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Provari Radius acting wonky after 1 year

Discussion in 'VV/VW APV Discussion' started by peterk1, Jan 29, 2018.

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  1. peterk1

    peterk1 Full Member

    Mar 8, 2016
    Hi Guys,

    Just wondering if there are some Radius owners out there who have perhaps seen the same thing.

    I purchased my Radius about a month before ProVape shut down. I used it like crazy all of last year and it was incredibly reliable and I was totally thrilled with it.

    A few weeks ago, through, it started acting really weird. I'd put a freshly charged battery in it and it would give me one or two hits and then the button would start flashing red and would signal an empty battery. Removing the battery and putting it back in resets everything, but it goes back to empty battery again very quickly.

    A lot of times when it's working "properly", the mod will "reboot/reset" after a hit.

    The strange behavior is only happening when I have a tank on top.

    It looks like this is either because the Radius needs to be cleaned or the the spring needs to be replaced. There's no noticeable gunk anywhere but I'm cleaning it fairly frequently with 99% Iso Alcohol - metal terminals, the spring, everything except the top contact point which I can't really reach with a Q-tip. The manual warns against trying to remove that top panel, so I haven't done that yet. After cleaning it works properly for maybe 1 tank and then starts acting wonky again.

    I didn't take Provapes advice to almost never remove the battery and to use the internal charger. I've been using my own charger (since it's way faster) and have been replacing the bettery maybe 2-3 times for a year. The spring may have lost some of it's force.

    Just wondering if the long-term radius users have a sort of standard maintenance procedure they run through. I know there is still a repairman fixing Provape stuff, but I don't think I'm going to bother with that if this turns out to be something that happens every year. Too much trouble.
     
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  2. Frenchfry1942

    Frenchfry1942 Chillin' Verified Member ECF Veteran

    Jan 12, 2014
    Sky Island
    Cleaned. There are some YouTube videos that are worthwhile.

    Pretty simple actually once you get a 2-3 cleaning tools. You will see them in the videos. Basically, Wal-Mart.

    I clean all mine once a year (Christmas) and no troubles ever.
     
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  3. peterk1

    peterk1 Full Member

    Mar 8, 2016
    Didn't find any videos specifically for the Radius, but found this one



    I have a hard time believing that a bit of invisible gunk on the only contact I haven't been able to clean yet can be responsible for turning this mod from heavenly to a nightmare...but I'm willing to get (or make) some long Q-Tips to give it a try. Will post back.
     
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  4. Frenchfry1942

    Frenchfry1942 Chillin' Verified Member ECF Veteran

    Jan 12, 2014
    Sky Island
    Don't forget the 510 contact, battery contact, spring, and the gap between the button and the body.

    Wal-Mart pharmacy area has individual-packaged alcohol pads at like a dollar for 200. I don't work in a mud field, but my hands do get dirty.

    I think some send their Provari back to the "spa" because they have many to use during the shipping process. I am just happy to tinker while a sports game is on.
     
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  5. peterk1

    peterk1 Full Member

    Mar 8, 2016
    I've done all of those points. I've even immersed the spring and bottom piece in an alcohol bath for a few minutes. And I've immersed the bottom portions of my tank as well when I build a new coil.

    I've just scotch-taped 2 Q Tips together and that let me get to the top battery contact. I've also just cleaned the tops and bottoms of my batteries.

    Right at this very moment, it's acting fine (awesome vape! It's way better than my backup mod at the same W setting) but it took a few tries to get my battery to "catch" and to get the light show happening on the button.

    But the more I think of it and fight with it, the more I'm convinced that it's the wire that's connected to the end piece. It's probably become weak due to all the battery changes I've done in the past year and it's now providing a slightly unstable ground to the circuit which is so sensitive that it resets whenever that happens.

    =================

    And now it's acting crazy again. Was OK for 75% of a 2ml tank.

    Very frustrating.

     
    • Like Like x 1
  6. Frenchfry1942

    Frenchfry1942 Chillin' Verified Member ECF Veteran

    Jan 12, 2014
    Sky Island
    Oh, I USB charge so that may be a difference since I rarely open mine up to let hand/air dirt get in.

    Bottom line, I just have occasionally done a good cleaning. If your's need to be sent to the shop and put up on the rack, so be it.

    I think a lot of dirt/oils just come from handling them.

    Good luck!
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
  7. peterk1

    peterk1 Full Member

    Mar 8, 2016
    I finally got my Radius working mostly properly again without sending it in. Just going to post the solution here in case others in future run into the same situation.

    For most of my first year I've been building 0,4 Ohm coils for it and it worked really well (the lower limit is 0.3 on the Radius). Last night, I decided to try building and trying 0.8 Ohm coils for the first time using thinner wire and running at a lower wattage (27W instead of ~30W) and it seems to have done the trick. It looks like with 0.4 Ohm, you're starting too close to the limits of the device and as the coil heats up you can throw it into a self=protection zone where it will shut down early and even try to reset itself. I'm not sure why it didn't happen very often when the device was newer.
     
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  8. stols001

    stols001 Mistress of the Dark Nicotinic Arts Verified Member

    Supporting member
    May 30, 2017
    Tucson, AZ
    I think it's recommended to USB charge, not switch out the batteries each time they are drained due to this very issue. The radius is a pretty self-contained unit, unless you get a catastrophic leak or something, I wouldn't keep changing the batteries, as that spring/contact that touches the lower battery seemed pretty fragile to me, not to mention having to unscrew/rescrew those threads at the bottom, doing that too much would make me think they wouldn't last forever.

    I USB charge my radiuses, and trust me, I vastly prefer a battery swap out, but since it is specifically mentioned by the manufacturer to do it that way, I do. Also have a magnetic charger to cut down on wear and tear with the USB port.

