Electronics Repair (sci.electronics.repair) Discussion of repairing electronic equipment. Topics include requests for assistance, where to obtain servicing information and parts, techniques for diagnosis and repair, and annecdotes about success, failures and problems.

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OGX OGX is offline
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Default Weather Station

My weather station went down after years of service.

Changed out the THREE rechargeble alkaline batteries and it ran for a
week but now dead again.

Probably the solar panel not recharging the batteries.

Pain to get down.

Need suggestion on finding a replacement solar panel.

I can just stick on the outside of the weather station rather than
tearing into the unit.

Need an all weather (Southern California, no snow or ice) solar panel.

What might the open circuit voltage of the solar panel be ?

Links please.
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Default Weather Station

Model is: Ambient Weather WS-1200-IP

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On Thu, 4 Jul 2019 18:13:50 -0700, OGX wrote:

My weather station went down after years of service.

Changed out the THREE rechargeble alkaline batteries and it ran for a
week but now dead again.

Probably the solar panel not recharging the batteries.

Pain to get down.

Need suggestion on finding a replacement solar panel.

I can just stick on the outside of the weather station rather than
tearing into the unit.

Need an all weather (Southern California, no snow or ice) solar panel.

What might the open circuit voltage of the solar panel be ?

Links please.


I have a weather station that uses three AA rechargeable alkalines.
It stopped working but a reset of the indoor unit fixed it.
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It started working and worked for about a week after just replacing the
batteries. No reset was necessary.

Resetting "Outdoor Reset" does nothing to fix the current situation.

I am pretty sure it is the solar panel.

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On 7/5/19 2:38 PM, OGX wrote:
It started working and worked for about a week after just replacing the
batteries.* No reset was necessary.

Resetting "Outdoor Reset" does nothing to fix the current situation.

I am pretty sure it is the solar panel.


Ya know, you're gonna have to take it down to fix it anyway.
You didn't say if you tried another set of batteries after
they died. Or rather than buy yest another set, since you
have to pull it down one way or the other, put in another set
and see if the weather station works.




--
"I am a river to my people."
Jeff-1.0
WA6FWi
http:foxsmercantile.com


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Default Weather Station


not on for a wild goose chases.

I guess no one here knows much about solar panels or charging 3 AA cells
and what is needed.
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On 7/5/19 5:54 PM, OGX wrote:

not on for a wild goose chases.

I guess no one here knows much about solar panels or charging 3 AA cells
and what is needed.


I guess you just want to waste everyone else's time asking questions
instead of doing anything useful.


--
"I am a river to my people."
Jeff-1.0
WA6FWi
http:foxsmercantile.com
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Default Weather Station

On Fri, 5 Jul 2019 15:54:24 -0700, OGX wrote:

not on for a wild goose chases.


You don't know what you're missing [1].

I guess no one here knows much about solar panels or charging 3 AA cells
and what is needed.


True. Nobody here knows anything that will help you deduce what has
failed without you taking down the wx station, cleaning out the
inevitable corrosion, inspecting the batteries, and making a few
measurements. However, you're in luck here. I've had some experience
with both the WS-1200 and WS-1201-IP.

Spare parts. Sorry, no solar cells:
https://www.ambientweather.com/amwewswestre1.html
The WS-1200 uses rechargeable alkaline batteries.
https://www.ambientweather.com/amws1000batt.html
Rechargeable alkaline batteries are only a little better than junk.
They cannot be recharged to 100% of original capacity and are only
good for a limited number of partial recharges. It doesn't take much
to kill them:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rechargeable_alkaline_battery
The capacity of a recharged alkaline battery declines
with number of recharges, until it becomes unusable
after typically about ten cycles.
So, every time you run the weather station batteries down to zero
(such as after a cloudy winter), you kill one of the 9 lives of this
cat. Ambient is apparently aware of the problem as the newer
WS-1201-IP uses a super capacitor instead of batteries. I suspect you
could replace the 3 AA cells with a super capacitor:
https://www.ambientweather.com/amws1200ip.html#caption
Note: The WS-1201-IP replaces the WS-1200-IP. The WS-1200-IP
uses rechargeable batteries that are charged by a solar collector.
The WS-1201-IP uses a super capacitor for energy storage, and
is charged by the solar collector in the day, and
non-rechargeable batteries at night.
I think you'll find that the batteries are dead, your solar cells are
just fine, and you'll either be making a phone call to Ambient to see
if they offer an upgrade to the WS-1201-IP, or buying 3 more
rechargeable alkaline cells.


