Bolt+ Overheating - Cooling Method? - Please Post Pictures

Discussion in 'TiVo Bolt DVR/Streamer' started by JOSHSKORN, Jun 11, 2019.

  1. JOSHSKORN

    JOSHSKORN Member

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    I've looked over the forums and yes, there are other topics on the same thing, but what they lack, are pictures. I just got the dreaded message that my Bolt+ has overheated, and hopefully I can resurrect it, but I'll determine that in the morning. I tried it after 20 minutes, even though it was still warm. No lights.

    Please post your cooling method, devices used, with pictures (most importantly), and stats if you have them, as well. While using Laptop Coolers are fairly self-explanatory, other solutions (using fans, for instance) are not. For those, I'm a bit lost as to if you replace internal fans or set the TiVo Bolt+ devices on top of them, and if that's the case, in what manner. I'm also interested in knowing things such as reliability, noise levels and which is also most cost-effective.

    I have moved my TiVo Bolt+ out of its place and will just end up placing it on top of my rack. I may even swap it out to another room in the house and just settle with a TiVo Mini.
     
  2. JoeKustra

    JoeKustra in the other Alabama TCF Club

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  3. fcfc2

    fcfc2 Well-Known Member

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    Sorry no pictures, but the quickest easiest methods to cool a Bolt are to raise it up by placing almost anything under the 4 corners, removing the cable card cover is another quick easy one and lastly just pick up one of those laptop coolers and stick it under the Bolt, and use the Bolt's USB to power it.
    From the sound of it, you had your Bolt at the top of some type of enclosure....likely poorly ventilated as most are. But placing the Bolt "at the top" of the stack with other electronic components would likely be the worst location as all of the lower components would be acting as pre-heaters.
     
    Abbott25, krkaufman and jrtroo like this.
  4. JimT48

    JimT48 Member

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    Does this problem exist on the Bolt OTA? I have purchased the Bolt OTA but it hasn't arrived yet but I just noticed this problem with the Bolt and was curious.
     
  5. UCLABB

    UCLABB Well-Known Member

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    Better to be safe than sorry. Take steps to keep it cooler.
     
  6. BobCamp1

    BobCamp1 Well-Known Member

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    Does the fan still work? I think you're the first one to actually get that error message. I'm worried something was wrong with your Tivo BEFORE it overheated.
     
  7. JOSHSKORN

    JOSHSKORN Member

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    How would I know. It's back up and running after leaving it unplugged overnight.

    Also, how would I find out the temp information?
     
  8. Mikeguy

    Mikeguy Well-Known Member

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    ODT, on the System Information screen.
     
  9. BobCamp1

    BobCamp1 Well-Known Member

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    When you reboot, the fan runs at full speed for a few seconds and is very easy to hear. Then you can hear it gradually slow down.

    No one has reported the temperature (ODT) to be higher than 80 C, so if it is that's another sign something is wrong.
     
  10. JOSHSKORN

    JOSHSKORN Member

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    Thank you. I didn't see it at first. I think a more accurate description would be:
    MENU>HELP>ACCOUNT & SYSTEM INFO>SYSTEM INFORMATION

    Scroll down to page 3 (shortly after Service Connection information), for those having a hard time following it.

    Anyway, I'd purchased one of the suggested Laptop coolers. I didn't actually notice where the ODT value is prior to using the laptop cooler, I'd just noticed that with it, the value is around 57/58. I've just unplugged it to see where the value jumps to. Mind you, I do not have the CableCard cover off as some have suggested. this is the Laptop cooler I've purchased: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00NNMB3KS. I haven't changed any settings on it than what's out of the box, granted i don't see any switches on it that do anything, other than an on/off switch.

    At the time of this writing, with the fan unplugged, the ODT has gone up to 62, thus so far with a drop of 4-5 degrees with the laptop fan. I'll continue to monitor it. I will be moving my Bolt to a room upstairs where it'll sit on a subwoofer and be out more in the open, rather than enclosed in a rack (left/right/top/bottom, front and back are open). It also will not then be sitting on top of a receiver which gets hot.

