Wednesday, November 08, 2017

Vodafone Sure Signal - No smoking please!

I've just had my Vodafone Sure Signal V3 blow up with a little puff of smoke. Fortunately I was sitting right next to the thing when it popped and I was able to unplug it pretty quickly! It rattled once unplugged! I opened it up and found a capacitor that had blown itself off the board. The interior was filled with smoke, see burn marks in the photos below.

I've contacted Vodafone via Twitter. Let's see what they do about it. Hopefully it's not a fire risk for others!

The label says it's an Alcatel-Lucent Model Number : 9361 Home Cell p3.0, Part Number : 3JR09113ABBA

I notice there is a big thread on the Vodafone UK Sure Signal forums with loads of people who have had exactly the same problem.

10 Nov Update
I am pleased to report that Vodafone have agreed to send a replacement SureSignal free of charge (regardless of the warranty status). It'll apparently be delivered within 3 days. Given the unit does not have a replaceable fuse I'll be plugging it into an extension block with a very small fuse fitted to the plug. In my case the old unit tripped the downstairs circuit breaker (which also has the fridge and freezer attached). Had it blown when I was not at home it could have had far greater and more costly consequences (not to mention the potential fire risk). I'm not totally comfortable with the design of the SS3 as it runs very hot, this will always shorten the life of any electronic components. However, I have no Vodafone mobile phone signal where I live (high tech Cambridgeshire) and need to use the phone for work so I have little choice but to use one. I think powering it from a power strip with a very low current quick blow fuse will be the best way to reduce the risk associated with using this product.

13 Nov Update
A free of charge replacement unit was delivered today. I've reported the fault to Trading Standards and they are contacting Vodafone to report another failed unit.

16 Nov Update
I've made a short extension lead and fitted a small 1A fuse to the plug. Hopefully this will stop the whole power circuit tripping out if (when) this new SureSignal fails.

No comments: