Here’s another Eberspacher control unit, this time from an ancient D5W 5kW water heater. The system in this case is just flaky – sometimes the heater will start without fault & run perfectly, then suddenly will stop working entirely.
The error codes are read on these very old units via an indicator lamp connected to a test terminal. In this case the code was the one for Overheat Shutdown.
Considering this fault occurs when the heater is stone cold, I figured it was either a fault with the sensor itself or the ECU.
The temperature sensor is located on the heat exchanger, right next to the hot water outlet fitting. I’m not sure what the spec is, but it reads exactly 1KΩ at room temperature.
The PCB is held into the aluminium can by means of crimps around the edge that lock into the plastic terminal cover. Inserting a screwdriver & expanding the crimps allows the PCB to be slid out.
The factory date stamp on the microcontroller dates this unit to March 1989 – considerably older than I expected!
Unlike the newer versions that use transistors, this ECU has a bunch of PCB relays to do the high current switching of the water pump motor, fan motor & glowplug.
Overall the board looks to be solidly constructed, with silicone around all the larger components.
Here’s the solder side of the PCB, which has a generous coating of sealant to keep moisture out.
Looking at the solder joints for the row of relays on the top side of the PCB, it looks like that there’s some dry joints here.
I suspect that years of vibration has taken it’s toll, as the relays are otherwise unsupported. It wouldn’t be possible to use silicone to secure these devices as they are completely open – any sealant would likely stop them from operating.
Using a very hot soldering iron I managed to get the joints to reflow properly, using lots of flux to make sure the conformal coating didn’t interfere with the reflow.