Tech Tips

Scroll down for VEX IQ Tech Tips which can help teams quickly diagnose problems with VEX IQ robots



Other Tech Tips can be found in the blog category or by the following tag

VEX IQ Batteries not charging and charger blinking red

If you find that your battery refuses to charge when placed in the charger and the charger's light blinks red this means that the battery has been left in the brain too long and the battery has discharged too much. All is not lost as you can 'jump start' the battery by doing the following.

"Jump start" them by attaching them to a brain, along with a motor and gear. By spinning the gear, it sends a small amount of energy to the brain and it briefly lights up. After a few spins, the battery will usually be able to take a charge. This is especially useful with batteries that have not been used for a while.


From another user "Had a close look at the middle pin on the charger unit. it "looked" ok but was a tad lower down than the main contacts. Its also narrower and smaller. I tried to lift it a little and presto the red light went from flashing to solid.  I tried with the second battery and really had to pry the middle pin up a little bit more forcefully. I also noticed that if you pressed the battery down more solidly onto the contacts then the red light went solid."

If this does not work then please contact us and we will find another way of getting you going.


VEX IQ Radio issues (not working as not properly inserted)

A few people having issues with their VEX IQ radios not working when they build their robots for the first time.

The cause is that the fit of the radio to the connection pins is very tight and the pins do not always slide into the radio due to a slight misalignment. As we do not like to force things, we all stop pushing the radio in when we feel it come to a mechanical stop. This is the right thing to do however it means that the radio will not work as it is not plugged in all the way.

This is very simple to fix as follows:-

1/ Check that both the radio module in thebrain and the radio module in the joystick are fully inserted as the pictures below show. Correct insertion is indicated by the distances indicated matching the photographs.

                Radio correctly in Brain......................................................Radio correctly in Joystick

2/ If the radio is correctly inserted then this is not the issue and you should contact me. DO NOT REMOVE THE RADIO ONCE IT IS CORRECTLY INSERTED AS YOU CAN DAMAGE THE CONNECTION PINS. (See #5)

3/ If the radio is not inserted fully then try pushing a little harder until you hear a solid 'click' this is normal as there are clips that hold the radios into the joystick and brain. Once you hear a click and the radio is seated as shown in #1 the radio will work as expected.

4/ If the radio does not click home with firm pressure then you may have to move the pins in the radio slot a little to one side or the other (in the directing shown by the arrow in the photograph below). Only a small movement should be needed. This canbe done with a small screwdriver to gently push the pin cover very slightly (less than 1/2mm) to one side. This will allow the cover to slip into the radio's slot. Repeat steps 3&4 until the radio clicks home.

5/ If you can see the gold pins with no plastic cover (i.e. the pins look like the pins in the photo below) then STOP and contact the Kiwibots.


Do NOT remove radios

A technical advisory note on the small radio modules that clip into the brain and the joystick.

It has been noticed that if you remove either of these modules from their socket that a small plastic shroud the surrounds the pins in the brain or joystick can sometimes stay inside the RF module and damage will be made to the pins when you try to put the module back in.

So please DO NOT remove the RF modules for any reason once you have inserted them, not even to check if it will happen to you. Complete disassembly of the brain or joystick is required to rectify the issue.


How do I update the firmware?


Our Sponsors

Our Values



"With the help of others we can reach further"

These days 'who you know' is as important as 'what you know'.
The Kiwibots and their sponsors are looking for people that are team players, they discourage teams-of-one.
A team will outperform a single person and they will be able to get involved in everything that the VEX competition has to offer.
The Excellence Award in New Zealand is out of reach of teams-of-one! 

Gracious Professionalism

Being gracious in victory is sometimes more difficult than defeat. While the events are competitive, all team members are prepared to assist other teams so they can perform at their best.

Good Luck to all this season! 

  • Facebook Social Icon
  • YouTube Social  Icon
  • Flickr Social Icon
  • Twitter Social Icon

Questions? Contact:


Mob: 09 213 2874