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P2 Water Damage - step by step repair guide?

Discussion in 'DJI Phantom (All)' started by Fire_Island, Aug 24, 2014.

  1. Fire_Island

    Fire_Island New Member

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    Aug 24, 2014
    Posted by Fire_Island, Aug 24, 2014 #1
    Hi everyone, great to meet you ! I´m hoping that someone can point me in the right direction...

    Our trusty Phantom 2 recently landed itself in saltwater and sank to a depth of around 25 feet. We managed to retrieve it within 15 minutes or so and followed the well-documented steps of removing the battery, rinsing with fresh water and drying in a combination of salt, silica packets and warm air after cleaning all circuits with fresh water and ear buds.

    The battery was safely disposed of and I just received the new DJI battery from EpicTV, however am unable to restart the machine (no start up lights or sounds) and am guessing that there is further damage. I´m also guessing that I should start with changing the DJI battery connector for a new one. The motors don´t feel too good but that should be no problem to replace them and the boards.

    As I can´t get power into the machine right now (when I try and keep the battery button pressed to force power, there is a click, like a shorting sound, from the P2) I´m unable to further test the MC and everything. SO any assistance or advice would be wonderful.

    My question is: Do any users know of a step by step testing and rebuilding guide for P2s? I´m no RC expert but can use a soldering iron and tools to rebuild the machine. I can also get the parts here no problem. I just need to reassure myself that I´m following the right steps, 1) to make sure I don´t cause any additional damage and 2) to make sure I don´t spend more than I need to to get the bird in the air again 3) to carry out the work myself and avoid having to send the P2 by mail as I live on an island off the coast of West Africa.

    Water damage seems to be a fairly frequent situation for P2 owners, so I hope that perhaps another reader can give me some advice on resuscitating my beauty step by step.

    Many thanks in advance and Happy Flying !!

    Dan

    PS: Following the same first aid process the Hero3+ came back to life within 3 days and is amazingly showing no signs of damage, recording in 2'7k fine :)
     
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  2. soler

    soler Member

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    Posted by soler, Aug 24, 2014 #2
    In my experience a dip in water can be recovered but a dip in salt water is death. Even after fresh water rinsing and packing in rice for a week. It was an expensive mistake


    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
     
  3. Posted by UgashikBob, Aug 24, 2014 #3
    FI:
    My experience has been the same as soler. Only thing I saved was the cam which had an amazing recovery like yours. The Naza and the rest of the electronics may have been OK but wasn't about to risk the cost of the rest of the equipment in case of a possible intermittent failure. Mine was only in 8 feet of salt water for 10 minutes.
     
  4. Fire_Island

    Fire_Island New Member

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    Aug 24, 2014
    Posted by Fire_Island, Aug 25, 2014 #4
    Thanks for the replies guys.

    If there is anyone out there that has had more luck with a saltwater repair to a P2, I would love to hear from them.

    I´d like to start a repair job but just unsure which way I should prioritise the components, in terms of testing and replacement. There´s no way I can just discard my trusty bird to the trash !
     
  5. Buckaye

    Buckaye New Member

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    Aug 28, 2014
    Posted by Buckaye, Aug 28, 2014 #5
    I hate to be an additional downer... but I have been in RC Heli's for a long time - and aside from plastic - you cannot rely on anything really surviving a salt water bath. Even if a component miraculously seems to survive for the moment, you run a great risk of sudden failure in the future. I think you're looking at a complete rebuild (minus perhaps the shell) - and it seems like that would spell that it's cheaper to replace.
     
  6. roblysak

    roblysak Member

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    Posted by roblysak, Sep 12, 2014 #6
    And one more downer.... I lost mine in two feet of salt water for maybe a minute, had easy and quick access to fresh water as well. Washed it down with Iso and a long dry. Within a week, one of my motors died followed by another. I replaced all of them with Anti Gravity's. Next was a ESC, i replaced all of them considering the situation. It didn't stop, the MC failed followed by the NAZA. Today i finally managed to start it tethered for a flight and guess what, the GPS crapped!
    Advise, and serious advise, by another one and salvage some parts, time your done spending on repairs you will easily be able to buy a new one. If anyone gives you advise other wise, they don't know what they are talking about. Sorry man, feel for ya!
     
  7. gtranquilla

    gtranquilla RadioActive

    Posted by gtranquilla, Sep 13, 2014 #7
    Sorry you had to experience that.

