A quality massage table is very important to my wife Amy, a massage therapist. Many clients find the warmth of an electronic table warmer beneficial for various reasons. Enter the NRG Digital Table Warmer 231-0293 found “on sale” for $70+ dollars. Amy purchased one of these pads; it lasted six months before the controller crapped out and died. She purchased another, stored the extra pad and plugged the new controller into the original pad. Give it about six months and that controller bit the dust as well.
Always curious with electronic stuff I took apart a controller to inspect for a blown replaceable fuse. I didn’t find any. I poked around a few of the components with my meter to test continuity, it all checked out. I sent one of the broken controllers to my electronics expert friend Charlie. He found a blown thermal fuse positioned under a resistor on the circuit board enclosed by a glob of thermal compound. When the resistor reaches a temperature above 76 degrees Celsius the fuse trips and permanently shuts down the controller. RIP.
Both Charlie and I went to work locating the manufacturer of the thermal fuse Set Fuse (www.setfuse.com), the Model Number is K0. We reached out to the very enthusiastic and helpful sales department and a week later Charlie received the fuses direct from China. He replaced the fuse and returned the controller to me. I unpacked the box, removed the controller and dashed to the massage table. With the controller attached to the pad I plugged the controller in and Voila! The controller turned on like new.
I possess the remaining replacement fuses and I’m looking forward to repairing the other blown controller. While I have the second controller disassembled I plan on measuring the temperature of the resistor while the unit is functioning to examine how close to the cutoff temperature the resistor becomes. Hopefully the new thermal cutoffs last longer than six months each. At best we extended the life of these otherwise perfectly good objects, keeping them out of the landfill for now.
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Monday, August 10, 2015
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