batterybulgedtrScary even when it’s not Halloween! This bulging DTR series battery is from a radio that came into Delmmar’s 2-way radio repair center for repair. The customer has chosen to have their DTR650 radio repaired (flat rate $85) and purchase a new battery to replace this bulging one. Bulgy has been disposed of in hazardous waste.

In the news recently there has been a lot of talk about electronics devices catching fire on planes. An educated guess would be the battery in the device was damaged or poor workmanship. It could have been physical or liquid damage, overcharging, poor manufacturing, or the effects of the change in air pressure in the cabin. While we have not heard of any incidents involving 2-way radios (which have restrictions when taken on a plane), users should always use wisdom whether in the air or on the ground.

There are dozens of youtube videos showing these types of batteries in flames once they are abused, overcharged, wet or mistreated.  Short story: If your battery bulges, or shows any sign of puncture/damage DO NOT use it. Motorola has a good explanation concerning the differences between Li-Ion and Li-polymer batteries. You can read it here.

For your two-way radio choose a good name brand battery from a reputable radio dealer. Choose good quality Li-Ion or NiMH batteries instead of Li-Polymer.


easybakeovenThey say “variety is the spice of life”. Here in the 2-way radio repair center things are usually pretty spicy. We see a variety of radios every week, everything from portable radios (handhelds) to repeaters (a device which increases the range of the average two-way radio). When you do flat rate repair on more than 40 models of Motorola radios, and then add in Kenwood and Vertex radio repair… variety is the name of the game.

Most radios are in need of the common user-interface items. The things you move or touch when using the radio such as push-to-talk buttons, battery contacts, on/off/volume potentiometers, accessory jacks, antenna ports, etc.. Then there are the radios which look like roadkill and the electronics technicians are miracle workers using everything but the kitchen sink, bring them back to life. The techs do board level repair, this means they actually work on the component board that came in your radio, soldering and replacing necessary parts to bring your radio back to factory spec (or as close as possible).

Our customers are pretty spicy too. We take care of radios for businesses of all types, from A to Z. If they use radios we probably have them as a client. Today we might be talking to a nightclub owner and the next client might be a monkey reserve.

We enjoy the variety and helping businesses keep their radios in good working order. Plus, we can generally repair a radio for 1/3 of the cost of a new unit. This makes us all happy.

Have a radio needing repair? Pass the Tabasco please!

GOT STATIC? GOT POOR TRANSMIT? Using an old battery on your radio can cause you problems, including poor or intermittent transmit, a battery that no long last the full day, lots of static or white noise, poorly functioning add-on audio devices, and more. Continual use of an old or bad battery can eventually cause wear and tear to the radio itself, resulting in the need for repair. The life expectancy of the average rechargeable battery used in 2-way radios or other devices is 2 years. This includes your rechargeable flashlight as well as your portable radio.

How can you tell the age of your battery?
Nearly every manufacturer of a rechargeable battery marks the battery with a date code representing the date of manufacture. Sometimes these date codes are hidden in plain sight. You might feel like you need a secret decoder ring to break the code. Motorola is no different than most manufacturers, their batteries and accessories are marked with manufacturing codes.battdatecodes

Motorola batteries follow a very simple date code system. You will find a 3- or 4-digit number on the battery label (or embossed in the plastic of the battery itself). Use the example 1611, the first two digits are the year, and the next two digits are the week of the year. The battery shown is dated 2016 the 11th week.
If you have a 3-digit code the first number is the year. 611 would be either 2016 or 2006. (You can usually tell by the appearance of the battery if it is 10 years or more old.)
For more details see this PDF: Battery Date Code Sheet

Next time you have a poorly functioning radio check your battery date code. Maybe you simply need to replace your battery.

