TV/PVR Remotes sticking

I prised apart the 9yr old PVR remote yesterday as a few keys were getting a bit unresponsive.
Almost dripping with oily substance.
Bit more research shows this is from the silicone membrane and some theories are that it is because they were not cured long enough.
A techician suggests touching the pads with a hot soldering iron but warns against using Isopropyl on the circuit board.
My instinct is to give it all, including circuit board, a good soapy wash, rinse and dry and try the soldering iron tip.
What do the experts on here reckon?
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On 12/01/2020 12:48, AnthonyL wrote:

Order a replacement on Amazon?
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On 12/01/20 12:48, AnthonyL wrote:

I found that with my Panasonic PVR remote a year or so ago. Cleaning the contacts and membrane with IPA helped for a while, but it didn't last. In the end I bought a new remote from Amazon. It's worth checking prices as there was quite a variation between different suppliers.
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AnthonyL wrote:

build up of coffee/wine/cola/orange juice/skin oils more like!

I've always found isopropyl on a cotton bud is fine, or if none handy then vodka in a pinch

I'd leave it at that point and re-assemble

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On Sun, 12 Jan 2020 12:48:46 +0000, AnthonyL wrote:

From experience, oily sweat builds up - people hold onto remotes much more than they realise.
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On Sun, 12 Jan 2020 12:48:46 GMT, AnthonyL wrote:

Pads of what? The membrane or pads for each button on the PCB?

Why?

I'd see if water/detergent cleans off the oily residue first. It may need a solvent probably an alcohol based one...
Sticking small bits of ali foil on the membrane pad works quite well.
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On Sun, 12 Jan 2020 13:36:56 +0000 (GMT), "Dave Liquorice"

Risk of dissolving the black traces on the board
Something less concentrated eg meths might be safer.
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wrote:

Concentrated isnt the right word. They are both equally concentrated.
It isnt even clear that isopropanol is more likely to remove whatever conductive stuff is on the rubber either.
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On Sun, 12 Jan 2020 20:18:04 GMT, AnthonyL wrote:

Can't say that's ever happened to me.
Old remote board destined for WEEE. Just tried isopropanol, lighter fluid, plus gas (why not?) and Baufix thinners. First rub over with all of them on previously uncleaned areas made the bit of blue wipe quite black but subsequent rubs nowhere nearly as much. None removed the track. Not sure where me meths is, probably out in the garage after demonstrating model stationary steam engine to the lad...
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On 12/01/2020 20:18, AnthonyL wrote:

Using IPA on circuit boards is a pretty "industry" standard way of cleaning them - are we actually taking about the circuit board itself or the membrane under the keys?

Can't see it making much difference.
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AnthonyL wrote:

Had the same problem with two Sky remotes, both were old and had been hammered. Took apart and cleaned the rubber thing with nail varnish remover, it worked for a while. I got fed up and bought a new one from ebay for less than a tenner. They are not worth messing with.
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Had the same on my Panny TV remote.

I'd assumed something had been spilled on it.

I stripped mine down and gave it a good clean. Warm water plus washing up liquid, dried, then a blast of AF spray.
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Well be aware that the conductive gunge is needed as the rubber is not conductive. The only sure fire way is to make it all sqeaky clean then carefully cut some self adhesive ally foil to the shape of each button and glue them on. Other wise it will only be a short term fix and the gunge will build up again. To my mind the design is the problem. In the older remotes they had little click switches, but these conductive coated rubber mats are a total waist of time. The ok goes first and if on of the rows gets shorted by gungy mess then nothing works and the batteries go flat in about a day.
Somebody out there needs to make a remote that is built to last. Fat chance of that. Brian
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On 12/01/2020 12:48, AnthonyL wrote:

When faced with the same problem, I clean the flexible 'rubber' bit with Isopropyl alcohol and give the 'key' area of the PCB a wipe with a tissue dipped in the same.
I'd not use a soldering iron, the pads on the PCB are generally gold plated, once cleaned as per above, should be better than a tinned surface.
As for the silicone not being cured, never heard that. Even if it wasn't cured when made, I would think 9 years would be long enough!
I'd be more inclined to think it is just oil/moisture etc from handling etc. which gets trapped.
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Not according to:
http://p1repair.com/blog/2013/05/28/rubber-keypad-problems-liquid-oil-moisture-found-inside-the-buttons-what-is-it-where-does-it-come-from/
and other sources.
The oily substance is far too clear to be regular handling gunge and also is on too many surfaces rather than being concentrated around the buttons.
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On Sun, 12 Jan 2020 12:48:46 GMT, snipped-for-privacy@please.invalid (AnthonyL) wrote:

From my experience: Avoid the soldering iron! IPA is fine, on both the PCB and the silicone rubber. I have also used "brake cleaner", some highly volatile cocktail of solvents. Soap should also be fine on the rubber -- I'd personally skip water on the PCB.
The remote may eventually give out on the most-used buttons where the conductive rubber wears off. Then, get thee to ebay and search for "REPLACEMENT Rubbers for Remote Controllers Conductive Rubber Pads" or some such. (L2.69 for a hundred including postage and glue.)
Thomas Prufer
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