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Repair remote controls

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iceblue

Member
Whats the solution to repairing faulty remote controls (for tv's, vcr's, etc)? It seems after a few years of use the most frequently pressed buttons don't seem to function too well and need to be pressed really hard to get them to work. Is there a fix for this?
 

iceblue

Member
I tried cleaning a few different ones a few years back but had no luck. Will try again though. Have some new ones giving me problems. Do the conductive rubbers have a special name? Haven't seem them yet.
 

rmn_tech

Member
I find that simply rubbing over the pads on the rubber with a soft graphite pencil returns the remote to full use. It simply replaces the conductive surface of the pads.
 

shokjok

Member
Don't forget to clean the membrane below the switches, and keep minute foreign matter away from the keypads to avoid future concerns.
 

bountyhunter

Well-Known Member
Whats the solution to repairing faulty remote controls (for tv's, vcr's, etc)? It seems after a few years of use the most frequently pressed buttons don't seem to function too well and need to be pressed really hard to get them to work. Is there a fix for this?
If you open it up, you will find a little slime layer on the PCB under the buttons you use most. It will also be on the little carbon "buttons" glued to the rubber on the inside.

Use a Q tip dipped in pure acetone to clean this junk off everywhere it is.

The buttons will work like new again.
 

vedo35

Member
years ago i had same problem. You cant do anything with this rubber key pad. There are carbon pens,inks, cleaners or so... But when u use this materials problem comes back in some days or weeks. So you have two best solve or you will buy new one or universal r.c or you will search from flea markets or cheap another device that have same keypad r.c you will cut with scissors (must be min. 2 key or more) and chance that part(s) and use. for strange shape keys u dont have any choice. you must buy new r.c success
 

iceblue

Member
Thanks I'm going to try cleaning it first, as soon as I get a chance. If that doesn't work then I will try some of the other suggestions. The remote I'm having problems with at the moment is an RF remote for a ceiling fan and they're not that easy to find so I'd prefer to get this one working.

Thanks for all the suggestions.
 

onetech

New Member
The best solution I have found is at your local auto parts store. Buy a small bottle of solution for repairing the window defrosting traces on the glass in your car. This is very conductive and holds up very well.
 

morseindustries

New Member
cleaner

the residue off your fingers causes this oily film. use metho or pcb cleaner to clean the board and a clean cotton cloth wash the buttons in a soapy dish washing solution , rinse and dry. clean the Infared diode too.
 

electro900k

New Member
Maybe not the best idea, but I've always put a tiny drop of superglue on the non-functioning button's pad, and then glued a tiny piece of tin foil on top of it. Works perfectly if you do it right.
 

gaspode42

Member
olly_k

This may not be exactly what you had in mind but have a look here
 

olly_k

Member
olly_k

This may not be exactly what you had in mind but have a look here

Thanks, but not sure it will last long tbh. CPC used to have purpose made paint for this but stopped selling last time I looked.

I find the best option is to carefully slice a thin layer from an old disused pad and stick to pad to be repaired but it does reduce travel.
 

#1supertech

New Member
Using pure Acetone is not a good idea, as sometimes it will partially dissolve the wrong carbon tracings or else harm the impregnated carbon rubber push buttons, and ruin the remote. What I found to work the best is pure Iso-prop alcohol using a swab or camel hair brush and then moderate air pressure to blow dry all remaining alcohol and any residuals off both surfaces. The cheaper remotes usually require more frequent cleaning as well. Better made remotes seldom have this problem! Keeping food and drinks away from them as well helps!

Happy clicking!

Frank
 

olly_k

Member
Using pure Acetone is not a good idea, as sometimes it will partially dissolve the wrong carbon tracings or else harm the impregnated carbon rubber push buttons, and ruin the remote. What I found to work the best is pure Iso-prop alcohol using a swab or camel hair brush and then moderate air pressure to blow dry all remaining alcohol and any residuals off both surfaces. The cheaper remotes usually require more frequent cleaning as well. Better made remotes seldom have this problem! Keeping food and drinks away from them as well helps!

