November 21, 2018

By Shaker: Steve Caron

Today (Friday, November 16th), when I got home from work I noticed that my RS4D had gone offline around 7am. Very unusual. The RS4D just usually runs without issue. I thought maybe the SD card had corrupted and I needed to create a new one.

So, I opened up my vault to see what lights were on or off. (You can see details of my vault here). Then I saw my worst nightmare. WATER! My heart sank. I could not tell at first if the RS4D was completely submerged or not. I then realized that the water had just come just to the bottom of the RS4D. I put the RS4D to the side to let any moisture dry out.

My vault with RS4D and without water!

My now wet vault!

After the initial panic, I started to try and figure out where this water had come from. The vault has been in place for about one and a half years. I have checked it after heavy rainfall and have had no issues. In fact, we have not had any significant rain is Southern California for months and the water table should not be an issue up in the hills where I am… This was not making any sense.

Then it occurred to me to check the sprinkler valve about 2 feet from the vault. Hmmm… it had a constant couple of drips.

I am pretty sure the valve is my culprit. I believe, I became overconfident in my vault and I had not opened it up for at least two months. The sprinkler valve is covered and it could have been leaking for a long enough time to saturate the ground and work its way into the vault.

I did make a modification to the vault that may have helped with the water penetration. I used to have a full layer of spray foam insulation between the pier and the inner wall of the vault. A few months back I removed a good amount of the foam to create separation from the pier and the foam to see if there was any noise reduction. I added sand in the place of foam. I am not sure if the foam would have stopped the water. However, I think I will put the foam back after this.

Lessons learned…. Check the vault on a regular basis and check and replace leaky sprinkler valves!

Oh yeah….. I was very nervous about adding power back to the RS4D. It felt like the longest boot ever 🙂

Good news! The RS4D appears to be perfectly fine and my RS4D is now back online at its temporary home located in the garage. My only loss at this point is a $11 POE splitter. The splitter was totally submerged.

So, I am very fortunate indeed. Once the vault and ground drys out I will place the RS4D back in the vault. From now on, I will be checking in on it a lot more often!

–Steve Caron

Checkout Steve’s now fully operational (and dry!) Raspberry Shake on Station View here.

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