SCANNER  TIPS  &
TROUBLESHOOTING

This is a compilation of tips, facts, technical information and troubleshooting.  Most things apply to many scanners however we will attempt to spell out things that are universal and those that apply only to specific models and brands.

Check with us often as we are building this file from scratch and will add to it as often as we can. Please bear with us and feel free to offer any tips that you may have that we have or may miss in this venture. 

FREQUENCY FAN CLUB
 

CLEARING  SCANNER'S  MEMORY / RESET

MANY SCANNERS CAN CLEAR SINGLE CHANNELS BY SIMPLY ENTERING 000.0000 AND PRESSING "ENTER". 

UNIDEN SCANNERS -ALL MODELS
The memory of all Uniden scanners can be cleared totally (all channels back to 000.0000) by using the following procedures:

1.  Place the scanner on it's back on a hard surface with it 
     turned "OFF". 
2.  Press down and hold down the following keys with your left 
     hand. (MANUAL), (2) and (9) -use HOLD, 2 & 9 on SC150B,
     SC150Y, SC230, BC72XLT AND THE BC92XLT. 

3.  While holding down these buttons, use your other hand to 
     turn the scanner power "ON".  Continue to hold all the 
     buttons down until you hear a "click" and all the channels
     are cleared to 000.0000.
      

RELM SCANNERS - ALL MODELS  PLUS RE2000ALPHA 

1.  Place the scanner on it's back on a hard surface with it
     turned "OFF".   Place it crossways with the bottom of the 
     scanner to your left.  Using your left index and middle 
     finger of your left hand cover the keys in the next step (3).
2.  Press down and hold the following keys with the two or 
     more fingers  above.   (MAN), (SCN), (PRI) & (SRCH)
3.  While holding down these buttons, use your other hand to 
     turn the scanner power "ON".   When it comes on you will 
     immediately see on the display screen "CLRING". 
4.  If it says, CLRING you can immediately release the keys 
     and in a moment or two the screen will be cleared.  If not
     start over at step 2 above.  Press harder this time to get
     them all down.

RADIO SHACK SCANNERS 

    Radio Shack scanners clear in many ways - see the book 
    that came with the scanner for specific method.  Some

    RS units are made by Uniden and can be cleared with the
    Uniden method above.  It won't hurt anything to try it if you
    don't have the instruction booklet.
 

BATTERY CHARGING INSTRUCTIONS 

SPECIAL NOTICE:  BEFORE PLUGGING A RECHARGER INTO A SCANNER OR BATTERY PACK, CHECK TO BE SURE THAT THE  CELLS IN THE UNIT ARE RECHARGEABLE.  CHARGING  ALKALINE OR REGULAR BATTERIES WILL CAUSE SEVERE DAMAGE IN YOUR SCANNER (BURST AND LEAK CHEMICALS).
NOTE:  MANY NEWER SCANNERS HAVE A SWITCH IN THE BATTERY COMPARTMENT THAT MUST BE SET TO "NiMH BATT." BEFORE THE RECHARGING CIRCUIT CAN BE ACTIVATED.  REMEMBER TO CHANGE IT BACK TO "REG. ALK. BATT" IF YOU CHANGE BACK TO NON-RECHAGABLE BATTERIES.

SCANNERS- MODELS LISTED BELOW 

UNIDEN / REGENCY
BC60XLT    BC60XLT-1 BC70XLT    BC80XLT    BC100XLT  BC200XLT  BC205XLT  BC120XLT  BC220XLT  BC230XLT   BC235XLT  BC245XLT  SC150B  SC150Y  SC180  SC200  R4020  R4030
NiCAD BATTERY - CHARGE 14 -16 HRS.  MAXIMUM
NiMH BATTERY --  CHARGE 36 HRS.  MAXIMUM

BC2500      BC3000
NiCAD BATTERY - CHARGE 14 -16 HRS  MAXIMUM
NiMH BATTERY ---CHARGE 24 HRS  MAXIMUM

RELM / RE2000Alpha
HS-100       HS-180       HS-200       RE2000ALPHA

NiCAD  BATTERY - CHARGE 14 -16 HRS MAXIMUM
NiMH  BATTERY -- CHARGE  36 HRS  MAXIMUM 

ALL TIMES GIVEN ABOVE ARE FOR STOCK STANDARD CHARGERS THAT WERE SUPPLIED WITH THE SCANNERS WHEN NEW.