Happy clicking!

Frank

I actually have a SOny RM3000 which was far from cheap, but perhaps the worst offending remote I have ever come across! After 2 months buttons stop working and when opened there is a sticky residue on the board! I also have a Beolink 1000 nearly 20 years old that works like new :)
 
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#1supertech

New Member
OLLY_K,

Why do you think I've boycotted all Sony products well over 11+ years ago?

Repeating FYI here - Sony ripped me off 11+ years ago big time on a "bait & switch" bogus rebate, and for that very reason they have been banned forever from our whole household - as well as from all our friends and family relatives as well. Their loss not mine!

Hate to tell you this, but just because it has the name Sony on it - doesn't mean diddlysquat!

I learned a long time ago that just because it's a Sony doesn't mean it's the best anything - much like that of their now long ago gone commercials of yesteryear that used to state otherwise - saying "it's a Sony" - unquote!

Sony doesn't make that great of a TV set to begin with - much less any of their other electronics as well - sorry - but it's true. Just because it had the name Trinitron attached to it didn't mean diddly as well. All their so-called "Proprietary parts crap" as well.

Sony TV circuits aren't the best engineered designs - that is a given for sure! I've worked on a few of their TV sets in the past and the HV deflection section is the worst design I've ever seen to date!

Overall - I've just seen too many of their products fail way before their time was due. This coming from stupid friends of mine that HAD TO HAVE that name Sony for whatever weird reason! They're learning though - finally!

The ridiculous prices people/you pay just for their so-called "name" - and nothing else I might add - just isn't worth it in my mind. That and the fact that they are just one big "service dept" rip off to begin with! Esp when walking something in for repair to one of their so-called factory repair centers - is a joke to begin with. The prices they want to charge you just to "put their magical little hands" on your broken item "and only look at it" is totally absurd to start with.

I'll take my Sharp TV's & home DVD movie players over anything Sony any day. One of my older and bigger Sharp CRT type models is going strong as ever being well over 18 years old, and it still plays as GREAT as day 1 even with the new digital converter box hooked up! That digital converter box even makes the pix look a bit "sharper" as well.

I still like the older CRT type TV technology, as it was built MUCH BETTER then the electronic junk of today. I've always owned and still have all Sharp CRT type TV sets in my house including a newer but still a CRT type 27" TV - as well as with my Sharp home DVD players, and they are all rock solid!

In a way I hate the newer TV technology - as to it's much shorter run time verses $$$ investment initially made - or shelled out as it were. Not to mention the added ENERGY WASTE factored in with your now increased Electric Bill and all.

Recently I heard where the Fed government has even imposed stricter ENERGY STAR standards as to the ENERGY WASTE factor being made by all these newer so-called "digital marvels" - as related to all their excessive energy hungry wasted power!! We'll just see how all this latest ENERGY fiasco plays out with the Mfr's!

I forgot to mention this before in my prior QUICKIE post, but I really think there are 2 main reasons for some of that OILY type residue found on the inside of some remote control FLEX pads. I actually think it's from the poorly made "leached out" petroleum based materials that the "Made in China" mfr will use to start with. All brand names aside here, as that part is just a "pig in a poke" chance to begin with.

That and then the possibility that the FLEX pad surface push buttons are way too micro-porous in nature to begin with as well - thus taking in way too much human body oils that are found on our hands, which in turn are constantly in touch contact with the remote control to begin with. Thus only aiding in more "leaching effect" from the underside of the FLEX pad push buttons.

Each push button (or mini momentary ON/OFF contact switch as it were) - having a small carbon impregnated contact pad on the underside - will then get contaminated from the OILY "leaching effect", and in turn will transfer that OILY residue to the PCB carbon contact pads as well.

