If you have a Ubiquiti US-8-150W switch, and it’s suddenly dead or unstable, it’s probably the power supply. In this post, you’re going to learn what causes these switches to stop working as well as a few different ways to repair them. This article focuses on the US-8-150W, although this info may apply to other Ubiquiti models as well.
The Problem with the US-8-150W
The US-8-150W uses the Gospower G0398-15011480A power supply. If you do a quick Bing or Google search, you’ll find multiple people online that found the same dead power supply in their dead US-8-150W. Some people have repaired them, finding various faults. Some of the power supplies died with a loud bang, burn marks on the PCBs, and obviously failed components, others looked perfectly fine from a quick visual inspection but simply didn’t work. Before we continue, a quick disclaimer: this article is for entertainment purposes only, and working on power supplies can be dangerous – I’m not responsive for anything that may go wrong.
The innards of our US-8-150W looked OK from a brief visual inspection. Using a multimeter, I tested the output of the power supply and found it to be fluctuating between 0 and 24V while still connected to the switch’s mainboard. Upon unplugging the output, it simply sat around 24V… definitely not useful when it’s supposed to be outputting a steady 53V!
Unfortunately, the G0398-15011480A doesn’t lend itself to easy repair. It has a single heatsink that covers about two thirds of the PSU (power supply unit). Anyway, once the heatsink was removed a closer visual inspection it was obvious the top of the primary capacitor, an “STGCON” 450v/150uF, was bulged. Removing the plastic covering made it easier to see and photograph.
Replacing that failed capacitor with a used Nippon Chemi-Con KXG 450V/100uF out of some other random dead PSU for testing purposes restored a steady 53V output – thankfully no other components on this power supply were damaged when the original cap died. The trouble is, it’s hard to source a trustworthy replacement capacitor with the same specs and dimensions. Something like this should work.
Solution 1: Fix the OEM PSU
If you can, fix the original power supply. It’s a bit tedious, but it’s the cheapest option. Hopefully you just need a single capacitor, and nothing else was taken out by the failed cap. If you need help, contact me and I may be able to offer an affordable repair if you ship me the power supply and/or switch.
Solution 2: Direct Replacement PSU
An easy, direct replacement power supply is available, although it was officially discontinued by the manufacturer in 2020, so it might be hard to find. The Mean-Well ASP-150-48 has the same dimensions, mounting holes, and connectors. While it’s only a 48V unit vs the original 53V unit, users have confirmed it works fine. At the time of this writing, you can purchase the Mean-Well ASP-150-48 on Amazon, but it’s a whopping $120. I found them online at other places too, priced similarly. Once the supply of these supplies dries up, there is no other known direct replacement available – Neither Ubiquiti nor Gospower offer them. If you find a good direct-fit alternative, please let me know in the comments section below.
Solution 3: Alternate Replacement PSU
Searching eBay and Amazon for “48v power supply” brings up a bunch of new and used power supplies that may or may not work. In theory, any 48V-53V DC power supply will work.
For my US-8-150W, I found a lightly used Cosel LEA50F-48-Y on eBay for like $10 shipped. It’s only rated for 50W, not 150W, but for my usage (only one PoE device) this is not a problem. I did have to rearrange the pins on the output connector and make my own mounts, and for safety I should have run a ground from the unused ground pin on the input connector, but it worked perfectly. The LEA50F-48-Y does have adjustable output, which is cool, so I set it to about 52V, but even if whatever unit you find is just 48V you should be OK.
Another option is to use an external power adapter and splice that into the wires from the 4-pin connector that goes into the mainboard of the switch. If you want to get fancy about it, drill a hole in the back of the switch, install a DC jack, and either leave the old/disconnected AC plug as a dummy or pry it out and cover it with something.
US-8-150W vs US-16-150W Power Supplies
If you’re lucky, you’ll end up with a dead US-16-150W as well, that died for some other reason. I acquired a US-16-150W that wasn’t working, although the power supply was just fine. Something more serious is wrong with that one – I’m still troubleshooting it. In the meantime, since they use interchangeable power supplies, I ended up using the much better designed power supply from the US-16-150W in the US-8-150W. As you can see, the design is far better – the heatsink is not covering the primary capacitor, and although CapXon is still a low-grade part, it’s better than STGCON.
So, what did Ubiquiti do wrong?