    EDIT: In feeling around along the top of my Bolt+, I'd noticed that it seems to be hottest near the Coax port. Just wondering why this is and if there are any measures that can be taken to cool this area down, without modding the Bolt+, itself.

    Also, with the CableCard cover off, my ODT has lowered to 56.

    With all that said, what specific location of the Bolt+ is being measured for ODT? Can someone produce a picture and circle the area on the Bolt+?
     
    Last edited: Jun 14, 2019
  11. JoeKustra

    JoeKustra in the other Alabama TCF Club

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    The extra warmth at the rf input is normal for the Bolt and Roamio (I don't know why). The link in post 9 explains the measurement.
     
  12. Mikeguy

    Mikeguy Well-Known Member

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    Lol, you're welcome. I hadn't included the entire path, as I wasn't sure if you were on TE3 or TE4 and if the paths under each are the same (I'm not on TE4)--I trusted that you would know or could figure out where the System Info. screen is. ;)
    If you want further cooling, you always could purchase and use a further AC Infinity fan, aiming it at the Coax port. E.g.: https://www.amazon.com/AC-Infinity-...=B00G05A2MU&psc=1&refRID=HBK6H9K0Q7RGYBZ51V8E. Not sure how many people are going multiple fan devices.
     
  13. BobCamp1

    BobCamp1 Well-Known Member

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    All those temperatures look normal for a Bolt that is over something that is room temperature. That is good news.

    The ODT is the On Die Temperature and is located inside the main chipset. Unfortunately, it does not accurately represent the temperature inside the Bolt enclosure. Typically ODT temperatures run 20-30 C hotter than that. In theory the ODT can go up to 95 C before it overheats, but I don't know of anybody who has seen it over 75 C.

    I think in your case just don't put the Bolt over something else that is generating heat and you'll be fine. But there are other threads that discuss how to easily cool it without going crazy. The consensus seems to be a USB powered fan placed directly underneath the CableCard (door removed) with the fan blowing the air down. And using bottle caps on the corners to slightly raise the Bolt off the table/shelf.
     
  14. Mikeguy

    Mikeguy Well-Known Member

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    I had an old laptop 2-fan cooling pad around and put it under my Bolt box (with the cablecard compartment hatch removed, and with the Bolt box raised up by water bottle caps on the 4 corners). It blows air up (no option to reverse the direction) onto/into the Bolt box and has lowered the temp. by 6-7 degrees compared to no cooling pad.
     
  15. JOSHSKORN

    JOSHSKORN Member

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    So are you saying, in addition to placing the Bolt+ onto a laptop cooling device, I should also put some water bottle caps under the corners?
     
  16. Mikeguy

    Mikeguy Well-Known Member

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    I have--it really just is a "leftover" method from before I added a laptop cooler, but perhaps it provides some extra space for the blowing away of heat and for heat dissipation. I haven't done a temperature comparison with and without the water bottle caps, using the laptop cooler.
     
  17. JOSHSKORN

    JOSHSKORN Member

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    Ugh, so I just moved my Bolt+ from downstairs to upstairs. It was working fine until I unplugged it, then plugged it back in about 20 minutes later. No lights. However, I got the same thing the other day when it overheated, I'd unplugged it overnight, plugged it back in and it was back up and running. I might have to do the same thing. I've had the power unplugged for just over an hour and will probably go back upstairs in about an hour to try it. The HDMI and Coax are still plugged in, though. If I'm unsuccessful when I reattempt to plug it back in, I'll unplug everything for the night and try it again in the morning.
     
  18. JoeKustra

    JoeKustra in the other Alabama TCF Club

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    That's a good reason to not use the USB ports to power any add-on ventilation. The CPU is hot but the fan gets rid of the heat. Pull the plug and the fan stops yet the CPU is still hot. It is more work to adapt a wall wart to run a fan, but there are times when it can help.
     
  19. BobCamp1

    BobCamp1 Well-Known Member

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    Now I've changed my mind again. I think something is wrong with your Tivo's main chipset. I think you have a short somewhere which either prevents it from starting or allows it to start but later results in overheating.

    If that thing is under warranty I'd get it replaced.
     

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