we were across the street from our little campground at a Mexican restaurant, a nasty thunderstorm came through suddenly. We waited it out an upon return noticed that the strong winds that came from the rear had blown rainwater in the MaxxiFan vent. It wasn't much and quickly wiped up. But later in the middle of the night the chirping started. So it was clearly the circuit board getting wet. I removed the bezel on the underside of the fan and disconnected the positive lead. WE let it dry out a few days, reconnected everything and all was good until we had very cold weather in Wyoming. Again the chirping started. Rinse & repeat.

After we got home, Johnny Hung posted a step-by-step solution on the Escape FB page. https://www.facebook.com/groups/9139...2383343214593/
(Jim Bennet or I can add you as a member of the group if you are not already.)

The solution involves removing the circuit board enough to have both sides clear. Then drying it out by lightly using a blow dryer on low heat to ensure no moisture is present. The spray coating it with "CRC Seal Coat Clear Urethane Coating" which is a non-conductive polyurethane film. After treatment we took a 3500 mile trip to AZ and back and had no chirping on that trip. It appears to have solved the problem.
That's encouraging. I suspect that condensation is the culprit although my previous one in the 19 went 5 years in a variety of climates without any issues.

The primary reason I contacted my bro-inlaw was to ask if there was a waterproofing coating that I could use on a new circuit board, if and when I get one. So, yes, there's some higher level stuff that can be used or the type you mention.

So I've nothing to loose, I'll follow the same drying and coating process and leave it on and see what happens.

Ron
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Old 06-11-2020, 07:02 PM   #8
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I've dried the circuit board. I thought having a late model one it might have escaped having the problems previous ones had. But now I'm not so sure.

I interpret the numbers and dates that I see as the board being manufactured in 2018-7-18 and then used in 04-2019 to make the finished board. So does that put it in the group that had problems?

Ron
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Old 06-11-2020, 07:04 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ron in BC View Post
I've followed that thread but I think that there's also a second reason for circuit board failure; condensation related short circuiting. That's been blamed for other cases of "chirping" problems.

At any rate I have the good fortune to have a brilliant bro-inlaw electrical engineer whose asked me to send him a photo of the board so he can advise me how to determine what's failed.

I'll no doubt install a voltage regulator at the same time that I do whatever I end up doing.

I noticed when I googled the chirping problem that there were several comments about poor Airxcel customer service. Now I see why.

Ron
I've had the condensation problem as well. I conformal coated the board but still had some condensation problems happening.
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...?ie=UTF8&psc=1

So, on an occasion that some condensation had collected on the cover, I pulled the fan housing down and found water dripping out of the hole that the fan motor leads come through directly on the control board. A little Proflex sealant in the hole stopped that and the condensation failures quit.

In hindsight, it was probably the combination of sealing the board with conformal coating and sealing the hole that was dripping water on top of the board the solved the problem. If I had it to do over, I would still do both.
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Old 06-11-2020, 07:24 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ron in BC View Post
I've dried the circuit board. I thought having a late model one it might have escaped having the problems previous ones had. But now I'm not so sure.

I interpret the numbers and dates that I see as the board being manufactured in 2018-7-18 and then used in 04-2019 to make the finished board. So does that put it in the group that had problems?

Ron
The 10A21276K is the older board. It has been replaced with 10B21276K V3.9.

The one you have according to Airxcel doesn't like voltages above 13.6 volts. The V3.9 has been upgraded and can now tolerate up to 14.4 volts. Still not great if you have solar.

https://www.adventurerv.net/printed-...t-p-41753.html
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Old 06-11-2020, 07:31 PM   #11
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All good information gentlemen............
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Old 06-11-2020, 07:35 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by tdf-texas View Post

So, on an occasion that some condensation had collected on the cover, I pulled the fan housing down and found water dripping out of the hole that the fan motor leads come through directly on the control board. A little Proflex sealant in the hole stopped that and the condensation failures quit.
Ah! Good info. Thanks!
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Old 06-11-2020, 10:09 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by tdf-texas View Post
The 10A21276K is the older board. It has been replaced with 10B21276K V3.9.

The one you have according to Airxcel doesn't like voltages above 13.6 volts. The V3.9 has been upgraded and can now tolerate up to 14.4 volts. Still not great if you have solar.

https://www.adventurerv.net/printed-...t-p-41753.html
OK, thanks for that. I was hoping that a trailer manufactured in Aug. 2019 would have the newer style board.

