Just fixed my remote that I dropped in my coffee

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Just fixed my remote that I dropped in my coffee

Post by bobbo_the_Pragmatist » Sun Jan 24, 2016 10:06 pm

About two hours ago.... balanced my media player remote on my coffee cup and it dropped in for 2 seconds getting wet about 1/3 of its length.

I shook it dry and tried it: didn't work.

Then I used a hair dryer on cold to dry it out: didn't work.

Then I took my knife and separated the unit into two halves (the halves fitting so snugly I never did see any "line" until my knife blade found purchase. There was a "sheen" of moisture on the circuit board. I made it dry with clean toilet paper: still didn't work.

Then I noticed some "smudges" on the circuit board and used the TP to polish them clean. The remote worked once then stopped again.

During this whole process I was concerned that maybe it was "working" but some part just not aligned correctly as I snapped the unit back together. So I made as sure as I could that everything was indeed lined up and properly seated. Still not working.

THEN==I cleaned all surfaces with rubbing alcohol and dried with TP and air under my spot lamp for 20 minutes.

Now---works as before.

What have I learned?---Its difficult to think about violent vs non-violent opposition to power when an irreplaceable remote is ruined by my stupidity. I hope to have learned something... like finding a universal that lists Aver Media c-281 Game Capture. None have so far.

Hey.............. its Sunday.
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Re: Just fixed my remote that I dropped in my coffee

Post by Matthew Ellard » Sun Jan 24, 2016 10:19 pm

bobbo_the_Pragmatist wrote:THEN==I cleaned all surfaces with rubbing alcohol and dried with TP and air under my spot lamp for 20 minutes.
Robert Redford, as a sailor, rinsed his sea water-wet radio with clean fresh water, from a bottle, in "All is lost". Lots of people have told me that is the right thing to do.

Most people on this forum would have spilt a cup of coffee onto their keyboards at least once. Keyboards never seem to get better.

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Re: Just fixed my remote that I dropped in my coffee

Post by bobbo_the_Pragmatist » Sun Jan 24, 2016 10:24 pm

Yes, I would have used plain water but since I have rubbing alcohol that doesn't leave any residue (my water is not harsh but still a bit "hard'), I thought I would give it a try. It may have "drawn" moisture out of the circuit board, more than what was making a sheen?

But since you mention it, too many variables I suppose but I wonder why drying it out didn't fix it? Or, maybe it was and the parts didn't align when snapped back? I tend to think it was still "wet" in some way.... hence the alcohol. Whatever--I don't think green tea would have worked! :-)
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Re: Just fixed my remote that I dropped in my coffee

Post by Matthew Ellard » Sun Jan 24, 2016 10:35 pm

bobbo_the_Pragmatist wrote:Yes, I would have used plain water but since I have rubbing alcohol that doesn't leave any residue (my water is not harsh but still a bit "hard'), I thought I would give it a try. It may have "drawn" moisture out of the circuit board, more than what was making a sheen?
I think rubbing alcohol would be better than pure water.
bobbo_the_Pragmatist wrote:But since you mention it, too many variables I suppose but I wonder why drying it out didn't fix it? Or, maybe it was and the parts didn't align when snapped back? I tend to think it was still "wet" in some way.... hence the alcohol. Whatever--I don't think green tea would have worked! :-)
I don't really know but I assume coffee contains fats and other big molecules, and that this remaining junk, after washing, causes tiny little short circuits.

I work in accounting. When I started offices had "computer rooms" with no food and drinks allowed. Nowadays you can tell what people had for lunch at their desk, by looking at their keyboard. :D

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Re: Just fixed my remote that I dropped in my coffee

Post by bobbo_the_Pragmatist » Sun Jan 24, 2016 11:02 pm

Matthew Ellard wrote:I don't really know but I assume coffee contains fats and other big molecules, and that this remaining junk, after washing, causes tiny little short circuits. [/color]
Most likely....although most of my surprise is actually how "robust" the circuit board looks with plain vision and under a magnifying glass. If it really is something in the coffee/cream/sugar combo I prefer then these remotes are extremely sensitive.

As stated: the board/key pad/covers where completely dry to the touch and vision ... but they didn't work until swiped with the alcohol.... and then dried.... although I think alcohol is non-conductive (google agrees). I recall a cooling system for maximum overclocking a cpu was made by immersing the entire guts into a fish tank of mineral oil. It too being non-conductive.

Fire?
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Re: Just fixed my remote that I dropped in my coffee

Post by Gord » Mon Jan 25, 2016 3:08 am

I would have cleaned it with a hammer.
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Re: Just fixed my remote that I dropped in my coffee

Post by scrmbldggs » Mon Jan 25, 2016 7:13 am

If it had to do with the cream, alcohol as a degreaser might have taken away whatever fat might have clogged the system. (Just don't overuse the remedy. It normally deposits its lipiduous catch on the belly of the nearest victim. :-P)
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Re: Just fixed my remote that I dropped in my coffee

Post by TJrandom » Mon Jan 25, 2016 9:09 am

Why a remote anyway... most devices have the control buttons built in - no remote required. :neener:

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Re: Just fixed my remote that I dropped in my coffee

Post by JO 753 » Mon Jan 25, 2016 10:32 am

Plain tap water iz rubbish! A microscopic layer uv coffee and sugar will not dizolv. The rubber keypadz need to be cleaned also after a dunking, paying special attention to the conductiv rubber padz. But dont rub so hard that you take off the gold plating. its only about 1/1,000,000" thick! Az you discovered, rubbing alkahol works well. Never uze any harsher solvents! They can turn the casing and insulation on the srkit bord to rubble. Are there any wrdz with 'rub' in them that I havent worked into this yet?
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Re: Just fixed my remote that I dropped in my coffee

Post by Poodle » Mon Jan 25, 2016 4:03 pm

At the risk of being obvious, if you're going to clean a circuit board in any way at all, disconnect the battery first. You know - no-brainer, you would think (but you'd be surprised).

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Re: Just fixed my remote that I dropped in my coffee

Post by bobbo_the_Pragmatist » Mon Jan 25, 2016 6:06 pm

Joe--the rub would be if cleaning the circuit board dissolved some other components. You said as much .... just another rub, or two.

TJ--the AmerMedia Player unit has power on, record and pause. But you NEED the remote every week or so to reset the units storage location.... ie, to reset the unit when it freezes.

Poodlie: well, what I'll do in the future is not "try" the remote after it gets wet as I did as I did worry about causing an electrical short of some kind. Next time: admit the situation and clean the unit before trying to use it. Thats another nice thing about the alcohol....it dries fast so I felt good about using it again. For this remote, you have to take the batteries out in order to separate the two halves. Almost a nice feature as otherwise it would be too easy to break the battery terminals when places the circuit board in the unit. ....... I all too often do that on home repairs: break something else while fixing the original problem. HATE IT..... when that happens.
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Re: Just fixed my remote that I dropped in my coffee

Post by Gord » Tue Jan 26, 2016 3:31 am

On second thought, I'd use a rock. No point damaging a perfectly good hammer.
"Knowledge grows through infinite timelessness" -- the random fictional Deepak Chopra quote site
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