We love a musical singing book toy, don’t we. They’re great for encouraging children to form words, read and follow a narrative. We have a few of these and they’re all great fun, all the time the batteries hold up.
We’re not so fond of musical books when they seemingly start by themselves, at one o’clock in the morning, when there’s no one else in the house. Very creepy.
Make and model: VTECH Electronics Singing Nursery Rhyme Book
Fault reported: Poor sound quality
Cost of replacement: N/A
Cost of parts: £0.00
Hours spent on repair: About 10 minutes
Tools needed: Small file, cleaning cloths
Sundry items: Contact cleaner
Repair difficulty: 1/10
This toy was a hand-me-down and had enjoyed a few years of use already, before it came in to our household, but it was in good condition and still has many more years left in it yet.
Recently though the singing emanating from the book was becoming a bit off-key and to be frank, rather than bringing joy the noise coming from the toy was enough to induce nightmares. I keep a ready supply of rechargeable ‘AA’ batteries in this house and after popping out the old ones, the new ones fitted, I assumed all would be well, but not so.
Despite fresh power, the singing was still horrible and wobbly. A quick test of both sets of batteries (old and new) revealed that the original batteries were fine and that something else was at play.
Time to delve a little deeper.
Galvanic corrosion can occur when two different metals in close contact with each other, chemically react. The corrosion forms a barrier, in this case between the electrical contacts of the toy and battery to form a resistance. This means that the toy, with the corroded contacts, wouldn’t get the full power it needed.
There was some minor corrosion on the contacts that needed a quick clean with some cloth and contact cleaner, something I keep on the shelf for such an occasion.
This did the trick and with the original batteries fitted, the toy was back on song once more, ready for another performance.