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Unread 05-17-2015, 10:31 AM   #1
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Default Something Got Wet

Need some expert advice on this one.

I have a 48V TXT from 2000. It has an Alltrax 4855 controller and a lot of parts (solenoid, F/R switch, etc) I got from ScottyB a few years back. All working great until I messed something up!

I sprayed off my batteries and filled the water levels. All of a sudden when I put the cart in Forward the light on the controller went Yellow after it blinked green 4 times. Then, when I drive the cart it jerks violently forward or backward.

The controller is programmable so I got my laptop and connected to it and lowered the maximum current and speed. Now the light stays at green and the cart goes slower, but it still jerks pretty violently during the initial press of the pedal.

I've read the alltrax troubleshooting guide at http://www.alltraxinc.com/files/Doc1...ting-Guide.pdf. It says I should "Install/replace suppression diode on the small terminals of the solenoid."

Could that be the cause? I also see a lot of posts suspecting the ITS throttle box, as well. I took out my floor mat and opened that box, but it was bone dry.

Interestingly, when I use the "monitoring" capability of the Alltrax software, it shows the throttle at 48% when the cart is just sitting.

Could the throttle be the cause? Any other ideas or suggestions would be most appreciated. Thank you!
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Unread 05-17-2015, 10:56 AM   #2
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Default Re: Something Got Wet

Park cart in a dry place or in the sun for a few days. Inspect the cable and plugs from the Pedal box to the controller. Water and/or corrosion in any plug or splice you find in the cable between the ITS throttle box and the controller may cause this.
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Unread 05-17-2015, 12:55 PM   #3
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Default Re: Something Got Wet

Measure the voltage between the white and black wires (throttle) on top of controller, while they are connected to the controller. (Pins 2 & 3 on an AXE)

You should get 10V when pedal is pushed just far enough for solenoid to click and 6V when pedal is on floor.

Sounds like you are getting about 8V (about half throttle) when solenoid clicks, which will definitely make the cart jerk when you try to move it.

Since the pedal box is dry, follow the gray cable out of it to the in-line connector that mates it to the cart's wiring harness.
Disconnect the MOLEX connector and spray clean the dickens out of it, then dry with hair drier and reconnect.

------------
If that doesn't do the trick, hit the ITS sensor in the pedal box with a hair dryer.
After a few years, the potting compound shrinks and cracks form, typically along the edge of the PC board inside the sensor, and humid air gets inside and condenses on the board, causing all sorts of weird stuff.

----------
I haven't had any issues with the in-line connector to the pedal box on my car yet, but when I do, the connector is gone. Replaced by soldered connections.
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Unread 05-17-2015, 12:59 PM   #4
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Default Re: Something Got Wet

OK, thanks for the quick reply! It has been two days, but I will let it sit in the sun this afternoon and will report back. I disconnected/reconnected just about every connection into the solenoid and controller including the cable coming out of the throttle box, and everything looks pretty dry. Couldn't really find any wetness or corrosion anywhere, but I will give it a little more time.

I went ahead and changed the "Max Output Current" to around 20% and that seems to make the "jerkyness" less violent, but it still isn't smooth.

I'll report back in a day or two if there are any changes. Still wondering if it is that darn diode on the small solenoid connectors.
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Unread 05-17-2015, 01:03 PM   #5
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Default Re: Something Got Wet

Thanks, JohnnieB. I will try your suggestions and report back. Thanks!
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Unread 05-17-2015, 01:19 PM   #6
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Default Re: Something Got Wet

Quote:
Originally Posted by smuponies View Post
OK, thanks for the quick reply! It has been two days, but I will let it sit in the sun this afternoon and will report back. I disconnected/reconnected just about every connection into the solenoid and controller including the cable coming out of the throttle box, and everything looks pretty dry. Couldn't really find any wetness or corrosion anywhere, but I will give it a little more time.

I went ahead and changed the "Max Output Current" to around 20% and that seems to make the "jerkyness" less violent, but it still isn't smooth.

I'll report back in a day or two if there are any changes. Still wondering if it is that darn diode on the small solenoid connectors.
The purpose of the diode is to protect the contacts in whatever switch that is opened to de-energize the solenoid coil. This is usually the pedal microswitch, but could be the keyswitch, or MS-2 on the F/R assembly, or the reed switch.

When the solenoid coil de-energizes, a huge voltage spike is generated and it will arc across the air-gap of switch contacts that are in the process of opening.

If the diode had poor reverse bias impedance, it might delay the closure of the solenoid contacts and cause the cart to jerk, but diodes seldom fail that way. (They usually short for a fraction of a second and then explode)

Disconnect one leg of the diode and see if it changes anything. The diode is not necessary for operation, it simply prolongs the life in the pedal switch.
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Unread 05-17-2015, 01:30 PM   #7
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Default Re: Something Got Wet

I would reset the control to Default settings and open the pedal box and apply my wife's hairdryer to everything in it. I think the problem is water in the ITS box and or water in the wire harness connector between the ITS and control.
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Unread 05-17-2015, 04:38 PM   #8
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Default Re: Something Got Wet

My Ezgo with alltrax controller does this exact thing when I get water anywhere near the controller and solenoid. I never have pin pointed the cause, it always begins to work normal again after a couple of hours or sometimes right after if I drive it full throttle it will slowly gain speed and start acting right. I've just came to expect that it will do this when I clean the batteries and learned to live with it. Please let us know if you find the cause.
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Unread 05-17-2015, 04:41 PM   #9
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Default Re: Something Got Wet

One thing I have suspected is the water creates a short between the 12v positive and the 1/2 speed on the controller pins, but I have tried drying that afterwards and problem still exists.
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Unread 05-17-2015, 05:23 PM   #10
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Default Re: Something Got Wet

Well, I've spent most of the day unplugging, cleaning and drying with my wife's hair dryer. I even re-crimped a few connections. Problem is still there, unfortunately.

I also disconnected that plastic connector coming out of the ITS box and sprayed cleaner and let it dry. Then I blew a hairdryer in there for a few minutes. I also blew a hairdryer in the open ITS box for a few minutes.

I even reset the controller back to default. And then reconfigured it. The only way I can get the cart to a usable point is by putting the max output current to somewhere between 15 and 20 percent. But it still isn't a smooth start.

I did check the voltage between throttle I and II on the controller and it reads 3.8V without the pedal pressed. I disconnected my motor and tried pressing the pedal all the way, but as far as I could tell, the voltage stayed at 3.8V. Not sure I did that correctly, but did what I could. Seems like the voltage between those two is too low anyway??

Removing the diode on the small solenoid connections didn't change anything.

I guess I will just let it dry out for a couple more days. If that doesn't do it, I guess something just shorted out.

Let me know if you guys have any other ideas, or want me to try something else. Thanks again!
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