Obviously this is not an isolated issue – after all, you ended up on this article for a reason. While we’ll never know the true failure rate, it shouldn’t be this high and would have been very easily preventable.
First things first, the Gospower power supply is a bad design. It’s that simple. One large heatsink covering a subpar primary capacitor? Brilliant! /s.
Next up, the cooling on these switches is a joke. Fanless is OK for low-power consumer grade networking equipment but not for business-class equipment with PoE support.
On the US-8-150W, the addition of a couple fans would have made a huge difference. Sure, that cheap primary cap on the Gospower PSU would still get toasty, but it probably would have lasted 5+ years with no issues. If you want to add a fan or two to the US-8-150W, keep in mind you’ll need to also install a DC-to-DC converter to power them as 30mm or 35mm 48V DC fans aren’t readily available.
A note about the US-16-150W – that’s a dumb design too – and that’s why there are also plenty of reports of the 16-porter having power supply failures as well. It has two fans but they are nowhere near the power supply. Either relocating one of the existing fans nearer to the power supply or adding a third fan would have cost pennies.
I’d love to hear from you!
Have one of these with the same problem? Fixed it? Something else? Let us know in the comments below.
Fabulous. thank you. My US-8-150W died during upgrade today. Rats.
My system has spent 99.9% of the last three years OFF – being turned on just to keep it all upgraded.
So electrolytics can fade away when not charged … is that correct?
So it is possible that the cap died because it’s been off so much … ?
Thank you so much for sharing great ideas on solutions.
I’ll have some fun now.
Have you confirmed the problem is the capacitor in yours? I’m curious. Thank you!
Hello, I came across this post as I’m looking for people with experience fixing this switch. Mine is a bit different – the switch does not turn on, but I checked the PSU is outputting 54V both from the PSU output and from the board connector input. I am suspecting there is a bad diode (D1) next to the 4 pin DC connector. Do you think you can check what the reading is on your working one? Thank you!
Same issue not sure if it is capacitor but getting readings of 38-48v and a popping sound like a Capacitor load. The little LED on the psu also blinks in time to the sound.
16 port 150watt NZ 240v version.
I came across a friend’s usw doing this today…confirmed the large mushroom capacitor was at fault as per this posts theme above.
Looking online, I couldn’t find any nz sources for this cap and opted to drop in a comparable 450v 180uf 35mm height replacement as that was on hand. PSU functional again.
Replacement of cap required unsoldering the heat sink mounting tabs. The heat sink also needs a section removed to allow for the 35mm capacitor. Cut, filed reinstalled in just over an hour all up.
If you’re creative with a cutoff wheel in a drill you can make a hole in the heatsink for the cap without removing it 😉 Just gotta be sure to clean off all the metal flakes from the board before powering it on.
Great article! thank you. I had the exact same issue, it was the capacitor. Ended up desoldering the heatsinc and replacing the capacitor. It’s run great now. I do have some pictures of the process if you want to add ti the article.
Sure, I’d be happy to add them to the article! Feel free to reach out via contact page. Thank you.
There is a thread here https://community.ui.com/questions/Is-there-a-problem-with-US-8-150W-switches/71d6e953-f315-45dc-943e-7cd292a7e370?page=10 discussing these issues. I have ports that is not providing proper PoE/networking as it started to exhibits issues after like 3-4 years of usage. Really did not expect the short lifespan.
In fact with USG there was also some issue too https://community.ui.com/questions/Unifi-Security-Gateway-USG-Dead/c4dd29e6-4595-4b6c-bd89-574824dd77b7?page=2 but luckily it was a much easy replacement of adapters. Still, it was still a good few days/week of downtime while I tried to order a spare adapter online.
Really bad quality all around, doesn’t seem like professional brand except that the APs is nice. If not for the ease of use and me being able to get APs/router/switches separately (instead of like an Asus consumer 3in1) I would’ve shifted elsewhere. Any 8 port switch (with poe out) recommendations that is stable and actually using quality hardware parts?
I have replaced the capacitor, Still no joy, I noticed R210 was blown and had some burn marks on the thermal pad. Do you know the value of this resistor? If it’s even a resistor. I assume R210 means resistor correct?
I don’t have one of these handy to check that right now, all my boards at my storage unit… can you send some good pics?
It’s a bit of a late answer, but since I’m troubleshooting mine as well, I kappen to know the answer.
R210 is marked with the following three digits “100”, which translates to 10 ohms.