Tuesday, March 24, 2009

The Magic Smoke Escapes Again

The kids were all in their coats, and I went out to get the Cart to take them up the hill to Fiona's preschool. Disconnect the charger, close the trunk, switch it to forward... nothing. I switched it to reverse. Nothing again. Back in forward, and I suddenly started wishing for "nothing" as smoke erupted from under the seat and swarmed out the back. I pulled the emergency disconnect as fast as I could (thank God for that feature!) and hauled it away from the buildings, lest it catch fire or the batteries explode. Once the smoke cleared — and there was a tense minute or so when I worried that it wouldn't — I was able to open up the back and assess the damage.

It looks, to my untrained eye, like the same thing happened as last time: one of the forward or reverse relays got stuck, making a very hot, fast, discharge loop between the three batteries.

Maybe it's time to replace those relays and put in a circuit breaker...

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