Smart Motor stopped working

I have a Smart Motor that has been working with no issues. Went to turn on the robot and now the motor does not turn.
I plugged the motor in the Port 1 on the brain with noting else connected. Went to ***Settings ***then ***Device Info ***and the display reports “Port 01 Empty”.

I have tried a different brain, different cable, and plugged this Smart Motor in to other ports. What ever port the Smart Motor is plugged in always reports empty.

Am I missing something here, or did the Smart Motor just die?


It might have died. Motors are rather sensitive due to the “builtin EMI generator”. But they rarely die altogether, it’s more often a firmware corruption problem.
You could try a quick fix attempt following this protocol:

  1. Connect a working motor to the port1 (of otherwise empty brain)
  2. Start the firmware updater, so it sees the motor.
  3. Silently swap in the broken motor.
  4. Invoke “Update -> Reinstall current version -> Specific port -> Port 1”
    If this fails, contact VEX support.

I have restored few devices this way. On the other hand, I have had a motor that enumerated well, reported manual rotations, but didn’t turn on its own. That was a really dead motor.

Thank-you for the suggestion. It acted like it was going to work then posted a failed message on the firmware updater program. And the port shows empty after attempting the update.

Aloha Tony,
When I come across the problems with motors that you described I usually have the kids test a few motors using the same wire. If it works, I have them swap the motor. If it doesn’t I have them switch the wire and then start the test all over again. I have a bunch of motors which the kids labeled as “Bad”. However, I never let the kids throw them away. I informed them that until I come up with a testing method which determines conclusively that the motors are bad I will not throw them out. (I actually use simpler words for them) It would be great if VEX IQ or one of us can share a fool proof testing method for motors. Until then, I’ll keep having kids swap them until they find what works.

I hope that helps.