hot tub topside panel and other issues


  #1  
Old 12-03-23, 06:50 PM
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hot tub topside panel and other issues

Hi all,

I have a 240V hot tub (Artesian Springs, Santa Cruz model; Balboa controller, Model MBP501UX PN 56931-03), with a 50amp breaker. The tub has worked fine for 3 years, with the exception that about a year ago the topside panel stopped working (no display at all). This was replaced and things worked fine for the next year.

Last week the topside panel was once again dead (no signal): My wife reported that she was about to put chemicals in the tub, hit the topside panel to wake it up, heard a "click" sound, and the panel went dead. The breaker was not tripped.

I verified with the multimeter that the tub was still getting 240v (2 x 120v inputs) and that all of the fuses in the control panel (not the topside panel, which is not fused) were intact. I turned power off and on at the main panel and again at the breaker box. Still no response from the topside panel. I figured that the topside panel had gone bad again. I ordered a new one.

Upon installing the new topside panel, I was surprised that it was also nonresponsive (dead, no signal). The topside panel is clearly not the problem. I swapped back and forth between the 2 topside panels (old and new) and, out of the blue, the old panel worked...

Sort of... I ran the pumps, etc. and things appeared to work fine. Then, dead again. After filpping the breaker switch off then on, and re-installing the topside panel connection (topside panel still dead at this point), I was re-checking the fuses with the multimeter for continuity and I heard an audible "click" sound. The topside panel was again on, and functioning fine.

This has now happened a few times. The topside panel will be dead...then not dead.

Any ideas what to do next? Thanks in advance!
 
  #2  
Old 12-04-23, 02:41 AM
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My opinion would be that the problem seems to be coming from the controls of the tub itself.
You use the word "panel" different ways so sometime diff to tell if you mean the breaker panel, the tub topside panel, the tub control (internal) panel.

The only thing that I would do to determine if in fact it is an electrical issue within the tub itself that is the problem is to test the voltage of the line at the breaker. If you get 240v from leg to leg and 120v from each leg to neutral and ground then the breaker is fine. Doing the same thing where the power comes into the disconnect at the tub and determine the voltage there. If the same then it is an internal issue with the tub.

If you don't get good voltage readings at the panel then it may be the breaker. If you have another 50amp breaker in the panel swap the wires to that breaker and run the tub and see if the same thing happens. I myself would not go and start poking around the inside of the tub looking for the electrical problem. Not my thing. That would be more of a manufacturer problem. If the electrical panel 50amp breaker is a GFCI then you would want to swap it with another 50amp GFCI breaker which more than likely you would not have i the panel. But if you do swap with another 50amp GFCI breaker you would need to be sure you move the 2 hot legs and the neutral from the existing breaker and place it on the test 50amp GFCi breaker.
 
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Old 12-04-23, 09:44 AM
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Thanks for the reply.

To clarify, there is a main electrical panel at the house, a GFCI 50amp breaker at a separate subpanel nearby the tub, the "topside panel" on the tub (which is used to control the tub, and which is connected to the tub internal panel), and following your language let's call it the "tub internal panel" (the panel in the tub itself, to which the main power goes, etc.).

The topside panel is what is sometimes going dark. Neither the main electrical panel nor the 50amp breaker at the subpanel are ever tripped. The tub internal panel is always getting the proper 240v when it should. I agree that the problem seems to be not with the power getting to the tub but, rather, with the tub internal panel itself.

Thanks for any help anyone can offer and ideas of what to check next.

 
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Old 12-04-23, 10:51 AM
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Since the issue seems to be internal to the hot tub itself then I would contact the dealer or the manufacturer. They would have more specific troubleshooting ideas than most of us could offer; well at least more than I could offer.

You said:
I verified with the multimeter that the tub was still getting 240v (2 x 120v inputs) and that all of the fuses in the control panel (not the topside panel, which is not fused) were intact.
If you checked the fuses then you must have a schematic/electrical diagram of the tub showing the locations of the fuses in the tub. Maybe if you post the diagram someone more efficient in electronics may be able to help you here.

How old is the tub? You said it worked fine for 3 years. What is the warranty on it? If there is a valid warranty I would not be poking around and would call a qualified repair man. You may end up voiding the warranty by doing the work yourself.



 
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Old 12-04-23, 11:10 AM
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The tub is 3 years and 1 month old. The warranty was for 3 years.

Here are photos of the tub internal panel and its wiring diagram.




 
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Old 12-06-23, 01:47 PM
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Some additional information:

The tub has gone through its tantrum a few times now. Each time, it works for awhile just fine. Then, the topside panel goes dark, I check the main panel and the breaker box (subpanel) and see that neither has been tripped. I check that there is power to the tub, which checks out (120v x 2). I turn things off and on to no avail.

Twice now, though, with the topside panel dead and the power turned off and back on by me, I've been checking the main control panel of the tub (pictured above) for power and testing the fuses for continuity and I hear an audible "click" and things work again. It is as if probing the control panel -- specifically the fuses therein -- has caused something to turn back on that had turned itself off. Notably, all of the fuses appear fine and test fine with the multimeter for continuity.

Help!?
 
 

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