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Reed Switch Question

masada

Aug 14, 2012
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Is it possible that a reed switch could go bad if it was stuck to a magnet for a considerable amount of time, say a year or so? I had a couple of them sitting in a drawer and they were stuck to a pack of earth magnets. Now it looks like the contact inside the glass tube is fused together.
I guess I can't tell if the two reeds are stuck together because of the magnets somehow, or if the distance between them is just really short. :confused:

I'm a novice to electronics, but I anticipate one answer to this would be to test them. If that's the case, what's the best way to test them / with what equipment?
 

shrtrnd

Jan 15, 2010
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If you have a multimeter, you can run a continuity check through the reed switch
using the ohm function.
Close to zero ohms for closed contact, Infinite ohm value for an open.
 

john monks

Mar 9, 2012
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Yes. I ruined a number of relays by sticking them onto neodymium magnets.
If you did this you might try a tape demagnetizer.
In my case I gave up on them and threw them away.
 

CocaCola

Apr 7, 2012
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If you did this you might try a tape demagnetizer.

A wonderful tool, especially if you work with speakers that have a tendency to magnetize every thing and tool on the bench as you move stuff around...
 

masada

Aug 14, 2012
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Thanks for the quick responses! I think I'll just get some new ones instead. Save myself the hassle. I'll have to check if Radio Shack has these. Seems like they would...
 

Raven Luni

Oct 15, 2011
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If you fancy building your own demagnetiser, the principle is pretty simple - just an electromagnet driven by AC to give you an alternating field. Other examples include the degauss function on old CRT monitors and a larger version used on ships to stop them attracting mines.
 

CocaCola

Apr 7, 2012
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If you fancy building your own demagnetiser, the principle is pretty simple - just an electromagnet driven by AC to give you an alternating field. Other examples include the degauss function on old CRT monitors and a larger version used on ships to stop them attracting mines.

I looked into that when I was in need of one, but since magnetic media has been on the phase out for years now you can get demagnetisers cheap now on the second hand market... I picked up an older bulk tape eraser on Ebay for $8 delivered, with $7 of that being the shipping ;) Just had to be patient for a few weeks watching for one that wasn't involved in a stupid bid war... I use it at least once a week on my tools, that always seem to find their way to being magnetized...
 

masada

Aug 14, 2012
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Thanks for that advice. I figure in the time it takes to order a demagnetizer, I could just get a new pack of reed switches. I suppose I'll get one soon enough as I get more into electronics.

Does anyone have a reliable place in the U.S. for me to order reed switches that you'd recommend? The size I'm looking for is about 13mm in length by 3mm wide (not including the leads).
 

masada

Aug 14, 2012
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Thanks CocaCola. I tried Radio Shack and the clerk looked at me as if I had seven heads.
 

CocaCola

Apr 7, 2012
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You can get them at Radio Shack if you gut them out of the reed relays they carry in stock...

But, yes Radio Shack has become a joke overall unless you need batteries or a cell phone...
 
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