    Best of luck that it continues to work!

    Anna
     
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  9. peterk1

    peterk1 Full Member

    Mar 8, 2016
    Yeah, I know. If I had two Radius', I think I would internal charge - but they shut down before I could get a second one. It's tough to put it down for 4-5 hours when I have a fresh battery already at the ready. I need to find a backup that I like as much as the Radius - or close.
     
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  10. Topwater Elvis

    Topwater Elvis Vaping Master ECF Veteran

    Dec 26, 2012
    Texas
    I use a Radius all day every day, charged mine exactly 3 times since new using the usb. I purchased mine about a month after being released.
    I change my battery whenever necessary, once or twice a day.
    My USB port seems to stay packed with mud, blood, grease / general grime and cow poo.

    To me it sounds like your batteries are nearing the end of their useful life.
    As they are used & age they lose the ability to provide the amps necessary.
    This causes the internal protection features to signal low battery.
    Proof is in when you used a higher resistance & the problem subsided, higher Ω demands less amps from the battery to function.
    It isn't acting wonky, it is telling you it is time for new cells.
     
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  11. peterk1

    peterk1 Full Member

    Mar 8, 2016
    You may have a point, most of the batteries in my rotation (I charge 4 batteries every day) are getting a bit old.
    But are the demands of a Radius so much greater than other mods? When I use these batteries in my backup at the same W setting with the same tank, there's never any problem at all.
     
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  12. stols001

    stols001 Mistress of the Dark Nicotinic Arts Verified Member

    Supporting member
    May 30, 2017
    Tucson, AZ
    Not necessarily. IDK if you are using it more because you love it the most, but I still think it's the fact that you aren't charging via the recommended route. I find my radiuses to not be "power suckers" but if you have left your display screen on the highest setting (which I have heard you might not want to do as the display can burn out) and you button is the 7-flashing lights setting, that might eat into your radius power demands. I really think it's the charging method and the mod getting dirty over time.

    If you have other mods, endure the torment of the USB charge, if you ask me. You can try changing your settings to reduce power demands and charge it near the end of the day. There is no use swapping out batteries constantly, over time you may kill your radius and then you will have 0 of them..

    Anna
     
  13. Topwater Elvis

    Topwater Elvis Vaping Master ECF Veteran

    Dec 26, 2012
    Texas
    First point, Provape devices in general have conservative safety features.
    More accurate, 'safe' & efficient than the majority of other devices.
    A Radius will actually give a low battery signal at various voltages, a brand new authentic name brand cell may drain to 3.2v while an older used cell may trip the low batt signal at as high as 3.8v.
    The reason the same cell continues to function in another device is due to the radius's outstanding & conservative safety features.

    A battery that when new was 20a CDR with age & usage can end up only being able to provide a few amps due to an increase in voltage drop, caused by loss of capacity.

    It has nothing to do with the method used to charge the cell. usb/external charger.
    The recommendation to charge internally is suggested mostly as a convenience feature, as long as you don't twist or fiddle with the negative puck on the wire you'll have no problems.
    The wire & puck can be re soldered in less than 4 seconds if it does somehow become detached.

    You are not going to kill your Radius by removing the battery frequently, charging externally or using at any setting you wish.
    Use an authentic name brand cell 15/20a CDR 3000mah from a reliable source and be happy.
    Samsung 30Q
    Sony vtc6
    LG HG2

    I buy my cells here ---> Batteries and Chargers
    The only place I trust 100%.
     
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  14. JimzDogz

    JimzDogz Super Member Verified Member ECF Veteran

    Well stated sir and I concur 100%, since I have had the same problem with some old Trust Fire batteries. After upgrading batteries, no more problems. I love both my Radius. If they hold up as well as my (2) ProVari v2, that I started vaping with over 6 yrs. ago ( and still see daily use) have, well then I will probably die without having to grieve the loss of one of my precious ProVape mods. ha, ha, ha
     
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  15. peterk1

    peterk1 Full Member

    Mar 8, 2016
    Turning into a good and very informative thread. I'll upgrade my batteries pretty soon to see if there's an improvement.

    In the meantime - these 0.8 Ohm coils are really great. They heat up so much faster than the 0.4s did and I'm using less power because of that. Awesome vape.
     
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  16. Frenchfry1942

    Frenchfry1942 Chillin' Verified Member ECF Veteran

    Jan 12, 2014
    Sky Island
    There used to be a Provape forum under the vendor listing that had a good forum, but when Provape closed so did the forum. Nowadays, there is a forum in the lounge that is a hangout with many experienced people. It is located here:

    ProVarinati Diner & Saloon and Beyond

    Good luck!
     
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  17. JimzDogz

    JimzDogz Super Member Verified Member ECF Veteran

    I like using SS wire for my coils, for the clean taste. So, I build my Radius coils to about .6 ohms, which leaves room for the resistance to drift a bit as SS wire does. Just a tip in case you try SS coils.
     
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  18. Jingles

    Jingles Ultra Member Verified Member ECF Veteran

    Supporting member
    Jul 18, 2011
    Ohio
    Next month it will be time for my second battery swap out in my Radius. I think I bought it the end of 2016 maybe on a Black Friday sale. It's much easier for me to USB charge it and not worry about swapping out the battery in it. I do have other devices to use while it's charging though.
     
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  19. fivefivesix

    fivefivesix Senior Member ECF Veteran

    May 27, 2010
    california
    Radius really made me sad. I still have mine and love it and its a very well crafted piec of art and I have been a provape fan since my provari years and years ago but it makes me sad how much beter performance I get from a cheep junky mod.
     
  20. ImThatGuy

    ImThatGuy Ultra Member Verified Member ECF Veteran

    Sep 1, 2012
    California
    I like gold...
     
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