AFTER MARKET "RAPID CHARGERS" SHOULD BE MARKED WITH TIME

FOR FULL CHARGE FOR EACH TYPE BATTERY.

STORAGE OF RECHARGEABLE BATTERIES 
NiCAD and NiMH batteries should be fully charged when put away for storage.  While in storage they should be charged back to full capacity every month or two while in storage.  Rechargeable batteries that are allowed to discharge to "totally flat" are subject to cell reversal (+ goes to -) thus rendering the battery a weak and/or dead.
 

Scanners that depend on the batteries to keep the memory up during storage periods should be stored on the scanners and recharged at least once monthly to maintain the memory (frequencies that are programmed will be lost) if power is not maintained during storage. 
 

LOSS OF POWER

BATTERY  TERMINALS - CARE AND CLEANING
 

FIRST  RULE: NEVER CHARGE ALKALINE OR REGULAR BATTERIES - ONLY RECHARGEABLE BATTERIES - OTHERWISE IT WILL RUIN YOUR SCANNER AND YOUR POCKETBOOK TOO!!!

Battery terminals and connections inside scanner battery compartments should be clean and shiny.  Clean them with a Qtip and alcohol.  Wipe any cloudy residue off with a clean cloth.
 

UNIDEN BC100/200/205XLT & REGENCY R4020/R4030
 

The slide on BP200 and BP205 battery packs work well if you will just keep the mating surfaces clean.  Clean them with alcohol and a clean cloth--not sandpaper as we often see.  Very small black specks, smaller than a grain of sand, are the most common problem we see.  These specks develop at the exact point of contact when the battery is snapped into place.  They are corrosion spots and will cause the power from the battery not to connect to the scanner.
These scanners were manufactured with two different types of connections that protrude from the bottom of the body: early models had "balls" while later models had "cones".  You can not see the specks on the chrome plated balls or cones.  We recommend that you GENTLY scrape a sharp knife blade over the lowest point that sticks down and touches the battery pads.  This is the only point that touches.  You will feel the speck "pop" loose if one is present as you move the knife blade over the point.  DO NOT SCRAPE THE CHROME PLATING OFF !!  Wipe them off with a clean cloth with alcohol.

Now clean the battery pads on top of the battery pack.  They only make contact in the very center where the ball or cone touch.  Black specks (corrosion) can be there too.  Slight knife blade scraping may be necessary but usually a pencil eraser or scrubbing with a "dollar bill" will usually clean it off.  Always clean it off with alcohol and a clean cloth when you finish.
 

Now that you have got them clean - KEEP YOUR FINGERS OFF THE CONTACTS - OIL FROM YOUR SKIN CAUSES MORE POOR CONNECTIONS THAN CORROSION.

RELM SCANNERS AND RE2000ALPHA

The problem areas here are the battery holders (holds the 4 "AA" batteries).  The metal contact slots on the bottom of the holder get oil from your fingers or often have a milky white haze on the metal.  Clean them with a Qtip and alcohol or just a clean cloth but get them clean and shiny.  When loading the pack with new batteries hold the batteries by the sides - NOT THE ENDS - again the oil from your skin will cause the batteries to make poor or no contact.  If you can, wipe both ends of the batteries on a piece of cloth (your shirt or pants will do ok) just get them clean. 

A word of caution about the contacts in the bottom of the battery box.  DO NOT BEND THE CONTACTS UP OR IF YOU DO DON'T BEND THEM UP OVER A VERY SLIGHT AMOUNT BECAUSE THEY WILL BREAK IF BENT UPWARD OVER 45 DEGREES.

Clean them with a Qtip and alcohol.  On many units if you look closely you will see Japanese fingerprints on the contacts - oil from their fingers.
 

UNIDEN BC60XLT/BC80XLT
 

Same tips apply here like the Relm above.  Keep you fingers off the battery tips - wipe them with a cloth or shirt tail during a race if you need to.  Clean contact areas with Qtip and alcohol.

Biggest problem area in the 60/80 are the crossover parts.  Where the back of the battery compartment carries power from the 2 batteries on the back to the front of the case.  These can get bent when not being careful when snapping the case closed.  They can also corrode  and need to be kept clean.

BC120XLT/BC220XLT/BC230XLT/BC235XLT/BC245XLT

These units all use the same type battery pack (4 rechargeable "AA" cells all heat shrunk together w/two wires with a connector).  Problems with this arrangement are few and far between with this pack.  The only real problem with the pack is abuse in unplugging the connector -use your fingers on the plastic connector - DO NOT PULL ON THE WIRES - THEY WILL PULL OUT OF THE CONNECTOR WITH ENOUGH PRESSURE.