Because OIL acts as a good electrical insulator - PCB circuit current is then greatly impeded as well, and thus no signal tends to get sent as it were.

It then sets up a very high (dirty) resistance point at those "make and break" carbon contact "make and break" mini switch points, and thus in turn it inhibits the preprogrammed "code" change in the IR Freq Signal to be sent to the TV or whatever related remote controlled device(s) you happen to be using at the time.

Thus continuing the vicious cycle of contamination, and in turn makes the remote control harder and harder to get to work. Reason why you have to PRESS SO HARD on the FLEX pad buttons. Sometimes you actually break the cheaply made PCB in the process and then nothing works anymore! As in a completely DEAD remote control in which all the cleaning in the world won't help it anymore

That leached out petroleum base residual from the FLEX pad is btw found on both sides of the FLEX contact pad assy (in some cases), and that would also explain why that messy OILY residual is found on the circuit board surface as well. Once that oily mess contacts the carbon tracing points on the PCB that starts the cycle all over again.

First time it happened to me with a cheaply made ZENITH Universal brand remote (followed by 2 more of the same btw) I actually thought it was the AAA rechargeable Ni-CD batts I was using that drained down, but that wasn't it at all so I found out with a batt swap out. Oh well - live and learn as it were!

Seeings I got those 3 cheaply made $7 Zenith brand RC's FREE after a rebate, and after going through all 3 in less then 3-4 years time - I really can't complain at all other then it was a bit frustrating having to take them apart every 4-5 months just to clean off all that PCB crude that built up inside.

The new PHILIPS brand 4th one - that I also got FREE on rebate - actually turned out to be a charm - as they simply redesigned them, gave the old Zenith's a new name, and actually made them a bit bigger in size with a better FLEX pad button design - as well as a glow in the dark feature for the main function buttons.

The only weak point with it is the "stenciled on" number buttons in that the cheap white printed on numbers/lettering is starting to wear off a bit. I don't have to use it much anyway, as now I have the digital converter box RCA brand RC's and they work just great!! The IR opto device design inside (signal sender) isn't the greatest design - as it's somewhat "line of sight" critical (weak), and doesn't have the same flexibility of the original Sharp RC's and the newer Philips RC as well. Oh well….

"Cheap is as cheap is made" I always say!

Some generic or Universal remote controls actually work way better then the OEM units that come with the TV set or whatever device it may be. The weakest part about some of the OEM remote controls are those poorly made and often times stupid batt access pop out covers that always seem to break when least expected. I've had to Velcro many a cover back on to keep the batts from falling out. Annoying as hell, and the Mfr won't send you out a silly little part like that either! Go figure huh?

Happy clicking out there!

Frank
 

bountyhunter

Well-Known Member
Sony doesn't make that great of a TV set to begin with - much less any of their other electronics as well - sorry - but it's true. Just because it had the name Trinitron attached to it didn't mean diddly as well.
Well, I am currently watching a 32" trinitron I bought back in '96 and it still has the most perfect color picture I have ever seen (even better than many new TVs today), despite the fact I have used it an average of at least six hours a day over it's life. The perfect picture was a big deal because I used to service color TVs, and any color errors like convergence or purity really annoy me even though most people wouldn't notice them. This TV is the only one I have seen with near perfect convergence/purity all the way to the edges and corners so the picture-in-picture box in the corner is as sharp as the center of the screen. It also has a total of four video/audio inputs for accessories and every one has its own full set of control adjustments on color/brightness/contrast, etc so each VCR or video player looks perfectly adjusted. Again, a particular annoyance for me because I tuned color pictures and I like it when they are set just right. No other way to do that with three external units playing through one set.

I also have a top end (3 head, 3 motor) Sony cassette deck from mid 90's that has studio sound quality and a mini-disc recorder which has superb sound. Obviously, CDs have replaced cassettes and MDs, but they were tops in their day.

I have not had any problems with Sony performance. Toshiba is another story.
 
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