Battery tips:

  • Clean your battery contacts on your radio and charger periodically with a pencil eraser to remove any film or debris. This will allow your radio to make better contact on the charger. (Never use chemicals or a sharp object to clean contacts.)
  • Always have your radio turned off when placed on the charger, and if in an emergency you must have a radio turned on when on the charger, never ever transmit while charging. This can burn out components in your radio causing the need for repair.
  • If you feel you have an old, bad, or poorly functioning battery, try trading batteries with a known good radio and see if the problem is solved. You may simply need to replace your old battery.
  • The shelf life of a battery which has never been charged (initialized) is supposed to be indefinite. If you store new batteries before you use them, mark them with the date you initially charged the battery. This will give you a better idea on your 2 year life expectancy.
  • When initially charging a battery that has been in the cold or stored for a period of time before use it may take 2-3 charge cycles for the battery to successfully take that first charge. If you charger is blinking when it usually doesn’t, leave the battery on the charger and let it blink a few hours, even try again the next day doing the same thing. The battery will usually wake up, charge and be fine.
  • Beware of aftermarket batteries from less than reputable sources. We’ve seen or tried them all. We do offer a good aftermarket battery for most models if you are looking for such a battery.
  • Dispose of all old batteries in hazardous waste.

What are you waiting on? Go check your date codes!
#motorolaradiobattery #nntn4497 #motorolaradiorepair #motorolabatterydatecode

WalkieMonkey_smlThe radio arrived with a note saying “Walkie Monkey may have caused the problem… no one else will admit to it.” As an added surprise Walkie Monkey arrived with the #BPR40 radio and he’s not talking.

Customers ask us often what they should include with their radios when sending them to the radio repair center. Short answer is we need the radio and any other accessories you think might be associated with the problem. If you include the battery we can check the date code and run it on the reconditioner/analyzer to see how well it is performing. If you think the antenna or charger may be part of the problem include them too. Oh the other hand, if you feel certain the issue is with the radio alone, just send the radio itself. It is that simple.

Occasionally we receive fun surprises like Walkie Monkey, which brightens our day. The BPR40 radio from sunny California is now in line for repair, and Walkie Monkey continues to have this smirky grin and is maintaining his silence. We think we will keep him here for further interrogation.

#motorolaradiorepair #monkeyproblems #BPR40radio #radiorepaircenter


radio soup

1 Oct, 2015

BPR40 radioSomewhat like the book series Chicken Soup for the Soul, our days at the radio repair facility can consist of true stories about ordinary people’s lives and they way they use and sometime abuse their 2-way radios. Today the subject of soup came up because of an interestingly packaged Motorola BPR40 radio, which came in for repair packaged in an AT&T cellphone box and an open, but clean, soup package. The radio suffers from low receive (Rx) audio, and the user says it can faintly be heard. Currently the radio is in line awaiting the electronics technician’s careful assessment. Barring any unforeseen circumstance this BPR40 radio should be repaired and headed back to the tofu with spinach soup eating customer in just a few days.

Motorola PR860 and XTS1500 waiting to go home to “Sweet Home Alabama”

Did you know Delmmar’s radio repair center does repair on Motorola 2-Way Radios and Kenwood 2-way Radios? Yes, it is true. We keep a large supply of common failure parts on hand, and have skilled electronics technicians on staff to repair your existing radios. Did you also know radio repair is typically less than one-third the price of buy a new radio? We are always happy to help you with either option, repairing your existing units or purchasing replacements.

This week we happened to have a few radios on hold awaiting parts, two from Alabama and one Kenwood Protalk from Illinois. Barring any unforeseen circumstance, the parts should arrive in a timely fashion and the radio repaired the same day the parts arrive. Soon our little travelers (radios) will hop on the UPS truck and be heading .

Impres XE Remote MicSo you are probably used to seeing your local law enforcement officers wear a remote speaker mic on their shoulder. It’s identifiable, something that seems to be part of their uniform. But did you know many other industries use these devices too? Just to name a few: manufacturing, amusement, sporting and entertainment venues all take advantage of the convenience of the remote microphone. Remote mics (aka lapel or shoulder mics) can be used anywhere two-way radios are used. They move the convenience of your radio on your lapel.

You can find a remote mic for most types of commercial two-way radios. Mics vary in features with some including submersible, windporting, display screens, antennas, emergency buttons, audio jacks for earpieces, coiled or straight cords. For basic business two-way radios a remote mic may simply have a speaker, microphone, coiled cord, lapel clip, and a push to talk button.  Everything you need to have the convenience of your radio near your head, where you an both talk and listen.

Ever seem like you are constantly taking your radio off your hip to talk? Maybe a remote mic is right for you!


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