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Thread: AutoPilot digital won't power on

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    AutoPilot digital won't power on

    Hello all, first post and first pool. Just purchased a home that has a 6 year old pool, previous owners installed autopilot digital with sc-48 cell and when the cell died they abandoned the generator and used chlorine again.

    I would like to begin using the swg again but for the life of me I can't get the digital readout to do anything.

    I have checked that it has 240v going to it and I also checked the fuses. Everything checked out good. Is there some type of secret to this power supply or should it illuminate as soon as power is fed to it?

    I've been reading the manual but maybe I'm missing something. When I get a chance I'm going to troubleshoot deeper with my meter Monday but maybe someone here has an idea?

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: AutoPilot digital won't power on

    Welcome to TFP!

    If it is working, the display should light up almost right away after power is applied.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
    Creator of PoolMath and Pool Calculator. Other handy links: Support this site, TF Test Kits, Pool School

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    Re: AutoPilot digital won't power on

    Found the blown fuse, main ac 3 amp fuse, checked for short, no short, so I replaced fuse. Unit is now powered on but the display flashes on and off about twice a second. Is that normal? It looks like a have puffy capacitors so that may be the problem. Salt level is too low to test cell but will add salt this weekend and work on it some more.

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: AutoPilot digital won't power on

    Some slight blinking of the display is normal, though I remember it being a lot slower than that. It should be turned on for a lot longer than it is turned off.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
    Creator of PoolMath and Pool Calculator. Other handy links: Support this site, TF Test Kits, Pool School

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    Re: AutoPilot digital won't power on

    Quote Originally Posted by BrdChris View Post
    Found the blown fuse, main ac 3 amp fuse, checked for short, no short, so I replaced fuse. Unit is now powered on but the display flashes on and off about twice a second. Is that normal? It looks like a have puffy capacitors so that may be the problem. Salt level is too low to test cell but will add salt this weekend and work on it some more.
    Do you have an analog multimeter? Mine saved me a couple hundred bucks yesterday! Thanks Jason!!!!!
    Pool size: 24000gal inground Vinyl-Taylor k-2006 and k-1766 test kits and-speed stir
    Intermatic P1353ME digital timer w/freeze sensor
    CircuPool Si-45 SWCG System
    Polaris 280 vacuum/Polaris PB4-60 boost pump
    Pentair IntelliFlo VS 3hp Pump--Pentair sand filter

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    Re: AutoPilot digital won't power on

    I have a digital, I first tested the fuses in place so maybe it was still shorted and reading through the short. After removing unit from wall I took the fuses off the board and checked.

    Anyone know what the small black box is on the left side under the three 1000 uF caps? It has a crack in it's case but I don't know what it is to know how to test it.

    I'm pretty sure it was flashing 50/50, I'll double check though.

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    Re: AutoPilot digital won't power on

    There should be 5 capacitors in the top left corner of the board. All 5 are are the same size (about 1" tall) with silver tops. You should see a cluster of 3 and then a cluster of 2. What color is the wrap on these capacitors? Are the top silver caps flat?
    Josh Ulfers - josh@saltpoolguys.com - 888-725-8766
    SaltPoolGuys.com - AutoPilot Pool Pilot Systems, Parts & Cells - AquaCal Heat Pumps

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    Re: AutoPilot digital won't power on

    4 out of the 5 are bulged and 1 of the large .01 F caps are bulged.

    The three in the cluster are brown, the other two blue and brown. the two large ones are black.

    - - - Updated - - -

    I'm trying to order replacements but having trouble finding caps this big that aren't counterfeit on ebay. I've contacted a cap distributor to attempt to get some good replacements.

    - - - Updated - - -

    I just bought the house but the previous owner has had the system professionally replaced twice already in 5 years, and it's failed again. I would like to repair it but I can't see myself spending a lot of money on this brand swg.

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    Re: AutoPilot digital won't power on

    The three in the cluster are brown, the other two blue and brown.
    Those are certainly bad in that case.

    I just bought the house but the previous owner has had the system professionally replaced twice already in 5 years, and it's failed again. I would like to repair it but I can't see myself spending a lot of money on this brand swg.
    That is certainly not typical with AutoPilot. Do you know what the issue was?
    Josh Ulfers - josh@saltpoolguys.com - 888-725-8766
    SaltPoolGuys.com - AutoPilot Pool Pilot Systems, Parts & Cells - AquaCal Heat Pumps

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    Re: AutoPilot digital won't power on

    Not reporting correct values and bad power supply board. Went through two cells since 08. Not sure what parts have been replaced.

    Would really like to run salt but previous owners spooked me, don't wanna feed it parts. I will move unit into a waterproof enclosure if I ever get it running.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Unit was installed by a dealer and always serviced by the same dealer. But it's far out of warranty now.

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    Re: AutoPilot digital won't power on

    Went through two cells since 08.
    What size cell are you using? How many gallons is the pool?
    Josh Ulfers - josh@saltpoolguys.com - 888-725-8766
    SaltPoolGuys.com - AutoPilot Pool Pilot Systems, Parts & Cells - AquaCal Heat Pumps

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    Re: AutoPilot digital won't power on

    18x40 27000 gallons sc48 cell

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    Re: AutoPilot digital won't power on

    You should be able to get at least 4 years out of an SC-48 cell on a 27,000 if it is an original OEM AutoPilot cell. Typically premature wear of a cell happens when the system is run at too high of a percentage. I just spoke a customer the other day and he didn't know to not run the system at 100% output and was going through cells way too often. Typically most installations can run between 40-60% max and produce proper chlorine. Once you get things running I can help you tweak things if you need assistance.
    Josh Ulfers - josh@saltpoolguys.com - 888-725-8766
    SaltPoolGuys.com - AutoPilot Pool Pilot Systems, Parts & Cells - AquaCal Heat Pumps

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    Re: AutoPilot digital won't power on

    Thank you. I'm going to put some thought into it but I'm thinking about replacing it with the new model, maybe if I keep it protected from the elements but still allow airflow it will do better.

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    Re: AutoPilot digital won't power on

    but I'm thinking about replacing it with the new model
    That brings up a good point... the board you have (based on the description of the capacitor design) is the older generation board. Units sold today use a different board with a new capacitor design and it has been working very well.
    Josh Ulfers - josh@saltpoolguys.com - 888-725-8766
    SaltPoolGuys.com - AutoPilot Pool Pilot Systems, Parts & Cells - AquaCal Heat Pumps

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    Re: AutoPilot digital won't power on

    Ordered 8 new capacitors and two fans, found one of them seized. Will update with results.

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    Re: AutoPilot digital won't power on

    Got it running! Ordered nichicon brand caps which are top quality, much better than the teapo in it, from digikey. I just measured the old caps height and diameter, and distance between leads, that plus the uF and voltage written on the cap is all you need to order direct replacements. Installed them, also replaced the fans and the power wires from the board all the way to the cell, the wires inside the panel were crispy. Lots of heat trace on the board but the whole board checked out good before I powered it on so no jumpers needed, although if anyone else repairs theirs, jumpers may be necessary.

    So for $60 I was able to repair the $40 fan assembly, ~$360 power module, and $60 cell wire. Oh and it turns out I have software 4.4 also. Must have been added during one of the warranty repairs.
    27,000 gallon vinyl in ground
    Sta-rite system 3 de filter
    Sta-rite dura glass pump
    Autopilot digital with sc-48 (currently being repaired)
    Tf-100 test kit

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