[1] I've been doing morning exercise walks in a local county park,
which feature a pond inhabited by a family of Canadian geese. I've
been watching three little goslings grow up very rapidly:
https://friendsofquailhollow.org/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/4Goslings.jpg
I know all about chasing wild geese, or rather about being chased by
papa wild goose for getting too close to his family. Wild goose
chases can be fun.


--
Jeff Liebermann
150 Felker St #D
http://www.LearnByDestroying.com
Santa Cruz CA 95060 http://802.11junk.com
Skype: JeffLiebermann AE6KS 831-336-2558
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On Fri, 5 Jul 2019 15:54:24 -0700, OGX wrote:


not on for a wild goose chases.

I guess no one here knows much about solar panels or charging 3 AA cells
and what is needed.




Well, your weather station isn't a low cost unit from Walmart, so it's
not exactly fair to flame the rest of the world for not having THE RIGHT
ANSWER at the tips of their fingers. You haven't said anything about
your electronics knowledge. If you have none, or very little, you might
be out of your league from the start.
Now, do you have a multimeter of any sort? Have you attempted to
measure the unit's charging voltage and/or current? How about measuring
the solar panel's voltage in full sunlight? How about the voltage and
current (if any) it's putting into the charge controller?
Knowing that information can tell you whether your problem lies with the
batteries, the solar panel or the charge controller. Chances are that a
schematic is not available for your station. You might send an email to
the manufacturer and ask for the schematic. That little piece of paper
could be invaluable for you (of someone who is able to read it and
determine where the problem lies.
Just guessing here, but if the unit uses 3 AA cells, that means that the
solar panel will likely be rated for 6 - 9 volts open circuit, at maybe
50 - 100 mA.
You need to make some voltage and current measurements and report them,
then someone might be able to help you get it going again.

Cheers,
Dave M

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On Friday, July 5, 2019 at 10:11:54 PM UTC-4, Jeff Liebermann wrote:
On Fri, 5 Jul 2019 15:54:24 -0700, OGX wrote:

not on for a wild goose chases.


You don't know what you're missing [1].

I guess no one here knows much about solar panels or charging 3 AA cells
and what is needed.


True. Nobody here knows anything that will help you deduce what has
failed without you taking down the wx station, cleaning out the
inevitable corrosion, inspecting the batteries, and making a few
measurements. However, you're in luck here. I've had some experience
with both the WS-1200 and WS-1201-IP.

Spare parts. Sorry, no solar cells:
https://www.ambientweather.com/amwewswestre1.html
The WS-1200 uses rechargeable alkaline batteries.
https://www.ambientweather.com/amws1000batt.html
Rechargeable alkaline batteries are only a little better than junk.
They cannot be recharged to 100% of original capacity and are only
good for a limited number of partial recharges. It doesn't take much
to kill them:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rechargeable_alkaline_battery
The capacity of a recharged alkaline battery declines
with number of recharges, until it becomes unusable
after typically about ten cycles.
So, every time you run the weather station batteries down to zero
(such as after a cloudy winter), you kill one of the 9 lives of this
cat. Ambient is apparently aware of the problem as the newer
WS-1201-IP uses a super capacitor instead of batteries. I suspect you
could replace the 3 AA cells with a super capacitor:
https://www.ambientweather.com/amws1200ip.html#caption
Note: The WS-1201-IP replaces the WS-1200-IP. The WS-1200-IP
uses rechargeable batteries that are charged by a solar collector.
The WS-1201-IP uses a super capacitor for energy storage, and
is charged by the solar collector in the day, and
non-rechargeable batteries at night.
I think you'll find that the batteries are dead, your solar cells are
just fine, and you'll either be making a phone call to Ambient to see
if they offer an upgrade to the WS-1201-IP, or buying 3 more
rechargeable alkaline cells.


[1] I've been doing morning exercise walks in a local county park,
which feature a pond inhabited by a family of Canadian geese.



Canada geese Jeff. No citizenship granted...



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On Fri, 5 Jul 2019 19:20:24 -0700 (PDT), John-Del
wrote:

On Friday, July 5, 2019 at 10:11:54 PM UTC-4, Jeff Liebermann wrote:
[1] I've been doing morning exercise walks in a local county park,
which feature a pond inhabited by a family of Canadian geese.


Canada geese Jeff. No citizenship granted...


Ummm... thanks for the pedantic correction. By the gooses name, I
just assumed that they vote in Canadian elections. I guess not.

