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Broke Fog Machine


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Right. took my fog machine 2 a concert I was techinn for.


I left half way through cos I felt ill. my "Boss" who isn't really my boss was left with the fogger and he flooded the place and ruined the concert. he's not very good at his job.


Plug cable was pulled out so the coloured cables were exposed but it worked. used it for 2 gigs but a week after the concert it stopped working. it just wouldn't heat up. the fogger has no light to indicate it is on. normally you just plug it in and it just heats up. when its heated up a light comes on on the remote.#]

checked the fuse all good.


any ideas to what could be wrong? I know its a long shot but are there any common problems?





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From the loose description I'd guess this was a cheap and cheerful machine. Any decent quality fogger is most likely going to have at least a mains indicator neon.


I'd echo the other poster who says that the clue may be in the question....


If the mains wire has been pulled out of it's restraints, then it could well be disconnected from the internal contacts.

Your profile doesn't give your age, but you say you're a student - I wouldn't recommend that you take this box apart yourself but if you do decide to do so, take great care - the cheaper machines aren't renowned for hefty safety measures, and make SURE you're disconn from the mains first!!


If there's nothing wrong with the mains feed, I suspect it would be cheaper to invest in a new cheap fogger....

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<written as general reply for future refference, not completely ignoring what you said when I talk about does it heat up or check fuses>


foggers are REAALY simple machines...


your basically looking at a glorified kettle! (with a special wizmo automatic pump rather than old fassioned pour system hehe)


first off, I'll echo Ynot, check the 3 mains points are connected and go to the right places.. if one/some have disconnected, check fuse too... the live will go to the fuse, the neutral will exit from a the cuircuitry without a fuse, the earth will probably be connected via a screw/bolt to the chassis of the fogger.

Also, a simple check, if the mains lead was pulled, take a point meter to the plug pins, and test where they meet inside the machine.. has the cable been pulled and broken the cables cores?


Every rosco I have opened at work has the fuse very far downstream, and NOT as the first "item" after the cable enters the aperatus, therefore, if you've checked hte fuse (and its a rosco) dont just take it as red that its just a fuse problem.


get a volt meter.. and CAREFULLY..

(get someone to aide holding things open etc if you are in any doubt you might touch something)

check that you have elecricity going to the heater.. or the safer option, leave it, does it get warm to the touch (on the outside) after (whatever is) a normal time (for your machine).


Ok, assuming it gets hot, hang around near it and listen to see if you get the "clack" noise as the relay, which alows you to use the pump, switches.


The remote system you have, I dont know so cant comment on,

could be one with dials and more controls, the most simple type are just a button, completing a circuit.. again.. volt meter, push the button, does it actually complete the ciruit or not.. (best done with point meter dissconnected, no nasty electricity to be scared of)


if the relay clicked, and the button works, Next, push the button, and test for a voltage at the motor terminals..

if it gets voltage but doesnt spin, its the motor broken, if it does not get voltage, the realy is broked..


one last thing it can be, the temperature sensor could be broked/dissconnected.. also check the wire is not touching an electrical terminal, the other day I repaired one where the temp sensor wire was touching a fuse holders terminal... (now the wire has insulation!!!)


There you are.. a complete "how to fault-find a generic smoke machine"!



Finnally to answer your question:

Most common problems I've seen:

yuk, gunk and mess inside creating bad terminals.

wires which have been working too long in a small space filled with unused fuild and heat, going dry and crusty and generally bad all over..

I spend an inordinate amount of time just re-making complete wiring looms for our smoke machines!

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Look first a t the replacement cost! If it's under £50 it probably isn't worth repairing if you account for your time. If it is chinese then spares come by the package (called buy a new one anyway).


If you really are electrically competent then working cold and off power, work out what the cct is and what it should be, then make it right -insulation and termination and cord grips seem the first things to try.

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