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Author Topic: Stalling / Intermittent problem on ETS EC sanders  (Read 2647 times)

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Offline SRSemenza

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Stalling / Intermittent problem on ETS EC sanders
« on: March 15, 2021, 10:45 AM »
From Festool USA in blue.

         Please note this is NOT a recall.


Festool is currently investigating a product performance issue that is the result of an electronic fault affecting a small
number of ETS EC model sanders. While this issue does not pose a safety concern, it is important that every user has the
same impeccable experience you expect from Festool. If you are having an issue with your ETS EC model sander, please
submit a repair request by going to the following website and completing the required information.

https://www.festoolusa.com/campaigns/microsites/onlinerepair

Once Festool receives your sander, they will verify if the issue is related to the known component fault. If it is not,
Festool will follow their normal warranty & repair procedures with the goal of getting your tool working and back to you
as soon as possible. However, if it is related to the known fault, Festool will reach out to you specifically to give you an
update on your sander.

All Festool tools are backed by an industry unmatched 3 Year Warranty/Service All-Inclusive program designed to give
customers peace of mind in situations like this. We sincerely apologize for any inconvenience this may cause and thank
you for your confidence and understanding as we work to resolve this issue as soon as possible.
« Last Edit: March 15, 2021, 10:54 AM by SRSemenza »

Festool USA does not pre-approve the contents of this website nor endorse the application or use of any Festool product in any way other than in the manner described in the Festool Instruction Manual. To reduce the risk of serious injury and/or damage to your Festool product, always read, understand and follow all warnings and instructions in your Festool product's Instruction Manual. Although Festool strives for accuracy in the website material, the website may contain inaccuracies. Festool makes no representations about the accuracy, reliability, completeness or timeliness of the material on this website or about the results to be obtained from using the website. Festool and its affiliates cannot be responsible for improper postings or your reliance on the website's material. Your use of any material contained on this website is entirely at your own risk. The content contained on this site is provided for informational purposes only and does not constitute professional advice.


Offline mino

  • Posts: 378
Re: Stalling / Intermittent problem on ETS EC sanders
« Reply #1 on: March 15, 2021, 11:22 AM »
For those asserting that "Festool should check/test their tools before release."

Things like this usually indicate a manufacturing issue which is not (yet) precisely understood.

E.g. a subcontractor component like a capacitor having a higher variance in its properties in turn causing a higher occurrence of unexpected behavior. E.g. way faster degradation of a random selection capacitor would not be detectable at manufacture time but be able to semi-randomly increase failure rates etc. etc.

The best thing is to send a matching mis-behaving tool to Festool to look into. The more affected tools they can identify, the easier/faster they can find or confirm root cause and come up with a remediation.

If you produce stuff things like this will happen, no matter how much quality control you do. What separates the companies is not if they have issues, but how they are handled vis-a-vis the customers.

Lets hope this gets a root cause soon. I am in line for an EC 150/5 too this year.
 [smile]
The Machine does not have a brain. Use Yours!
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
AGC 18@AGC 125 flange, BHC 18, C 12, CTM 36, DRC 18/4, PSC 420, RS 200, TSC 55
Protool: AGP 125, VCP 260
Narex: EDH 82, EFH 36@LR32, EVP 13 H-2CA, S 57 A
My Precious: 376, 376, 376 holy, 632, 1016 holy, 1400 holy, 2520, GECKO, GRS 16 PE, GRS 16 PE

Offline serge0n

  • Posts: 150
Re: Stalling / Intermittent problem on ETS EC sanders
« Reply #2 on: March 15, 2021, 12:32 PM »
Any specifics on what kind of behavior an impacted sander exhibits? My ETS EC 125 refused to turn on and randomly stopped twice so far, I wonder if it's related. It has not been an issue yet as it only occurred a few times in the past 2 weeks, but I am slightly concerned as previously the sander worked without any issues whatsoever for 2 years of almost daily use.

Offline Alex

  • Posts: 7386
Re: Stalling / Intermittent problem on ETS EC sanders
« Reply #3 on: March 15, 2021, 01:35 PM »
Any specifics on what kind of behavior an impacted sander exhibits? My ETS EC 125 refused to turn on and randomly stopped twice so far, I wonder if it's related.

That is exactly the problem that is looked into. You should contact Festool.

Offline xedos

  • Posts: 478
Re: Stalling / Intermittent problem on ETS EC sanders
« Reply #4 on: March 15, 2021, 02:29 PM »
For those asserting that "Festool should check/test their tools before release."

Things like this usually indicate a manufacturing issue which is not (yet) precisely understood.

E.g. a subcontractor component like a capacitor having a higher variance in its properties in turn causing a higher occurrence of unexpected behavior. E.g. way faster degradation of a random selection capacitor would not be detectable at manufacture time but be able to semi-randomly increase failure rates etc. etc.

