BCD396XT: Scanner started smoking and...

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Bushwack44

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#1
Not sure why but after 3 years of use, my BCD396XT stopped working.

What happened was the scanner was on for about 45 minutes (with fresh Everloop batteries), standing up on my desk. I went to reach for it to unlock a channel but got distracted. It was in my left hand for about 2 minutes when the unit started feeling hot...and getting hotter. I went to look at the display and the scanner turned off and the unit was getting too hot to hold. As I placed it back down on the desk, I noticed it smoking and the smell of burning plastic became apparent. I opened the batter compartment (which was getting hotter) and could see the grayish-white smoke coming from within the unit (definitely not from the batteries).

I moved the unit (like I was holding a hot potato) to the bathroom onto a ceramic tiled counter-top. Still smoking, I went and grabbed for a Phillips screwdriver to open it up (already concluded this scanner was a gonner). Still smoking (and the burning of plastic getting worse), I finally got the unit opened. I'm not an engineer so I couldn't tell what got damaged but I could see the back of the motherboard (in the middle) - part of it melted and warped. The plastic side of the scanner where the a/c adapter is was also damaged.

The scanner is 'toast'. Not sure why/how this happened. Decided to write this post as a matter of record should someone else have the same experience. I've owned Uniden scanners for a long time so this won't stop me from replacing it with a 436HP.
 

AC2OY

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#2
Wow that is horrible. I would be upset three years isn't a lot of time. I had a Realistic Pro-2006 and sold it a few years ago and it was still working. Display might have dimmed a tad but she still scanned almost 20 years later?
 
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#3
Never heard of that before on batteries only. Sometimes parts just fail. I would suspect it might be the voltage regulator that failed.
 
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#4
BCD396XT: Scanner started smoking and...

Not sure why but after 3 years of use, my BCD396XT stopped working.

What happened was the scanner was on for about 45 minutes (with fresh Everloop batteries), standing up on my desk. I went to reach for it to unlock a channel but got distracted. It was in my left hand for about 2 minutes when the unit started feeling hot...and getting hotter. I went to look at the display and the scanner turned off and the unit was getting too hot to hold. As I placed it back down on the desk, I noticed it smoking and the smell of burning plastic became apparent. I opened the batter compartment (which was getting hotter) and could see the grayish-white smoke coming from within the unit (definitely not from the batteries).

I moved the unit (like I was holding a hot potato) to the bathroom onto a ceramic tiled counter-top. Still smoking, I went and grabbed for a Phillips screwdriver to open it up (already concluded this scanner was a gonner). Still smoking (and the burning of plastic getting worse), I finally got the unit opened. I'm not an engineer so I couldn't tell what got damaged but I could see the back of the motherboard (in the middle) - part of it melted and warped. The plastic side of the scanner where the a/c adapter is was also damaged.

The scanner is 'toast'. Not sure why/how this happened. Decided to write this post as a matter of record should someone else have the same experience. I've owned Uniden scanners for a long time so this won't stop me from replacing it with a 436HP.
A friend of mine had this issue with his 396XT and sent it into Uniden service for repair. They told him they had a few that had this issue and they fixed it and shipped it back and it's been working for 6 months now.
http://repair.uniden.com/


Mike
 
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garys

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#6
I'd fill out a repair request, get a return number, and send it back. Or maybe call Uniden customer service. It might be out of warranty, but if they've had a few units with this problem, they might fix it at no or reduced cost.

It will cost you nothing to ask them about it.
 
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#7
If it was the OEM cells that shorted, that might be the case. If not, I don't see Uniden fixing an issue that was caused by a third party.

As for the smoking, post a 'no smoking' sign to prevent future issues. :D
 
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