The big problem with many of these units in the first several years of production (1994-1997) were the charging jacks.  The condition was, the battery was fully charged but the scanner will not turn on and operate.  The unplated jacks were used and caused a corrosion condition to set up and the battery would charge but the switch inside the jack would not close.  We have replaced hundreds of the jacks and finally production changed to  the  silver  plated  contact type switches and later units have been ok.  We still see some from time to time that have worked for a lot of years but they will fail in time.  We have cleaned some with a small wire to get people by at a race but changing the jack is the real cure.
 

WATER PROBLEMS - BAD  NEWS
 

Scanners should not get wet (you should always carry a plastic garbage bag folded neatly in your race bag to cover your scanner and headsets and your bag in case of rain).

Fresh water instructions.  Here is all you can do if you have this happen.  Get a phillips screw driver and a hair drier asap.  Start taking the scanner apart and place it on a dry surface.  Get the battery out and don't worry too much about it (new ones are cheap).  Take the body of the scanner apart as far as you feel that you can (at least get the back off of the unit).  Blow on it, shake it, rub it with paper towels and get the surface water off it.  Next take the hair drier and start trying to get the inside dry.  Use low heat or you can melt the plastic case. Don't get it too hot. Water damage is not covered by the warranty. 

Keep all the parts together and wrap them up in paper towels and little bags for the screws and etc.  It is going to have to come to the shop to have the keypad cleaned and we will put it back together then. 

Saltwater instructions - do like above but when you get it apart you need to wash it with a mild soap and water solution and then rinse with clear water and dry it good and pray.  If you wait too long corrosion will destroy the insides.

BACK FEEDING AM/FM  INTO HEADSETS 
Many fans want to listen to the AM/FM broadcast of the race and hear their race cars when they talk too.  This can be done in several ways.  It can be done with the scanner priority system, by using one of our AM/FM  headsets with scanner input or by a method we call "back feeding".  The AM/FM headset and the back feeding method are preferred over the priority system  since they eliminate the "click" or gaps in the radio broadcast.  Below is a diagram and parts list for "back feeding". 

 Click here for BACKFEEDING diagram
 

SCANNER TO SCANNER CLONING

INSTRUCTIONS  FOR THE UNIDEN SC200

UNIDEN’S OPERATING GUIDE explains the procedure for Scanner to Scanner cloning but not the parts necessary to connect the cables together for cloning.  The picture in the Scanner to Scanner section (page 39) shows a connector between the serial connectors on the ends of the programming cables but fails to state what kind of connector(s) is needed.

TO CLONE FROM ONE SC200 TO ANOTHER SC200 THE FOLLOWING PARTS ARE NECESSARY:

 1   NULL MODEM  ADAPTER  DB9  MALE TO  DB9   FEMALE 

 1  GENDER CHANGER – DB9 MALE/DB9 MALE

These parts can be purchased in many computer stores and are available through our Parts section (See REPAIRS/PARTS on our website).  The price is $12.OO (includes both parts) plus shipping ($3.00 by mail).

INSTRUCTIONS FOR THE RE2000ALPHA 

The RE Cloning Kit contains the PROCEDURE for cloning one RE2000ALPHA to another RE2000ALPHA.  Included in the Cloning Kit is the special cable necessary to connect the two units together for the cloning process.  The Kit is available on our website for $10 plus shipping.
 

GOT QUESTIONS, NEED HELP?  - WE OFFER  REPAIR SERVICES AND DO MANY MODIFICATIONS INCLUDING MODS THAT DOUBLE AND TRIPLE THE NUMBER OF CHANNELS IN MANY HANDHELD SCANNERS USED IN RACING.  WE OFFER REASONABLE RATES AND QUICK TURN AROUND.

GOT QUESTIONS, NEED HELP  - WE OFFER  REPAIR SERVICES AND DO MANY MODIFICATIONS TO HANDHELD SCANNERS USED IN RACING.  WE OFFER REASONABLE RATES AND QUICK TURN AROUND.

PRESENTED  BY  THE  FREQUENCY  FAN  CLUB

FREQUENCY  FAN  CLUB
298 Morton Rd
Gray, GA  31032


Website:  www.racescanners.com