If you produce stuff things like this will happen, no matter how much quality control you do. What separates the companies is not if they have issues, but how they are handled vis-a-vis the customers.

Lets hope this gets a root cause soon. I am in line for an EC 150/5 too this year.
 [smile]

We'll just have to disagree on this.   If a new production batch was sent out 20-100 users for evaluation before going on sale or being distributed; the issue(s) would have been identified in short order. 

Is this impractical , time consuming , and expensive ?  Perhaps.  But, Festool has said on this forum that they beta test tools before release.  They also said their wasn't anything wrong with the kapex motors too. 

Sure every manufacturing operation has issues.  But this is starting to become a credibility issue.  If these were tested any amount of time in real use, either in house and especially in the field , this issue would have shown up.  These are not inexpensive, high volume consumer tools or from a new venture that doesn't know what they're doing.

Offline mino

  • Posts: 378
Re: Stalling / Intermittent problem on ETS EC sanders
« Reply #5 on: March 15, 2021, 07:57 PM »
We'll just have to disagree on this.   If a new production batch was sent out 20-100 users for evaluation before going on sale or being distributed; the issue(s) would have been identified in short order. 
It is not that simple as that.

You can test even 1000 units. You can even test (by test I mean run a several-years-workload-simulation) a sample from every run of 1000 or so. BUT you will still not be able to catch all possible issues.

All that needs to happen is a scenario like the one I mentioned. A higher-than-normal variance in a capacitor quality from a bad batch by your supplier and you are screwed. Unless you were lucky, your (crazy-expensive sample testing like mentioned above) would STILL not catch many potential issues at all, or not soon-enough before they reach customers.

Today's tools are complex machines and there will always be things you miss or your supplier misses. You catch the problem, root cause it, figure out the scope, issue a remediation (when needed). That is the only way to deal with these in a sustainable way.
The Machine does not have a brain. Use Yours!
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
AGC 18@AGC 125 flange, BHC 18, C 12, CTM 36, DRC 18/4, PSC 420, RS 200, TSC 55
Protool: AGP 125, VCP 260
Narex: EDH 82, EFH 36@LR32, EVP 13 H-2CA, S 57 A
My Precious: 376, 376, 376 holy, 632, 1016 holy, 1400 holy, 2520, GECKO, GRS 16 PE, GRS 16 PE

Offline binettea

  • Posts: 40
Re: Stalling / Intermittent problem on ETS EC sanders
« Reply #6 on: March 15, 2021, 08:02 PM »
My ETS EC 150/5 would do it every time under load (onto a surface), usually within the first 2 minutes of operation. It could momentarily stop a couple of times, then completely stop after 2 minutes.

Offline Wood_Slice

  • Posts: 91
Re: Stalling / Intermittent problem on ETS EC sanders
« Reply #7 on: March 15, 2021, 08:50 PM »
It kinda sucks that my very first experience with a Festool power tool is this exact issue. I bought a ETS EC 125/3 sander end end lf 2020 and mine was produced in October 2020. It had both the intermitten shut offs and major wobble from very first use. I dont know what the issue is specifically but at this point i should think they have enough sanders being sent in for same issue to have figured it out by now. Its a small package there are only so many things that can be wrong with them. Mine was in repair for nearly a month and at that point I couldnt wait and wanted a refund instead. I dont want to have a sour feeling from my first power tool use by them. I did re-order it but not available for at least 4 months from now. Shame I have to rely on my big bix store dewalt ros.
DF 500 + Assortments | ETS EC 125/3 EQ | CT MIDI + CT-Fi| MFT3 + Elements| Installer's Set |

Offline squall_line

  • Posts: 243
Re: Stalling / Intermittent problem on ETS EC sanders
« Reply #8 on: March 15, 2021, 10:47 PM »
It had both the intermitten shut offs and major wobble from very first use. I dont know what the issue is specifically but at this point i should think they have enough sanders being sent in for same issue to have figured it out by now. Its a small package there are only so many things that can be wrong with them.

I'm sorry that this is your first experience with Festool; I wouldn't have a good taste in my mouth if my first experience went this way either, especially with a premium-priced product.

Just a word of reminder/caution that the posts on this website are not necessarily representative of the overall experience that customers have with the product, nor do they necessarily represent a reasonable sample size.  People who seek out web forums are usually a) experiencing a problem and looking for an answer, b) deeply motivated to learn more about the product, or c) looking for community and camaraderie, or some combination of those three.

I personally view this website as an enthusiast website first and a corporate outreach/customer service website second.  The experiences of people on this site may encompass a wide variety of personalities and use cases, but they certainly are not exhaustive nor statistically representative.  Forgetting this can cause institutional blind spots that manifest themselves in many different ways: corporations ignoring issues as 'not the general experience', corporations blowing issues out of proportion because of a vocal minority, customers feeling that issues are more widespread than they might actually be, customers vociferously defending the corporation against naysayers, etc.

