R7 sleeping/dead - heat related?

InsipidMonkey

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Heading out for some 4th of July festivities today, and noticed the R7 was suspiciously silent. Not a single BSM alert, door opener false, and no response to a series of Ka speed signs I usually get great range against. Confirmed I was in Highway mode with K and Ka enabled. Unfortunately I didn't have a radar gun with me to test, but the absence of any alerts at all had me pretty confident the detector was asleep or dead.

External temperature when I started the car was 85 degrees, and the car had only been in the sun for about an hour. I had the AC vent pointing at the R7 for the second half of the drive, and radar detection never recovered even though the case felt barely warm to the touch.

Parked in the shade for 2 hours with the windows cracked and went out for another drive. This time I got two brief K band falses (still in Highway mode). I'm glad to see it working somewhat again, but am concerned about the sensitivity and reliability now. Will do some more testing with real radar guns this weekend to see if it is reproducible and whether any permanent damage has been done.

@UnidenSupport can this unit be repaired or exchanged under warranty?
 

InsipidMonkey

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I had a V1 I left on a windshield of a hot car for a couple of days and detection was never the same.

Hopefully it recovers.
How old was it? I believe some earlier models had an issue with the horn solder joints (possibly due to early RoHS solder). Did VR repair it for free?
I never take my v3.8952 down and have never had a problem.
 

venom690

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How old was it? I believe some earlier models had an issue with the horn solder joints (possibly due to early RoHS solder). Did VR repair it for free?
I never take my v3.8952 down and have never had a problem.
It was one of the later models, it was 3.85 I think, the one before the last, I mean it still worked , just the range was never the same
 

aim4squirrels

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My Texas 95° laughs at your 85°:lol:. R7 is still ticking...bet there's hotter areas out there than me with detectors left on the windshield.

Test it before you condemn it. If you really think it's the heat, what's going to be different about the new one by the end of the summer? I know I'm not interested in a detector that can't stay up on the window indefinitely. If that's your MO as well, you should know by testing it first hand if the R7 is going to be the right choice.

Make the tool work for you, not the other way around.
 

Deadhead1971

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@InsipidMonkey I am concerned too. there were similar reports over the years with the R1 and R3. Some were overreactions while others valid. And the ones that had problems and sent back, we never had a diagnosis of what really was going on.

Trust your gut. I am sorry about this because once confidence is lost, it will never be the same with the same unit- even if it starts working again- you’ll always wonder. If it’s the heat, this should probably happen again (repeatable). Please keep us updated. I don’t have a solution but I’ll offer support.

I had an escort X50 years ago, it lost detection and started having a lot of laser falses, and I sent it back to escort for repair- I got the same unit back- worked better than before when new- with a note that they “recalibrated and replaced the antenna.”

Unfortunately Uniden does not operate like this so we know the fix.
 

InsipidMonkey

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Bench tested quickly with a Talon and Falcon HR once it cooled down and all seemed normal. Threw the guns in the car so I can test on the road tomorrow and see whether it's heat related. Will also grab an IR thermometer so I can check the R7 temperature if it happens again.
 

knight_man

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Heading out for some 4th of July festivities today, and noticed the R7 was suspiciously silent. Not a single BSM alert, door opener false, and no response to a series of Ka speed signs I usually get great range against. Confirmed I was in Highway mode with K and Ka enabled. Unfortunately I didn't have a radar gun with me to test, but the absence of any alerts at all had me pretty confident the detector was asleep or dead.

External temperature when I started the car was 85 degrees, and the car had only been in the sun for about an hour. I had the AC vent pointing at the R7 for the second half of the drive, and radar detection never recovered even though the case felt barely warm to the touch.

Parked in the shade for 2 hours with the windows cracked and went out for another drive. This time I got two brief K band falses (still in Highway mode). I'm glad to see it working somewhat again, but am concerned about the sensitivity and reliability now. Will do some more testing with real radar guns this weekend to see if it is reproducible and whether any permanent damage has been done.

@UnidenSupport can this unit be repaired or exchanged under warranty?
I had this exact problem. (Another post- “R7 potential issue”) You can’t leave the R7 out to the heat. Once I started taking the unit down (using the included sleeve to avoid scratching the lenses) I stopped seeing the degraded performance. My R7 is back to normal rocking. Also, it seems degraded performance even when the unit is working- seems like CPU throttling. Your phones, computers (most modern electronics) have a similar feature to keep from frying the unit when it gets too hot.
 

InsipidMonkey

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I had this exact problem. (Another post- “R7 potential issue”) You can’t leave the R7 out to the heat. Once I started taking the unit down (using the included sleeve to avoid scratching the lenses) I stopped seeing the degraded performance. My R7 is back to normal rocking. Also, it seems degraded performance even when the unit is working- seems like CPU throttling. Your phones, computers (most modern electronics) have a similar feature to keep from frying the unit when it gets too hot.
Thanks! I thought I remembered seeing that, but did a search and was only finding R1/R3 related posts. Here is the thread for others reference: R7 potential issue

Like @aim4squirrels said, 85 isn't that hot, and it's not like the detector was sitting all day baking in the sun. Plenty of members here have had no issues running the R7 in much hotter conditions, so at this point I'm leaning towards a hardware issue (solder joint, chip out of spec, thermal paste not applied, etc). My R7 was from the BRD pre-order batch with a S/N in the 2000s. @knight_man what was your S/N?
 
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BoyntonStang

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I had similar issues with mine. I returned it today to Best Buy as it was my last day to return it. I saw daily degraded performance. Unfortunately my commute back home is always in the 90. But also a I have had bad luck with BB units so not sure if being a BB unit was the issue with mine.
 