Since it's still on warranty I'm hoping that they will give me an updated version.

Ron
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Old 06-12-2020, 10:27 AM   #14
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I’m wondering if anyone knows about what percentage of these things fail. I have a 2018 19’. How worried should I be?? I am totally not savvy with electrical stuff and would have no idea how to fix it, replace the control board, etc. Would keeping the vent closed when not in use stave off any problems??
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Old 06-12-2020, 10:52 AM   #15
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Iím wondering if anyone knows about what percentage of these things fail. I have a 2018 19í. How worried should I be?? I am totally not savvy with electrical stuff and would have no idea how to fix it, replace the control board, etc. Would keeping the vent closed when not in use stave off any problems??
It depends on what model Maxxfan you have.

If you have the remote control model, the failure rate due to voltages above 13.6v is fairly high. Of the people I know, all of their remote control fans failed around the first two years or less.

If you have the manual model, about half of the people I know have had them fail but usually due to condensation getting on the board than high voltage.

The point I was trying to make in the earlier post was - you should get the free replacement V3.9 version if within the warranty period and then seal it with a conformal coating plus seal the hole above the board while you have the fan apart. It's called preventative maintenance - do the fixes before it fails rather than after.
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Old 06-12-2020, 11:08 AM   #16
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Thanks for the info!! I don’t have the remote control version so hopefully it will be OK. 50% odds aren’t too bad I guess. So far it’s worked perfectly, the trailer will be 2 years old in August. Fingers crossed!
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Old 06-12-2020, 11:36 AM   #17
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Originally Posted by salmo7000 View Post
Iím wondering if anyone knows about what percentage of these things fail. I have a 2018 19í. How worried should I be?? I am totally not savvy with electrical stuff and would have no idea how to fix it, replace the control board, etc. Would keeping the vent closed when not in use stave off any problems??
OTH my previous 19 went 5 years without any problem and in numerous conversations with a lot of folks about Escape items in general, no one ever mentioned the chirping problem.

No, keeping the vent closed is unlikely to prevent the problem. Ours was never opened this trip.


Quote:
Originally Posted by tdf-texas View Post

The point I was trying to make in the earlier post was - you should get the free replacement V3.9 version if within the warranty period and then seal it with a conformal coating plus seal the hole above the board while you have the fan apart. It's called preventative maintenance - do the fixes before it fails rather than after.
Couldn't agree more. There's going to be condensation in that area. There's only a thin layer of plastic between the outside cold air and the warm humid air inside. The circuit board should be able to withstand this situation.

First response from Airxcel is to ask me to test the input voltage.

Ron
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Old 06-12-2020, 01:37 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tdf-texas View Post
It depends on what model Maxxfan you have.

If you have the remote control model, the failure rate due to voltages above 13.6v is fairly high. Of the people I know, all of their remote control fans failed around the first two years or less.

If you have the manual model, about half of the people I know have had them fail but usually due to condensation getting on the board than high voltage.

The point I was trying to make in the earlier post was - you should get the free replacement V3.9 version if within the warranty period and then seal it with a conformal coating plus seal the hole above the board while you have the fan apart. It's called preventative maintenance - do the fixes before it fails rather than after.
Is the solar causing the problems with it bulk mode or is it the converter when it does it's monthly equalization causing the voltage spikes? I unfortunately have the deluxe model and had it installed with a "no escape warranty" clause due to these issues. So if it goes I'll have to purchase v3.9 board myself.
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Old 06-12-2020, 01:50 PM   #19
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I unfortunately have the deluxe model and had it installed with a "no escape warranty" clause due to these issues. So if it goes I'll have to purchase v3.9 board myself.
What the heck is the "no escape warranty" clause?

I received a prompt email response from Airxcel. The first asked me to measure voltages and if I had retried using it after unplugging it. I replied with the info requested and asked for a V3.9 replacement.

The second asked for my shipping info so that's good.

Ron
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Old 06-12-2020, 02:23 PM   #20
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Escape told me the only warranty would be with the manufacturer vs with them for the first 2 years. However I think that is the way it is now for everything. Reace and Tammy would try to help you if they could before sending you to the manufacturer, but not on the deluxe model.
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