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Old 01-23-2013, 08:16 PM   #1
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Default Anyone have an ActiveAir Speed Controller with an ActiveAir fan?

I have an ActiveAir 6-inch inline duct fan that works great. Since Amazon suggested it, and since Hydrofarm suggests it, I bought the ACSC speed controller. But upon plugging the fan into the controller, it causes the fan to hum loudly and spin very slowly on any setting of the dial. ActiveAir says they think I got a bad controller. But given all the confusion around brushless-works-with-this-not-with-that, does anyone know for sure that the ActiveAir speed controller linked above actually works with the ACDF6?

From what I read, the controllers that *don't* work with these brushless fans (like this one) all cause the hum and don't work well, just like the ActiveAir one.

Just looking for some confirmation before I pull the trigger on a new ActiveAir speed controller since my current non-working one is past the return window.

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Old 01-23-2013, 08:54 PM   #2
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If it is a brushless motor controller there will be 3 wires going to the motor, if its a brushed motor there will only be two wires. Thats the easy way to tell if its the right controller. Now weather or not its working properly is a different story...

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Old 01-23-2013, 09:09 PM   #3
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If it is a brushless motor controller there will be 3 wires going to the motor, if its a brushed motor there will only be two wires. Thats the easy way to tell if its the right controller. Now weather or not its working properly is a different story...
The controller has a 3-prong grounded plug (it's a wall-wart type thing) and a 3-prong socket into which the motor plugs in. I tested the controller with a random drill I had lying around, and it works great on the drill.

From the power-in plug, black wire is connected directly to motor-out socket. As is ground. The red wire goes to a control board, and from the control board another wire goes to the 3rd lead of the motor-out socket. The control board has a potentiometer (B250K), a high-current triac (STMicro BTA24) with a heatsink, a black rectangular overcurrent protector (10A @ 125/250V AC, 10A @ 24V DC), another small potentiometer marked "1M", three largish 400V capacitors (not electrolytic), a small diode and some random resistors.

By "3 wires going to the motor" do you mean grounded? Or is that "3 wires going to the motor" if I look in the fan itself?
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Old 01-23-2013, 09:50 PM   #4
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Common household drill motors are brushed. If the speed controller worked with your drill motor but not the fan it seems to me that either they are two different types of motors or the fan motor is not working. I am going to guess that the motor in the fan is a common brushed motor based on your statement that the ground and hot go straight to the motor socket. Because the controller works with the drill but the fan does not run I would check the fan motor before I ordered a new controller. Best of luck.

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Old 01-23-2013, 09:58 PM   #5
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Common household drill motors are brushed. If the speed controller worked with your drill motor but not the fan it seems to me that either they are two different types of motors or the fan motor is not working. I am going to guess that the motor in the fan is a common brushed motor based on your statement that the ground and hot go straight to the motor socket. Because the controller works with the drill but the fan does not run I would check the fan motor before I ordered a new controller. Best of luck.
When I plug the fan directly into the outlet (without the speed controller) then it works great. So I was assuming the fan was not the problem, since the hum/slowness only appears when the speed controller is used with the fan.
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Old 01-23-2013, 10:03 PM   #6
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Oh, found this on the ActiveAir site:

Q: What fans can I use a fan speed controller with?
A: Our fan speed controller (ACSC) will work with brushless motors, such as the ones commonly used with inline centrifugal fans. Do not use with blowers, booster fans, etc.

Of course, this was one of the FAQ on their site for the fan I purchased. But the specifications don't say whether the fan I bought is a brushless one, or whether it's considered a "blower" or an "inline centrifugal fan".

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Old 01-23-2013, 10:22 PM   #7
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I have the 8" active air fan and the SE controller you showed that doesn't work. It works fine...I haven't had any problems with humming or noise.

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Old 01-23-2013, 10:39 PM   #8
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I have the 8" active air fan and the SE controller you showed that doesn't work. It works fine...I haven't had any problems with humming or noise.
You mean you have the SE Electronic Stepless Speed Controller and that does work correctly with your ACDF8?
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Old 01-23-2013, 10:45 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dcbw
I have an ActiveAir 6-inch inline duct fan that works great. Since Amazon suggested it, and since Hydrofarm suggests it, I bought the ACSC speed controller. But upon plugging the fan into the controller, it causes the fan to hum loudly and spin very slowly on any setting of the dial. ActiveAir says they think I got a bad controller. But given all the confusion around brushless-works-with-this-not-with-that, does anyone know for sure that the ActiveAir speed controller linked above actually works with the ACDF6?

From what I read, the controllers that *don't* work with these brushless fans (like this one) all cause the hum and don't work well, just like the ActiveAir one.

Just looking for some confirmation before I pull the trigger on a new ActiveAir speed controller since my current non-working one is past the return window.
I have that exact setup and it works perfectly fine for me I haven't noticed the humming your explaining
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Old 01-23-2013, 11:21 PM   #10
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Exactly. Se strapless and active air 8". No probs. I can send video if you pm me ur email...


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