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knight_man

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Thanks! I thought I remembered seeing that, but did a search and was only finding R1/R3 related posts. Here is the thread for others reference: R7 potential issue

Like @aim4squirrels said, 85 isn't that hot, and it's not like the detector was sitting all day baking in the sun. Plenty of members here have had no issues running the R7 in much hotter conditions, so at this point I'm leaning towards a hardware issue (solder joint, chip out of spec, thermal paste not applied, etc). My R7 was from the BRD pre-order batch with a S/N in the 2000s. @knight_man what was your S/N?
SN 9a0049xx. Got it from BB.
 

davidc502

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The R7 can handle a storage storage temperature of above 200 degrees and a operating temperature above 165. Maybe if you were in the middle of Death Valley with the car running but no air conditioning would you even come close to challenging the max operating temperature. Heat has been in the forefront of detector design going back to the 1960's, and a bit of 85-95 or even 105 degree temperatures aren't going to threaten the reliability of the R7.
 

BoyntonStang

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seems like CPU throttling. Your phones, computers (most modern electronics) have a similar feature to keep from frying the unit when it gets too hot.
I think you might be onto something here. Heat has always been the death of electronics. Even when they are rated to work at x temperature it doesn’t mean it will work at full power at that temperature. It just means it will work. Computers normally slow down or even crash when they get too hot. It’s just protection. A detector cannot have too much insulation and doesn’t have fans to cool them down so they might throttle down power until the unit has cool down enough to operate full power. Who knows. Mine just wasn’t doing it. I hope to have better luck on my next unit. Probably from BRD.
 

knight_man

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Thanks! I thought I remembered seeing that, but did a search and was only finding R1/R3 related posts. Here is the thread for others reference: R7 potential issue

Like @aim4squirrels said, 85 isn't that hot, and it's not like the detector was sitting all day baking in the sun. Plenty of members here have had no issues running the R7 in much hotter conditions, so at this point I'm leaning towards a hardware issue (solder joint, chip out of spec, thermal paste not applied, etc). My R7 was from the BRD pre-order batch with a S/N in the 2000s. @knight_man what was your S/N?
Also, not a bashing type statement, I obviously own multiple brands, but my Radenso doesn't seem to get as warm to the touch. The other day in the 90s I was parked in the sun in the family car; I could barely touch the steering wheel. Under the hood and body panel heat was brutal. Pro M was warmish at best. (But I still took it down for good measure.)

I had similar issues with mine. I returned it today to Best Buy as it was my last day to return it. I saw daily degraded performance. Unfortunately my commute back home is always in the 90. But also a I have had bad luck with BB units so not sure if being a BB unit was the issue with mine.
I got my lousy R1 from BRD. Luck of the draw, it seems. (QC at manufacturing level, not necessarily the distributor).

On the upshot, Uniden mail in warranty is a pretty easy process. Just unfortunate to have to pay initial shipping and go through the whole ordeal.
 

Deadhead1971

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Heat has been in the forefront of detector design going back to the 1960's
The 1960s? You sure about dat? I may have learned something today
 

davidc502

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The 1960s? You sure about dat? I may have learned something today
Actually, the first detectors were made in the late 50's by amateur radio enthusiasts (HAM's) - BTW I'm a HAM too! The first commercially available detectors were available in the 1960's. My father and I used to take trips in the 1970's with his trusty Whistler radar detector, and even to this day runs a Uniden R3 which I helped him make a decision on. I bought my first radar detector in 1986, and ran them in all my cars until around 2000. It wasn't until the 2016-17 when I bought the Radenso Pro SE, then the Pro M, and now the Uniden R7.

So, detectors have been out a very, very long time, and as I mentioned earlier, they are designed to take the heat because these companies know they are going to get really hot sitting in the windshield.
 
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Brainstorm69

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I went to my niece's house (about 60 miles away and out in the boonies) today and didn't even think to take my R7 off the WS when I parked in her driveway/yard. 2.5 hours in mid-nineties degree heat on a sunny Texas day (not shaded). Didn't seem to have any problems on the way home, although it was quiet on Adv K=30%, so turned on Hwy until I got back to the city. Had to put City mode back on then (my wife isn't an RD lover).
 
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UnidenSupport

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Heading out for some 4th of July festivities today, and noticed the R7 was suspiciously silent. Not a single BSM alert, door opener false, and no response to a series of Ka speed signs I usually get great range against. Confirmed I was in Highway mode with K and Ka enabled. Unfortunately I didn't have a radar gun with me to test, but the absence of any alerts at all had me pretty confident the detector was asleep or dead.

External temperature when I started the car was 85 degrees, and the car had only been in the sun for about an hour. I had the AC vent pointing at the R7 for the second half of the drive, and radar detection never recovered even though the case felt barely warm to the touch.

Parked in the shade for 2 hours with the windows cracked and went out for another drive. This time I got two brief K band falses (still in Highway mode). I'm glad to see it working somewhat again, but am concerned about the sensitivity and reliability now. Will do some more testing with real radar guns this weekend to see if it is reproducible and whether any permanent damage has been done.

@UnidenSupport can this unit be repaired or exchanged under warranty?
The unit can handle temperatures somewhere around 200 degrees for storage without problem. It's likely that if you are having troubles after it being left in a hot car, you had a problem beforehand.

you can certainly send it in if you are concerned.
 

Deadhead1971

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200 F ?

That’s almost grillin’ bbq temperatures. :hampants:
 

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