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Epic53

Is overheating bad for the internals?

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Posted (edited)

I have the INMOTION V10f. I did the exact same test @eddiemoy did, overheating the unicycle by idling (rocking back and forth in my living room):lol:. It took me 18 mins to reach 64C or 147F. I heard the fan "screaming" pretty loud in the end, and I thought if this was actually bad for the actual internal components? I know the V10f like any unicycles do prompt you to get off for safety reasons, but do high temperatures like these have any effects long term? Thanks

BB4B6253-974D-4E0C-885D-1BD1D7542CA7.png

Edited by Epic53

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I’d think 67•C is not a nasty temperature at all regarding electronic components. IPS Lhotz runs a lot hotter even from very light riding. I would worry a lot more about the high current spikes from changing direction rapidly. I wouldn’t idle back and forth rapidly on any self balancing vehicle.

Although, my electronics knowledge is more at the rudimentary level.

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Thanks for the reply! @mrelwoodAt the end of the 18 mins it showed a max of 600 W used. My EUC can do over 2000 W. So I managed to overheat it, not because of drawing too much power. It just overheat physically from rolling back and forth, and told me to get off. Hopefully this wasn’t a mistake by pushing the limits. 🤙

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Posted (edited)

In my understanding the current reading for all EUC apps is too infrequent and inprecise to show what the actual, extremely fast peak currents were. I wouldn’t do it again before reading up on the subject. ”Current when idling” or ”is idling safe” might find some.

Nothing bad has yet happened to your wheel, but the worst case scenario is a MosFet burning while you do rapid back-and-forths.

Edited by mrelwood

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On 3/9/2019 at 10:22 PM, Epic53 said:

I have the INMOTION V10f. I did the exact same test @eddiemoy did, overheating the unicycle by idling (rocking back and forth in my living room):lol:. It took me 18 mins to reach 64C or 147F. I heard the fan "screaming" pretty loud in the end, and I thought if this was actually bad for the actual internal components? I know the V10f like any unicycles do prompt you to get off for safety reasons, but do high temperatures like these have any effects long term? Thanks

BB4B6253-974D-4E0C-885D-1BD1D7542CA7.png

Good workout.  Lol  don’t worry, you won’t burn out the unit.  Inmotion firmware is on the safe side.  They were measuring temp on the chip if I remember correctly and that heats up way quicker than all the other brands who measure the temp on the board.  

 

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Posted (edited)
On 3/10/2019 at 5:22 AM, Epic53 said:

I have the INMOTION V10f. I did the exact same test @eddiemoy did, overheating the unicycle by idling (rocking back and forth in my living room):lol:. It took me 18 mins to reach 64C or 147F. I heard the fan "screaming" pretty loud in the end, and I thought if this was actually bad for the actual internal components? I know the V10f like any unicycles do prompt you to get off for safety reasons, but do high temperatures like these have any effects long term? Thanks

Hardly my area of expertise, but based on what I (think I) know, likely this will have very little, if any, effect on the lifetime of the electronic components.

Consider this: when your mainboard was made, it went through a reflow oven to solder in the surface mount parts. A typical reflow "profile" might look something like this:

typical-pb-free-solder-reflow-profile.pn

During the preheat and soaking, the components are exposed to a temperature somewhere between 175 and 200C (roughly between 350 and 400F) to get the flux "activated" for a couple of minutes. Then the temperature is ramped up to around 260C (500F) for a short period to melt the solder and cooled back down. The limits (like 3C per second max) are there to prevent fast surface tension changes and such that could either cause the components to "pop" off the board or break the component packages. The profile above shows the maximum temperature (260C) for 20-40 seconds, in total the temperature might be above 217C (the melting point of "typical" lead-free solder) for 1-2.5 minutes.

Of course they aren't powered during the soldering, and the components are brand new at that point. For example, if the "core" of a mosfet hits around 175C while powered, it will self-destruct (possibly spectacularly, ie. blowing through the package leaving a molten hole on the side)...

Some devices also go through "aging" or "break-in/burn-in" periods at the factory where they're exposed to more than normal stress to find out faulty pieces early.

Through-hole parts maybe soldered in by hand or with wave-soldering, where the board is taken through a "fountain" of molten solder flowing over it. Wires are likely soldered by hand.

Even electronic components do wear out over time, and high temperature wears them out faster. However, for most components were talking so long times that it hardly is an issue over the product lifetime. In "normal" wear, usually the first things to give up are electrolytic capacitors (the big "cylinders" in the mainboard), because they contain liquid electrolyte. Over time, the electrolyte can slowly dry out, or the casing breaks and the electrolyte leaks out. We're still talking long time in normal conditions, but again higher temperatures cause this to happen earlier. Good quality caps should still work for decades. Your batteries will degrade far sooner below the point of being actually useful.

Due to the nature of the wheels, it's more likely that your wheel gets destroyed in a single, fast incident (high voltage/current spike) rather than by wearing it out. And even more likely that it's going to happen in a crash of some sort, unfortunately ;) In general, I wouldn't be too worried about the temperatures, of course you can destroy your wheel by overheating it, but it's not likely to happen during "normal" riding. Still, if you keep going back and forth like in your test, or climbing long mountain roads, and won't stop (and the firmware doesn't stop you), yes, you can overheat the components and destroy the board. If the temperature went high, but the board survived it, yes, you likely "aged" it faster, but in the big picture, other issues (like a crash destroying the wheel, battery degrade or switching to another model and selling the old wheel) are likely going to be the reason you stop using the wheel, rather than the components breaking through normal use and intermittent heating.

In the early days (for me, that's circa 2015-2016, first Solowheels and such came out even years before that), people were blowing up their boards by stressing them a lot (usually climbing), where either the mosfets or sometimes the wiring might melt. Sometimes it was enough to accelerate really rapidly or hop down or up a curb, hitting a pothole etc. Nowadays it seems that what usually destroys the wheel is a crash, as the components used and design have improved (bigger mosfet packages, better cooling, better connectors etc.).

My two desktop computers at home are both from somewhere around 2010. Both of them have seen a lot of use, although I "switched" to using the other one maybe 3 years ago. They both run hot (almost a decade old 3.2GHz 8-core Xeons )and the other one once had temperature problems (turned out to be a heatsink clogged with dust, the CPU was running at close to 70C at idle, hitting 100C during loading and went into thermal shutdown), yet they still run fine. Most likely one day the mainboard electrolytics will give in and I have to get a new one...

Edited by esaj
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Posted (edited)
On 3/10/2019 at 3:52 PM, Epic53 said:

 

Sorry, post deleted...

Edited by pico
corr

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