I hope that your issue gets resolved soon and to your satisfaction.  I think there's a lot of good tools in the lineup (they're not all winners), and this seems to be a pretty good group of folk to be around.

Offline serge0n

  • Posts: 150
Re: Stalling / Intermittent problem on ETS EC sanders
« Reply #9 on: March 16, 2021, 12:54 AM »
Any specifics on what kind of behavior an impacted sander exhibits? My ETS EC 125 refused to turn on and randomly stopped twice so far, I wonder if it's related.

That is exactly the problem that is looked into. You should contact Festool.

Thank you. I will contact them a bit later, once it becomes a real nuisance.

@mino I agree, it's not that simple at all. Festool got to the root cause and is repairing impacted sanders free of charge if my understanding is correct. I'm out of warranty, so I wonder if they will fix mine for free.

Offline Alex

  • Posts: 7386
Re: Stalling / Intermittent problem on ETS EC sanders
« Reply #10 on: March 16, 2021, 02:41 AM »
Thank you. I will contact them a bit later, once it becomes a real nuisance.

If your machine is out of warranty it is probably too old to be part of the problematic batch that is discussed now, as I understood it is a problem with 2020/2021 machines.

You can send your sander in, but if it is not caused by the current problem, you might be charged for repair.

Offline mino

  • Posts: 378
Re: Stalling / Intermittent problem on ETS EC sanders
« Reply #11 on: March 16, 2021, 07:16 AM »
...
Mine was in repair for nearly a month and at that point I couldnt wait and wanted a refund instead.
...
IMO you did the right thing.
Once the issue is identified, it may take a couple weeks for fixed/replacement parts to be produced. Especially if the issue is in the electronics board.

Anyway, your experience would be consistent with Festool trying to figure out the root cause at the time you sent it in. Not wanting to replace a component with another (potentially) faulty one. If you do not know a precise root cause, you also do not know which batches are affected, including your spares stock..
The Machine does not have a brain. Use Yours!
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
AGC 18@AGC 125 flange, BHC 18, C 12, CTM 36, DRC 18/4, PSC 420, RS 200, TSC 55
Protool: AGP 125, VCP 260
Narex: EDH 82, EFH 36@LR32, EVP 13 H-2CA, S 57 A
My Precious: 376, 376, 376 holy, 632, 1016 holy, 1400 holy, 2520, GECKO, GRS 16 PE, GRS 16 PE

Offline binettea

  • Posts: 40
Re: Stalling / Intermittent problem on ETS EC sanders
« Reply #12 on: March 16, 2021, 08:26 AM »
@Wood_Slice interesting that you also mention the wobble in conjunction to the intermittent stopping issue, because my unit also had the severs wobble/vibration. Can't really see how it would be related, but certainly interesting to note that it seems the 2 issues at least at times are appearing together.

Offline WastedP

  • Posts: 366
Re: Stalling / Intermittent problem on ETS EC sanders
« Reply #13 on: March 16, 2021, 09:22 AM »
The original ETC EC 125 I sent in (Festool replaced it on the third try) was purchased in Q3 of 2017.  The replacement has been running fine for a year.

Until yesterday.

I'm sending it in this week, and breaking out the "Pro 5" to take it's place, hopefully temporarily.

Offline SRSemenza

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  • Finger Lakes Region, NY State , USA
Re: Stalling / Intermittent problem on ETS EC sanders
« Reply #14 on: March 16, 2021, 10:20 AM »



I don't believe that a time frame of 2020/2021 has been firmly established by anyone. It is mentioned as being the likely time frame in one post that I can find on FOG. And even that is a supposition based only on the relatively few ( in the grand scheme of things) posts on FOG.

I also have not seen anything that indicates that Festool is repairing all of them for free as a blanket concept regardless of warranty.

            I caution people in making assumptions based on anecdotal evidence from forum posts and individual experiences with Festool or dealers.  I am sure those are true and valid, but it is a big leap to say that something is definite or has been established as fact.  That's how rumors get started ...........................................

 Seth

Offline Wood_Slice

  • Posts: 91
Re: Stalling / Intermittent problem on ETS EC sanders
« Reply #15 on: March 16, 2021, 01:59 PM »
I wonder if some odd ball some portion of Rotex parts got stuck in the ETS sanders and they just want to perform Rotex mode lol. I don't have any experience with Rotex but it would be funny.  [big grin]
DF 500 + Assortments | ETS EC 125/3 EQ | CT MIDI + CT-Fi| MFT3 + Elements| Installer's Set |

Offline xedos

  • Posts: 478
Re: Stalling / Intermittent problem on ETS EC sanders
« Reply #16 on: March 16, 2021, 10:43 PM »
I just hope this isn't a widespread issue waiting to mushroom like the saw that wasn't a problem - but then turned out to be after all.

