Ethernet shield gets really hot

Hello all, I have a generic ethernet shield with a w5100 chip, which is normal. After only a minute though, the chip is ridiculously hot and I cannot touch it for longer than a few seconds. And after a little longer the Arduinos 5v regulator is quite hot (not too hot to touch but abnormally hot). The chip and board still work, even at these Temps but is there something wrong?

Do you have the possibility to measure the current that is drawn by the board / by your total setup?

Hi,
Do you have any other sensors or devices running of the arduino 5V rail.
What is the voltage that you are feeding the arduino?

Tom.... :slight_smile:

Mike44449:
even at these Temps but is there something wrong?

Probably not. I think it is pretty normal. I understand both Arduino and the Ethernet shield have the same crude regulator system, and the shield gets power from the VIN pin. They both get hot, or very hot. If your power input is more than 9v, I guess they get insanely hot. The regulator is that little flat thing beside the power jack with a tab on one side and three legs on the other. On the Ethernet shield, the tab is soldered to a bigger patch of conductor, thereby acting as a token heat sink. I guess this suggests the wastage is even greater than on the Arduino.

Unfortunately I do not have the capabilities to measure current at the moment, as my meter is broke and shipped out for repair. I have considered buying a better quality ethernet shield simply because I feel that the fact that the shield was $10 has something to do with this, something has probably gone internally. For now I will continue to analyze it but until my meter gets back I cannot do much.

Mike44449:
I have considered buying a better quality ethernet shield simply because I feel that the fact that the shield was $10 has something to do with this, something has probably gone internally.

Again, probably not, and indeed about the only thing you can say about a $10 Ethrnet shield is that you paid too much for it.

You have already said it works, so letting it continue to do so is probably a constructive idea, just don't hold your breath waiting for it to fail. Answering reply #2 might help.

I have a Mega and W5100 shield running for about two years in a small enclosure. 24/7
The chip gets warm, but not too hot to touch.
The regulators don't get hot either, because I have regulated 7.5volt to the DC jack (= 6.8volt on V-in).
I expect 9volt on V-in or the DC jack might kill it.
Leo..

My W5100 is too hot to keep my finger on it, and I'm told that it is normal. I have added a heat sink to it, and I dimmed the leds with an extra resistor and in my sketch I reduce the number of reading/writing to it. It is still hot. But that is "normal".

When you buy bad quality, then at least buy the cheapest there is. An Ethernet Shield version R3 with W5100 costs less than 5 dollars on AliExpress.

On Ebay are many cheap modules with the ENC28J60 (not officially supported by Arduino). That one also gets hot.

The newest Ethernet Shields have the W5500 : Ethernet Shield for Arduino - W5500 Chipset : ID 2971 : $32.50 : Adafruit Industries, Unique & fun DIY electronics and kits

Koepel:
My W5100 is too hot to keep my finger on it, and I'm told that it is normal.

Depends on the ambient temp.
I estimate that it could get ~35-40C above ambient.
It's about 10 degrees C in my basement now, so I can still touch it.
Leo..

Wawa:
I expect 9volt on V-in or the DC jack might kill it.

I submit that that is nonsense. The 9v wall wart is what most people use and, if it fried Ethernet shields, everybody would know about it, and the maker would be out of business. I reckon Wawa would be about right. I have run mine in continuous service through an Australian summer so now lessee, average of 35 + 35, yes 70, it would be at least that, and it does it week after week.

I hear tell the ENC28J60 uses a lot less power and happily runs off Arduino's 5v like any other small module, but I don't think that justifies using it.

There is 9v on the input, there are no other devices connected to the board.

It should not be a problem.