    Fresh water is not that great an issue apparently...... but for salt water, it is highly conductive so that battery and electronics short circuit immediately.
    In addition rapid water electrolysis occurs such that the positive terminal produces massive amounts of chlorine gas while the negative terminal produces massive amounts of oxygen.....
    both gases together can ignite and/or explode. meanwhile the affected water turns into a sodium hydroxide mix.... a very strong base..... that eats away copper in a manner similar to a strong acid.
     
  8. Fire_Island

    Fire_Island New Member

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    Posted by Fire_Island, Sep 14, 2014 #8
    Guys thanks once again for your responses.

    Sounds as if I may have to forget my repair project after all.

    Easy come, easy go. As they say.
     
  9. ShawnPisciotti

    ShawnPisciotti New Member

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    Nov 3, 2014
    Posted by ShawnPisciotti, Nov 3, 2014 #9
    It is possible to repair a salt water machine. I just finished a vision plus that went into salt water..I may be able to help you.
     
  10. gtranquilla

    gtranquilla RadioActive

    Posted by gtranquilla, Nov 3, 2014 #10
    Don't get your hopes up...... even an instantaneous soak in salt water might be too late!


     
  11. Coaster2coast

    Coaster2coast New Member

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    Essex UK
    Posted by Coaster2coast, Jan 18, 2015 #11
    It is possible, two weeks ago my Phantom 2 decided that its home point was in my local river, it is a tidal river, salt water and full of silt, i had to wait a full gut wrenching 3 hours before i could retrieve it from the receding tide. I immediately removed the battery and took it home and washed it in the rain water barrel, i then put it in a large container filled with silica gel to dry. when it was dry i used a contact cleaner and a medium artist brush to clean all the connections on the circuits, then did the same with the motors, it was not surprising that a certain amount of rust had built up, i then gave the motors a light coat of silicon grease. Having had a look at the battery disposed of it and ordered a new one.
    when the battery arrived i popped it in and powered up, light came on and flashed through the test sequence then went into the dreaded error 25. so i brought a new IMU unit which arrived Saturday, duly installed switched on all seems well, plugged into PC ran the update, no error codes! I have now taken it out for a couple of test flights (well away from the river) it fly's normally with no obvious ill affects, though i will be keeping an eye on the circuits.
    In all it cost £200 to repair ($300) yet to see if the gimble is working as, surprisingly my Gopro did not survive....
     
  12. haha49

    haha49 Member

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    Posted by haha49, Jan 18, 2015 #12
    Well you can try distilled water in the store instead of rain water. Then throw it in a bag full of rice to suck the moister out. Then take it apart and clean it well. 100 percent achol works best. (as long as it doesn't eat plastic so careful in what you buy)

    To take it out of fail safe you flip between alti and gps mode 2 times. It over rides the fail safe. The reason why it went ok the river is my return to home point is the lipo was past the cut off voltage so it didn't try to come back. If you disable or change the settings for first warning second warning on the lipo limit in the DJI settings it changes when it will just land vs fly back and land. What happened was it was flying back then switched to to low better land mode as the voltage went down. Chances are you lost radio for a split second and it switched over which is why I like the Mini osd it tells you what mode it's in gps ati and fail safe.
     
  13. saif

    saif New Member

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    Mar 25, 2015
    32904
    Posted by saif, Mar 25, 2015 #13
    what is battery connector ?

    main fall into the pool and now it makes the same sound as yours the clicking sound ?
    any one can help by telling me what to replace and whats the part number
     
  14. saif

    saif New Member

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    Mar 25, 2015
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    Posted by saif, Mar 25, 2015 #14
    can u help me plz
    what do i need to change if drowned in fresh water
    and what is battery connector ? whats the part no.
     
  15. A;KnightFlight

    A;KnightFlight New Member

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    Jul 12, 2015
    U.S.
    Posted by A;KnightFlight, Jul 12, 2015 #15
    There's a good video on the "FLIGHT TEST" website that deals with pretreating electronic components to prevent major damage from both fresh and salt water, although that would be a bit "after the fact" in your case. Also has some recommendations for "after the incident" steps to minimize damage. Although I HAVE done a lot of flight over water, I stopped doing so after an incident where radio emissions from a Coast Guard cutter caused some erratic flight behavior that barely allowed me to return to land. Unless I have the money and the desire to throw it away (probably never), I probably wont be doing overwater flights anymore.
     
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