I suspect the geese in question might be refugees from Denver:
"Canada geese in Denver parks culled for meat"
https://www.upi.com/Top_News/US/2019/07/02/Canada-geese-in-Denver-parks-culled-for-meat/2481561766136/


--
Jeff Liebermann
150 Felker St #D
http://www.LearnByDestroying.com
Santa Cruz CA 95060 http://802.11junk.com
Skype: JeffLiebermann AE6KS 831-336-2558
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On Saturday, July 6, 2019 at 1:22:53 AM UTC-4, Jeff Liebermann wrote:
On Fri, 5 Jul 2019 19:20:24 -0700 (PDT), John-Del
wrote:

On Friday, July 5, 2019 at 10:11:54 PM UTC-4, Jeff Liebermann wrote:
[1] I've been doing morning exercise walks in a local county park,
which feature a pond inhabited by a family of Canadian geese.


Canada geese Jeff. No citizenship granted...


Ummm... thanks for the pedantic correction. By the gooses name, I
just assumed that they vote in Canadian elections. I guess not.


Common mistake I used to make. A Canada guy corrected me when I said it..
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On Fri, 5 Jul 2019 15:54:24 -0700, OGX wrote:


not on for a wild goose chases.

I guess no one here knows much about solar panels or charging 3 AA cells
and what is needed.

I think ogx is trolling. Or maybe is only 6 years old. Maybe both. Did
I just get caught?
Eric
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On Sat, 6 Jul 2019 02:26:22 -0700 (PDT), John-Del
wrote:

On Saturday, July 6, 2019 at 1:22:53 AM UTC-4, Jeff Liebermann wrote:
On Fri, 5 Jul 2019 19:20:24 -0700 (PDT), John-Del
wrote:

On Friday, July 5, 2019 at 10:11:54 PM UTC-4, Jeff Liebermann wrote:
[1] I've been doing morning exercise walks in a local county park,
which feature a pond inhabited by a family of Canadian geese.


Canada geese Jeff. No citizenship granted...


Ummm... thanks for the pedantic correction. By the gooses name, I
just assumed that they vote in Canadian elections. I guess not.


Common mistake I used to make. A Canada guy corrected me when I said it..


The problem is that it doesn't quite work the same way south of the
border. In Canada, it's a Canadian citizen, and a Canada Goose. In
the USA, it's an American citizen, but also an American Elk, American
Black Bear, American Alligator, American Bison, American Beaver,
American Otter, American badger, etc. The distinction is perhaps
understandable as the results of our previous presidential election
suggests that some of these animals may have voted.


--
Jeff Liebermann
150 Felker St #D
http://www.LearnByDestroying.com
Santa Cruz CA 95060 http://802.11junk.com
Skype: JeffLiebermann AE6KS 831-336-2558
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On Fri, 05 Jul 2019 19:11:52 -0700, Jeff Liebermann
wrote:

On Fri, 5 Jul 2019 15:54:24 -0700, OGX wrote:

not on for a wild goose chases.


You don't know what you're missing [1].

I guess no one here knows much about solar panels or charging 3 AA cells
and what is needed.


True. Nobody here knows anything that will help you deduce what has
failed without you taking down the wx station, cleaning out the
inevitable corrosion, inspecting the batteries, and making a few
measurements. However, you're in luck here. I've had some experience
with both the WS-1200 and WS-1201-IP.

Spare parts. Sorry, no solar cells:
https://www.ambientweather.com/amwewswestre1.html
The WS-1200 uses rechargeable alkaline batteries.
https://www.ambientweather.com/amws1000batt.html
Rechargeable alkaline batteries are only a little better than junk.
They cannot be recharged to 100% of original capacity and are only
good for a limited number of partial recharges. It doesn't take much
to kill them:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rechargeable_alkaline_battery
The capacity of a recharged alkaline battery declines
with number of recharges, until it becomes unusable
after typically about ten cycles.
So, every time you run the weather station batteries down to zero
(such as after a cloudy winter), you kill one of the 9 lives of this
cat. Ambient is apparently aware of the problem as the newer
WS-1201-IP uses a super capacitor instead of batteries. I suspect you
could replace the 3 AA cells with a super capacitor:
https://www.ambientweather.com/amws1200ip.html#caption
Note: The WS-1201-IP replaces the WS-1200-IP. The WS-1200-IP
uses rechargeable batteries that are charged by a solar collector.
The WS-1201-IP uses a super capacitor for energy storage, and
is charged by the solar collector in the day, and
non-rechargeable batteries at night.
I think you'll find that the batteries are dead, your solar cells are
just fine, and you'll either be making a phone call to Ambient to see
if they offer an upgrade to the WS-1201-IP, or buying 3 more
rechargeable alkaline cells.


My weather station uses rechargeable alkaline AAs.
When they failed after several years of use the outdoor unit
continued to function in daylight but not in the dark.
At first I replaced them with Nicads but that didn't work.
I found one place on ebay selling the proper ones and
they are working.
Oddly enough after an extended power outage the
weather station started displaying the symptoms of
failed batteries. A reset of the display unit fixed that.
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