Offline binettea

  • Posts: 40
Re: Stalling / Intermittent problem on ETS EC sanders
« Reply #17 on: March 17, 2021, 08:10 PM »
Got my replacement ETS EC150/5 on the 30 days, but it also wobbles badly. I'm sending it in for warranty repairs.

Offline Macjacktastic

  • Posts: 1
Re: Stalling / Intermittent problem on ETS EC sanders
« Reply #18 on: March 24, 2021, 08:18 PM »
I bought my ETS EC 125/3 in 2018 and it's been exhibiting this problem since shortly after I bought it.  I finally boxed it up and sent it in for repair today and I'm really beginning to regret the purchase.  There's been a lot of speculation on how this problem can innocently crop up, but seriously - it has been around for years and it still exists?  There is something fundamentally wrong with a design process that can allow faulty products to be sent into the field - and a quality program that hasn't solved it in at least three years.

Offline binettea

  • Posts: 40
Re: Stalling / Intermittent problem on ETS EC sanders
« Reply #19 on: April 06, 2021, 08:26 PM »
Just wanted to add something to this. For some reason tonight I lowered the speed from 6 to 5 on my ETS EC 150/5, and the intermittent stopping issue seemed to go away. At 6, it was impossible to get any sanding done because it kept stalling and stopping. But on 5, I did quite a bit of sanding and it didn't stall or stop once. Is anybody else also experiencing that?

Offline mino

  • Posts: 378
Re: Stalling / Intermittent problem on ETS EC sanders
« Reply #20 on: April 07, 2021, 06:35 AM »
Just wanted to add something to this. For some reason tonight I lowered the speed from 6 to 5 on my ETS EC 150/5, and the intermittent stopping issue seemed to go away. At 6, it was impossible to get any sanding done because it kept stalling and stopping. But on 5, I did quite a bit of sanding and it didn't stall or stop once. Is anybody else also experiencing that?
I would expect such behavior if the overcurrent or overheat protection was kicking in when it should not.

That would indicate an electronics or sensor issue. Best you can do is send it in for a repair.

Or if speed 5 is OK and still well in warranty, wait a couple months until Festool has it sorted so you can get your sander back quickly once sent in.
The Machine does not have a brain. Use Yours!
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
AGC 18@AGC 125 flange, BHC 18, C 12, CTM 36, DRC 18/4, PSC 420, RS 200, TSC 55
Protool: AGP 125, VCP 260
Narex: EDH 82, EFH 36@LR32, EVP 13 H-2CA, S 57 A
My Precious: 376, 376, 376 holy, 632, 1016 holy, 1400 holy, 2520, GECKO, GRS 16 PE, GRS 16 PE

Offline binettea

  • Posts: 40
Re: Stalling / Intermittent problem on ETS EC sanders
« Reply #21 on: April 07, 2021, 04:54 PM »
That's what I'm thinking, and I had never read that anywhere yet, so I thought I would share in case it can help others. I'm actually nearing the end of the 30 days return window, and debating if I should keep (and send for repairs) or just return and wait for a new one to be available months down the road. The other problem I face is the vibration (or wiggle/wobble) that is very present, and so bad with a protection pad that I just can't use it that way. I was planning to use the net abrasive, for which I believe a pad saver is recommended, but the vibration is way too severe that way.

Offline Wood_Slice

  • Posts: 91
Re: Stalling / Intermittent problem on ETS EC sanders
« Reply #22 on: April 19, 2021, 04:56 PM »
Has anybody heard anything on this issue. I wanted to get the same sander again but I hear July is earliest for getting my hands on one again and that is an guesstimate by some of the dealers no concrete confirmation.
DF 500 + Assortments | ETS EC 125/3 EQ | CT MIDI + CT-Fi| MFT3 + Elements| Installer's Set |

Offline binettea

  • Posts: 40
Re: Stalling / Intermittent problem on ETS EC sanders
« Reply #23 on: April 19, 2021, 06:23 PM »
I was wondering the same thing. I'm currently using mine at speed 5 instead of 6, which makes it mostly usable, as I wait to hear that they are ready to perform the repair before I send it to them.

Offline Wood_Slice

  • Posts: 91
Re: Stalling / Intermittent problem on ETS EC sanders
« Reply #24 on: April 22, 2021, 06:13 PM »
Saw a status update on a dealers website as of 2 days ago the expected shipping date got pushed to August this year.
DF 500 + Assortments | ETS EC 125/3 EQ | CT MIDI + CT-Fi| MFT3 + Elements| Installer's Set |