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Proton 320 - will not stay turned off; comes back on by itself!

Discussion in 'Troubleshooting and Repair' started by cytherians, Apr 13, 2010.

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  1. cytherians


    Apr 13, 2010
    I am having a very peculiar problem with my Proton 320 hi-fi clock radio. It all started happening after I took apart the unit and reassembled it. I have taken apart dozens of electronic products before and reassembled with success, no lingering issues. My reason for opening up this unit was to examine the burned out bulb for the tuning dial (which turned out to be a wired grain of wheat bulb).

    After I reassembled the radio, I checked the functions and everything worked just fine. I turned off the radio and left the room. A few minutes later, I heard the radio was on. Thinking I imagined turning it off, I shut it off yet again. And once again, it turned back on after a few minutes.

    My assumption was that maybe somehow something didn't assemble properly. I unplugged the unit and disassembled it again. Nothing appeared to be out of the ordinary. I took a look at the switches and they do not appear to be fully mechanical. They are spring loaded, but the engagement is "soft". I'm thinking they must be microprocessor controlled. Anyway, I used an air compressor to blow out any debris that might be inside them. I reassembled the casing and plugged in the unit. This time, the radio came on immediately. I pressed the off switch again, and the radio came back on again within about 5 seconds--much faster than before. And repeat pressing of the buttons ended up resulting in the unit not staying off for more than a fraction of a second.

    So, the condition got even worse. Is this a bad on-switch, or a faulty processor? I've never seen this kind of problem before and searching on the Proton 320 does not turn up any other reports of this problem.

    Any advice on what I should check? Thanks!
  2. shrtrnd


    Jan 15, 2010
    It may be IC controlled on/off function. But your description really sounds to me like mechanical. Is something on the housing rubbing against the PB switch part? Rubbing against the spring? (Slowing it's return to 'off' position). Sometimes when you reassemble housing onto chassis, misalignment of the push-button itself rubs against the chassis, slowing or stopping it's free movement. Other thing to consider is sticking switch, from hand oils or things like that. If you haven't already, I'd spray the offending switch assy with a CONTACT CLEANER, THEN blow it out. BUT be especially careful with type of contact cleaner, make sure it says 'safe for plastics', some types will melt the plastic parts.
    Good luck.
  3. william_b_noble


    May 17, 2010
    you need to open it up and put it together being sure that the snooze and/or sleep switch is not being depressed by something - what it is doing is what it should do if one of thse is held down.

    Oh, and the radio was put on the market in 1982
  4. Tesla


    May 10, 2010
    There could be a glitch in the programming. Make it start flashing 12:00 and then reset all programming (including alarms).

    If the buttons use a "soft" keypad (not mechanical/analog switches) ... there might be some debris under the contact cups. This usually causes the switches to not make contact, but in your case, they might be causing an unwanted connection.


    Jul 1, 2010
    I am having the exact problem as Cyth! She won't shut off....when off button is depressed and held down, it turns radio off...but when it pops back up..the radio comes back on. I too, don't know if its a circuit problem, or switch problem??? AL
  6. Stelios369


    Aug 8, 2014

    I just wanted to chime in on this problem with the Proton 320 alarm clock. I've had mine for what seems like forever. A few days ago I went to set the alarm, tested the volume, and turned it off. Immediately, the radio came back on. It wasn't a radio station, but just an annoying humming/buzzing noise. I pressed OFF and nothing happened. The only way to turn it off was to unplug the radio. I tried a different electrical socket and I had the same problem. I've never had a problem with this clock radio. I'd hate to have to get a new one, but repairing it seems silly since it is so old.
    Anybody have any suggestions?
  7. Gryd3


    Jun 25, 2014
    Sometimes the older devices are easier to fix than the newer ones!
    Sometimes they seem more robust as well. May be worth taking a look at least. If most of the circuit is comprised of a propitiatory IC then it may be toast.
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